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11/08/2016 12:18:49

unlimitedmagic
unlimitedmagic
Posts: 53
Here's a project I've been working on for a while. I wrote the script a few years ago intending for it to be live action but with the special effects requirements and no budget, Muvizu came along at the right time. The final show might be around 45 minutes long.

edited by robert-j-ladrach on 11/08/2016
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11/08/2016 15:09:00

ziggy72Muvizu mogulExperimental user
ziggy72
Posts: 1988
That's kind of epic. I would recommend you redo the first 4 minutes with depth of field to soften that hard horizon, it would look a lot more... y'know, heavenly Also, if you haven't already, I also recommend you download Hitfilm Express and start firing FX at it, it'll look great.
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11/08/2016 17:29:02

unlimitedmagic
unlimitedmagic
Posts: 53
Good point, as I got better with the software - I've been able to add better lighting and effects. Can you see the clip? It doesn't show on the post any more...
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11/08/2016 18:55:42

ziggy72Muvizu mogulExperimental user
ziggy72
Posts: 1988
Yes the clip shows fine on this page for me - maybe you have browser issues? I use Firefox.
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12/08/2016 19:04:24

clayster2012Muvizu mogul
clayster2012
Posts: 651
This was very touching, I lost my dad back in November of 2010, I never got to spend any last moments with him but I wished I did, I never got to tell him how much I loved him before he left, but I know he knows how much I do, this was really good and epic, if you need any help on anything to finish this let me know Bro, this was heart touching to me!

clayster.
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16/08/2016 03:01:06

unlimitedmagic
unlimitedmagic
Posts: 53
I've taken the great advice from ziggy72, and re-rendered the opening 4 minutes with camera blur. I've added several scenes to the end and sweetened the audio with some effects and foley. I appreciate the comments from Clayster; it gives me the resolve to push ahead and finish the film. It's funny, when I posted the clip on facebook and asked my friends to give me constructive criticism - I got very little. But I really want solid critiques of the work so I can improve the story, animation - whatever I can do, so please don't be shy with your comments - I appreciate the feedback, especially criticism on how you think it could be better. Thanks again.
Bob
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16/08/2016 03:25:22

PatMarrNCMuvizu mogul
PatMarrNC
Posts: 1742
robert-j-ladrach wrote:
It's funny, when I posted the clip on facebook and asked my friends to give me constructive criticism - I got very little. But I really want solid critiques of the work so I can improve the story, animation - whatever I can do, so please don't be shy with your comments - I appreciate the feedback, especially criticism on how you think it could be better. Thanks again.
Bob


it has been my experience that the general friends most of us have on facebook aren't likely to stick their necks out and critique much of anything.. and if they did, you probably couldn't believe it because friends tend to tell you what you want to hear.

They also tend to lack the technical expertise to offer any truly helpful suggestions. Which is why software forums are a good way to get the kind of suggestions that most creative people need in order to grow their skills.

As you've already discovered, Ziggy is a good source of information, and he isn't inclined to tell people what they want to hear.
edited by PatMarrNC on 16/08/2016
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16/08/2016 03:39:02

PatMarrNCMuvizu mogul
PatMarrNC
Posts: 1742
awesome sets, Robert! And good story line and voice acting! You've clearly put a lot of work into this already!

I especially like the houses. Tell us a little about how you created them... are they full-blown models? Or 2d graphics on backdrops? Is all of this happening in Muvizu? Or are your scenes composite shots assembled in your editor?

Enquiring minds want to know...
edited by PatMarrNC on 16/08/2016
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16/08/2016 05:32:58

Rocque
Rocque
Posts: 359
If there is one thing people can use right now, it is something to believe in and hope, lots of hope. I can see the definite Biblical influence here, and it is a great way to explain it. From the golden streets to the places prepared for those who believe. One thing I did notice that if there is no time in Heaven, why is his dad wearing a watch? Of course God knows time, but since I have never been to heaven, I am not sure if everyone else has a way of telling time, or if it is important. I liked the mother's reaction when her son appeared in her house. The time went really fast watching this so that means you did a great job, because I have difficulty sitting through anything over 3-5 minutes. LOL.

