View Full Version : Quick Help
10-02-2005, 01:08 PM
Hey i am new to 3D animation this year and i am wondering what the easiest way to animate text and create scenes in 3Ds max. I have some ways of doing it but i would like to know the easiest and superior way of doing it. Sorry if there is a tutorial showign how to... i didnt get a chance to read any yet.
10-04-2005, 01:21 AM
Ok, some quick things with any amination stuff, there isn't always a superior way of doing anything in 3d, but there are easier ways to do them. In the case of text animation, it depends on what you want it to do. So what exactly do you want your text to do within your scene and I'll give you some pointers. Sorry that I'm not helping just yet, just wanted to get a general idea before I went blabbing on about anything that you didn't want/care to know about. :D
10-06-2005, 02:53 PM
well i was just wondering how to get letters to animate all at the same time but like rotate at different times.... like one flip after another as they cruise across the screen... and backgrounds lol
10-10-2005, 12:38 AM
Okie dokie, now that you've got an idea, lets start to build, shall we? First things first, make your text that you want to make do it's tricks. Just create the text at first, and then you can add an extrude modifier to it in the modify panel to give it some thickness and depth. Because if you don't.. well what's the point of doing it in 3d. Select the Extrude modifier and give it whatever thickness you want to, then right click on the modifier in the modifier list and click on Collapse All. A warning may come up, if so, just click Hold/Yes. Once finished with this step, you should have 3d text as an Editable Mesh. Now since you want your text to do so many different things at once, you want to do the "base animation" first. By base animation, I mean the animation that ALL of your letters will be doing, ie moving from one side of the screen to the other. Now to do this, you will want to do tween animation. To do tween animation just press "N" (or click on Auto Key) and take and move the slider to about frame 35(or whatever you feel like) and move ALL of the text where you want it to go. Turn off auto key to ensure that you don't add more animation or mess up what you already have, and play the simple animation. Easy huh? Now for the fun stuff. Go to the Modify panel with the text selected, in the Editable Mesh/Selection rollout, click on Select Element(it's the icon that looks like a cube). Now select the letters that you want to do their thang, do nothing with them yet. Turn back on the auto key with your letters selected. Now, go to the last key that you made(I set it at 35) and move your selected letters only, how you want them to. Now turn off auto key and play the animation, and presto!!! There you have it, text animation at it's best. ;) Was this a helpful tutorial, or do you still have questions??? If so, just let me know, I'm more then happy to help a fellow animator.
10-10-2005, 07:51 PM
ok ya thanks that helps a lot but at what point in the process do you start to render your scene with a background and such? Is that the last step? As you see im not familiar with animation only inventor and CAD programs
10-11-2005, 11:59 AM
Oh yah... DUr... sorry that's my bad. Ok, now for the rendering portion of our little tutorial. To render your scene, you can do one of two things, you can do a quick render(which renders according to the settings that you either defined or are defaulted into 3ds, also it only renders out the current frame that you are in without saving it as a picture) and the other is just to render the scene(which brings up a dialog box where you can change all of the different aspects of a renderer). Now, max defaults with a black background and a default renderer at 640x480 resolution(I think, i don't have it right in front of me). To render a scene you want to go up to the main toolbar and click on the render menu, it drops down with a bunch of other menus(Render, Quick Render, Effects, Environment, Video Post etc.). If you're wanting to make a movie out of your animation, click on the Render tab. A menu will come up with alot of different settings. In the Render tab(which is the first one that pops up by default) you've got some settings that you want to change. First off, instead of just rendering a single frame, you want to render the entire animation(or a range if you only want part of the animation). Click on the circle next to Active Segment, this is your entire animation time. Now scroll down until you find the render output dialogue. This dialogue is pretty simple to work with, to save a file for an animation, click file, and name it whatever you want, then choose the file type(a good movie file type is either .mov or .avi)go ahead and choose .mov for the sake of simplicity. Click save and another dialogue will appear prompting you to set the settings of the file, move the quality slider to best and go ahead and click ok, the other default settings should be fine. Since we're done with that, you can click render, that is if you would like to have a black background. Now if you're the kind(like me)who doesn't always like to have a black background, this is how to change it. Go back to the render menu and click on the Environment tab, this dialogue is what you use to add environment elements to the scene, and also to change the background. Up at the top you have your background settings with a black box on the left side(that's you background color swatch). Clicking on this black box gives you the option of changing your background from black to whatever your heart desires. Now this is just giving you a flat base color background to work with, if you don't like that idea and you want to add and picture, look at the Background dialogue, and look at Environment Map. There is a box under it that says NONE, click on it, this brings up a menu that will let you change your background into something other then a plain color. If you want to use an image as your background, double-click on the Bitmap tab. Select the desired location of the bitmap that you would like to use, and there you go, a picture as your background. A word of caution though, make sure that your picture has a somewhat high resolution so that when you render, your picture doesn't turn out all pixelated. Now if you still don't like that, you can make your own 3d background and light it texture it... OH, what about texturing??? Since your native isn't max... then... oh what the hay... ok, to change the material of your objects, you can press "M" by default and that will bring up the material dialogue. In here you'll see a bunch of grey spheres, these are your material swatches, you can click on any of them and change alot of the different settings that go with each one of them(shine,glossiness,diffuse,ambient,refelectiven ess,refraction, you name it, you can probly change it here... unless it's like a diaper or something) Mess with the materials dialogue and the different settings and just have fun with them. Also, you can light you scenes in max, lighting is a very VERY VERY strong and useful tool, but for now, just keep it simple and do ith with the default lighting, sure it may look plain, but trust me, you can't learn max over night, I've been working at it for about 5 years now self taught and I still don't know half of what there is to know about it. So just play around with it, look for basics tutorials and learn the base fundementals and go from there. But I hope that this answered some of the questions that you had/have, if you have any other questions, just let me know... sorry if I kind of babbled at some points, just didn't want to miss anything. :)
10-11-2005, 12:00 PM
And no, you don't have to put your background in last, I just didn't put it in there at first, you can truthfully put it in whenever you feel comfortable doing it.
10-11-2005, 08:56 PM
ok thank you very much for all the help but when i try to do that animating of the letters i get to the last part and i cant get single letters to rotate or something like that... i get them selected like you said and when i move it to a slide.. it doesnt change the slide red at the bottom like it should and it doesnt move. It stays in the position i moved it at
10-11-2005, 09:00 PM
never mind.. i found out the problem with a little bit of futsing around... thank you for your help and i may need more down the road... ty every much
10-11-2005, 11:54 PM
Well, i'm always happy to help a fellow animator, so just yell, and i'll be there... and if you can't catch me on the forum, email me at: firstname.lastname@example.org and tell me it's you and what you need and I'll try and help you out to the best of my abilities
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