Sunday, November 21, 2010

Updated Pandora Rough Cut

All shots have been finished to a degree. I didn't get a chance to make too many changes to the rendered shots I had last week. Instead, I went ahead and finished most of the animation. All that is left, aside from rerendering the entire animation fixing all of the problems, is to get in some run cycles for the smoke monsters chasing the little dudes. Additionally I have to render out all of the smoke. You can see on the shot of the close up of the hero opening the box that the smoke doesn't match up to the geometry. I suspect it is a difference in the way that cameras are handled between Maya and Houdini. Some of the middle shots won't make too much sense the way they are now. I know. I wanted to get the Maya renders out as soon as I could so that I could see them in motion and see what I need to fix.

The only nagging worry I have is that I still have not found a way to comp the shadow monsters coming out of the columns. Chris pointed me to "Deep Camera Maps" in Houdini but it took over an hour to render one frame... and there isn't much support on the topic in the Houdini community. I haven't had much time to devote to it but obviously I'll get to it in the coming week.

YouTube Link to a larger version of the above.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Updated Previs

I updated the previs with rendered shots that I animated this weekend. Watching it right now I realized that I left out a shot of the previs. There is a reaction shot after the shadow monsters emerge from their smoke columns. Also I haven't updated the camera on the opening shot or the shadow monster crowd reveal, the one non rendered one after the columns hit. I am working on that shot now.

The second shot is probably too long. I showed it to some people and there seemed to be some agreement, and I agree, that I didn't really need that last shot. I could have the "No Fishing" sign reveal on the shot preceding it but facing the camera and towards the water.

If you have any crits I'd be more than happy to hear them. I'll be AMDO over the course of next week. I'm trying to have all the major animation done before Thanksgiving. Hopefully giving me two weeks for rendering and comp.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

No Shaders

My Massive sim imported into the opening scene and rendered:

Obviously they don't have a shader but I'm not sure why... I have a shader from slim that should be rendering but Maya can't find it for some reason.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Camera Update and Timing

I went back into a shot that I will be animating this coming week. In order to get all of the smoke effects rolling I need to animate all of the shadow monsters. I want to get all of my camera work nailed down as soon as possible, especially for the effects shots so I went back into the full reveal of the shadow monsters and updated the camera move and timed it out better than what was in the older previs.

This is the overhead shot that immediately follows the above shot. This will be where a Massive sim comes in. I wanted to time this out so I get get some obj sequences into massive to do the "panic" sim.

This puts me at two primary Massive shots. The first is the opening shot of the town where they will be walking around and idling. The second is the above shot. There may be other opportunities for more, for example the moving shot of the columns coming down, they'd be running away. Shots like that secondary though because there would only be one or two of the Massive agents in view of the camera.

Old Previs

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Smoke Column Viewport Render

A viewport render from my smoke sim. The shot opens with Fisher opening up the box (he hasn't been animated yet) and the smoke columns shoot out and land. The Shadow monsters haven't been simmed out for this shot yet and they won't be visible until the smoke hits the ground.

Massive is going fairly well. I am pretty comfortable with my opening town sim when the townspeople are just milling about. Other than the one agent that decided to stop, turn directly towards the camera, and wave for about 30 seconds, the agents behave as expected. The "panic" mode part of the sim isn't perfect yet. They tend to ignore the painted boundaries and run right into the water or through buildings.

URL for the video if it doesn't work:

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Massive Trouble

By Sunday I had finished the bulk of my animations and then on Monday I wanted to get them into Massive. When I switched from shadow monsters to townspeople for the Massive sim I tested out the townsperson rig in Massive with a quick animation. He seemed to hop along fine. When I imported my run into Massive it looked ok at first glance. The animation played properly but was jumping back t the origin. No problem, I thought,just need to set it up to loop. So I got the animation trimmed down and blended so it looked smooth. But when I took the camera off of "follow" mode I quickly realized that something was terribly wrong. He would run forward through the loop but when he reached the end of the loop e would get pulled back. Its important to note that he would get pulled back but not to the origin. As it turns out his axis moves slowly along in the z direction while the character moves quickly. So when he reaches the end of his loop he gets yanked back to the axis, which has only moved a little.

I spent a great deal of (frustrating) time yesterday trying everything that I could think of to fix this but nothing seemed to work. What drives me crazy is that the hop test worked properly with no issues but the animation that I spent two days on won't work.

In other news, here is a render of a couple of shadow monsters.

*EDIT: OK, they work now. Apparently I was just doing it wrong.