Wednesday, 8 April 2009

One to One

Since September I have been doing one to one training at the Apple store in the Bullring, Birmingham. It’s been a great way of getting to grips with Final Cut Studio, not just the divine Final Cut Pro (which I’m enjoying using to edit together the roughest rough cut of the film so far) but also the previously mysterious (to me) Motion.

As an After Effects user I was a bit dubious of the benefits of Motion, but it is so compatible with FCP that it seemed silly not to have a play. It’s my new best friend. It’s not as powerful as After Effects in some ways but (like all Mac stuff) it’s super-intuitive to use and the layout is much clearer. I used After effects previously mainly as a 2D package and it would be good to go back to it now that I am so conversant with 3D through Motion, and see where the differences are.

Compositing, like editing, is so much fun because you’re working with previously made content so you’re not animating per se. And, let’s face it, animating is quite tedious. In a compositing package the frame by frame animating has been completed and I can play about with it in 3D space, adding lighting, camera moves and behaviours. In addition I can key frame specific movements of still images, backgrounds and effects, giving life to the most static material.

My Apple one to one tutor, Ashleigh, has been amazing throughout my Motion learning curve. He’s been very open to my freaky animation needs (it’s so different not using live action - which the whole package of Final Cut Studio is really set up for) and whenever he hasn’t known the answer to anything he’s been brilliant about finding out answers and solving some of my stranger problems (like how to make a huge undulating quilt ripple about in the middle of a field through the window of a passing train).

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