Film Sensei's Stuff: Two Mandalorian Tutorials for HitFilm Express! (October 30, 2020)

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  • OliThompsonOliThompson Staff Administrator, Website User Posts: 140 Staff

    Really great tips Jay! Videos like this are so helpful for the community - thanks for putting it together :)

  • FilmSenseiFilmSensei Moderator, Website User, Ambassador Posts: 2,215 Ambassador

    Check out my newest #HitFilm tutorial... How to Parent a Mask to a Track Point in HitFilm! Is this even possible??? 

  • spydurhankspydurhank Moderator, Website User, Ambassador, Imerge Beta Tester, HitFilm Beta Tester Posts: 2,781 Ambassador

    Loved it, woke up early-ish and caught the last bit. Really cool, need coffee now. :)

  • Triem23Triem23 Moderator Moderator, Website User, Ambassador, Imerge Beta Tester, HitFilm Beta Tester Posts: 18,045 Ambassador

    Well, no - which is why you use a matte, but the technically incorrect title will make it easier to find. Those who need this tutorial won't be searching for "mattes." ???

  • CleverTaglineCleverTagline Moderator Las Vegas, NVModerator, Website User, Ambassador Posts: 3,013 Ambassador

    Good stuff, Jay! This question comes up just frequently enough that it's good to finally have a demo of the process.

  • FlyingBanana78FlyingBanana78 Website User Posts: 412 Enthusiast

    Dont know why I never thought of doing it this way *noob moment* lol I have always in the past just duplicated the source and masked it. And worst part is I knew about mattes and yet didn't use them when I did a walk around on the  Star TrekTNG bridge and sat in "the" chair. Make it so... Thanks for the tip and video

  • FilmSenseiFilmSensei Moderator, Website User, Ambassador Posts: 2,215 Ambassador

    @Triem23 You've figured out all my secrets... Notice the question mark in the thumbnail. 

    @CleverTagline Thanks!

    @FlyingBanana78 @spydurhank I am glad you liked it.

  • tddavistddavis Moderator, Website User Posts: 4,050 Moderator

    @FlyingBanana78 Me too!  That has been my go-to method because I suck at tracking __STILL!!!  With the duplicating it always followed the other :)  But there are situations I had to scramble around and this would fill that bill.  Got to work out my trackaphobia.

  • FilmSenseiFilmSensei Moderator, Website User, Ambassador Posts: 2,215 Ambassador

    @tddavis I have "trackaphobia" also... I hate running! 

  • alaska_vfx_filmeralaska_vfx_filmer Website User Posts: 443 Enthusiast

     Awesome! I only recently started using this trick, (even though it was one of the first things I wanted to learn, over two years ago), but I missed using the grade layer trick. I Wish I'd had this when I started learning Hitfilm. 

    BTW @FilmSensie, I downloaded miximo assets for the first time, And have to thank you again for that streamlined tutorial you made for phil, it was VERY helpful, in fact I only watched it once (right after you posted it), and had never actually used blender before (literally for anything), but Thanks to the simplicity of that video, I was able to repeat all the steps from memory.

  • FilmSenseiFilmSensei Moderator, Website User, Ambassador Posts: 2,215 Ambassador

    @LiamMcM1 That is awesome! Let us know if you need help with anything. :)

  • Stargazer54Stargazer54 Moderator Moderator, Website User, Ambassador Posts: 2,655 Ambassador
  • FilmSenseiFilmSensei Moderator, Website User, Ambassador Posts: 2,215 Ambassador

    Check out my newest HitFilm tutorial... How to Add a Mixamo Walk Cycle Animation into HitFilm!

  • spydurhankspydurhank Moderator, Website User, Ambassador, Imerge Beta Tester, HitFilm Beta Tester Posts: 2,781 Ambassador
  • cluelessnubecluelessnube Website User Posts: 476 Just Starting Out

    @FilmSensei - thanks for this.   I've finally got my mind around your other Mixamo videos, and so can benefit from this one too.

     

  • cluelessnubecluelessnube Website User Posts: 476 Just Starting Out

    Hmm....

    I just watched this video about importing models from Mixamo.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NP961pFqFCA

    That video says washing in Blender isn't necessary, and later videos on Mixamo say washing in Blender is necessary.   Did you change your mind on that?  Or something else?  Puzzled...