The use of water and the sounds of water was very effective. The lighting was really good too. You have accomplished a lot and I admire all the work you have put into this. I can not even begin to imagine how you were able to get so much into your scenes, when I put a few things in one and Muvizu tells me I have too much in it, and restricts how many objects I can use.

Do not give up on this production, you are doing a great job.
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16/08/2016 14:35:52

ziggy72Muvizu mogulExperimental user
ziggy72
Posts: 1988
@ Rocque Maybe he just liked that watch, maybe it was personal. Or maybe he liked to wear it as a sort of joke on time... No, actually you're right, why is he wearing a watch anyway? Whaaaaa?

@PatMarrNC I think you'll find those are Urbanlamb's sets for the wintertime stuff.

@Robert-J Depth of field looks nice, adds dimension, and covers a multitude of sins By obscuring the hard horizons you get a blended backdrop so people focus on the characters, not 'why is the horizon dead flat?', or 'where are those trees disappearing into?'. If you want a detailed breakdown on what you could immediately improve on (from my beady glare squint ) then it would be this -

Use Hitfilm (always number one recommendation from now on)

Re-record the first 2 mins of audio, stop biting the mic

1:02 When he looks in the water... It doesn't work. Very very obviously. Not working 'a bit' is okay, but not 'very obviously'. People would stop watching here.

1:25 Too much Camera Shake for too long. You can type in decimal values (like 0.5) to lower it right down. Or use keyframes to move the camera around slightly to make the view more of a POV shot from dude to Dad. Also, the fog behind Dad is now obscured by the DoF, so just looks like a big blob of darker nothing. I don't think you need it anyway.

2:10 I'd stop using the fly effect from here, going on a bit long now.

5:13 & 5:33 Lovely shot, nicely executed, completely ruined by the floor tiles clipping through the ground at some corners. Raise then a little and turn off 'Casts Shadows' - they'll still look flat and no longer distract.

5:40 The 'road' is clipping through the base of the structure in an ugly way (screen right). And your backdrop trees are stunted looking.

6:54 The tiling on the texture is obvious on the circular base - maybe try to find a similar golden texture that is seamless.

7:27 The problem with the cloth skirts is the glitching and jumping they do (as well as the characters hands always clipping straight though them), and this is distracting throughout this bit. Try framing the shot differently to keep it out of view. A higher camera angle would also help to flatten her fingers against the keys of the piano.

7:47 Her scarf went back to default colours. Hate it when that happens. Some weird colour shifts from shot to shot here, and layers - ?

8:28 Too many head scratches. He'd have a hole in head by now. Always use the eye and head movements to convey emotion first, then resort to Actions when they aren't enough.

9:33 Her eyes are now green - if fact everything's went green on Mom's side of the window. DoF would help this shot, move the focus away from the guys departing.

11:08 Nice shot mate.

11:30 His idea of heaven is a house built in Minecraft? That's what it looks like. If you need a natural looking hill or something let me know, I'll bodge something together

This is the 'lite' version of what myself and ukBerty do with each others stuff, in order to push ourselves to do it better. Finding a reliable sounding board is a great help if you want to improve, I highly recommend it. I hope my breakdown has been of some help.
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16/08/2016 17:09:33

Rocque
Rocque
Posts: 359
Wow, Ziggy!!! Can I borrow your eyes and ears? Maybe this comes with experience, but when I am working on something that I want to be epic, I hope I can call on your help, too. Your attention to detail is amazing, and I found it to be very helpful (if I was the maker of Heaven Bound, it would be, after I cried for about 30 minutes and then remembered that I wanted my project to be the best).

@ Rocque Maybe he just liked that watch, maybe it was personal. Or maybe he liked to wear it as a sort of joke on time... No, actually you're right, why is he wearing a watch anyway?
I loved this comment, Ziggy. It was excellent.
To Robert: You have a lot to do, but please continue, now, back to your dungeon and get to work!!!


