Glowing Trails Behind a Character

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  11 November 2017
Glowing Trails Behind a Character

So, there's an effect I've been trying to figure out how to do for a while now, but short of doing it in post with something like Photoshop in what would basically amount to a rotoscope, I have no idea how to manage it. I'm hoping there is a way to do it in MAX, and that someone can help me figure it out.

It's basically this:



A glowing trail or streak that follows the character, but which is cropped by their back border, the outline of their back side. It's basically like when The Flash is running:



...or when a disc is thrown in Tron:



I've tried plugins like GhostTrails, but it doesn't really do what I'm after; it turns a spline into geometry, which can be intersected by other objects, including the character itself, not to mention that creating splines that fit the character's geometry is kind of awkward at certain intersections. It's not really a special effect, if you see what I mean.

Anyway, I suspect this isn't possible in MAX, but if it is, please help...?
 
  11 November 2017
Check out a plugin called ghost trails
 
  11 November 2017
Yeah, I've got that. I mentioned it in the OP.
 
  11 November 2017
Oh sorry, missed that last part...

You could do it using a ton of particles.
 
  11 November 2017
Ehhh... not sure I could; the streak would end up too solid, too opaque.
 
  11 November 2017
You can animate the opacity over the lifetimes of the particles.
There's also a plugin called Ky Trails. ( You probably won' t be able to use the character directly, but will have to use a couple of standin objects.
 
  11 November 2017
Quote: You can animate the opacity over the lifetimes of the particles.

Yes, but, this isn't about changing their opacity over time; believe me, I already know how to do that.

The problem with particles is that there is no way--at least, no way that I know of--that will make the result look like that flat, solid wall that I have as an example in the OP.
Particles will look like bubbles or something, they'll be some shape other than the flat plane I'm trying to get. Making them packed together solidly enough to produce a wall is going to require a lot of them, and they'll be overlapping each other...it's not going to look right, pretty much no matter what, if I try to use particles.

Quote: There's also a plugin called Ky Trails. ( You probably won' t be able to use the character directly, but will have to use a couple of standin objects.

I have that, too. If there is a way to make a plane-shaped trail, they've managed to hide it very well.

I don't think you can make a trail that is a certain shape; it's generated from a point, and that's the only shape it'll make.

None of these actually generate the effect I'm after.
 
  11 November 2017
This is what KY_Trails does:



It's not following the border/edge of the object. It's being generated from a single point--the center, or possibly the pivot; not sure--and that's it. You can't shape it...which is what I need.
 
  11 November 2017
so the GhostTrails goes for $100.......ooooooooookay...
 
  11 November 2017
Like I said, I've got GhostTrails.
It doesn't do the job.

It comes close...but it doesn't do it.
 
  11 November 2017
Originally Posted by BionicDance: Like I said, I've got GhostTrails.
It doesn't do the job.

It comes close...but it doesn't do it.
i was just commenting on the price....but since you're being a smart a**........no help from me....
 
  11 November 2017
I wasn't being a smartass...to be perfectly honest, I wasn't sure why you were bringing up the price.
It seemed almost like you were making some sort of joke, like a "Jeopardy" or "The Price is Right" sort of thing, like, "I'll take GhostTrails for $100, Alex!"

I was confused, so I just reiterated the problem with GhostTrails.
Someone had already missed that I'd mentioned it once...it didn't seem outside possibility that it might have been missed again.

I really could use some help on this one.
 
  11 November 2017
just in case ppl are wondering....well what can YOU do vusta ?.......well......I can do something like this...watch when I scrub the timeline BACKWARDS,
it continues to work...proving time moves in only ONE direction....alright, alright stop nitpicking...never made it as an astrophysicist
 
  11 November 2017
Thats pretty sweet Vusta
 
  12 December 2017
some more shenanigans...
 
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