Creating a MoGraph Sports Intro Animatic: Project File Setup

Photo of Raymond Olsen

Instructor Raymond Olsen

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  • Duration: 06:04
  • Views: 2310
  • Made with Release: 18
  • Works with Release: 18 and greater

In this video we’ll create a folder structure and save out our first scene file. Then we dial in the render settings for the hardware previews and save them out as a render preset for future use. We conclude with an example of render tokens in use.

In this video we’ll create a folder structure to organize all of our assets, then we jump into Cinema and save out our first scene file. Then we dial in the render settings using a render token in the save path for the hardware previews. When finished, the render settings are saved as a render preset for use throughout the series. We will also see an example of the results of using the render token with our scene file names.



In this video, we will set up our folder and file structure for the project, and save out our first scene using settings that were determined in preproduction. Decide where on our hard drive you want the project to live. In my case, it's the C drive with the Projects folder. Make a root folder there called "MoGraph_Sports_Animatic". I use underscores instead of space, because some programs don't like spaces. Inside this folder, place subfolders with the following names. "Docks" for storyboards and scripts, "Footage" for any footage elements, "Output" for your renders, "Premiere" for the edit sequences, "Reference" for anything you pull off the web to use as reference, and "Scenes" for our 3D files. Once you get those made, open up Cinema and save your file as Shot_01_3D_V1. What this does is it designates this as shot one. I tag all my outputs from Cinema with "3D", because I almost always pull those renders into After Effects for compositing, and then the outputs from After Effects do not have the "3D". So that helps me keep them all straight. V1 is going to be our increment number. So every time we save a file incrementally, it will just add a version number to this. So save this out in your Scene folder, and open up Render Settings with Ctrl+B or this Render icon up here. Let's go ahead and rename this to "Preview", and we're going to use the Hardware renderer, because we'll be just making hardware previews. We're not going to actually be doing any rendering. Over here in Output, we're going to use 1280 by 720. We'll go ahead and lock that ratio. If you need a frame rate other than 30, go ahead and enter it here. But also change it down here in the project settings, which is Ctrl+D, or Edit Project Settings. So make sure those two match, and make sure your frame rate is set to All Frames. Now, go up to the save settings and activate the ellipsis. Navigate to your folder. Go into the Footage folder, and we're going to make a new folder here called "Previews". That's where we're going to store our files. The Previews folder is going to keep all the iterations of hardware previews separate from the rest of the footage files in your project, just because we'll make a lot and this will keep your Footage folder from becoming cluttered. So for the file name, we'll use $PRJ. What this is, is a render token. So Cinema will take your file name and replace this render token with the file name. So as we iterate our renders, the file names will match the renders that we create. I'll explain that more later. So save that. We want to use a QuickTime movie. Jump into the options, and you want an H264. I'm using 30 frames per second with my project, so that's what I'm using here, and then I'm going to duplicate that in the keyframe Every. That'll help your video players to scrub the file after you make it, if you're using a video player to check out your files. Drop this down from Best to High. That'll just save us a little bit of file room. I just upgraded to R18, so this changed from Hardware to Hardware Open GL. So jump down to your Open GL settings. Enable Enhanced Open GL, and let's go ahead and turn on Shadows, SSAO, and Reflections. That's all we should need for this Animatic series. So that's it for our settings. So now, we can go ahead and save this as a preset. So right-click on Preview, Save Preset, and call it "Preview". So now that you have that saved, you can come over to the content browser, go to Tree View, and navigate to Presets, User, Render Settings, and there you can see the Preview preset that we just created. So now, I just wanted to illustrate what we just set up with the file names and render tokens. So I've set up a little animation in our Shot_01_3D_V1 scene. If you look at your render settings, they're all still there. There's our render token. So let's say we're happy with the animation. We just hit Render, which is Shift+R, or this little button up here. This will give us our preview. Now, if we jump into Explorer, in our Footage Previews folder, you'll see here's our hardware preview. So the client looks at it and says, "That's great. But we wanted a sphere instead." So what we do is we make sure we've saved the file as the V1, so that continues to match the render we just made. Then, we save incrementally, and now we're on V2. So we can just add a sphere, zero out the coordinates, delete the cube, and now we have a sphere in the V2 file name. So save that. Hit Render. It makes a new hardware preview with the sphere. Jump back into Explorer, and here's our V2 with the sphere. So now, you can pull both of those iterations into Premiere and compare them side by side. Whichever one the client likes better, you can always get back to this version of the animation by referring to this scene file.
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