3ds Max and Revit Interoperability - Part 17 - Animating Cameras

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Industry
  • Design Visualization
Subject
  • 2015
  • Interoperability
Products
  • 3ds Max
Skill Level
  • Intermediate
Duration
7 min

3ds Max and Revit Interoperability - Part 17 - Animating Cameras

In this tutorial, you learn how to animate a couple of camera shots to emphasize the Revit building. You learn to animate the camera and its target, and to edit the trajectory and speed for best effects.

Notes

  • Recorded in: 3ds Max 2015
  • This tutorial is intended for use with 3ds Max version 2015 or higher.

Transcript

00:00:06 --> 00:00:13
Continue working on your file from the last movie or use the provided file named Museum_cameras.max

00:00:13 --> 00:00:20
It's a more complete version of the scene you worked on in the last movie, with about a dozen vehicles moving along their respective paths.

00:00:21 --> 00:00:27
As much as this adds to the scene, you still need to animate a camera or two to get more interesting shots at the project.

00:00:28 --> 00:00:32
Still images work well but animations sell a concept better.

00:00:32 --> 00:00:36
Creating a camera is easy, especially in 3ds Max.

00:00:37 --> 00:00:43
In the Top view, you create a Target Camera with a simple click and drag to define camera and target positions.

00:00:44 --> 00:00:49
A target is obviously a point you want to look at, in this case the Museum structure.

00:00:50 --> 00:00:56
To see what the camera is looking at, switch one of the viewport to display the camera POV.

00:00:58 --> 00:01:04
This way, as you adjust the camera and target positions, you get instant feedback in the viewport.

00:01:15 --> 00:01:18
This looks like a good starting point.

00:01:20 --> 00:01:27
It's also a good idea to rename a camera, we'll name this one: Cam_Street, which hints at a street view.

00:01:28 --> 00:01:36
Also, do not rely on the viewport for framing a camera shot. The viewport's aspect ratio may not be the same as the final render.

00:01:36 --> 00:01:42
Instead, set the camera view in Safe Frames mode so you can frame the shot better.

00:01:44 --> 00:01:46
All that remains is to animate the camera.

00:01:46 --> 00:01:52
Fortunately, animating a camera for Design Animation is easier than doing so for a movie or a computer game.

00:01:53 --> 00:01:56
What I mean by that is the camera motion is typically simpler.

00:01:57 --> 00:02:03
You don't usually initiate camera shakes and fast cuts in Design Animation like you would do for a James Bond movie.

00:02:03 --> 00:02:07
Instead, you keep camera flow slow and smooth.

00:02:08 --> 00:02:13
In this case, you'll simply animate the camera linearly in the space of 600 frames or 20 seconds.

00:02:14 --> 00:02:17
Enable Animate mode and go to frame 600.

00:02:20 --> 00:02:24
Move the camera in the top view but keep the distance in check.

00:02:25 --> 00:02:31
Again, you want a slow animation to give the client time to appreciate the building design.

00:03:01 --> 00:03:07
However, you can lift the camera in Z to give the impression of a crane shot. These always look nice.

00:03:07 --> 00:03:13
You can also relocate the target at frame 600 if you need to fine-tune the framing of the shot.

00:03:17 --> 00:03:21
Test out the result by playing the animation in the viewport.

00:03:26 --> 00:03:28
Adjust as necessary.

00:03:30 --> 00:03:39
Because you are using a simple move action from point A to point B, the animation automatically takes into account acceleration and deceleration.

00:03:43 --> 00:03:47
With the camera selected, right-click and go to the Curve Editor.

00:03:50 --> 00:03:54
Notice the curve that accelerates gently at the beginning and decelerates at the end.

00:03:55 --> 00:03:59
This is because the position default controller is based on Bezier Float.

00:03:59 --> 00:04:03
This works well for simple motions like the one you just created.

00:04:05 --> 00:04:10
Let's do another one, this time you'll create a shot from above, or a bird's eye view.

00:04:10 --> 00:04:17
Exit Auto Key mode and create another Target Camera, looking at the opposite side of the building.

00:04:21 --> 00:04:25
Rename it: Cam_Birdseye,

00:04:28 --> 00:04:32
and switch the 3D viewport to see through the lens of the new camera.

00:04:37 --> 00:04:41
Adjust the camera and its target to get a nice diving shot at frame 0.

00:04:46 --> 00:04:51
Go to frame 600 and enable Auto Key mode one more time.

00:04:55 --> 00:04:59
Move the camera so it's looking at the front of the building again.

00:05:04 --> 00:05:12
Scrub the animation and notice the problem: the camera is going through the neighboring building.

00:05:12 --> 00:05:18
This could have been prevented by placing the camera on a path, but it's not hard to fix with simple keyframing.

00:05:18 --> 00:05:24
All you need is another keyframed position to ensure the camera's trajectory doesn't go through the building.

00:05:24 --> 00:05:30
You can display the current trajectory by right-clicking the camera and going to the Object Properties dialog.

00:05:30 --> 00:05:41
Under Display Properties, disable By Layer if you need to (this is a 3ds Max Design default) and enable Trajectory. Click OK when done.

00:05:41 --> 00:05:46
This shows you the trajectory the camera is traveling along, which is a straight line so far.

00:05:48 --> 00:05:54
Go to a frame where the camera is in the middle of the side building. I'll use frame 260 in my case.

00:05:54 --> 00:06:02
With Auto Key still enabled, move the camera outside the building. The trajectory is now an arc.

00:06:20 --> 00:06:25
In the Curve Editor, verify acceleration and deceleration,

00:06:29 --> 00:06:32
and test out the playback in the viewport.

00:06:32 --> 00:06:36
There are no limits to the number of cameras you can create and animate.

00:06:37 --> 00:06:42
Ultimately, each camera shot can be rendered and saved as a separate animation.

00:06:44 --> 00:06:49
You now have an interesting scene coming together, with animated cars and cameras.

00:06:49 --> 00:06:53
To bring it fully to life though, you need animated pedestrians.

00:06:53 --> 00:06:57
You will achieve that in the next movie by using the Populate tool.
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Tags
  • 3ds Max
  • 2015
  • Interoperability
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