Feedback from C4D Café forum

After my last post I revisited the site to see if anyone had left feedback from the two videos I posted and these were the results:

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Although there were not loads of responses it is good to get at least a few which directly relate to the questions I asked. It shows that people on the forums have more to say than if you just use a simple Survey monkey style questionnaire as this gives a lot more room for explanations tips and tricks.

This basically supported my suspicion that there is almost no need for a GI element as the light boxes (light dome) have done a good job lighting the scene efficiently. It is also apparent that the shadows may be the reason that the realistic feel is not complete. This can be seen in the latest control box update with the shadowing ending up looking like two different materials have been used. This will need to be edited and now that I have some suggestions on how to do that I feel a lot more confident doing so.

There is mention of trying out an HDRI for reflections however I really haven’t the need for much reflection and therefore don’t think i will use this technique. Also studio HDRI was mentioned however this is a very costly setup and considering I can get a pretty similar effect without having to fork out for a professional lighting kit this is not an option i can implement. Although for my re renders i will try adding some slight bevelling to help with reflections. However I feel that using GI on top of this process will just push the render time through the roof and therefore will be pretty ineffective in the time we have left to complete the project.

It was also mentioned by an esteemed colleague that the computer used within the control box videos would be made more visually effective if screenshots of the software were added to show that there is a reason for them being there e.t.c so this will also be added in to hopefully boost all aspects of the animations.

 

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Catering for an international audience – Design Methods

This is something that as a group we all have to consider when creating our videos. As well as the actual language used it is also necessary to look further than that and consider different colour theory for different countries and the eastern hemisphere. Therefore I decided to look at several sources to see if I could find some pointers and tips to point me in the right direction.

Designing for an International Audience

Although all these links are more related to web design it is also important to consider several elements relating to colour and also the specific audience within the different countries.

“Studies have shown blue to be the least offensive color for international audiences, which explains why so many websites use “corporate blue.””

“For example, on a dashboard widget in Western countries, green means great, red means danger. In China, those colors are reversed and have the exact opposite meaning because culturally, red is a sign of happiness and well being. White is typically a sign of purity, clarity and innocence, but again, in Asian cultures, it symbolizes death and mourning.”

This is very important to consider during my own design process making sure to use non bias and non threatening colours.

“The difference is obvious. Chinese audiences prefer a much more cluttered home page with loads of information cramped in, while English audiences prefer a cleaner interface with a few neat categorisations.”

Design from East to West

Could this be true of Visual animated content as well and if so would this effect the Chinese market if we tried to simplify everything to cater for a solely western market?

Although I am not really involved with the call outs and translation of them into several different languages (outlined in the brief) I came across a website through doing this research. I have suggested in the group chat that google translate might not be the most effective and efficient way of collecting a wide range of translations in a short period of time. It is also risky as it is more often than not incorrect. More political blunders in the link below!

Why Relying on Google Translate is a Bad Idea

The website is called Phrase app and translates from within the app to help efficiency within international companies on a project by project level. Although this is not the purpose of our project the reliability and accuracy is a lot higher as this is a standalone platform.Screen Shot 2017-05-04 at 18.01.22.png Forget Google Translate 3 Ways to get Accurate Translations

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I also found a few cheaper alternatives, however there is a free 14 day trial with phrase app which is all we need considering the project deadline is the 12th of May.

 

 

Advanced Lighting Techniques in Cinema 4D

Lighting has a very important role to play in all things but especially in 3D as it is a lot harder to effectively use lighting in a realistic way using the standard light settings. Therefore it has become important for me to progress as an animator to incorporate more professional use of lighting by using the inbuilt lights in C4D.

This tutorial has been very useful in pointing out the fact that all 3D light is flat and does not react in the same way naturally occurring light does. Instead of bouncing off surfaces and bending the 3D light carries in one continuous line. Therefore some extra measures have to be taken to create a visually rich and high contrast images.

The introduction to 3 point lighting is also a game changer and although i already had some knowledge of this lighting technique i failed to use it before in  a 3D environment. Another point well made was using more than 3 points as the lights in 3D only pick up shadow, mid tones, and highlights whereas in reality there is five main points of light shadows, quarter tones, mid tones, three quarter tones and highlights. Therfore we must add in more soft lights to create a higher dynamic range of light. This effect can be achieved by adding in different layers of light slightly off point from each other and emitting slightly softer light each time.

I could just use GI (Global Illumination) with a HDRI image however this would defeat the point of the experiments and learning about lighting is the real goal here. It is also mentioned that GI is actually a pretty lazy way of lighting and can make you’re image look flatter, however using it alongside a proper lighting rig can improve the image/animation. Therefore I still need to learn proper lighting techniques to boost the potential of my overall animations.