One other thing is that I would "borrow" Ziggy's blanket can cover up the dying man. I am just modest like that.
edited by Rocque on 16/08/2016
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16/08/2016 17:25:10

MrDrWho13Muvizu mogulExperimental user
MrDrWho13
Posts: 2221
Now that's the sort of criticism I'd like when I'm making a video. I know who to ask now.
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16/08/2016 18:38:47

ziggy72Muvizu mogulExperimental user
ziggy72
Posts: 1988
Just call for me for some abuse, I'm here all day Big Grin
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16/08/2016 18:40:19

unlimitedmagic
unlimitedmagic
Posts: 53
Great feedback! I'm going to put all of this on my to do list and will knock them out as I can. I appreciate the detail as some of this I saw on the first render and then got busy with the rest of it. EXCELLENT - it does help and the time code helps me to zero right in on the issue. Thanks again!

Cheers,

Bob
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16/08/2016 18:41:29

unlimitedmagic
unlimitedmagic
Posts: 53
Oh, and the watch thing, I had created the character with a favorites and never changed back to the watchless version, good catch.
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17/08/2016 00:34:53

unlimitedmagic
unlimitedmagic
Posts: 53
PatMarrNC wrote:
awesome sets, Robert! And good story line and voice acting! You've clearly put a lot of work into this already!

I especially like the houses. Tell us a little about how you created them... are they full-blown models? Or 2d graphics on backdrops? Is all of this happening in Muvizu? Or are your scenes composite shots assembled in your editor?

Enquiring minds want to know...
edited by PatMarrNC on 16/08/2016


Mom's exterior house is from sketchup with as many reduced planes as I could manage but still have a decent front view.

Mom's house interior walls were made from modified wood wall panels from Sketchup 3D warehouse. The ceiling and floor were ground planes with textures. The wall panels have been posted in the Store
https://www.muvizu.com/Set/46528/More-Panel-Options

Everything except the audio and dissolve or time shift edits are happening in Muvizu.

The Mansion above the waterfall was from Sketchup but because it was too big of a file, I used a section plane to chop off the back of the house to create the asset. The interior of the mansion is mostly super-wide walls with textures. The roof and supports were created in sketchup.

I did come up with a neat trick, on the bridge scene where Joe and his Dad walk slowly, I used the SAD emotion but kept tapping a happy pose. This kept them upright while walking slowly. At the beginning and end of the sad walk cycle the character slumps forward and then leans back at the end. If you look, you will see that both characters have this strange leaning back action when they stop. I wish there were several walk speeds but this is a happy compromise.



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17/08/2016 00:51:02

ziggy72Muvizu mogulExperimental user
ziggy72
Posts: 1988
Sorry, I thought for sure that winter set looked like Urban's - guess snowy trees at Christmas time look alike anyway! Also, forgot to ask about the strangely slow walk - choosing moods before actions can change the actions and movements in odd ways, and that's a good find.
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17/08/2016 01:18:49

unlimitedmagic
unlimitedmagic
Posts: 53
The trees might be Urban's, not sure whether I imported them from Sketchup or found them in the store...
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17/08/2016 02:07:11

ziggy72Muvizu mogulExperimental user
ziggy72
Posts: 1988
Of course, I forgot she also uploaded some assets (back in the days when we still could). I've used those same trees myself, she makes nice models.
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17/08/2016 04:06:45

tonyob67
tonyob67
Posts: 214
robert-j-ladrach wrote:
I've taken the great advice from ziggy72, and re-rendered the opening 4 minutes with camera blur. I've added several scenes to the end and sweetened the audio with some effects and foley. I appreciate the comments from Clayster; it gives me the resolve to push ahead and finish the film. It's funny, when I posted the clip on facebook and asked my friends to give me constructive criticism - I got very little. But I really want solid critiques of the work so I can improve the story, animation - whatever I can do, so please don't be shy with your comments - I appreciate the feedback, especially criticism on how you think it could be better. Thanks again.
Bob


Sad story , my father died , I hope to see him in a place like that.

Nice indor sets...

Did he ever get to fly?
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17/08/2016 07:58:24

unlimitedmagic
unlimitedmagic
Posts: 53
Working on flight now...
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19/08/2016 15:36:51

Rocque
Rocque
Posts: 359
tonyob67 wrote:


Sad story , my father died , I hope to see him in a place like that.

Nice indoor sets...

Did he ever get to fly?


I have had dreams about both my father and mother in heaven, as well as a dog, and a co-worker. This video brings in some of the feelings of my dreams. Maybe once I get better at this I can animate the dreams. Or maybe I should write it out and let Robert animate it.

