Getting Started In Visual Effects...

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by acearchie, Jul 18, 2009.

  1. acearchie macrumors 68040

    acearchie

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2006
    #1
    Ok so I have come back from the new harry potter and whilst I was easily able to pick up a lot on the editing side of things and camerawork I didn't have a clue how to do the special effects.

    I have now tasked myself with the next month and a half of the summer holidays to tackle some CGI or just basic special effects.

    Im very confident in Final Cut, and have got to grips with after effect (through the help of Andy Kramer!) but have no 3D experience.

    Anyone suggest any programs or video-copilot-esque sites for special effect creation?

    Thanks
     
  2. spinnerlys Guest

    spinnerlys

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2008
    Location:
    forlod bygningen
    #2
    Special Effects are the effects created on the set, like a bullet hitting an object and the resulting "explosion" of that hit.

    What you mean, are the visual effects, effects created after the actual shooting, and mostly done via means of computer generated imagery.

    Have a look at Lynda.com, as they have many video tutorials for lots of valued software.

    Also have a look around at forums for the according product.
     
  3. acearchie thread starter macrumors 68040

    acearchie

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2006
    #3
    My error!

    Yes visual effects is what I want to get into.

    I've done a bit of explosion compositing in after effects and things like people getting hit by cars but now I want to delve into some 3d effects!
     
  4. spinnerlys Guest

    spinnerlys

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2008
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    #4
    Then have a look at Autodesk's page, as they have now the two big 3D packages used in films and games, Maya (Mac and Wind) and Softimage (Windows, and maybe Linux). They also have 3D Studio Max (Windows).

    Newtek has Lightwave (Mac and Windows), Lightwave was used to make Babylon 5.

    Then there is Cinema 4D from Maxon (Win and Mac).

    Also there is Blender, a free 3D modeler and renderer.

    There are some more I think.

    In the nineties, when I was into 3D I had a look at 3dcafe.com and metacafe.com, they had some free resources like tutorials and such.
     
  5. acearchie thread starter macrumors 68040

    acearchie

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2006
    #5
    I have some access to Cinema4D through a friend but its on his dad's computer and he hasn't got a clue how to use it!

    At the moment I'm into minor productions which look pretty good with some friends from school so I'm looking at doing some Wow-factor effects.

    Anyone know a Andrew Kramer style site which teaches some really nice effects but for a 3d program?

    Thanks
     
  6. bigbossbmb macrumors 68000

    bigbossbmb

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2004
    Location:
    Pasadena/Hollywood
    #6
    3D modeling/effects take so long to do, I don't think a site like that is possible...

    check out Blender (open source). there's a bunch of tutorials on the site for how to use it, but I don't think there's any "this is how you make ____" kind of stuff.
     
  7. mooseface macrumors member

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    Apr 28, 2009
  8. acearchie thread starter macrumors 68040

    acearchie

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2006
    #8
    Thanks I will try some of these!

    Thanks guys for giving me all these useful tips.

    If some of you are into visual effects or have some knowledge could you tell me how you got started in it then?

    Thanks
     
  9. Richardthe4th macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2008
    Location:
    Below Sealevel
    #9
    Hi,

    I just received my copy of 'encyclopedia of visual effects' . You might want to check it out. Costs virtually nothing on amazon.

    Enjoy summer, don't forget to go out sometimes ;-)

    Grtz
     
  10. eleven2brett macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2008
    Location:
    H-Town
    #10
    The hardest thing about composting 3D effects, in my opinion, is matching the camera moves. Really, all the other complexity lies in model creation/animation. And those can be as basic or as complex as you chose, but as soon as the camera moves, you've just self-induced frustration. This problem is less apparent if your object is suppose to be in the center of the camera.
     
  11. tweekskratch macrumors member

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2007
    #11
    I agree. Doing FX without some type of motion capture is going to be a pain. You can track points pretty easily though in After Effects/mocha. I think you should prob. go with after effects to start, and then get into 3d after you're comfortable with working in that environment. I know it's cliche', but I would recommend videocopilot.net for technique. Some really good shortcuts on there, though I don't like some of his work, there's a lot on there to learn.
    Another site is graymachine.com. Harry is one of my good friends, and he used to teach at my college. Def. a cool dude with some good insight.

    Lynda.com is great for learning the software.
    For 3D I suggest Maya on the professional level, but again that's a whole other beast. Maya can be daunting. C4D/Blender is great for starting out. There are TONS of tutorials about this stuff.
     

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