Wednesday, April 28, 2004

AE 6.5 Cycore Plug-ins

Posted to the AE-List by Dik: AE Product Manager Steve Kilisky has very kindly put me out of my misery of speculation about what FEC plugs will be in AE 6.5 and sent a list of the effects licensed from Cycore. Thanks to Steve for taking the time to do that.

The effects are:
CC BallAction
CC Bendlt
CC Bender
CC Blobbylize
CC Bubbles
CC BurnFilm
CC ColorOffset
CC Composite
CC Cylinder
CC Drizzle
CC FloMotion
CC ForceMotionBlur
CC Glass
CC Glass Wipe
CC Griddler
CC GridWipe
CC Hair
CC Image Wipe
CC Jaws
CC Kaleida
CC Lens
CC LightBurst2.5
CC LightRays
CC LightSweep
CC LightWipe
CC Mr_Mercury
CC Mr_Smoothie
CC PageTurn
CC Particle Systems
CC Particle Systems II
CC Particle Systems LE
CC Particle World
CC Pixel Polly
CC Power Pin
CC Radial Blur
CC RadialScaleWipe
CC Rain
CC RepeTile
CC Ripple Pulse
CC ScaleWipe
CC Scatterize
CC Simple Wire Removal
CC Slant
CC SlantMatte
CC Smear
CC Snow
CC Sphere
CC Split
CC Split2
CC Spotlight
CC StarBurst
CC Threshold
CC ThresholdRGB
CC Tiler
CC Time Blend
CC Time Blend FX
CC Toner
CC Twister
CC Vector Blur
CC WideTime

The 3 effects missing in AE 6.5, compared to the original Metacreations-released set are:

Advanced 3D
Alpha Map
Glue Gun

Advanced 3D isn't really necessary in AE now that it has a 3D environment, of course. Alpha Map also isn't really necessary since you can remap alpha using AE Curves, which is already 16-bit. The Curves interface isn't as pretty as Alpha Map's custom UI though ;-)

Glue Gun seems a strange omission. Maybe it's possible with combinations of Vector Paint/Paint and CC Blobblize/Glass, but it won't be as convenient, I think.

The 3 missing filters are in the Media-100 version, but there are 5 plugs which are missing from Media-100 FEC for OS-X which are now included in AE 6.5:

FE Force Motion Blur
FE Particle Systems
FE Particle Systems LE
FE Radial Blur
FE Wide Time

Tuesday, April 27, 2004

How creative are you?

Take this interesting and free forty question self-assessment test from CREAX and find out how you compare creatively to the rest of the world. It's measured across 8 different "metrics". I'm bold, it says. I retook it and tried to answer as I suspected a creative person would, and I actually scored lower. Funny.

Digital Anarchy announces 3D Layer 1.0

Digital Anarchy has found a way to give 3D layers "thickness"! The students in my class this semester were asking if this was possible in AE, now I can tell them it is. "Its raytracing render engine creates beautiful reflections, refractions, and renders. Your 3D Layer can be bent, warped, punched through, texture mapped, and of course animated. This plug-in is what you've been waiting for since After Effects added 3D."

It looks like there's a sale price of $149US right now. Get it while it's hot!

Profound Effects does it again!

From MacNN: 4th Party today announced new plug-ins for Profound Effects' Useful Things (UT) and Useful Assistants (UA), its third-party tools for Adobe After Effects. The plug-ins include Color Sampler (an animated, multi-point color sampler), Effervescence (generates moving streams of particles); Filigree (complex repetitions of shapes along any After Effects path), Sprite Generator (paths filled with controllable gradients), Matrix Displacer (3D displacement of Matrices), and Wireframe (Things-based wireframe renderer). They will ship in second quarter of 2004, will cost between $15 and $25 each, and require Adobe AE and Profound's UT or UA.

Wednesday, April 21, 2004

Tutorial: Bleach by-pass method

Bleach By-Pass, also called Skip Bleach, gives the look of high contrast and low saturation. This is the method used in Seven and Saving Private Ryan where the silver is not removed from the negative. Stephen Schleicher shows you how.

eLin gives expanded color space to AE 6.5

The Orphanage, Inc., whose recent visual effects efforts include "Hellboy" and "The Day After Tomorrow", announced eLin, a suite of plug-ins and scripts for Adobe After Effects 6.5. eLin allows After Effects users to composite film, video, and 3D elements together in a unified High Dynamic Range (HDR) color space that mimics the physical properties of light. As a result, even simple compositing operations look better and more photographic. eLin includes support for industry-standard Cineon film scans as well as Industrial Light & Magic's open source EXR file format. eLin will be free of charge for non-commercial use.