I am glad you are still working on this project, Robert.
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20/08/2016 21:42:24

unlimitedmagic
unlimitedmagic
Posts: 53
This is the next scene. Still have some lyp sink issues.
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21/08/2016 04:59:10

Rocque
Rocque
Posts: 359
I liked that. Too funny!! I will let the experts add their technical help. The dialog was great.
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21/08/2016 15:08:50

ziggy72Muvizu mogulExperimental user
ziggy72
Posts: 1988
If moving the audio on the video editor's timeline doesn't give you a decent enough 'fit' for the sync, you need to use the talk/shush commands to clip the points where their lips are still moving - if you have a deep, well recorded voice like you have then Muvizu picks up on everything (reverb and decay) and you get mouth flutter. Another option (which I use) is to make a special version of the audio with every bit of slack space 'between' words muted out. This is used only for Muvizu to get a better lip sync (but will still sync up with your original untouched audio when you bring it into the editor). I did this for my last video because William Burroughs has a deep, resonant voice and it gave Muvizu problems.
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21/08/2016 15:29:04

unlimitedmagic
unlimitedmagic
Posts: 53
Hey Ziggy,

Yeah, I edit two audio tracks and assign them to the individual characters without any effects. I'm still wondering if I get a slight deviation because of 25fps PAL format versus 29.97 or 30 fps on the editor. I'm still investigating it but the results aren't too bad with a little editing. I really wanted to do the contest but wanted to put the available time toward the project - looked interesting!
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21/08/2016 15:35:00

PatMarrNCMuvizu mogul
PatMarrNC
Posts: 1742
robert-j-ladrach wrote:
Hey Ziggy,
I'm still wondering if I get a slight deviation because of 25fps PAL format versus 29.97 or 30 fps on the editor. I'm still investigating it but the results aren't too bad with a little editing. I really wanted to do the contest but wanted to put the available time toward the project - looked interesting!


recording at 25fps then editing at 30 fps will definitely lead to synch problems. For short bursts like conversation you can work around it with a little patience... for music sound tracks you really need to record and edit at the same fps.

One of the unexpected perks of switching from Adobe Premiere Elements to HitFilm was that HitFilm has multiple 25fps editing templates, whereas all my templates in Premiere were 30 fps (They could be changed, but that's just another step... and easy works for me!)



-----------------------------------
edited by PatMarrNC on 21/08/2016
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21/08/2016 15:54:02

ziggy72Muvizu mogulExperimental user
ziggy72
Posts: 1988
Yeah, make everything the same as your source (25fps) - you can always up the frame rate later, when you're done, but you can't go changing frame rates on Muvizu without problems.
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27/08/2016 14:45:25

unlimitedmagic
unlimitedmagic
Posts: 53

Heaven Bound Revelation Concert Test Render.


This is a quick test render for the final scene. Tried to add more effects, but it closed down the software. Will have to build separate close up sets to do most of the detail as there isn't enough memory to put everything in at once.


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29/08/2016 08:50:16

unlimitedmagic
unlimitedmagic
Posts: 53
Created some rough camera movements and ran a single pass at selecting them. Some changes will be switching out the video after the first verse on the rotating column, smoothing out the camera movements and shots, cutting in a scene when the rotating column curtain drops revealing the Throne of Grace, and working on more lighting/effects/colors/timing. Adding audio ambience and vast crowd cheering and singing the last verses.

This scene comes at the very end of the film - turned Revelation 4 into a concert in a vast stadium. Took a break from making fixes and the linear narrative to work on this scene. Thought it one of the hardest to tackle and I've heard that you should always work on your ending first whether writing a book or making a movie - this gives you a clear idea of what you're working towards.

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29/08/2016 14:24:21

ziggy72Muvizu mogulExperimental user
ziggy72
Posts: 1988
That's nicely done, but wouldn't it be better to have the laser beams coming from above, so you can't see them erupting from nothing behind her? The upward snow is a nice effect too, but you can replace the white ball with something else (and it won't add to the CPU load). Maybe try a little star or sparkle-type PNG instead. You might also want something between the stage and the stands, to fake a bit of depth/distance - you don't want it to look like she's a giant performing to midgets! Also, the central 'screen' cylinder is grey - the videos are always going to be washed out looking anyway (due to Muvizu's mishandling of AVIs) so maybe make the cylinder white instead. Or do it in Hitfilm
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29/08/2016 17:30:33

unlimitedmagic
unlimitedmagic
Posts: 53
Good suggestions, I was thinking about the DOF on the close ups - I'm thinking of making a curtain texture for the cylinder with the video screen overlaid.

