Recreating illustrations for HD - Best technique

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by kepardue, Nov 14, 2011.

  1. kepardue macrumors 6502

    Oct 28, 2006
    We're replacing a lot of footage in our old training videos with HD, and in the process we're needing to recreate some of the illustrations in the video. I've uploaded a sample of it to Youtube for you folks to look at here.

    As you look at this, note that these illustrations were done in the late 80's, early 90's, and are fairly static. I'd like to animate the various components that move as the narrator describes them in the new footage. What I'm looking for is advice on the best way to recreate these illustrations. I have Illustrator, Motion 5, Final Cut X, Photoshop at my disposal.
  2. handsome pete macrumors 68000

    Aug 15, 2008
    You don't happen to have After Effects available to you as well? If that were the case, then I'd suggest creating your illustrations with Illustrator then importing and animating in AE.

    I haven't used Motion in a long time, but I was under the impression that it has difficulty working with Illustrator files, especially with layers. I'm not sure if that is something that has been fixed in the recent version. If not, then your best course of action is probably to create layered images in Photoshop and import them to Motion. You'll lose any advantage of working with vector graphics however.
  3. alph45 macrumors member

    Jun 2, 2010
    i would convert the illustrations to vector images so that they could be scaled, zoomed etc without a quality loss. Also having the graphics as vector images is generically useful. Illustrator can do this (live trace i think). I would create a static background and make each moving component a layer.

    i would actually animate in Flash of all things. It handles vector graphics and is a good platform for simple animations. You could then zoom into a detail rather than using a jump cut for example.

    i don't believe you can import vector files to motion, but you could make png files with alpha and do the animation in motion instead, but you lose the ability to zoom into graphic without a rez change.

    text and graphic overlays like the arrows and highlighting an area of an image can easily be done in motion.
  4. kepardue thread starter macrumors 6502

    Oct 28, 2006
    Unfortunately I don't have After Effects available, but I do have Flash. I could do the animations there and export them, though that seems like a bit of an odd way to go about it. I've got a couple of the illustrations recreated in Illustrator already. I've exported individual components and imported them into Motion (Motion 5 doesn't seem to have a problem with the .ai files), but I'm having trouble keeping the components together during the 'zoomed in' portions and consistently moving the center of an object so I can rotate around it.

    Also, what's the best way to output this from Motion in a format that Final Cut can use? There's not a vector format that Motion outputs as, is there? That way, I could do the zooms in Final Cut X without having to worry about scaling issues.
  5. careypo macrumors member

    Oct 15, 2011
    You may want to consider using Keynote for illustrations. Create the slides in Keynote and then export them into a self playing Quicktime movie. Import the Quicktime movie into your editing system.
  6. kepardue thread starter macrumors 6502

    Oct 28, 2006
    Huh, I hadn't considered Keynote. I've actually done similar kinds of illustrations there before. Lots of great feedback, and no shortage of options! Thanks guys!
  7. alph45 macrumors member

    Jun 2, 2010
    the only reason i suggested flash was to maintain the vector images, if the .ai files aren't rasterized on import to motion that would certainly be easier because you have to write the actionscript for the animation in flash.

    fcp will rasterize vector graphics.
  8. cgbier macrumors 6502a

    Jun 6, 2011
    Motion keeps them as vectors, but I'm not sure if it keeps the .ai layers intact. IIRC there was a tutorial on Macbreak studio a while back.

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