View Full Version : Work In Progress... AM and EI

02 February 2003, 05:45 PM
Hi guys, I hope this isn't too off topic.....
I've been putting together some personal work and wanted to post the progress thus far.
It's not rendered in AM, but all the modelling was done with Animation:Master.
What's happening is basically I wanted to set up some shots showing flying bots that use
beams of light to build models out of clay like blocks. this is a hallway shot of a bot
heading towards the model making station(which has yet to be built....)
There is so much more work to be done detail wise... but I wanted to test what I had so far.
Any comments are welcome
sorenson 3 compression, about 1.5mgs

Thanks and have a nice friday!
Mike Fitz

Roger Eberhart
02 February 2003, 06:07 PM
Wouldn't that stuff have been easier to model in EI in the first place? Robots and space ships are a cinch in EI but take some work to smooth out in AM.

02 February 2003, 06:15 PM
Hi Roger thanks for the post...
Yes, it would have been easier to model them in EI modeller...... if I was going to stay in EI only.
What I plan on doing is compositing character work from Hash into the mechanical and background elements
done in EI.... using camera data from hash to seamlessly overlay/match it in EI. So I need identical sets in both
hash and EI to accomplish this. Also being that it is easier to get models out of A:M then it is to bring them in.... I decided to model in Hash.
Mike Fitz

02 February 2003, 08:19 PM
Looks cool, especially dig those green lights. I guess it could be the compression, yet the writing looks a little fuzzy.
I seem to remember way back, AM and EI were used to make a Volkswagon Beetle promo, not sure how though.

02 February 2003, 10:10 PM
Hi Pequod.... I really dig the character you posted....
But yeah, the compression makes the type hard to read on the bot & the type on the wall.....
is only for test now... going to be different in the final.
But it is crystal clear at NTSC size/compression.... which btw, is rendering out at 30-40seconds a frame EI!!!!!
Blows my mind
Mike Fitz

03 March 2003, 12:54 AM
I like the look of it, good cosistant detail so far. The only crit I have is the bot flys slowly. There is no reason it shouldn'd fly slowly, it just seems odd, like it might fall at any moment. I'll get over it.

Cheers, Graham:)

03 March 2003, 12:55 AM
Cool stuff. I hope you tell us more on how you managed to get use both AM and EI together. I have EI and would love to use both apps together. By the way when the robot flys through the hallway shouldnt we see green highlights on the walls as the light passes by?

03 March 2003, 04:31 PM
Using EI and AM together or any app and AM together is a matter of planning it out....
Both Applications will need identical (size and orientation) sets and cameras with identical or very
nearly identcal fov's.
If it's an animation you need to export Hash Camera Data... not directly possible... but can be done in a round about.... and load it into the camera of the other app. If all the geometry is identical from one app to the next then things should match up....
Once I'm done with the shots... I'll put some stuff together for anyone that's interested in
matching AM and EI.
Thanks for the comments so far
Mike Fitz

03 March 2003, 07:08 PM
Originally posted by 3DArtZ
If it's an animation you need to export Hash Camera Data... not directly possible...

Well it is directly possible, it just hasn't been done yet (if that makes sense). The new SDK gives programmers access to a great number of things including the camera positions and such. Just no one has made an exporter for the camera as of yet.

If you need such a beast, and have specs as to how it should be (file format/etc), I could probably take a look at it, and see what could be done.

03 March 2003, 11:40 PM
Wow Arthut if you could do that it would be great. It would make AM that much better if you can combine more than one apps output with another.

3DArtz if you can post more stuff how you did it that would be great to. Maybe a tute?

03 March 2003, 05:58 PM
Hi Arthur, that would be really useful... in my opinion.
My take on it is that it will need 2 things....
Give hash an export camera data function, which is just a text file
perform any simple math on the data to visually orient the motion file for the desired app.
Hash world co-ordinates are the same for EI, except the +/-Z coordinates, they are reversed.
I wrote a utility that does the math on the text file.... but I can't write the plugins for hash.
Also, in order for me to get the data from the camera, I have to translate the camera to a bone, then I animate the bone and export that bone as the data.
All you need is a single object BVH file to see the format of the text.... tab delimted and hard returns
Let me know what you think....
Mike Fitz

03 March 2003, 06:59 PM
It sounds like you want the format the same as the BVH format. I will take a look at that and see what it has in it. I am assuming that for each frame of the animation, you will want something like the transform, scale, rotations, fov, focal length, ... of the camera. I've looked at the doc and this seems pretty easy to do (by that I mean it would take me about 2 hours)....

