Meta Balls Rorschach Test in Cinema 4D

While working on a project I stumbled into a cool design with Meta Balls in Cinema 4D that creates this 3D version of the Rorschach Test. It’s the famous test where you are given 10 different ink blots to stare at by a psychologist and you are asked what you interpret the image to be. They are just smudges but sometimes you can make out the silhouettes of certain objects or themes, thus determining if you are 100% completely insane or not.

Using a Cloner with a sphere, a Random Effector, a Formula Effector, and Meta Balls, I was able to create a free-flowing version of a test. The great thing about Using MoGraph with this is you can alter the random seed, the number of clones, or any number of different options and get a completely different looking animation. Pause the video at any point and look at the pattern. See anything interesting?

Clearly this is the Dog from Dunk Hunt laughing at you when you fired and missed shooting at the duck.

Protagonistas Show Opening

Me and a couple other animators were given less than a week to prepare an entire graphics package for this new show called “Protagonistas.” The producers left the graphics on the backburner in the hands of some animators that weren’t cutting it for about 3 months. I would have loved to collect checks and produce subpar graphics for 3 months, but instead I was asked to make something nice in about 5 days.

Protagonistas follows the cookie cutter reality show format of: Auditioning contestants in front of 3 judges -> move selected contestants into house -> sit back and watch them fight/argue/have sex/argue about sex fights -> vote contests off until a star is born.

This show searches for the next big telenovela star. I was denied an opportunity to be on the show to which I am still outraged. Just because I’m white and don’t speak Spanish shouldn’t preclude me from becoming a telenovela star. I could totally be on Que Hora Es? and they know this. I will have to catch my big break at another time.

I highlighted the main part pf the show’s opening that I did in this clip, they added some sound effects and music for the broadcast addition. I had to make a tunnel full of screens showcasing clips of the contestants on the show. They wanted all this to feel like we are going into the camera lens, which is the main element of the show’s logo. The tunnel is a heavy render in Cinema 4D with the help of MoGraph. I modeled one flat screen TV and placed it in a radial cloner, then made a linear cloner of each radial cloner. The camera is set to have a very wide lens to make the tunnel appear a lot deeper than it actual is. I had to apply different clips to each TV so there was some variety among the monitors, so there were a lot of materials. I didn’t have Cinema 4D 13 at my disposal so I couldn’t use the new multishader setting where you can add entire folders to just one material.

The shutter is a transition I made with another radial cloner to the contestants on the show. They wanted a sort of “beam me up Scotty” effect to introduce the characters. Each contestant enters through a combination of effects like linear wipe, turbulent displace, and emitting some particles using Trapcode Particular. I used a lot of tech overlays from the Motion Designer’s Toolkit because having pre-rendered footage like that is the only way I could pull that off in a few days.

This intro marks the first time in Univison history that the female contestants are wearing more clothes than the males. Despite concerns from me and multiple other people with common sense that framing the male characters waist up without a shirt will make people think they are naked, this is exactly what the shows producers wanted to infer. There was plenty of room for me to include the tops of their pants, but I was told to scale them up so that viewers will obviously be so captivated by a bunch of naked hombres on the screen. This will clearly lead to incredible ratings, increased advertising revenue, and ensure that the visionaries that insist on shooting guys waist up without shirt get promoted.

Mograph Dancing Music Orb

I was trying to come up with a new way to show what the Sound Effector in Mograph can do for a lesson in my upcoming book. I wanted to make something that was beyond the simple “Hey look at the clones scaling up to the sound of beat” animations we’ve all seen. So I created this shiny, squirmy, dancing turd rock. GENIUS. There will be a short and sweet lesson on how to create it in my book, in case your future clients demand you make one.

Univision Promo: Spanish Maja

Here is a new Univision Promo I did with Cinema 4D and After Effects. They needed it done fast earlier this month because they wanted to air this network promo right after the coverage of the World Cup ended, and they were hoping Spain would win and they could air this promo that has an obvious Spanish theme to it. I got it done with a quick turnaround thanks to MoGraph as always. Continue Reading

ESPN Style Baseball Promo Titles

I recreated the baseball promos I’ve seen this season on ESPN. I modeled the whole scene in Cinema 4D and did the compositing in After Effects. This scene relies on the camera position being parallel to the wall to recreate the simple and smooth pan along the warning track. I used Mograph to create the wall by cloning the padded panel, and once I modeled one seat I simply used cloners to create the rows. The grass is made with Hair; it really slows the render down but it creates the best looking 3D grass in Cinema 4D. I added the titles that I created in Photoshop to look like they were painted on the wall, and did some color correcting and added some grunge to enhance the scene.

They look very similar to the commercials you see on ESPN, and the best part is that once you create in in Cinema 4D, you can simply swap out the titles to change the teams and games to say whatever you want.

The Red Jays beat the Blue Sox that night 6-4.

I made a Tube

I made a tube in Cinema 4D.

I will now answer your questions about the tube:

Q: I’ve watched the tube and I’m confused. What exactly does this tube do?

A: The tube doesn’t really do anything per se, it is what it is. It moves, and then the pieces inside it move.

Q. I see. How did you go about creating this tube?

A: Well I was trying to come up with a different way of presenting/containing/revealing some text in Cinema 4D. Instead of having the letters just sit there, I put them in a tube that kind of looks like those things at the bank or the basis for Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. I used MoDynamics to get the right feel for the letters to behave in their new vacuum sealed world. Then I altered the position and rotation of the tube to shake things up and have the contents bounce around. I added some marbles inside there because I felt like it. Then I added reflections and materials in order to make it look cooler and we arrived at the tube which stands before us today.
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Short & Gray: Falling Boxes

MoDynamics is awesome, I am using it all the time. You could create some really cool stuff with just Mograph before this addition to the module, but adding the ability to make your clones collide and interact with other bodies make it so much more powerful.

Here is a simple animation I made, it’s a quick revealer that can be used to bring some type, footage, objet, etc. on screen. You basically keyframe the hero box, have it blend in with some dummy clones, and animate the surfaces of the plane to unravel to showcase the contents of the box.

Short & Gray: Pie Chart

Because bar graphs shouldn’t get all the love.

Short & Gray – Jiggle Text

So I’ve got all of these unfinished projects that are just rotting on my hard drive. I come up with an idea and don’t know what to do with it. They are usually pretty simple, and I rack my brain trying to come up with a ground-breaking way to present my simple idea. It usually results in a dead end. So instead I’m just going to start posting them under the umbrella of “Short & Gray.” Since they will have just a plain old gray texture and be 5 seconds or less, the title fits. Maybe I will be able to use them down the road as part of a bigger project; it’s always good to have a library of random designs built and ready to go.

This is the first one, called Jiggle Text. It’s just some simple MoGraph using a Step Effector and a Delay Effector. The text is bouncy in a Jello type of way.

Text and Arrows – MoGraph’s Formula Effector

Here’s a little something something I came up with just adding a bunch of effectors together in MoGraph.

The main effector in charge here is the formula effector. That is controlling the motion of the text flowing around and the floating of the arrows. The random effector and target effector are also involved. I also like the candy or bubble-gum color scheme got going on here.