  • spydurhankspydurhank Moderator, Website User, Ambassador, Imerge Beta Tester, HitFilm Beta Tester Posts: 2,781 Ambassador

    Hey @cluelessnube ,

    You'll only need to "Wash" a model through Blender if for some reason, it won't load properly into Hitfilm.

    It really depends on the mesh object and animation that you're trying to use.

    Try first loading your mesh and animation into Hitfilm to see if it works, if it doesn't then that will tell you that you need to wash it through Blender.

    Just Frank

  • cluelessnubecluelessnube Website User Posts: 476 Just Starting Out

    @spydurhank, thanks for your input.   Ok, that seems a good rule of thumb.   I've found LOTS of models that won't work in Hitfilm on sites like TurboSquid, so I guess I need to add washing to the workflow before declaring those models dead.    I'll see how many models that fixes, and go from there.

    This really isn't a big deal at all, but I was just wondering.   Shouldn't all Mixamo files either need washing or not?  

     

  • spydurhankspydurhank Moderator, Website User, Ambassador, Imerge Beta Tester, HitFilm Beta Tester Posts: 2,781 Ambassador

    No problem @cluelessnube , Yes that is very, very good practice. :)

    I'd bring in every model into Blender, even at least just to inspect them and be sure that there is nothing wrong with them.

    When Jay @FilmSensei says "do or don't" in a video... he is being very specific to the assets which he is using in that specific video. This only means that, a very specific 3D model and animation will need the Blender "washing" strange word, while other models will not need the washing. Jay has come up with a pretty good method of getting Mixamo models and animation files to work in Hitfilm. you'd need more intimate knowledge like Jay has to be able to tell what will work and what will not work very easily.

    As far as every mixamo model needing washing? I'd go ahead and do it, at least then you'd be 100% sure that your model will work.

    Just have this in the back of your head somewhere... if the 3 d object is triangulated, you'll want to run it through the "rinse cycle". 

    you'll for sure want to re-target an alembic or fbx animation because... the Mixamo files carry animation but most times the alembic files aren't advanced enough to hold the correct "Normal angle direction" so the Alembic file itself is what inverts flips and duplicates vertices. 

     

    Just Frank 

  • DataDesignDataDesign Website User Posts: 422 Enthusiast

    @Spydurhank

    What you said:-----------

    Just have this in the back of your head somewhere... if the 3 d object is triangulated, you'll want to run it through the "rinse cycle". 

    you'll for sure want to re-target an alembic or fbx animation because... the Mixamo files carry animation but most times the alembic files aren't advanced enough to hold the correct "Normal angle direction" so the Alembic file itself is what inverts flips and duplicates vertices. 

     What I "heard" :-----------Loren Ipsum adnum Loren Ipsum adnum Loren Ipsum adnum Loren Ipsum adnum etc.

    But thanks for trying.:-)

  • spydurhankspydurhank Moderator, Website User, Ambassador, Imerge Beta Tester, HitFilm Beta Tester Posts: 2,781 Ambassador

    No worries @DataDesign , :)

    Sorry you couldn't understand me although it kinda makes sense because not only is English not my original language, but I'm also recovering from childhood brain injury, trauma and exposure that cooked my brain with a fever that jumped between 104 and 106 when I was three, so sometimes words are jumbled and come out in a flurry and out of order. The only time words come out good is when I'm thinking "Artistically" :)

    Thanks for understanding. :)

  • GrayMotionGrayMotion Website User Posts: 1,340 Enthusiast

    Just @spydurhank For the benefit of others - Do you know of any  Blender 2.80+ re-targeting plugins? or would you be interested in "showing" us less fortunate how to do it manually?

    I have a pretty good idea but learning from someone who actually knows how-to is a huge benefit to the old noggin

    For reference:

    https://github.com/igelbox/blender-retarget

  • spydurhankspydurhank Moderator, Website User, Ambassador, Imerge Beta Tester, HitFilm Beta Tester Posts: 2,781 Ambassador

    Hey @GrayMotion ,

    The way @FilmSensei does the Mixamo animations in Blender is just fine, almost identical to mine except I wrote an  addon for Filmer that bakes anything and everything to shapekeys which is the only fool proof way to export a perfect Alembic file for something as simple as an object with one material and one texture to something super complex with many materials and textures.

    Courtney is an expert with audio design and stuff so she bought us a few vocalist microphones and a new webcam. I've been using a cell phone camera as a web cam ever since the first time you saw me on camera on Jays livestream show. The phone camera always sucked so I'm glad that we got new gear.

