Help with After Effects

A place to discuss non-Moho software for use in animation. Video editors, audio editors, 3D modelers, etc.

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Shanty Baba
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Help with After Effects

Post by Shanty Baba » Wed Feb 19, 2020 12:58 pm

My Moho 12 is running so painfully slow...it is almost unusable, so I thought I would use After Effects CS6 for a bit of animation.
BUT...the whole workflow in AE is different and coming from Moho, to me, it seems almost archaic! In AE only assets in the camera output are visable unlike Moho, which seems like a step backwards for such a powertful program.
Are there any work arounds for this? What is the best way to animate assets that start outside the camera output? Is it best to start in the timeline with the final animation position within the camera output and then work backwards to the opening position off camera?
Cheers
Shanty
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Maestral
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Re: Help with After Effects

Post by Maestral » Wed Feb 19, 2020 1:47 pm

Interesting question since I never thought about that difference among workspaces. Must be I got used to these differences :) and I'd usually apply that 'backwards' routine, as you described it.

In the active view, there's a dropdown menu in the middle. By default, it's Active camera view which you may switch to Custom view and have some sort of an Orbit view from Moho. Now you can add another view to your workspace and have some ease for further directing of the scene. Not exactly what you asked for but it's the closest match I can think of. Check this tutorial as a preview of such a feature.

Although I never before gave it a thought while in AE, I'd love to hear if there is an option to mimic the Moho's clear/dimmed view outside the frame.
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Greenlaw
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Re: Help with After Effects

Post by Greenlaw » Wed Feb 19, 2020 6:20 pm

Moho really shouldn't be that slow. I've used it regularly for animating complicated scenes with multiple characters in many TV productions.

Is Moho slow for you in every project you work in or just in a particular project? If it's the latter, I suspect you have an errant negative keyframe present. To fix this, run Synthsin75's Find and Remove Negative Keyframe script: https://www.lostmarble.com/forum/viewto ... 12&t=32714

If it's the former, I would look into optimizing Moho's settings. The first thing I'd try is disabling GPU acceleration. My video on optimizing Moho's settings may have some useful suggestions: https://vimeo.com/335696360

If you have a lot of large image layers, Moho can bog down because it's generating huge meshes, and deforming many large meshes can be processor intensive. In this case, look into reducing the size of the images as much as you can, or find alternative methods for working with images. A typical trick I used in my old 'HLF Titles' video was to use vector shapes everywhere and fill them with smaller tiling textures. This kept all my HLF project files very responsive. You can see the results here: https://vimeo.com/123577740

Another thing that can slow down a project is the use of physics to animate your scene. After running the solve, you should bake down the result and then disable the physics. This can speed up your project immensely.

Inefficient use of Smart Bones Actions can also slow down a project. But I can't help you there without seeing what's actually going on inside your project.

Regarding AE's 3D camera system, while there are things I dislike about it, it's actually far more capable than Moho's 3D camera. As a matter of fact, I often render out passes from Moho using Layer Comps just so I can use AE's camera. Is there anything in particular you're having difficulty with? Just saying AE's camera is 'different' and 'backwards' isn't very informative.

Hope this helps. If you have any specific questions about using Moho with AE, I can try to answer later this evening.
Last edited by Greenlaw on Wed Feb 19, 2020 6:31 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Help with After Effects

Post by Greenlaw » Wed Feb 19, 2020 6:29 pm

Another thing that can slow down a project is too many layers/keyframes. I don't actually run into this very much but when I do, I pre-render the heavier layers/groups in a project, and replace them with the rendered versions. Remember to save backups of your projects so you can go back and change the animation if you need too. (You should save many incremental backups of your project files anyway; I do this routinely in any program I work in. This practice has saved my butt more times than I can remember.)
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Maestral
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Re: Help with After Effects

Post by Maestral » Wed Feb 19, 2020 6:30 pm

^ My remark about differences was solely in regards to the Active camera view where in AE one can not see outside of the given frame - as opposed to Moho's clear/dimmed view.
"Backwards' routine was me referring to Shanty Baba's approach:
"Is it best to start in the timeline with the final animation position within the camera output and then work backwards to the opening position off camera?"
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Greenlaw
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Re: Help with After Effects

Post by Greenlaw » Wed Feb 19, 2020 6:33 pm

Oh, I was referring only to the OP's original comments. Sorry for the confusion.
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Maestral
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Re: Help with After Effects

Post by Maestral » Wed Feb 19, 2020 6:39 pm

Come on :) this is such a rare situation hence my explanation.
No harm done and I hope Shanty's gonna find the most suitable resolution.

Though, I'd still like to hear if somebody knows how to make AE show outside the frame, if even possible.

x]
Pardon my (corrected) spelling
Last edited by Maestral on Wed Feb 19, 2020 6:43 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Greenlaw
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Re: Help with After Effects

Post by Greenlaw » Wed Feb 19, 2020 6:42 pm

@Shanty Baba

I just re-read your post. Re: AE's camera, are you referring to the small window when viewing the workspace through one of the Custom views? If so, yeah, I know exactly what you mean. By default, my elements or the camera tends to fall outside of the visible area, which is really annoying and one of the things I dislike about AE's 3D environment.

To deal with this, the first thing I do is select the Track Z Camera tool and pull back to until I see all of my layers and the camera inside the window's visible region. Using this tool does not affect your camera, it only affects the view port. You can use the other related tools in the menu to adjust your view so you can see everything. Once you've fit the elements inside the area, you can probably just use the Unified Camera tool to manipulate the environment (again, this affects only the view, not the camera you render with.)

I think the reason AE crops the view is to speed up the OpenGL preview by not rendering anything unnecessary or outside of the viewing window. Of course what's 'unnecessary' is subjective. :)

I wish the 3D environment (in AE and Moho) worked more like it does in dedicated 3D animation programs. That said, AE does try to render an awful lot of detail in its preview that I wouldn't see in most other 3D programs. (Or 2D programs for that matter.)

Hope this helps.
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Shanty Baba
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Re: Help with After Effects

Post by Shanty Baba » Thu Feb 20, 2020 5:02 pm

Maestral and Greenlaw, thanks for the feedback.

On a slow Moho 12, thanks for the tips and the Vimeo video on preferences was " top notch."

On the AE workspace...it looks like something that you just have to get used to.

As for the ins and outs of compositing from Moho to AE, I have several questions, but let me ask in a new topic, in the next few days.
Thanks again
Shanty
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Re: Help with After Effects

Post by cyclearrows » Sun Feb 23, 2020 6:56 pm

Another thing that slows down Moho is long scenes. For complex animations I would not go beyond 300 frames. I had a scene with 800 frames and it was painful to work with it.
It's better to make short pieces and put the together in a NLE.
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