Adjust the default light C4D – This is a quick way to change the position of the lights within a space. This could come in very handy and i feel it will definitely speed up my process as well.

Free Light Dome – A quicker alternative to GI as these are all separate lights it will be faster and also there is a lot more control over colour schemes and shadow maps.

10 Tips for better lighting in Cinema 4D – Similar stuff to the first video, however it does mention the use of different shadow types and features. It states that “Area shadows are by far the most superior shadow type as they offer high accuracy and the most control.”. However  “area shadows are the slowest to render. To speed things up you can decrease the number of samples and accuracy, this will give you results faster but also will introduce noise.”

So a lot to think about and experiment with…

 

Project 5 Animation Sequences

For project 5 there is around 4 main 3D sequences that occur in video 2 and 3. These are highlighted in the storyboards.

These consist of showing the ctex machine and its flower pattern lights (the animation used for the concept/prototype)

Showing the fabric rolling left and right so that the customer knows to notify ctex about which direction the fabric rolls on their own machine.

Showing a PC on the left and right of the machine so the customer knows to notify ctex about which side the controller will be standing on.

And lastly the control box being closed to show dimensions needed to install. Or if they don’t have one to offer purchase of correctly sized control box.

Therefore I have created a timeline and lists to hopefully create all the assets in the allotted time.

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As you can see so far I have created most of the initial assets needed for the animations however I still have to create the control box and also figure out a way to actual get the fabric to roll.

I have also created a basic setup where most of the animations will occur. Although this is very early stages and really just a jumping off point in terms of layout and structure.

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I tried to use this tutorial to add movement to the fabric but unfortunately on my first attempt i couldn’t get the motion graphic elements moving. This was very irritating however I will attempt it again with a more thorough understanding of the concepts behind it and hopefully it will be second time lucky… Watch this space….

 

I have also made a start on the computer side to side animation as i have created all the necessary assets for this section. Again it is really basic with no real texturing or lighting etc. However it is a starting point for further development….

 

PROJECT 5 – The Final Brief

For project 5 I will be revisiting C-TEX and making a further 2 videos to complete the C-TEX Colour package. These will be available after the client has made the initial purchase of the machine and therefore will go into a lot more detail about pre installation of the machine and also training there workers to use the machine, and also showing the managers how to get the right information that they need from the spreadsheet that the program creates. Detailing different information about the materials being tested.

The first video is the sales video which was completed for Project 3.

The second video is a pre installation guide –

Pre-Install Video Script

Should be less than 5 minutes

Thanks for buying c-tex colour, this video guides you through 2 things:

1. The information we need from you in order to manufacture c-tex colour ready for you

2. For you to prepare ready for the installation

So…the information we need.

Firstly, we need a photo of where you would like c-tex colour to be installed. Here are some examples…

Then we need some dimensions so we can fit c-tex colour to your machine

Here we show you the dimensions we need

Secondly we need to know the direction the fabric is flowing in: please indicate this with an arrow

Thirdly we need to know at which side of the machine you wish the PC and Operator monitor to be located

Also please take a photo of your length measuring wheel (if you already have this installed) so we can assess how to fit our encoder onto this

Lastly, machine construction: Please indicate the materials your machine is made of and thicknesses. For example, Solid Mild Steel 6mm thick, Mild Steel Box Section 2mm thick with section of 100 or Wooden Section 15mm.

Therefore, the photo you send us will need the additional information as shown here (photo with all details on)

We can then build c-tex colour to fit your machine

Onto the second step:

For the installation we need:

Network Access to machine area for us to connect the c-tex colour PC to your network

Electrical power: single phase

If you have not purchased a control cabinet from us and you will be providing yourselves this needs to be onsite when we arrive. We require minimum internal dimensions of Height: 1000mm, Width 600mm, Depth 600mm. The operator monitor can be mounted above the control cabinet of you can purchase a control unit with monitor surround.

If you have not purchased a PC from us and you will be providing yourselves, please ensure this meets the specification we list in our agreement document and is available when we arrive onsite

If you are running c-tex colour for an inline process, for example a continuous dye range or sanforiser or compactor we will also need a mains compressed air supply provided, to include a regulator and moisture capture mechanism.

When we arrive onsite for the installation we need to meet with your factory engineering manager and IT manager to present what we are going to be doing while onsite and what support we need.

We will also need a meeting room with a projector or large monitor in order to give a training presentation for 1 hour. For the training we will need your colleagues who will be: operating c-tex colour, analysing the results of c-tex colour and managing the implementation of c-tex colour.

Adam has done these rough storyboards which really helped me to visualise what exactly needed to be done in terms of 3D animations. As this is the job role i will be fulfilling for this final project. I will of course have to make some more detailed sketches of what exactly needs to be shown in 3D and camera movements etc, however this quick visual is very handy for mapping out the whole video 2 sequence.

