some advice needed

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  04 April 2007
Thumbs up some advice needed

Ok...I need to create an animation that has over 200 photos mapped to differently sized polygon boxes with bevels. The client is wanting something he calls it....

I want an animation to look like the millenium falcon flying through an asteroid field. But, the asteroid field is this field of 200 photos mapped onto boxes and the camera is the millenium falcon.

he wants each box to move independently, he wants them to rotate on H,P,B, and he wants the camera to fly around them as if trying to avoid being hit by one of the boxes.

Is there a quick way to set this up using some of LW's plugs or is there a plug I could get that would make this animation easier to create in a very short time frame?

I would greatly appreciate any thoughts any of you 'wavers may have on this.

  04 April 2007
I don't know about plug ins, but I'd start with animation technique to simplify the process.

With 200 boxes it seems impossible that you'd be able to see every picture on every box. Rather than focusing on positioning every box I'd focus only on "hero" boxes and fill in with the rest. (Which, if I recall, is how the Falcon/asteroid sequence in Star Wars worked.)

I would:

1. Set up my scene by laying out 10-15 "hero" boxes that the camera is going to come close to. Making sure there are dramatic "close calls" where the box nearly strikes the camera.

2. Once I got the main animation laid out I'd start filling in the gaps with a secondary group of boxes, perhaps up to 30 or so, that are visible, but don't come as near to the camera.

4. Once the "hero" and secondary boxes were working I'd use something like point clone + to fill in the deep background with boxes to give the impression of density. These probably wouldn't need pix mapped to them as they'd just be "blobs" in the render.
  04 April 2007
I don't imagine you have to have the camera avoid 200 in a row. How long is the animation?

My first thoughts would be instancing the cubes with randomization to their rotations ... HDInstance would be helpful in that regard:

But the camera path will probably have to be hand animated.

  04 April 2007
If you still haven't sorted this...try Mike Green's ImagestoPlanes plugin:
Double Negative visual effects
  04 April 2007
I agree with Plotz idea about hero boxes. As for the boxes in the distance, you can pre-render a few image sequences of a randomly rotating box, complete with alpha (ie TGA or TIFF).

Create a point cloud with the camera path carved out so none of the points come near to the camera during the animation, and apply sprite HV to the point cloud and load your rotating box sequences to your sprites. As they are far away and constantly rotating, viewer's should be hard-pressed to tell that they are actually 2D sprites.
Push - The force exerted on the door marked "pull"

  04 April 2007
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