Thanks again ziggy!
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01/09/2016 17:26:06

unlimitedmagic
unlimitedmagic
Posts: 53
So here's the next test render. Per Ziggy's suggestions, I changed the upside down snow to sparkles (which rendered more like little stars), tried to add the DOF setting to the close up cameras but they got stomped on by the laser effects. Maybe it's a rising heat effect? : ) Also added some light objects to the stage but it still doesn't work for me - thinking more about some sort of low curb or banister to hide the laser emitter bases. I know the issue of the singer looks giant compared to the stadium - I already am running at a fairly small scale all the way around to fit it under the sky dome, I might try making the stadium set pieces larger next render but from past experience they tend to hit the sides of the dome and then bounce around destroying everything else in the scene. I might just leave it - only one shot really bothers me about it. I want to take a crack at the video texture on the two curved screens next.

I like the idea of doing everything I can in Muvizu itself. It's a fascinating challenge to make things work with the limitations. It's always fun to find a new way of doing something that adds dimension or expands the capability of the software. BTW has anyone noticed the limits on the cameras seems to be higher than before?

Bob

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01/09/2016 18:32:28

PatMarrNCMuvizu mogul
PatMarrNC
Posts: 1742
looking very impressive from here! Good job!
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26/09/2016 01:34:53

unlimitedmagic
unlimitedmagic
Posts: 53
Here's a test render from the library scene and the porch scene. I had 9 cameras going in the library and it was done as a single sequence. The glove was not covering his hand although I tried several sizes, it's about as good as I could get. I had a problem that I needed Joe to walk up to the table and see his glove yet the distance was so short, Muvizu wouldn't let me trigger the walk cycle. Seems he's got to take at least 3 steps minimum. When I adjusted the end point of the cycle, it put him outside the set through the back wall. So to solve this I used 2 Joe models - one you see standing next to Dad and one that is not visible outside the door with the walk cycle. I make Joe disappear when the camera is off of him and the other Joe becomes visible when he walks into frame. The same thing happens with the glove on the stand. It's visible until Joe reaches for it out of camera frame then I make it not visible and make the one on his hand visible. Worked pretty well I thought.

The outdoor scene is covered in detail here.

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26/09/2016 01:58:36

PatMarrNCMuvizu mogul
PatMarrNC
Posts: 1742
Love the lavish sets! and the firefly trick worked very well.. especially in conjunction with the flies effect user the strong lighting.

Do you model all your own assets? You have some very nice things going in in your project!
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26/09/2016 03:13:01

unlimitedmagic
unlimitedmagic
Posts: 53
Wish I could say I model that well, but no. Usually hack 3D warehouse stuff from Sketchup. Lots of texture re-mapping, slicing, scaling, and chopping. Finally figured out how to export 2-sided textures to FBX, didn't realize there was an options button on the export. The rest is mostly photoshop select and deleting background from interesting images. I did find a neat trick where if you search Google for 360 or Spherical images, you can get really nice skydome assets that only need to be re-sized. The rest I'm trying to push Muvizu to do most in program. It's really a neat piece of software, I love the challenge. I think the physics capability of the Unreal engine is under-used, just haven't found the perfect need for it yet.
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26/09/2016 04:30:32

PatMarrNCMuvizu mogul
PatMarrNC
Posts: 1742
Finally figured out how to export 2-sided textures to FBX, didn't realize there was an options button on the export.


can you say a little more about this? I've just spent the weekend beating my head against the wall trying to bring 3DWarehouse models into Muvizu with no luck at all. I can load them into other 3D programs and the look OK, but when I make FBXs out of them using Blender, I must be doing something wrong.