    I just did a one on one video chat with a new Filmer user here on the forums a few weeks ago and it was pretty damned fun. Yeah I've been really diggin' teaching people live. That dude walked away from our chat inspired, I was so happy just to see someone get exited when they see the potential of what I can offer. :)

    Yeah I can walk you guys through some stuff, no problem. We can talk or video chat any time dude, I'm always open. :) 

    Do you have something specific in mind like that awesome I-clone stuff? or the Mixamo stuff? or something like...    Applying a 3rd party BVH or Alembic file to a custom mesh object? All doable. :)

  • Triem23Triem23 Moderator Moderator, Website User, Ambassador, Imerge Beta Tester, HitFilm Beta Tester Posts: 18,045 Ambassador
    edited July 6

    @GrayMotion a couple of threads online to get you started. 

    https://connect.unity.com/p/retargeting-animations-with-blender-2-80

    https://github.com/Mwni/blender-animation-retargeting (This is a Blender 2.8 add-on from March 2020)

    @DataDesign let me try and translate. In early 3D modelling all polys were triangles. A triangle is the simplest polygon that can define a plane. Later polygons - Quads and N-gons - became possible, well, later on! Triangles can be wacky to deal with, but... Hitfilm is OpenGl based, and is going to convert any model you import to triangles. In theory it's better to "wash" through Blender so you can control where tris go and you can correct normals (if needed) before import to Hitfilm. In practice, boy, sometimes the triangulation is a pain. I have a TARDIS model I'm working on for Hitfilm use and, no matter what I do, I'm getting visible triangles on things that should be "flat."

    Normals. A polygon normal is found at the center of area of a polygon and extends perpendicular to the surface of the poly. Stretch out your left hand flat, palm up. Stick up your right thumb and put your right hand on you left palm so your thumb is sticking up. Your left hand is the poly, your right thumb is the normal. The normal determines which way the polygon is facing and is also used to calculate the angle of incidence of a light ray (In early CG, only the center normal was used to calculate facing - these days, depending on the software and shader, the normal AND all the vertices are measured for facing). A polygon only exists from "one side," and the normal determines which side it is. Again, this can be confusing. Blender, for example, renders both sides of a polygon, but Hitfilm only renders the side that the normal faces out of. I'm dealing with this myself on that TARDIS model. I'd take it into Hitfilm and certain sections rendered "inverted." Turns out some normals got flipped (Which, i guess, happens a lot when modeling with a mirror modifier), and had to be corrected.

    So, Alembic files (and FBX files) bake the model and animation together. However, the Alembic format doesn't properly store the normals, so polygons can end up "flipped," which means the normals have to be corrected before export to Hitfilm.

    @Spydurhank has written a "Show Normals" function into Filmer. His is really neat! Blender lets you view normals, but Blender renders each normal as a little line sticking out of the poly face and, with a high-density mesh, or with smaller polys it can be hard to see which way the lines are extending. Frank's version shades the poly BLUE on the side with the normal and RED on the side that "doesn't exist." This is actually a heck of a lot easier to read, and enabled me to catch normals on my TARDIS that were flipped that I'd missed in the modeling stages because I didn't see the little line for that tiny poly that was surrounded by a bevel...

  • spydurhankspydurhank Moderator, Website User, Ambassador, Imerge Beta Tester, HitFilm Beta Tester Posts: 2,781 Ambassador

    @Triem23 , You're funny. I see how you guys are, it must be pick on the guy with brain damage day. Heh, that is funny. :) 

    @GrayMotion ,

    Dude, you're gonna have to forgive me. When I answered earlier I was also coding something extra special for Filmer so there were several thoughts that had the word "re-targeting" sims and physics stuff in my mind.

    So the retargeting was simply a misspoken word because any real 3D guy knows that you don't need to retarget a Mixamo animation. Sorry about that and for steering you in the wrong direction. My bad Greg, like I've said before, sometimes words and thoughts get jumbled up. So sorry about that because you where about to go on a wild goose chase. If you do decide to try the method in the video that Mike posted, I'd say go ahead and do that if you absolutely love and enjoy mind numbing frustration.