If you can parse out the text file yourself, I could just write stuff out, and then you could do the changing of it later. But, it might be easier to just go to the format that you need in the first place.

[Edit] Can you send me the single object BVH file (with camera data) so I know what you are talking about... or point me to one.

03 March 2003, 01:22 AM
I'm kinda confused now. I looked at the BVH file format, and it has no information related to camera that I can find. It basically defines the hierarchtical relationships amongst the bones, and the relative offsets and rotations of each bone.

There must be a format that *is* for camera data. I don't know EI so I don't know what it can import, but this doesn't seem like it would be the way to go - but maybe you can steer me as to what you would like...


03 March 2003, 03:08 AM
Hi Arthur.... to do a test of the data, make a model file that has only a bone, no geometry
Then make an action.... once the action is made export that as a bvh file.
when you open that file in a text editor you'll see all the data. If the bvh file is for a model that has multiple bones, it gets busy and you see all the hierarchies and such.
I have not looked at the data in a couple months but I think all that you can work with, with generic bvh files
is x,z,y trans and x,y,z rotation
Some apps have a specific option of saving, exporting and importing other characteristics like field of view, but that would
change it from the generic bvh.
So, an exporter for hash would just export camera position and rotation.
I'll email you camera data from projects I've done if you think it will make it clearer.
Mike Fitz

03 March 2003, 04:52 AM
Ok... I'm just trying to get this straight so I do what you will need, and correct me if I'm wrong:

1) It sounds like EI can import BVH data and treat it as camera data (for position and rotation), even though BVH data is usually used for bones.

2) You need an exporter that will export the camera data from AM in BVH format (just position and rotation - no FOV, etc).

3) This is the best way to get this info into EI. (I.e. it doesn't support some other method of getting camera information into it)

4) This is for AM 9.0 and above (I don't think I have access to the camera information in the AM 8.5 SDK - but I would have to look).

If this is all correct - I could have it for you tomorrow. Is BVH an industry standard for importing camera data? It seems there should be some format a little better suited for camera data, but then again - I don't know :)


03 March 2003, 02:26 PM
Hi Arthur, this is really cool of you to do this.... I think that the Hash Community at large could potentially be getting
a great tool if one uses other apps and would like to combine the two when creating 3d work.
Okay, so you are pretty much correct.... the camera accepts the bvh file in EI, even though it is typically for bones.
But EI does have a custom import/export for motion data format which includes field of view.
So, let me take a quick lookse at that format and maybe you'd be able to work your magic to the point of upon export from hash, you could offer the user the option of just standard bvh export or include fov. And if that's the case, maybe
other apps have this... like lightwave, cd4 and the such... could open a totally new option for people who want character work in AM and backgrounds in their other apps.
I'll get back to you on this in a little while.
Thanks a lot for taking a look with this.
Mike Fitz

03 March 2003, 02:18 AM
Hi Arthur, I spent a little while today going through the steps I take to get Hash and EI ready for compositing and there are just too many steps that would justify the plugin.... it seems like I may be the only one who would use it....
So, thanks for the offer, that was extremely generous to offer your skills.
If you feel like you want to do it anyway and want some more info from me let me know and we can take it from
Mike Fitz

03 March 2003, 05:00 AM
3DArtz anyway to share what you have so far for us folk that need way to much help! A small tute or something. I have no idea how to even approach this. It would be great to use for EI and C4D.

03 March 2003, 03:12 PM
Hi Koon69, yes I can put together a tute on how "I" do this type of stuff... I just won't be able to get together for a little while. Maybe in a few weeks I could have something together that would be suitable for public digest...right now
everything is either scribbled on paper or stuck in my head...
I will let you know when it's together
Mike Fitz

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