Are you using Blender? Where is the setting for 2 sided?
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26/09/2016 06:24:06

tonyob67
tonyob67
Posts: 214
PatMarrNC wrote:
Finally figured out how to export 2-sided textures to FBX, didn't realize there was an options button on the export.


can you say a little more about this? I've just spent the weekend beating my head against the wall trying to bring 3DWarehouse models into Muvizu with no luck at all. I can load them into other 3D programs and the look OK, but when I make FBXs out of them using Blender, I must be doing something wrong.

Are you using Blender? Where is the setting for 2 sided?



He most be usin sketchup, and the setting most be the one on the bottom of the import object, the one that says *Dos lados* like the picture bellow..........I think

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26/09/2016 08:19:41

unlimitedmagic
unlimitedmagic
Posts: 53
Right, Sketchup.
edited by unlimitedmagic on 26/09/2016
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26/09/2016 13:03:20

PatMarrNCMuvizu mogul
PatMarrNC
Posts: 1742
unlimitedmagic wrote:
Right, Sketchup.
edited by unlimitedmagic on 26/09/2016


But you said export to FBX... Does Sketchup now have an FBX plugin?
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27/09/2016 17:05:42

ziggy72Muvizu mogulExperimental user
ziggy72
Posts: 1988
Blender does have an FBX exporter, but in true blender style it takes a LOT of trial and error to get the settings right for Muvizu. Assuming you have the FBX shown on your export options, you have to set it us thus :

Turn off all output options except Mesh
Scale to around 0.20 (depending on what you need)
In the Geometries tab, make sure Apply Modifiers is ticked, and change the Smoothing to Face (not Normals).
In the Armatures tab, untick everything.

If the FBX option isn't showing, you have to got to User Preferences, Add Ons, and find Import-Export FBX and make sure it's ticked.

You can buy an FBX exporter for Sketchup, but it's not part of the free program.
edited by ziggy72 on 27/09/2016
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27/09/2016 19:27:30

PatMarrNCMuvizu mogul
PatMarrNC
Posts: 1742
Yeah, I've been using Blender to export my models as FBX for a while now.. works great when I create the model in Silo... but everything I get from Sketchup turns into a gummy mess when I export it, and I think it has something to do with the way Sketchup deals with double sided surfaces.

The original post said something about "I finally figured out how to export double sided surfaces to FBX", which is the only thing I was trying to zero in on.
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28/09/2016 09:20:25

unlimitedmagic
unlimitedmagic
Posts: 53
On a fairly recent version of Sketchup on the export FBX, there's an options button on the lower right, under that you can select "2-Sided".
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28/09/2016 10:30:20

PatMarrNCMuvizu mogul
PatMarrNC
Posts: 1742
unlimitedmagic wrote:
On a fairly recent version of Sketchup on the export FBX, there's an options button on the lower right, under that you can select "2-Sided".


Is the FBX plugin something you paid for? or does The most recent version come with FBX export natively?
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28/09/2016 13:51:25

unlimitedmagic
unlimitedmagic
Posts: 53
Pretty sure it came with it.
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28/09/2016 13:51:32

unlimitedmagic
unlimitedmagic
Posts: 53
Pretty sure it came with it.
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28/09/2016 14:13:34

ziggy72Muvizu mogulExperimental user
ziggy72
Posts: 1988
It comes as part of Sketchup Pro.
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28/09/2016 18:57:29

primaveranz
primaveranz
Posts: 524
unlimitedmagic wrote:
I think the physics capability of the Unreal engine is under-used, just haven't found the perfect need for it yet.



If you do, they should make you an instant Mogul, it is such a pain.
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30/09/2016 16:02:02

unlimitedmagic
unlimitedmagic
Posts: 53
I got an idea for an infinity mirror in Muvizu. It would be easy to change this to use for other projects. Hope you like. Here's the result...




Here's the edited render with some ray and sparkle effects.




Here's a link to the set file.
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30/09/2016 16:43:49

ziggy72Muvizu mogulExperimental user
ziggy72
Posts: 1988
Very very nice. And sparkley
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13/04/2017 03:09:15

PatMarrNCMuvizu mogul
PatMarrNC
Posts: 1742
Wow, standing ovation here! That was well done on so many levels it would take a week or more just to say everything I liked about it! Total eye candy from start to finish! Loved all of the mansions... great attention to detail! And getting Ziggy to help was a good idea too.. all of his contributions were awesome!

