Object warping trick

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Lost Marble
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Object warping trick

Post by Lost Marble » Mon Apr 11, 2005 9:30 pm

Last night I thought of a little trick you can do with bones in Moho, using them in a way to deform objects as they pass through a space. I'm calling it "warp field". For an example of what you can do, take a look at this:

http://www.lostmarble.com/misc/warp_fie ... _field.swf

And here's the Moho file for the above animation:

http://www.lostmarble.com/misc/warp_fie ... orial.moho

Here's a little tutorial on the technique.

First, draw a grid in Moho. Make sure the lines of the grid have plenty of intermediate points, as they're going to be warped around a lot:

Image

The grid will be used as a reference for setting up the warp field - you don't want to see it in the final animation. So, in the Project Settings dialog, turn on "Don't render this layer" for the grid.

Next, create a bone layer and put the grid inside it. Add a few bones:

Image

The bones in this example are set up as follows: the top and bottom horizontal bones are not meant to move - they are intended to hold objects that are above or below the warp field. The middle bones will do the warping. How you set up the bones depends on what kind of warping effect you want - in this example, we're squeezing an object through a small opening.

Next, set the current time to frame 1 and move some (or all) of the bones around:

Image

Now you can see the purpose of the grid. The grid shows how the bones will affect the space they enclose. The center of the screen is being squeezed here, and any objects in that space will also be squeezed.

To get the desired warping shape, you will probably need to adjust the strengths of the various bones so that they work together the way you want.

Once you have the bones adjusted how you want, create a new layer for a background - place this layer outside the bone layer so the bones don't warp it:

Image

Draw some kind of background features to fit the warped space. Alternatively, it might make sense to draw the background first, and adjust the warp field to fit it, it's up to you.

Next, create a new layer inside the bone group and draw the object(s) that you want to get warped:

Image

Here we drew a circle (with lots of extra control points), but any Moho object should work. The circle was drawn up above the warp field, and because of the stable top bone, the circle still looks like a circle.

Now, move the time further along (in this case to frame 72), and move the new object across the warp field using the Layer Translation tool:

Image

When moving objects through a warp field, it's very important to use the Layer tools to move them. The Point Translation tool would not work for this purpose because point movement is designed to be immune to this effect (you often need to combine bone and point motion to get subtle movements).

At the bottom of the warp field, the circle also looks like a regular circle because of the stabilizing bottom bone. The interesting part if when you play back the animation and watch the intermediate frames:

Image

Here's what the general layer setup looks like:

Image

In the final animation, a character was added in addition to the circle. Because both objects pass through the warp field, they bone get deformed in the same way.

Are warp fields useful? I don't know, but they're fun to play with. Besides squeezing through tight spaces, warp fields could be used to create wavy underwater effects, funhouse mirrors, or maybe refractions through glass and lenses.
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Lost Marble
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Post by Lost Marble » Mon Apr 11, 2005 9:54 pm

Like I said, it should work for most objects in Moho. Here's an example of a 3D object passing through the same warp field:

http://www.lostmarble.com/misc/warp_fie ... warp3d.mov
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7feet
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Post by 7feet » Mon Apr 11, 2005 10:12 pm

That is just bloody amazing. I imagine you could also use this warp field by animating the fields bones one something that lives inside it. Whoa, man, it's gonna get trippy. Now, where to use it...
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jorgy
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Post by jorgy » Mon Apr 11, 2005 11:38 pm

7feet wrote:Now, where to use it...
Just what I was thinking!
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jahnocli
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Post by jahnocli » Tue Apr 12, 2005 9:36 am

Fantastic! What a program!
You can't have everything. Where would you put it?
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rylleman
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Post by rylleman » Wed Apr 13, 2005 11:52 pm

I've got a lamp, it consists of two drums, the inner rotates and has fishes on it which is projectet onto the outer drum which has a waffled cardboard inserted. The effect is that the fishes seems to swim around the lamp.
Perfect for trying out this technique!

http://www.rylanderanimation.se/lampa_warp_V1.mov

I still got some things to do on the lamp but it's presentable for now.
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Post by bupaje » Thu Aug 04, 2005 12:14 am

Just saw this thanks to another post that reffered to it. Really cool idea (nice application of it rylleman also). Light bulb went on. I think with this concept and the grid script I saw around you could have some real fun. Can't wait to get home now. :)
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Max Power
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Post by Max Power » Thu Aug 04, 2005 8:19 am

The only idea I have so far is if a character is walking past a glass in the foreground. The streaching effect would warp the character only when viewed through the glass. Nice.

oh, I bet it would make some cool fluid dynamics too, and do a good job of warping an object's reflection in water.

How can Moho rock so hard? Magic?


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bupaje
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Post by bupaje » Thu Aug 04, 2005 9:23 am

Well, I thought I was going to have a shadow move over various surfaces as an imaginary light turned but I over complicated this and the pillar ended up with a dancing and shape changing shadow but I kind of think with a bit more thought a pattern of light or shadow could flow around and bend over the walls and some obstacles .... have to give it a try again. Getting ready to return to school so even less time than usual ...
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Marteinn Einarsson
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Post by Marteinn Einarsson » Fri Sep 23, 2005 12:19 pm

Well guys (and/or girls), this "warp field" instantly reminded me of a disney educational film called "The Story of Menstruation".

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0190806/

I'm not giving you any details, but I think it's a funny coincidence that the circle is red.
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Post by mr. blaaa » Fri Sep 23, 2005 7:22 pm

Whoooot LM nice technique :wink:
usable for several animation tasks.
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morda
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object warping trick

Post by morda » Wed May 10, 2006 10:45 am

just checking out this very nice thing with warping field, but having a bit of problem importing an image (with an extra bone layer), with this extra bone layer the image does not want to warp, without it yes, but then hard to control....
hmm

anyone out there having any ideas/suggestions how to solve this? :?

(I am working mainly with imported images and also been trying to find out if it is possible to "translate" them to vector. seems like Moho is mostly designed toward vector...)

with best regards

Morda
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