Tuesday, April 20, 2004

Free Charts for VFX supervisors and coordinators

VFX Soup has free charts plus some great interviews - so be sure to check out their homepage too.

They have great forums for blue/green screen, tracking, budgets, interviews...

eFX Extract 3D helps integrate 2D & 3D workflow

eFX Extract3D is a brand new Adobe After Effects plug-in giving you total control over the powerful "hidden" 3D image channels rendered by applications like 3DS Max, Maya, Cinema 4D, Softimage and Electric Image. For a limited time, buy the public beta for $65. When Version 1.0 ships, the price will go up to $95. As a participant in the Public Beta program, you'll receive a free upgrade to the released version when it ships, so it makes sense to be the first on your block to get it!

Apple announced high-quality video codec at NAB

All you techies will know what I'm talking about - an advanced HD video codec, dubbed h.264 or MPEG-4 Part 10 by the MPEG LA governing body. The codec is scaleable and flexible - can be used in cell phones, the web, HD, DVD, cable tv and more.

Monday, April 19, 2004

80's BBC Typography Documentary

Check out "Typomania". Very interesting documentary about general typography (and the music in the beginning is rad!)

GridIron announces X-Factor for AE 6.5

AE Staff reporter Matt Schirado tells us that X-Factorenables AE users to preview and render their video effects faster using a grid computing network. The new plug-in is expected to be released at the same time as After Effects Professional 6.5, which is expected in the second calendar quarter. (Yay!) X-Factor Unlimited will offer unlimited CPU use for about $2,000.

Friday, April 16, 2004

Trapcode Particular

I just got wind of a new plug-in announced by Trapcode. and it's all about serious particles! Trapcode puts out amazing plug-ins, my favorites being Shine and 3D Stroke, so I have extremely high expectations for Trapcode Particular. The release day is May 10, 2004.

Thursday, April 15, 2004

Save a Grand on Saphire Plug-ins

GenArts, who generously gave the West Michigan After Effects User Group lots of goodies for their March meeting (Plug plug! Next meeting is April 19), is giving everyone a fat discount of $1000 on their incredible plug-ins. Read the press realease here.

Algolith Announces Frame Rate Converter

Just announced at NAB... This handy plug-in is designed to perform high-quality format conversion between SDTV, HDTV and film images. Read the press release here.

Tuesday, April 13, 2004

Mayang's Free Textures

Over 1400 free textures for personal OR commercial use. I know these will be very useful!

Expressions help

Dan Ebbert's AE Expressions Lab is an incredible resource for working with expressions. If you're like me, not exactly a math person, this is the site for you! He has examples of each expression with all the code you need, plus good explanations of how to apply the expression. Genius. Thank you, Dan!

Another really great expressions resource is JJ Gifford's Expressions in After Effects.

Monday, April 12, 2004

Conoa, Inc. Announces New Versions of Its Product Lines

Conoa, Inc. announces the release and immediate availability of new versions of its Conoa 3D plug-in and Conoa EasyShapes plug-in sets for video compositing and motion graphics. Conoa 3D is now updated to version 1.8 and Conoa EasyShapes is updated to version 1.4.

The new versions feature improved rendering speed and reduced memory usage. Additionally, Conoa EasyShapes adds some user-requested features. Users now have separate controls for manipulating the opacity of the front and rear of the objects. Users may also invert texture maps horizontally. Since Conoa’s camera model allows the camera to be placed inside objects, this feature maps the video texture correctly when viewed from inside an object.

Friday, April 02, 2004

IrisFilter5.6jet Released

The new generation of IrisFIlter has just arrived. IrisFilter5.6jet is a revolutionary plug-in for genuine reproduction of Bokeh and DOF (Depth of Field) effects, like a film camera. It has been researched and developed to solve the issue of fake and unnatural DOF effects. Some of the features include various aperture shapes and variable exposure.

CameraPOV Simulator Plug-Ins Let You Go Behind The Lens

Profound Effects, Inc., a leading innovator in special effects technology, is pleased to announce the immediate availability of Version 1.0 of CameraPOV, a plug-in suite that offers the through-the-lens point-of-view of eight different types of cameras. This modestly priced package is available for many effects and editing platforms including Final Cut Pro 3.x or 4.0, certain Avid editing systems, After Effects 5.5 and later, combustion 3.0, and Digital Fusion 4.0.