Clueless Newbie Productions

cluelessnube Posts: 515 Enthusiast

Here's a test where I'm learning Puppet Tool, lights and shadows, and camera animation.


  • Andy001z
    Andy001z Lord EarthPosts: 3,578 Ambassador

    Looking good Phil.

  • OliThompson
    OliThompson Staff Posts: 167 Staff

    Great stuff! @PhilTanny - It's nice to see the Puppet Tool getting a little love. I think we'll need to do another tutorial on the effect before long to expose people to it more so that we can see some more creativity like this :)

  • tddavis
    tddavis Posts: 5,224 Expert

    @OliThompson Yes!!!  I will definitely watch.  I was so stoked when that was added but I only ever used it with Javert's Christmas card tutorial.  It is too intricate for me to understand.

  • DataDesign
    DataDesign Posts: 674 Enthusiast


    Great idea! I would not reject a forum topic just for the Puppet Tool. :-)

  • cluelessnube
    cluelessnube Posts: 515 Enthusiast

    A Puppet Tool forum section gets a vote here.   

    I see Puppet as being a promising device for bringing novice video editors in to the FXhome realm, assuming that is desired.  There are good arguments for and against targeting novice  users, which I'lll leave to FXhome to calculate.

    A dedicated section of the forum and more tutorials would be a good start.   How about a slick sales page dedicated to Puppet?  It seems Puppet is kind of buried in the pile at the moment.   And then maybe this?

    How about a standalone Puppet Tool?   Start with Express, add Puppet, and hide everything not related to Puppet animation.  The priority here is not power but simplicity, accessibility, and the shortest possible path to fun for new  users.   Not more is more, less is more.

    Sell it for $9.99 or some similar impulse purchase price.  If you charge something, anything, that would help weed out the folks who will never pay for anything.  Or give it away perhaps, dunno.

    The upgrade path is of course Express with the $25 Puppet addon, and from there Pro.

    The point here is to to present novice users with the fewest possible obstacles to entering your showroom.    Get them in the door by dangling something fun and easy in front of their eyes.  

    While Express is free, it's not easy for novice users.   Now that I've wrapped my head around it the interface seems entirely logical and orderly and I wonder why I was ever confused..  But when I first encountered Hitfilm it seemed entirely baffling and I almost didn't make it over that obstacle.  

    The solution to Hitfilm being challenging for novice editors seems to be to tell them they need to get serious, buckle down, do the homework, read the manual, watch the tutorials, and other such lectures.  Ok, I agree, and that's a good plan, so long as you don't mind losing 80%  of prospects in the process. 

    If you do mind such a loss of opportunity, the solution is to provide the experience of fun at the earliest possible moment.   Once folks are having fun they'll be much more willing to learn, so that they can have more fun.  If you provide nothing but a pile of work right at the start, lots of folks won't make it over that pile.   I almost didn't.

    I realize that I'm obsessed with this topic, apologies for that to those who aren't so obsessed.     For what it's worth, here's why I'm obsessed with this.  My college degree was in special education, so I spent 2 years of my life focused on such psychology.   Later I applied that psychology to the development of a net startup which I sold to a big dog, allowing me to retire at 50.  That's why I'm now able to fart around with silly little videos all day.  

    Point being, this isn't just a pile of theory.   Whether it's for FXHome I can't say.    End of rant.

    As for my Puppet learning project, one of the things I'm hoping to do soon is to create a true 3D theater with walls, ceiling, audience etc so I can learn more sophisticated camera moves than my first vid which was basically the "Camera Man On Crack" method.  :-)

    I also plan to integrate sound and CrazyTalk face animations.  

    I'd already be done with all this but for some reason I can't seem to find the  #$%^! Kill All Rants button in Hitfilm!!!!   What's wrong with this interface anyway????  :-)


  • cluelessnube
    cluelessnube Posts: 515 Enthusiast

    So it's on to version 2.    In this test I cloned the hula girls.   Added embedded video.   Fired cartoon man, replaced with photo of singer.   Singer and hula girls done in Puppet.   Face animation of singer done in CrazyTalk.

  • cluelessnube
    cluelessnube Posts: 515 Enthusiast

    The point of this test is to help me learn how to create 3D spaces in Hitfilm, and then navigate around those spaces with the camera.

  • tddavis
    tddavis Posts: 5,224 Expert

    Got to say, I never thought about using the puppet tool the way you have been in your tests.  Very interesting methodology!

  • cluelessnube
    cluelessnube Posts: 515 Enthusiast

    Thanks TD.   

    Well, nothing too fancy happening with Puppet in that clip, but learning how to create the 3D space has been fun.  One of Film Sensei tutorials made me realize I knew very little about Hitfilm's 3D features, so he got this ball rolling. It's still fairly slow going for me in 3D, but I figure that if I just keep making 3D clips it will become more natural in time.   Thanks also to Film Sensei for getting me going with shadows, a great feature.   

    In making this clip I stumbled  upon the realization that I can parent a light on the character, (Duh!) which really helps.