Posts Tagged ‘adobe’

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Working on new Minosa Films blog header

August 8, 2008
New design WIP - Minosa Films blog header (Blender's node editor.)

New design WIP - Minosa Films blog header (Blender's node editor.)

Recently I have been working on a new header design for the Minosa Films blog.  It is not done yet, but it is turning out well.  I am using render layers and compositing them together, which is a first for me.  Praise God!  The theme is darker and has a moon, branches, the words “Minosa Films” and a nifty little design behind it.

Originally I was designing this in a hope to make an animated Minosa Films title intro for a promo video about Minosa Films.  I could make it theatrical like a silver screen trailer, or I could make it more instructional, like an interview or special feature.

I need to get back to solving the mystery of a successful video workflow.  My current progress on that is:

Import HD SP video file (.tod) into PowerDirector Express.
Drag video file onto the timeline.  Hit produce.
Go through a number of options and choose to export as an MPEG2 (for DVDs.)
Wait for it to render.
Import .mpg file into Adobe Premiere Pro 1.0.
Place on timeline.  There are no apparent “hiccups”.
Export video to .mov (Apple QuickTime.)
Play video in Media Player Classic – it works.

Goals:
I would prefer to someday edit in full HD; use a faster (better) conversion method; buy and use a newer, different, HD compatible non-linear editing (NLE) app; edit .avi (or .mpg if I choose to);  export to .avi, .mpg. with no  errors when opening in MPC (Media Player Classic,); be able to use After Effects (AE) in conjunction with Premiere (currently when I export from After Effects I get a jittered effect to the video and some artifacts.  Most unpleasing and… terrible.)

Goals in list form:

  • HD
  • Best conversion method (no conversion if possible.)
  • New NLE software
  • No editing hiccups
  • Excellent file export
  • Cross-software use

But for now, no HD!  No fooling around with the unnecessary.  😉

Thanks for listening,

God bless, prayers,

-b

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First successful alpha in Blender!

July 27, 2008

Yahoo!  Praise God!  I have made my first successful alpha texture in Blender!

What is alpha?  It is the “invisible”, the transparency per se.  Whatever is set as alpha, you can’t see.  Whatever is a normal color, like red, green, or blue (RGB) displays in it’s normal color.  With alpha you can have a complicated image (say, of a leaf,) applied to a plane.  The area around the leaf will be turned to alpha.  Loading the image (PNG or TGA) into Blender, you then apply it to a plane, and go through a series of steps.  Finally, rendering it, you get a wonderful result:

First successful alpha leaf in Blender

First successful alpha leaf in Blender

Well, maybe not all that wonderful, but the possibilities sure are astounding!

Imagine a cutout animation, set in a 3D world!  Or a tree with twenty thousand leaves – imagine it, you don’t have to model a complicated leaf, duplicate it twenty thousand times, and make your polygon count 4,000,000,000, causing your render time to go bonkers!  Instead, just apply the alpha image to all your leaves (a simple plane,) and kapow!  Your render time is lightning fast compared to what it could have been!

Go ahead and find out how to do alpha texturing in Blender. Carefully follow the steps.  One important step that I didn’t get right is this: for any objects that you want to recieve the shadow of your alpha image, make sure you turn on TraShadow in the Shaders Panel (for the objects that are recieving the shadow.)

Here’s an image of the GIMP and Blender, and what some of it looks like.

Making the leaf transparent with alpha - using GIMP and Blender

Making the leaf transparent with alpha - using GIMP and Blender

God bless,

Thanks for listening!

-b

P.S. I have run into a problem editing the interview of Dr. Narendra Singh.  When I get to a certain place in the video, the video gets stuck and he is frozen saying part of the same word.  This is an error, and some fault with the program or video file.  The video file plays fine, so my guess is it is Premiere.  Now is the question of “Now what?!”