Use of music in the story was also very effective... you totally nailed it! Great song choices too!

You must be feeling pretty good now that all of your work has paid off and you have a complete story to watch and share! Great job!
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13/04/2017 08:29:33

ukBertyMuvizu mogulExperimental user
ukBerty
Posts: 976
Nicely done.
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13/04/2017 11:19:15

unlimitedmagic
unlimitedmagic
Posts: 53
Forgot to normalize the final audio so I'm re-rendering and uploading. Will post when done. Gets rid of all the varying audio levels and smooths things out sound wise. Still have a bunch of little things I could fix with time but there is a point of diminishing returns where I just wanted to keep moving on it and get it done.

This was started as a way for me to learn the Muvizu software. It's funny how simple the animation is in the beginning and how it gets better as it progresses. Some of the first beach conversations aren't tight and when you get to the party scene near the end, Joe's dad is almost naturally speaking with his hand gestures.

The biggest mistake was trying to do this on a very minimal computer. It has an integrated graphics card which really limits how much I can show in a scene. When Ziggy sent me the model for his version of the throne of grace scene, my computer wouldn't even open it. So if you ever try something this long, I recommend a dedicated, current 3D card. I didn't want to change computers until I was done as I've got video files all over the place and didn't want to lose something in the upgrade.

There are several scenes where there was extra processing and effects from Sony Vegas - sparkles and glows. The majority of it though I wanted to come directly from Muvizu. Some shots like when Joe remembers his grandfather at the party needed After Effects to remove his left arm.

The biggest challenges I ran into with Muvizu were:

Need more actions - got tired of having to re-use hand gestures and others to keep the character moving.

It would be nice to be able slice the actions into bits and put them together in various combinations. I found you could cut a full action short by selecting "idle" quickly after a gesture was recorded. This helped tremendously for timing, but it only works on the first part of the action. Would be nice if you could do this at any part of the action. Because this is adding an editing feature to the timeline, it should be easier to update than having to pay for the time to create a bunch of new actions - although it might be nice to have a series of short actions like - left arm forward, left arm up, left arm, left arm back, etc. With selectable hand positions like you have when you attach an object. Just like some of the actions that stay in the position you leave the character in, these would also "hold". This would really open up how you control the characters. I always hate how the clapping action is too short, the hug is too short, etc.

How about a "HOLD ACTION" action? This would freeze the action where you like and then be able to continue when you choose a new action.

I struggled with the character movement interface. It's too random. The walking is too fast for most applications. What happened to the idea of a "stroll" speed? Also the walking is pretty much useless for short distances. If you move the path arrow out, the character pauses until you get a certain distance away and then walks right on by your target destination. Forget about having a character take two steps forward and stopping.

Still don't like the shadow flickering. You either have to turn off shadows or run them with razor sharp edges to fix.

Overall though Muvizu is an incredible product for its scope and use. I had more fun building scenes and animating than any other package I've ever used. You can really get creative when you learn the capabilities of having an open world to build and populate with characters. For what it is and the price, Muvizu is an excellent value.

The forum and member store are also the best. There is a homegrown culture of comradery here that doesn't exist in Unity or Unreal where they either mock you if you don't know how to do something or are going to charge you for simple model examples.

Hats off to Muvizu for creating such a wonderful product!
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13/04/2017 13:11:01

scorpio66
scorpio66
Posts: 17
Thanks for an incredible video. An inspiration to newbies like myself, and the possibilities of Muvizu.
Thats a high bar to reach, but I look forward to the challenge. Just great.
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13/04/2017 15:42:31

PatMarrNCMuvizu mogul
PatMarrNC
Posts: 1742
unlimitedmagic wrote:
Still have a bunch of little things I could fix with time but there is a point of diminishing returns where I just wanted to keep moving on it and get it done.


My philosophy too. If I had an established youtube channel with lots of viewers I might spend my time differently... but I weigh the value of my remaining time on the planet against the value derived from 300 views. As I get older my time left decreases, which makes it more valuable and that increases my desire to spend it wisely. Redoing a scene ad infinitum to make it perfect when the average viewer won't notice the added details and it doesn't impact the story anyway.. that doesn't make sense to me.