    Hours of waisted time and frustration vs a few minutes with me and getting it done right every time? Hmmm. :)

    That last video I posted with the Tie Interceptors and Filmer lensing was my first Unreal exporting to Filmer then Hitfilm test run, I actually imported the Interceptor models into Unreal and played around a bit before exporting them along with an ocean and islands to Filmer for rendering and then re-exported the entire 3D scene from Filmer to Hitfilm for further post work. I exported with alembic animations which worked and then I exported empties to hold the same alembic animation and it also worked. My exporting and compositing tricks work with any combination of 3D engine. I don't care who you are... that is magic right there. :)

    Let me know when you would like to Video chat, I'm going to bed now before the drunk people show up. :)

  • Triem23Triem23 Moderator Moderator, Website User, Ambassador, Imerge Beta Tester, HitFilm Beta Tester Posts: 18,045 Ambassador

    @spydurhank not making fun, trying to help. :-) Different people explain things different ways. There have been times on this forum where I've tried to help someone, they didn't get what I was saying, so I tag in someone else, like Javert or Jay, because I figure maybe their explanations will make more sense for that other user.

    Speaking of, I may have misunderstood what @Graymotion was asking? Greg, were you trying to strip miximo data out of model >A< to apply to model >B< without going back through Mixamo? That's what I thought you were asking, but I can always be wrong.

  • cluelessnubecluelessnube Website User Posts: 476 Just Starting Out
    edited July 6

    animation_retarget = Applies animation from one armature to another

    Armature = The Armature Object in itself is a tool for the animator to move an object or group of vertices in a reliable way. An armature is made of bones, which can be parented to each other, or connected to each other. ... And in fact, in the 3D world with animation inclusive, its considered to be the skeleton.

    https://en.wikibooks.org/wiki/Blender_3D:_Noob_to_Pro/Advanced_Tutorials/Advanced_Animation/Guided_tour/Armature/index#:~:text=The%20Armature%20Object%20in%20itself,or%20connected%20to%20each%20other.&text=And%20in%20fact%2C%20in%20the,considered%20to%20be%20the%20skeleton.

    Filmer = ??

  • cluelessnubecluelessnube Website User Posts: 476 Just Starting Out
    edited July 6

    @DataDesign let me try and translate in to business language.   All this hyper nerd stuff is going to go away and be replaced by more user friendly software which can be sold to a dramatically larger market.  Follow the money.  We might keep in mind that all this nerd stuff we're learning will become obsolete in time and all that will be left is art.   

    For we geezer nerds, not so important.  For younger folks who will be here to see it unfold, kinda matters.  In the future you will be judged not by your mastery of nerd stuff but by whether you can create compelling engaging art.   And, when this future arrives almost anybody will be able to make such art, so you will have a LOT of competition.

    For evidence, see the web.  These days nobody cares about the nerd skills of the webmaster.  Boring!  All the audience cares about is the content.  And it's really hard to earn attention, because almost anybody can now create web content.

    This post is off topic only if we assume that video and 3D etc is all about technology.   It's not.  It is instead about 1) money and 2) human emotions. 

    Point being, as nerds who are on average generally speaking not all that savvy about human emotions,  we might be aiming at the wrong target.

     

     

  • spydurhankspydurhank Moderator, Website User, Ambassador, Imerge Beta Tester, HitFilm Beta Tester Posts: 2,781 Ambassador

    Hey sorry Mike, when I saw your post last night, the part where you say "let me translate", that huge wall of text that you have now wasn't there last night, it was blank. It looked funny to me, comical so I thought you must be pokin' a little fun? Let me translate but then it's blank. Seems funny to me. :)

    I also assumed that @DataDesign was just funnin' or being sarcastic because I didn't say anything that couldn't be understood by anyone but it sounded like Greek to him. :)

    I suppose how I said it is shorthand but you wrote a novel. Plainly, the Mixamo alembic files are wonky and not the mesh. It is not even really a "washing" still think that is a strange word to use because all you need to do is import the model and apply the animation, then you export that to Hitfilm. 3 easy steps.

    "We might keep in mind that all this nerd stuff we're learning will become obsolete in time and all that will be left is art."

    @cluelessnube , What you just said there, that is a fact. This is art no matter what anyone thinks. :)

    Any real artist can tell you that. :)

     

  • DataDesignDataDesign Website User Posts: 422 Enthusiast

    @Spydurhank, yes I was just funnin, kinda, sorta, maybe.

    @Triem23,Wikipedia is calling your name my friend.

    @Cluelessnube yes, I agree with the art part, but nerds still rule!

    What a community. Thanks to all.

     

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