 

The third video is a training video – Full Script to follow…

 

Testing and Survey Questions for YCN Competition

Although I have not left enough time to make any real changes to my final product i still realise that testing is a key phase in any creative process and therefore I have done some surveys both on social media sites and also on more specific motion graphics and C4D sites.

During the process I decided it would be a good idea to host two separate surveys with different questions. Therefore I came up with two different survey questions:

Survey for general public (Target Audience)

(Survey Posted on Facebook.)

What is your age?

To gauge the exact ages of the participants, This is key as the animations are meant to be universal in terms of the target audience being absolutely everyone, young and old alike.

Did you know about different Rainfall types?

To see if they have already been educated in these types of weather conditions and processes.

Did you learn anything from these videos?

To see how effective these videos have been towards the target audience. To gauge how much understanding went on in the participants.

Would you be interested in finding out more about weather after watching these videos?

To see if this kind of thing stimulated people into finding out more and wanting to see more of this explanatory weather content.

How visually appealing are the videos?

This is more of a general question to see how the style and pacing of the videos effected the participants.

Does the music work well with the video?

Again this was really just to double check that i had the right sort of music to match the pace and overall mood of the videos.

Do you feel that the text is sufficient to explain the process throughout all three videos?

This was for my own understanding of how people used the text that was embedded within the videos. As I have done so much research into the three types of rain that I look at it a lot differently and with a lot more understanding than people who don’t have a clue what they are watching when put into a test environment.

 

Survey for Industry Professionals and Specific 3D Creatives.

(Posted on C4D Cafe, Work In Progress Forum)

Do you think the use of motion graphics is an effective way of showcasing this information?

Quite a general question to gauge where the effectiveness of the use of motion graphics for a project such as this.

Do you notice a link between all three videos?

To see how effectively the three videos link up with one and other. And present themselves as part of a trilogy.

Is the low poly style clear enough?

How effective is the low poly style within the 3D animations. Is it immediately noticeable / is it obvious to the viewer.

Do you think just using physical sky and global illumination is an efficient way of lighting these scenes?

Another more technical question considering its nature to understand the efficiency of lighting techniques.

What would you do to improve these videos?

To help me gain an insight into what real creative professionals think of these videos. Also to help me gain more knowledge about how to make a quality and professional looking video. This questions was really asking more about the method behind the animations as well as just asking for more advice about them. This was also a chance for people to comment on things that maybe I hadn’t brought up in my survey questions.

These are both survey questions and I hope to get a few responses back from each to really help inform my next steps. Although I do not really have time to make that many changes to the final product due to rendering and editing in after effects taking a lot longer than expected for the first 3 drafts. Therefore I aim to at least explain and discuss the changes i would have made if i had more time to produce quality, finished and polished work.

 

Sales Video Showing Problem, Solution and benefits of the product – Conceptual and prototype ideas.

 

The Concept for this is family and friendly. Meaning to show the company in a friendly way as a laid back and relaxed environment.Image result for coloured 3d ribbons

The problem.

It will involve graphics and 3D to help show the current issue within the textile industry. Highlighting the T-Shirt with seemingly matching colours then a zoom in will reveal that they are unfortunately slightly different shades. I think using ribbons for this could look quite cool to replicate the threads of the material. Or we could use 3D blocks to replicate the colour swatches which is used in the old method of colour matching.

A few different options here:

Also i have a prototype of a logo screen being rolled out. Laid across five separate carpets. This looks really cool and i will add it into my progress post. I could also make it look a lot more professional with a proper high res image and adding some masks and effects in after affects.

The solution.

I will then show not the solution but the desired outcome and simplifying the process. This will involve showing a similar shot to the problem but now with correctly colour matched items. Also it will show a traffic light system to show the functionality of the product and although the traffic light system is in the software it will help to so how the software works without actually showing the software.

Image result for 3D TRAFFIC LIGHT

Image result for 3D c4d TSHIRT SIDE BY SIDEImage result for 3D c4d TSHIRT SIDE BY SIDE

 

How to use.

This will mainly be filmed and i don’t think much 3D will be used as it would be more advantageous to use filming so that techniques like stop motion or maybe a time lapse of people working can be used. It will show basic installation as it really just needs to be placed on top of the rolling station. Then also a bit of the software as this is the main element of the usability. This would all look a lot more professional using real footage as it would be useful to show the customer the real product in motion to give them a feel for what they’re actually buying.

Benefits:

Show that it is cost effective and Time effective this could be very easily shown by making comparisons as a sort of motion graphic typography thing.

 

Like this but with facts about costs and timing etc. Also show shots of the employees playing pool and all the games that they have at the factory. To show the relaxed friendly environment as this is really what we want people to buy in to. As the product speaks for itself but the sales video should help to show personalty within the company.