Animating a Camera

I may be thinking about this the wrong way… maybe the question i should as is… what is the best way to animate a camera through a scene, particularly when it comes to tilting, rolling, and moving it along the z axis.

I’ve got my camera attached to a peg, and it does just fine when i’m moving along any of the 3 axis… when i roll the camera as i’m moving it along the z axix, then try to keep it at a 30 degree angle while moving it along the x axix, everything gets a little off in the export… and it’s nearly impossible to control from that point on.

Thank you for any help you can give me on animating the camera. I’ve done most of my animating in flash, and I really like toon boom because of the 3D space it allows you to work in… but I have hit a stumbling block when it comes to animating the camera.

That’s a pretty complex shot you are trying to produce. I’ve never had great experience trying to rotate the stage in Flash. My only thought and this isn’t based on actually having ever done that particular type of trucking spinning shot (I guess that’s what you are describing) would be to truck the camera along a motion path while having your other elements attached to pegs and rotate the elements themselves. At least thats the way we would produce that shot on a physical multiplane animation camera stand. Each plane’s compound would provide rotation for its elements and the camera itself would only move up or down but not actually spin. -JK

Thank you for replying to my post. I eventually did ended up rotating my objects as sort of a jerry rig… when I couldn’t figure out what was going on with the camera. i was just curious if there was a way to avoid that. It seems to create an unnecessary step. Is there no way to move the target of the camera?

If i cant rotate the camera, can i tilt it while trucking it? Say I’ve got a rollercoaster animation… and i want the camera to be sitting as a 1st person shot on the roller coaster… I dont want the camera to stay pointing straight ahead, I would like it to tilt down when the rollercoaster is going down, and tilt up when the rollercoaster goes up the hill…

any ideas?

You don’t have the same ability in TBS as you might have in a true 3D application such as Maya. So normally you would create those changing viewpoints though your drawings themselves. So it is possible to produce the type of visual effects you are describing but it is far more diffcult and complicated then it would be in a true 3d environment. Not the answer you wanted, and I’m certainly not the end all expert on TBS camera effects but my understanding of the way the TBS multiplane camera works tells me that it operates much closer to its analogy of the classical Disney multiplane camera and not like the types of 3D simulation environments of CGI applications like Maya. Still if you ever watched The Great Mouse Detective, they did some amazing things with their multiplane camera although they used a 3D CAD based system to generate all the changed viewpoints in those backgrounds as the camera moved thru what looked like the inside of a clock mechanism. -JK

Thanks very much for your response. It’s good to know I wasn’t just missing something. Now that I understand the limitations, I can start to think of ways to acheive the same effect. Thanks.

it is possible to achieve roller coaster movements of the camera.

first of all, the camera must be attached to a peg.
then one must set enough keyframes for the motion path in the function editor so it could be then easy to manage the ups and downs with the camera. → EDIT: see the update.

the positions of the keyframes on the motion path can be set in the side view of the scene → one needs an art of a sinusoid, displayed almost in place.
the preview won’t show anything, but the rendered film will have the roller coaster effect.

ok, i’ve played a bit with the camera peg.
it’s not even necessary to set the keyframes manually. if one selects any frame in the timeline (red vertical bar, indicating the frame number) then the motion path for this peg gets a red circle in the side and top views in the exact position of the particular frame.

when dragged on the circle (not in the middle), the motion path in the function editor gets a keyframe in this place, and the motion path curve gets modified according to the dragging.

through manual dragging in the side/top views one can set the camera for this frame in any position.

the fine tuning can be made in the function editor then, adjusting the rotation, scaling and velocity of the camera along the motion path.