This was started as a way for me to learn the Muvizu software. It's funny how simple the animation is in the beginning and how it gets better as it progresses. Some of the first beach conversations aren't tight and when you get to the party scene near the end, Joe's dad is almost naturally speaking with his hand gestures.

it's inevitable that in any given video the director is more experienced at the end than at the beginning. But I want to say that from a functional point of view, you got your point across consistently throughout the whole story.

The biggest mistake was trying to do this on a very minimal computer. It has an integrated graphics card which really limits how much I can show in a scene. When Ziggy sent me the model for his version of the throne of grace scene, my computer wouldn't even open it. So if you ever try something this long, I recommend a dedicated, current 3D card. I didn't want to change computers until I was done as I've got video files all over the place and didn't want to lose something in the upgrade.


I understand exactly what you're saying here... but I'm a bit surprised to hear it. The richness of your scenes led me to believe you must be using a beast of a computer. It speaks well of your design sensibilities that you were able to create such graphically interesting scenes on a consumer grade computer.


There are several scenes where there was extra processing and effects from Sony Vegas - sparkles and glows. The majority of it though I wanted to come directly from Muvizu. Some shots like when Joe remembers his grandfather at the party needed After Effects to remove his left arm.


the ability to think outside the box and use other software to do the things that Muvizu can't do really makes the creative process a lot more fun. At least, I think so. To take the attitude that Muvizu has to provide all the solutions for an infinite amount of possibilities.. that thinking leads to frustration.


The biggest challenges I ran into with Muvizu were: <snip>


agreed.

Overall though Muvizu is an incredible product for its scope and use. I had more fun building scenes and animating than any other package I've ever used. You can really get creative when you learn the capabilities of having an open world to build and populate with characters. For what it is and the price, Muvizu is an excellent value.


agreed. And it's perhaps the FASTEST animation solution I've tried. A project of this scope would have taken much longer if you tried it in MOHO, and it wouldn't look half as good.

The forum and member store are also the best. There is a homegrown culture of comradery here that doesn't exist in Unity or Unreal where they either mock you if you don't know how to do something or are going to charge you for simple model examples.


its been my experience that forums full of adolescents and young adults (like gaming forums) tend to be very caustic and unpleasant, for approximately the same reason that middle school and junior high school both tend to be unpleasant. On the other hand, all of my favorite forums... the ones where people are helpful and the criticism is more constructive.... they are all populated by an older demographic. Muvizu certainly has its share of young users, but far as I can tell, the forum regulars are mostly old enough to be past the stage of pointless confrontation. It takes time to learn social skills and a spirit of cooperation.

Hats off to Muvizu for creating such a wonderful product!

<insert applause here>
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13/04/2017 16:00:40

RodrisilvaMuvizu mogulExperimental user
Rodrisilva
Posts: 114
I have not yet had time to watch this video in the best conditions of image and sound, but from what I can see, it brings together several predicates that are the attribute of generous, inventive and passionate people. This video reproduces the best that Muvizu has to offer and above all is a manifestation of individual freedom. Muvizu is not perfect, but he unleashes in us these abilities that we thought we did not possess. I believe that is his great virtue.It transform us, improve us, rediscover us.

Thanks for this video
edited by Rodrisilva on 13/04/2017
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14/04/2017 09:43:13

ritsmer
ritsmer
Posts: 110
It is a long time ago that I have watched a film lasting over 3 minutes to the very end without skipping forward underway.

I just found myself again - sitting on the very edge of my chair, taking off the headphones - and trying to force my mind back to everyday - after having spent 38:40 of my (carnal) life watching this epic story.

Just one thing kept disrupting my thoughts a little while watching: How is he going to "land" this story at the end ? - but then we got the sweetest imaginable finish - delivered with the same steady hand that controlled all the previous scenes .

Thank you, Robert, for this great experience.
edited by ritsmer on 14/04/2017
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14/04/2017 11:23:54

unlimitedmagic
unlimitedmagic
Posts: 53
Wow, thank you ritsmer. Humbling.
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14/04/2017 19:15:31

unlimitedmagic
unlimitedmagic
Posts: 53
Here's the final render of Citizen of Heaven with the audio normalized.
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