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09/09/2016 23:54:19

PatMarrNCMuvizu mogul
PatMarrNC
Posts: 1742
I thought I'd start a thread dedicated to capturing ways people here combine various tools from the ol' creative toolbox in order to expand their options with Muvizu. I'm a firm believer that using multiple tools is the way to go.

I also find it easier (and cheaper) to use a variety of tools that are simple to understand and use.... than to find one product that is so complicated that it can do everything, but I can't figure out how to navigate its complexity.


Having said all that, I will start with the general premise that this thread is about MUVIZU, even though other competing products are bound to get mentioned. As an artist / film maker I assume you have other products besides Muvizu. Since you've paid for them, it doesn't make sense to let them sit idle while you use muvizu. The fact is that there may be ways you can combine output from many different programs to make new possibilities in your Muvizu projects.


If your Muvizu projects contain output from other software, use this thread to tell the rest of us what cool things you are doing.
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11/09/2016 18:42:19

PatMarrNCMuvizu mogul
PatMarrNC
Posts: 1742
toolbox trick #1
remember this example?


It involved placing an AVI animated face onto the face mask that comes with Muvizu. The advantage of doing this is that you can get some very expressive faces. The disadvantage is that filming specific shots of your face for every scene could be time consuming and inconvenient. Plus, you'd need other people to capture animated faces for additional characters.

Reallusion's CRAZY TALK 8 is kind of a one-trick pony: it lets you make animated faces from drawings, photos and the included faces that come with the software. Because it is limited in function, I've struggled to figure out a use for it.

But It would be a great way to create faces for a whole cast of characters, then put those animated faces onto the face mask. And because it's software, it would be easier than filming your own face separately for each scene... you could edit existing animations much more easily in order to achieve a fairly robust workflow.

Above and beyond the face mask, you can also put AVI animations on attachments you've created. Let's say you created a dragon, and the head is too far away from the internal core character to apply any of the built-in facial features. You could easily animate a dragon face in CT8 and use it as an animated texture on the attachment used as the dragon's head.

Don't like the face mask or idea of putting AVI textures on attachments ?

Chances are you already use a video editor to assemble the scenes you create in Muvizu. You may want to look at the free version of HitFilm. It provides very good tools for applying the faces created in CT8 to characters you've filmed in Muvizu.

Motion tracking lets you put the face in the right place, and they also provide lots of blending and re-coloring options to make added layers match the look of the layers underneath.

That's it for toolbox tip #1... I hope other people chime in with more ideas! Whether they do or not, there will be more ideas from me as time allows.
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14/09/2016 12:06:05

PatMarrNCMuvizu mogul
PatMarrNC
Posts: 1742
another bit of software that works well with Muvizu is HIT FILM.... and there are a number of compelling reasons to look at this particular tool:

1) Most people use Muvizu to create scenes, then they join them together with a video editor. On one level, HIT FILM is a video editor... and a very good one! Editing is linear... placing a bunch of clips end to end and trimming them to remove anything you don't want.

2) but it is also a COMPOSITING software, which is different. Compositing is where you build layers, create green screen, add special effects etc. HIT FILM shines in this arena!

3) HIT FILM also offers a free version, with much of the cool stuff included! Even if you'd eventually like to own the pro version, their sale prices are better for those who are already using the free version.

4) there is a growing core of Muvizu users who have embraced HITFILM already, and therefore you have a built-in resource of people who are using the two products together and can share how they're doing it.

5) HITFILM is somewhat unique among video editors in its ability to import, render and animate 3D models (paid version only). Since Muvizu is a 3D environment, merging it with other 3D content is a good match.

6) 3D stuff can drink up a computers resources in a hurry... so depending on how much horsepower your computer has, you may experience performance hits as the complexity of your projects grows. With Muvizu's layers it's easy to export clean cutout layers without having to deal with green screen. For example, HITFILM can layer ten clips of 10 people each using far less resources than if you tried to put the same 100 characters into the same scene in Muvizu.

