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In Motion 4 Essential Training, Ian Robinson shows how to start building outstanding motion graphics and animations for video production. He demonstrates how to build custom text animations with the new Adjust Glyph tool and explores Motion’s amazing real-time 3D tools. Ian highlights working in the 3D space, creating depth with lights and shadows, and using reflections to add realism. He gives practical advice on how to integrate Motion into a professional video workflow, round-tripping with Final Cut Pro and sending a final project to Compressor. Exercise files accompany this course.
In Motion there are some pretty powerful tools you can use to create different shapes and lines. In this video, we're going to create some basic shapes that we can use to create some DVD menu buttons and then as we continue we're also going to create an Illustrator style bird so you can see some of the more advanced functions of the different tools. Let's get started with some basic shape tools. Go up to the Create buttons and if you click and hold on the Rectangle tool, you'll notice you can not only create rectangles, but ellipses and circles as well as lines. Let's just choose Rectangle for now, so go ahead and click on that and just click-and-drag in your canvas.
If you hold down Shift as you drag, it will make a perfect square and since I want to make a rectangle, I'll just let it go. And now we've just created our first shape in Motion. Let's go ahead and grab the Select tool and take a look at what we have got. Press F7 to open up the HUD and you notice we have some basic options for this shape. We can tell it whether we want it to be filled or to be outlined. Now, I know it's kind of hard to see the outline with these lines on, so go up to your View menu and just turn off the Lines. The handles, they're okay. You notice in this slider you can adjust the Width.
So let's just make the Width a little larger and the Feather option is only when you have a Fill selected. Now, let's go to the Inspector. You can click this i button in the upper -right-hand corner of the HUD or press Command+3 to open the Inspector. Make sure you're on the Shape tab and let's look at some of the other options that we have. Notice first off, we have a lot more options under Outline in the Inspector. We can change the Brush Color using RGB sliders, the Opacity and we can check this box here called Preserve Width. What's nice about this, with it selected, if you scale this object any size, you'll notice it remains the exact same width.
We'll go ahead and de-select that for now. And there are some minor options you can adjust as far as the Joint, the Start Cap, and the End Cap. Now you might be looking and just going what are you talking about, Start Cap and End Cap? If you go down to the next set of sliders here, you'll notice there is First Point Offset and a Last Point Offset. Go ahead and click-and-drag the First Point Offset and you'll notice that this line actually can animate. And if you press F5 to open up your Project pane, you'll notice this Rectangle.
I'm just going to press Shift+Z to snap my canvas to be smaller and move my HUD out of the way. You'll notice the Rectangle has now switched to a paintbrush. This is really nice because once you create the shape you can fully animate it using all the Paint effects in Motion. We're not going to get into that right now, but I just wanted you to note, anytime you change something to an outline, it will automatically change into a paint shape. Let's go ahead and move the First Point Offset back up here and customize this shape a little bit. I want to cut this corner of the bottom of the shape.
So in order to do that, all you have to do is just double-click directly on the line and that will activate the Adjust Points tool. You can also select this tool by clicking and holding and then choosing it in the pulldown menu. Now with this tool selected, you'll notice when I move back over the line, I'll get a plus button. Go ahead and double-click on the lower line to add a new control point. Double-click on the line on the right to add another control point. Now, all we have to do is delete the corner point. So if you Ctrl-click on that point, you'll notice in the pop-down menu we have an option for Delete Point.
Go ahead and choose that and now we've cut off the corner of the box. You can tweak this just by clicking directly on the control point and holing down the Command key, if you press your arrow keys, you can move it up or down, left or right. I'm just pushing the down key and again if we click on the other control point, we can go ahead and adjust that accordingly. Now that we've created this DVD style menu button, let's go ahead and create a little more advanced shape. In the Layers tab, collapse the Group and rename it MenuButton.
Go ahead and lock it so we don't have any chance of accidentally changing it and add a new layer. Since we're not going to be working with the MenuButton anymore, go ahead and de-select it's on checkbox. Now instead of using a Basic Shape tool, let's go ahead and use the Bezier tool. Now if you have ever used an Adobe application before, you're probably somewhat familiar with the Bezier tool. You will notice it looks like a pen tip and to add some control points, all you have to do is click on the canvas. Now we'll get started just making a beak for our bird. Let's go ahead and click one, two, three and when you roll back over the original point, you'll see the closed circle and now it will let you know it closed the path.
And so now we have our beak. I know it doesn't look like much but just follow along. Now to make the body of the bird, I want it to have some kind of round edges. So rather than using the Bezier tool, I'm going to click and hold and use this other tool that's hidden underneath called the B-Spline tool. I'm just going to start clicking and creating the body of the bird. What the B-Spline tool does is it allows you to create multiple points that easily get rounded as you create the different sections.
So there we have got the tail, come on down to the body. We're going to make a good healthy chubby bird and close that path off. So now we have a basic body shape and it looks kind of funny because he is all one color right now. So make sure to go to the Shape tab in the Inspector and under Style, let's change the Fill from Color to Gradient. The Gradient Adjustment tool you'll find in a lot of other places in Motion. So follow along as I make some adjustments. But understand once I teach this to you once, you'll be able to see it throughout the application.
Anytime you see this menu, it's going to function the exact same way. So on the top, we've a bar that actually controls the opacity of this object. Now, we're not going to make any adjustments to this right now, because I want the bird to be completely opaque. We'll mess with this little bit more when we get into animating particles. Right now, let's go ahead and just adjust some of the options for the Gradient itself. If you notice, to build the Gradient it works from left to right. And you'll notice if you start on the left hand side here, and just click in this little color chip well, it brings up my options to change the color.
Now, I would like the bird to have a nice red head, so I'm actually going to leave that alone. Let's change the body color over here. Go ahead and click on the Blue chip and we'll just mix in some more colors. Let's move down to the Type pop-up menu and if you click on that, you'll notice I can switch between Linear and Radial. I want to keep this Linear but I want to adjust exactly where this gradient goes throughout the shape of the bird. The easiest way to do this is to actually use yet another tool. If you click and hold on the left button in your View tools, the last tool option is the Select Transform tool.
And you'll notice now I have a direct visual representation as to what's going on with the gradient and how it's mapped on to the body of the bird. So if I click-and-drag on the control triangle, you'll notice now I'm adjusting the angle of this gradient. And if I want the body of the bird to be a little bit more red, I can just go ahead and drag this out and it's adjusted. You notice as I drag each one of these control points here, it adjusted the value sliders for the start and the end points in the gradient.
You can also adjust colors directly in here as well just by clicking and dragging on the color clips. So now we have covered the main tools to create different shapes within Motion.
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