October 27, 2006

'ZbornToy' for AE 3D Caustics, and Refractions, and Re-lighting

restyling Frischluft (Lenscare, etc) to Taronites, ZbornToy seems to go beyond abilities of obscure nodes in Motion Plug-in Conduit...

from Jonas Hummelstrand's General Specialist...

"Here's a fresh new way to composite externally rendered 3D images in After Effects. The plug-in ZbornToy takes grayscale depth maps and magically let's you continue tweaking and change many parameters from within AE.

In some ways, the technique is similar to Walker Effects' Channel Lighting, but with ZbornToy, not only can you change the lighting afterwards, you can also render with background refractions, cast caustic reflections onto other layers, and much more."

October 26, 2006

ProLost TV

Stu says ProLost has a video Podcast.*

* So far it's just graphics with music but you get good projects and presets.

Adobe back to Mac with Soundbooth

Adobe released a public beta of a new cross-platform audio application today called Soundbooth. Soundbooth "provides the tools video editors, designers, and others who do not specialize in audio need to accomplish their everyday work." Soundbooth is not an Elements product but will replace Audition in future releases of Production Studio. At first glimpse, I'd rather have Audition, but we'll see:

Audition: for audio professionals and experts
Soundbooth: for video professionals and Flash designers who need an easy but powerful audio tool for things like cue integration with Flash, Actionscript, and FLV

Audition: complete audio toolset with editing, mixing, CD burning, etc.
Soundbooth: Single file editor (ala Cool Edit 2000)

Audition: existing code base, Win only
Soundbooth: new code base, Win/MacTel

Audition: DAW-like multi-track features let you package your music as a Soundbooth Score (also available is separate SDK and packaging tool)
Soundbooth: Soundbooth Scores, similar in ways to SonicFire Pro, provide music bed and but things like ambient sound effects tracks.

There's more at Create Digital Music, the Creative COW preview, and product manager Hart Shafer's blog.

Details on saving FLVs and converting them

Here's a detailed tutorial for different browsers and OSes:
How to Copy Files Off YouTube and Convert them for your Video iPod, which mentions MoviePod (Mac/Win), another app that converts movies, with a single Drag & Drop.

And via DVGuru, a quite comprehensive Amazing YouTube Tools Collection from Quick Online Tips.

Update 10-26-06:
There's even a YouTube movie that explains how to get things off YouTube.

October 23, 2006

Windows Vista shell:revealed

With the avalanche of Adobe updates coming next year it'll be tough keeping track of both OSX and Windows, and who knows if Apple's emulation of Windows will improve, but Microsoft actually has an appealing subsite on Windows Vista (sorta) called shell:revealed, plus the start of a team blog and tips & tricks.

October 20, 2006

Light graffiti in AE

I first saw "light graffiti" posted by PIPS:lab as a Shockwave site. After graf experiments flowered further Wired did an article, and now Apple has a cool iPod commercial.

Andrew Kramer shows you a similar technique in AE with Trapcode Particular at Creative Cow.

Update: newer posts on these topics can be found under the tags graffiti, and light.

October 19, 2006

Easy bones in Anime Studio

A famous techie artist recommended Anime Studio (previously known as Moho), which has bone rigging that allows you to easily create a skeleton that can be manipulated to animate characters, simple drawings, or objects. The same company also offers MagicalSketch, a sketching program for kids and new 3D users that I think I'll get a nephew.

October 17, 2006

Indies Can't Charge for their Work, part2

Google and Apple don't really let independent media-makers to upload content to its for-sale services, but others do and CinemaTech has a list. While the biggies are waiting for Hollywood there's a bunch of people moving into building their delivery systems just in my little world.

CinemaTech also ponders NetFlix download services, which I get confused with CustomFlix (Movie Cleaner heritage), now an Amazon company.

October 11, 2006

YouTube & copyright, webisode viewers, and movie download problems

Scott Kirsner of CinemaTech is gaining traction with more interesting web video articles, moving from The Hollywood Reporter to Variety.

KROMAG, a free French-English motion graphic magazine

from XPLSV.tv:
Kromotion, a French motion graphics blog, has a free PDF of the 1st issue of KROMAG, a French-English motion graphic magazine.

Blend Modes on Collapsed Layers

from Motionworks:
"Have you ever been annoyed by not being able to apply a blend mode to a collapsed layer? ...[Here's a workaround:]

Apply an effect to the collapsed precomp (this can be something like EFFECTS > EXPRESSION CONTROLS > ANGLE CONTROL that does nothing) and the blend mode popup will become active again."

October 8, 2006

Celtx, open source pre-production software

YouMakeMedia reviews Celtx, open source pre-production software for film, video, theatre, and animation that includes client and collaboration features (intro movies here). I'm not sure if free is better than paying for Gorilla.

For background see The Filmmaking Paper Trail and the Gorilla Course.

FLVTool2: Flash video and meta data manipulation

Some compression apps don't support Flash Cue Points, so this might help:
FLVTool2 "can calculate a lot of meta data and insert a onMetaData tag. It can cut FLV files and add cue Points (onCuePoint). A debug command lets you see inside our FLV and the print command gives you meta data information in XML or YAML format."

And here's where I'm storing my link to Perian (requires OS 10.4) a plug-in for Quicktime that allows play of files encoded with a non-standard codecs like FLV, XviD, or 3ivX. And if I forget Flash Developer Center.

October 6, 2006

Render Policies for AE Plug-ins

I missed this not-too dated Toolfarm list of usage policies for filters on separate render node machines.

After Effects 7 and Flash 8 Integration

Lynda.com has new training on After Effects 7 and Flash 8 Integration with Lee Brimelow, including the use of Dr. Woohoo's tools. You can get access to Lynda QT tutorials for just $25 per month.

Fonts and DVD resources, from DV Guru

...a decent starting resource list from DV Guru, by Russell Heimlich:

Movie Fonts Sample