7) Perhaps the most compelling reason to pair any two software resources is when they complement the strengths and weaknesses of one another. HITFILM does some stuff well, Muvizu does other stuff well. Put them both together and you have a new set of capabilities that neither product alone could provide!

on the down side, I think it's a bit more complicated to use than many other video editors... but its capabilities are worth the learning curve.
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14/09/2016 18:31:28

zayha
zayha
Posts: 8
Hitfilm is awesome, very easy to use with decent effects,editing and compositing. I also use After Effects for effects and compositing
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16/09/2016 20:17:42

ziggy72Muvizu mogulExperimental user
ziggy72
Posts: 1988
I find that, now I always use image sequences, the standard image viewer in windows isn't enough, so I use Honeyview :

https://www.bandisoft.com/honeyview/

Why? Because you can step through your TGA or PNG frames using whatever keys you want to use, and Honeyview shows transparent areas in the classic checkerboard pattern to let you know it's genuinely transparent, which is very handy to know when using layers. I use my keys to scrub through the shots, even as Muvizu or Hitfilm is generating them, and it automatically loops back to the first frame on each pass. Not so much as tool as a utility, but I thought I'd share my experience with it.

Forgot to mention - it's free! No nag screens! Big Grin

Also, some AV programs give a false positive on the uninstaller - ignore.
edited by ziggy72 on 17/09/2016
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16/09/2016 21:02:52

ikesMuvizu mogul
ikes
Posts: 275
ziggy72 wrote:
I find that, now I always use image sequences, the standard image viewer in windows isn't enough, so I use Honeyview :

https://www.bandisoft.com/honeyview/


Good find! I just installed it and works flawless. Very useful for checking your sequences and transparencies.

Thanks for bringing it up!
-Ikes-
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17/09/2016 11:25:52

PatMarrNCMuvizu mogul
PatMarrNC
Posts: 1742
ditto! Thanks! That's exactly the sort of tool I hoped this thread would encourage people to make known.

If anybody else is using other software in conjunction with Muvizu, please talk about it in this thread. For example, what modelling program do you use? Why? What does it add to the equation that isn't already available in Muvizu?

SKETCHUP is free, there is a ton of info about it here on the WIKI, and it has a plugin that converts models to ASE format, which can be imported into Muvizu

MILKSHAPE is a fairly inexpensive modelling program, and it has export capability for both ASE and FBX... the only two formats that can be imported into Muvizu

BLENDER is free and it has native export capability for FBX... and there is a plugin for ASE export

If you are already proficient in another modelling program that doesn't offer export options for Muvizu, AUTODESK FBX CONVERTER is free. Most modelling programs offer export to OBJ format, which can be imported to the FBX converter

I use Nevercenter Silo for modelling because its interface makes sense to me (not true of most modelling apps) and its sculpting paradigm is well-suited to making characters for game engines.
http://nevercenter.com/silo/

Most of these modelling programs have already been discussed at length in the forum, but for the sake of putting a lot of useful information in one place, I mention them here again. The topic of other software that works well with Muvizu is something that comes up periodically.

Here are two links to the WIKI page that mentions other useful resources:
http://muvizu.com/Wiki/wiki/55/
http://muvizu.com/Wiki/wiki/143/
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14/10/2016 14:27:47

ziggy72Muvizu mogulExperimental user
ziggy72
Posts: 1988
Another good resource for Hitfilm, for both the Express and Pro versions - Inscape Digital's presets.

http://www.inscapedigital.com/presets/

These are preset effects/comps to save you time creating the same effect over and over, or just shortcuts to achieving these effects if you're not that competent at the program. It's best to watch the video at the top of the page first as it explains how to use them and what the little icons on the presets mean. It's all good

Oh, did I mention they were free? No, okay, they are free Big Grin
edited by ziggy72 on 14/10/2016
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14/10/2016 16:04:28

PatMarrNCMuvizu mogul
PatMarrNC
Posts: 1742
good find, Ziggy!
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