Wednesday, 21 March 2012

Bubble/Lighting test in AE

Easing into the world of After Effects and setting the tone for the underwater scenes of my film. Here I have experimented with different lighting effects and particles rising in the water. I am satisfied with the colour variations, (although they unintentionally change quite rapidly in this clip), testing a palette of greens/blues/yellows and blending them together to achieve the right colour scheme for the underwater scenes.

In this clip I have used two Parallel lights for the light sources, a camera lens blur at different intervals whilst varying the amount of bubbles rising in the clip. The effect I used was CC Snow with the gravity set at -2.0 so that the particles rise the opposite way, however I don't think they are varied enough in this clip. I may consider using the Particle World Effect and adjusting the settings, however I still but a novice with this software but I am optimistic I will improve.

Tuesday, 20 March 2012

City Background Developed

Updated the previous City scene, including more colour and detail into the composition. I have introduced more browns, and "tan" shades to the buildings so that the piece has a sepia look to it. To achieve a more realistic to the walls of the buildings and the rocky cliffs, I added some textures and created some brushes in Adobe Photoshop to create variation.

I debated with my lecturers whether I should keep the tree behind the house, however I soon decided it was far too awkwardly positioned in the composition and trying to establish the right amount of lighting was difficult, without the tree making the composition look too unbalanced. Without the tree, the piece appears more symmetrical and allows more focus on the house in the foreground. I don't regret including more detail, and adapting this piece as the previous composition seemed too illustrative and stylised. I received good feedback on the previous piece, especially on the aforementioned point but I need to focus on concept environment, where the backgrounds should look a bit more realistic.

I am happy with the development in this piece, but I may include more light sources and contrast to allow the fires to stand out.


Friday, 16 March 2012

Underwater City Animation

This is my first ever rendered film in After Effects, including a city background for the Underwater part of my film. The environment in question is obviously far from complete, but I wanted to test some underwater effects in Adobe Affects and see how effective they could be. I looked up an online tutorial that teaches you how to create light-rays and bubbles rising through the water, however due to my lack of knowledge of After Effects I believe I have struggled to achieve anything I am satisfied with.

The background in question may be altered to a mountain landscape, including caves and introducing a more "rocky terrain," which would reflect the apocalyptic city scene perched on top of sheer cliffs. I may include some ruins into the underwater mountains but I want to avoid a cliched, "lost, forbidden temple," feel to environments. I do believe those themes are done to death.

Instead, I would opt for more industrial, early 20th Century architecture to my buildings or combine modern industrial elements with old, ancient in ruins, i.e. crude, rusted pipes supporting a crumbling archway. This would a make people ask: "Who put these horrible additions to these old, beautiful ruins?" Is it an attempt to preserve them, or simply to make these structures safe and habitable?

The light rays were difficult to create and I had trouble grasping the complicated process of their creation. What I had achieved, was too bright and garish for the piece so I took the attempted light-rays out of the film clip. However, I decided to include the rising bubbles which are a CC Snow effect simply switched in reverse. I know there is a lot more I can do animate this clip to make it more effective, i.e. making the plant-life move in motion to the water or include light reflecting off the ground but I am confident, the more I use After Effects, the much more effective my underwater scenes will be. 

I hope to find alternative ways of creating light rays in After Effects or simpler tutorials to achieve this effect. There are presets already in After Effects which I could include, such as a "Water Ripple," effect on the clip but I believe that would make the clip unoriginal and "cheesy".

Until next time ...

Monday, 12 March 2012

The Hangman's Tree

This is probably one of my favourite compositions so far. Even though the City Scene was very effective, and this composition keeps in the same style as Mountain Scene, I like the simplicity and overall tone of this piece. Like recent posts, I have uploaded three different colour hues of the same painting, to compare which one is the most effective to use in my film.

I am drawn to the top image the most as the other two images appear to hold too much of the same colour. Like the previous post of the Mountain Scene, I have included the same brush texture to achieve  detail at the bottom of the tree. Anymore detail added to this piece would stray away from the focal point of the tree and the textured detail on the ground.

However, there are improvements ... I think I may add some more detail to the branches and more texture to the bark of the tree. Also, a light source needs to be added behind the clouds ... a "sickly sun" type of light source, so as to balance out the lightness of the fog above the ground.