Field with flowers

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Nimphaea
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Joined: Sun Aug 08, 2004 12:46 pm

Field with flowers

Post by Nimphaea » Thu Aug 20, 2009 8:43 am

Hello everybody!

I'm having a lot of fun with my favorite software Anime Studio again!

I'm trying to make an animation with a field of grass with flowers. I've made the camera fly over this field. I hope this will be a very nice effect.

I rendered the scene out first without any effects, and that looks like this:

http://www.flashanimatie.com/projects/b ... oppies.mov

The rendering was pretty fast.

Then, I wanted to render it with blur. This looks MUCH nicer!! I REALLY like the effect.

But... The rendering time is very, very slow... My computer has been rendering all night to render only 6 frames. My animation is 250 frames, so this will take much too long to render. My complete animation has to be finished at the end of next week...

Is there any way to fasten up the rendering process? Maybe you have some tips / advice? Is there a way to use the "non blurred" render and let another software package (like Adobe After Effects) do the exact same blurring based on depth (is there a way in AS to export for example "mask layers" for this)?

I have not yet upgraded to the newest version of Anime Studio, I'm still using Anime Studio 5. Is the rendering in the newest version of Anime Studio (a lot) quicker? Would it help to upgrade for this specific project? Would the newest version render this project faster?

Maybe I'm doing something wrong. My (very heavy to start up because of the huge amount of particles) Anime Studio project can be downloaded here:

http://www.flashanimatie.com/projects/b ... oppies.zip

Maybe somebody can give me advice. Of course, using less particles would speed everything up, but I found that that doesn't look right. I'm really happy with the scene as it is now.

I hope somebody can take a look and maybe give me advice on this specific animation. Thanks a LOT in advance! Your help is really appreciated.
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Mikdog
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Post by Mikdog » Thu Aug 20, 2009 11:01 am

Looks great.

Hmm...you could render it without blur first, hi resolution, then bring the movie back into Anime Studio, then duplicate the video and mask only the bottom half of the duplicated version and apply a blur to the mask and blur the video.

This sounds a bit complicated, but in essence you're blurring the top video and only showing a bit of it at the bottom, so it looks like the closest flowers are blurred and the video behind the top video is normal.

This is a workaround way to your solution, but it'd work and be a lot quicker. Particles do slow things down.
Nimphaea
Posts: 75
Joined: Sun Aug 08, 2004 12:46 pm

Post by Nimphaea » Thu Aug 20, 2009 12:50 pm

Thank you for your reply. I'm glad to hear you like my animation so far...!

Your idea sounded good, but unfortunately, I don't think the solution you describe looks good. It doesn't give a true feeling of "depth" because the blur is visible as a "thing" in itself. The nice thing of the Anime Studio depth blurring is that the objects all have their own amount of blurring, that's what gives the illusion of real depth. When I blur the whole downpart it doesn't look natural. If Anime Studio could export a "depth map" or something like that, I could maybe fake the effect with some help of After Effects. It really looks very nice to have blurred grass in front, with a sharp flower behind. When I blur the whole bottom of the movie, this effect can't be achieved.

But... Still I want to thank you for your help!

I saw one of the members of this site had made a rendering application for rendering outside of Anime Studio. Unfortunately, I only have a Mac. Is there maybe other software I could use to render quicker? Or is there maybe a trick with smart render settings?
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J. Baker
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Post by J. Baker » Fri Aug 21, 2009 1:05 am

WOW, this took forever to open. And even after I opened it, it still kept locking up the pc. Even for particles, I'm guessing something could have been done differently.

My pc has an AMD 4000+ 2.4Ghz and 2GB of pc2700. And since AnimeStudio doesn't use multiple cores or have hardware acceleration, I can't see a faster pc doing much more.

I tried to help out but maybe someone else has more time to fiddle with this.
Nimphaea
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Joined: Sun Aug 08, 2004 12:46 pm

Post by Nimphaea » Fri Aug 21, 2009 9:13 am

Thank you for your reply, that's really nice of you!

My friends are helping me now with rendering :) . It's rendering on 3 computers at the moment (on every computer another part of the image sequence), and tonight even on a fourth. So that is great, and a "sort of" solution to fasten up the total rendering time :) !

Ofcourse, if anybody has an idea on how to speed the rendering up, it would still be very welcome.

Thank you for your reply!
Vagabond
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Blur as a thing itself

Post by Vagabond » Wed Aug 26, 2009 2:43 pm

If the blur is that noticeable then maybe you can apply a gradient mask. You can either create a shape with a large soft edge or make a mask in photoshop and import it as a png image file.

The flowers are beautiful! Are the "bald" spots in the grass on the sides from the rounded particle emitter? I wish we could control the shape of the emitter.
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