A combination of frenetic CDM backend design work and all of my clients finally giving me materials 2 weeks before I leave to holiday in Vietnam has kept me from writing, and for that I apologize. Peter has or course kept up the fantastic content, but there is some more material which needs to be spread around and I can’t see any time to write full news posts before I leave. So here it is condensed, and almost editorialization free:

Visualist News

Open Source Film Footage: Stray Cinema

Stray Cinema is an online community where you are able to download and re-edit the raw footage from a film we have shot in London. This will provide people from all over the world with an opportunity to create their own version of the film. Stray Cinema will navigate the film experiment out of the online digital world, into the ‘real world’ with a screening of the top five films in London. The footage shot in London is the first of many open source films to be provided by Stray Cinema.

Lost in Light will transfer 8mm to digital for free* (so why don’t you shoot some 8mm).

New AE Plugin: ZbornToy.

Here’s a fresh new way to composite externally rendered 3D images in After Effects. The plug-in ZbornToy takes grayscale depth maps and magically let’s you continue tweaking and change many parameters from within AE.

Tasty 3D Business: Behind HP’s “Hands” commercials. Java-based 3D sketching. Fine art 3D rendering, and more.

Adobe’s November Plug-in Guide: The November version of the Plug-In Guide is now available. It contains listings of all known plug-ins for InDesign, Acrobat and Illustrator. Categories include Shrink-Wrap, Catalog & Database, Newspapers, and Freelancers.

Outside Hollywood:

Tutorials and Howto

Looping Fractal Noise: Fractal Noise is the swiss army knife of AE plugins. Newbies may pass over it because of the cheezy default plugin look, but seasoned pros can use it for anything which requires random or organic movement and looping motion; clouds, flame, water, slime, morphs

Beaming Up effect in AFX.

Hidden IllustratorPhotoshop integration

Background: The compositing model (i.e. the layer blending modes & options) used by Illustrator, InDesign, and Acrobat is different than the one used by Photoshop. Therefore some blending options in Photoshop (for example, complex “Blend If” settings) can’t be replicated in Illustrator. As a result, when you place a PSD file into Illustrator, the blending is isolated. That is, the PSD is treated as things a little world unto itself, and the blending modes within it don’t interact with anything else in the Illustrator document. Objects like drop shadows (set to Multiply mode) only multiply against other things inside the PSD.

AE Keyframe Boomerang Effect: Part 1.

In this tutorial, Creative Cow Leader Aharon Rabinowitz shows you how to handle the annoying (and sometimes crippling) boomerang effect, in which a layer moves randomly between two spatial keyframes that are exactly the same.

Using After Effects 7 on Intel-Based MacPro Computers. Ed.: This one is interesting as an alternative to booting into Windows, but don’t get too excited: basically, you have to humble your Mac Pro into running Rosetta and find some way of not having the machine die. In the meantime, I have to admit, I’m getting more addicted to running the Adobe software on Windows, anyway — sorry, Apple. -PK

DIY: Building your own computer for Digital Video. Ed.: See also our DIY Shuttle XPC assembly, which is kind of the portable version of this — only cheaper, and I didn’t dress up like Darth Vader. This looks great as a desktop machine, however, and you’d be hard pressed to match bang-for-buck and customization on the Mac. -PK


The Rapture – “Whoo! Alright! Yeah Uh-Huh!”: Great animation, great motion tracking, great feel. Rocking clip.

RC plane with Remote Head-Mount Gyroscope-Controlled Camera Plane: We now officially live in The Future.