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Progress made – editing

July 27, 2008

Well, the conversion of the .tod worked.  Praise the Lord!  I have converted it through Power Director Express, to the resolution of 720×480 (.avi).  Adobe Premiere Pro 1.0 can’t handle HD, so with this lower DV resolution I can edit my interview of Dr. Singh!

Dr. Singh Interview 08 - in Adobe Premiere Pro 1.0

Dr. Singh Interview 08 - in Adobe Premiere Pro 1.0

This is great news, because it means I can start working on video with what I have now, even though I’m not doing HD yet.

I hope to learn more on how to use Blender (www.blender.org,) the open source 3d content creation suite.  I may work on something in Blender soon.  If mastered, I would be able to do title effects, 3D animations, compositing, and CG FX for my films.  But until then, my options are somewhat limited, at least in the area of 3D animations and beautiful CG FX.

Once again, any film ideas are very welcome.  We’ll see what comes…

Ciao,

Thanks for listening,

-b

P.S. I have also found out how to handwrite subtitles for Adobe Encore.  Now I can work on the subtitles for MIG (Miracle In Gansu play to DVD,) and work to complete the project.  (Previously I had tried to write the subtitles in Encore, which caused the Encore file to get corrupted.  I recommend writing subtitles in a third-party app (like Notepad,) by hand, and then import them.)

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New Film Ideas

July 11, 2008

This evening a new idea came on how to extend the short film “Is This Love?” (not yet filmed.)  With this extended beginning sequence you will get a better awareness on the beliefs of the two main characters and (hopefully) get some background story on both of them, as well as setting up the film better for the climax.

Besides that it there are some other ideas floating around, not so much ideas as concepts.  The difference (in this situation) being that ideas would imply actually having some sort of film plot or overall concept, whereas film concepts would be “Oh, wouldn’t it be cool to make a sci-fi film!” or “Hey, we have to film here“.

So, anyhow, whether they be ideas or concepts, or some of both, they are circulating around some.  For instance, recently I have seen that others are/have done sci-fi (science fiction) films, and it would be really neat to do a good sci-fi film, totally unique and more realistic than “Star Wars” or “Star Trek”.  Also, I have brainstormed with a friend a little about doing film about brother inventors.  Filming in old rural towns is a wonderful location solution, and such buildings as the Whipple Company Store & Museum (www.whipplecompanystore.com) would provide an interesting backdrop for a story (or at least to be included in the film at some point.)

After looking at some success stories featuring the Adobe products I can get pumped up and scared at the same time.  “Wow, look, you can make your film dreams come true right at home on your own desktop computer”, and “Oh, yikes.  You are mentioning things I have no idea of how to meet” and “They have a whole post-production crew”.  So you are confronted both with the beauty and mystery of the challenge – the hope and the fear.

I am looking very keenly on a certain model for the HD camcorder.  I know which one I will most likely buy, and I may make the purchase very soon.  News on that later.

Looking at the Adobe CS3 Production Premium (http://www.adobe.com/education/products/creativesuite/production/,) which would be a great solution but would mean a lot more saving up again.  ;D  Oh well, that’s OK.  A different option is the Sony Vegas Movie Studio Platinum Edition 8 (http://www.sonycreativesoftware.com/products/product.asp?pid=447) which I am wary of, considering I have no personal experience with that software and would be much more comfortable saving up for a product that I know will meet a great many of my needs (than one I might wish to upgrade from in five days – but I can’t effectively say, since I am not a Vegas user.)

As you can see, things are happening even when they don’t look like they are.  🙂  All I can ask of you now is your prayers and I humbly beseech your support.

I know you will not always be able to act in a film, be there on filming days, or understand why I am so insanely driven to complete a film, but I ask you to bear with me and be as dedicated as you can.  Without you I don’t have a film.  I need you.  I could make solo documentaries, interview people, or even do one-man films – but not a full cast and crew short film.

We will see what happens.  Likely it will be a few of us who stick together and make it all happen, but I do appreciate it whenever any of you can help.

Thanks!

Regards,

-b