Design visualisation animation generally involves animation of cameras in walkthrough, panaround or flyover movies to give the client a much richer and more informative view of the design. The creation of a walkthrough is covered in Key Fundamentals to give an introduction to the basic routine of setting up a path and animating a camera through time at the correct speed. Once this has been mastered you will want to increase your production skill by using more of the advanced animation tools and techniques MAX/VIZ has to offer
TIP: Walkthroughs are not necessarily the best method of showing clients the design points in a scheme as long walkthroughs are particularly wearing to the viewer. For 'journeys', along routes they are effective, however.
Try to use a variety of panarounds, walkthroughs and stills using video production techniques (there are some very reasonable packages on the market and even MS Powerpoint can deliver good results). Keep walkthrough sequences below ten seconds if possible and make them part of a presentation 'story'
In order to follow this tutorial, you may want to use the supplied files. Please read the sample data instructions before downloading.
One of the first things new users want to do with their new 3D visualisation software is animate a camera along a path. Other animated objects can also be effective additions to a presentation movie. Cars moving along roads, people walking, trees blowing in the wind, leaves falling, water moving, smoke rising and clouds moving across the sky are all examples of how a scene can be brought to life with animation
This tutorial introduces you to the fundamentals of controllers, time configuration, use of track view (in the Mini-Curve Editor to slow and speed objects up) and the animation controls by animating a camera along a camera path
TIP: Always use NURBS Curves for camera animation. Curves are much smoother than splines. Using Snap to Face allows you to create a path that follows a the surface levels
NOTE: The camera is created in the Left viewport to keep the orientation of the camera correct when animated on the path
TIP: The animation starts with a big curve that will be rather distracting when viewed. Try and make curves rather wide if needed. this animation needs a fundamental change of direction as well as the speed altering to suit the output required thus:
The camera is moving too fast along the curve. A walking pace is about one metre per second. So, if you know the length of the line and how many frames per second the animation will be played back at, then you can quickly work out how many frames are needed for the animation
NOTE: A common mistake is to change the number of frames in the Animation section of the dialog. This will have the effect of moving the animation to on end of the time slider ie the speed will not be changed. The Rescale Time button must be used
The animation is a little 'cluncky' because it starts and stops straight away and does'nt speed up to walking pace and then slow down at the end to a stop. Use the Mini Curve Editor to edit the start and stop of the animation and thus produce an 'easier' animation to view
TIP: Only panaround animations should start and stop straight away as these may be required to 'loop' on playback
TIP: If the camera appears to 'turn around' at the end of the camera path move the last key down slightly below 100 percent
TIP: If the camera experiences shaking when rendered and a curve is used for the camera path, the problem is most probably caused by the fact that the site is far from 0. The accuracy of MAX/VIZ is only 32 decimal; places and not 64 like AutoCAD. This is a common problem with infrastructure and landscape schemes as many are positioned using real-world coordinates. As explained in 'AutoCAD Drawing for 3D', the scene data will need moving nearer to 0 to stop this problem
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