foliage effect

hi all -

just wondered if anyone has a good technique for creating a foliage effect for trees that spans an intermixed collection of reds, yellows, and greens… the gradiant gives me linear or radial effect, which really doesn’t work and rather than just drawing leaves, coloring them, then copying pasting them throughout the scene, i was hoping someone had a quick and dirty technique that gave the image that brushed look where the colors seem to fade into each other … the shot will be a distant shot, so the individual leaves will probably not be readily seen - be like a panoramic vista scene of a valley … thanks, Dan

Check out my most recent CTB blog post (the third slide show) where I use some imported images of trees, a fallen log and grass ect to explain the multiplane camera.

Those images were created in SketchBook Pro 2010 which is a really inexpensive ($89 on Amazon) but incredible application. The trees leaves and grass are all created super simply by creating custom brushes that basically let you “stamp” patterns on to the canvas. (You can do this type of work in PhotoShop too if you have a copy.) Really interesting natural looking backgrounds in minutes are possible. I’m going to be introducing more about using this great product and integrating it with Toon Boom Studio for cartoon making in my next Fundamentals post, so watch for it.

Toon Boom Fundamentals - The Basics Part 2

thanks jk - I went into photoshop and created the effect … i did want to ask, with all the blogs you have created, have you one on how to use the function editor? from what I can understand through the manual, it seems i can use the timeline and exposure sheets to perform the same tasks the function editor offers, so i must be missing some vital benefit it offers … thanks, dan

The function editor is used to make adjustments for controlling the calculations done in creating “tweens”. You set key frame start and end information (keys) and then based on the number of frames you provide between that start and end, TBS determines the number of subdivisions (inbetween frames) it needs to calculate to in between those start and end settings.

Now if there was only one function used in calculating those in between values you wouldn’t have very much control over the way they are implemented. For example by default they are calculated according to a linear function meaning that the amount of variation between each in between frame is equal. But in animation equal spacing is boring and usually unnatural.

We normally want to use some other timing approach. For example having some of the frames spaced closer together and others spread further apart. Because, for example, in nature things often start out slowly and speed up over time as opposed to moving at the same speed all the time. So for a given starting value and a given ending value, even with the same number of in between frames to present an action, if we carefully control the spacing of those frames we can create different variations of an action.

The mechanisms provided for us to make those types of timing tweaks in a computer generated tween are the curves we set in the function editor. Yes you can use the timeline and the x-sheet as tools for adjusting your animation timing but when it comes to controlling “tweening” it is a combination of the number of frames you provide between keyed display values and the applied calculation function as set in the function editor. -JK

hi jk -

never got that understanding from the manual … definitely makes sense and will require me playing around with it to see what monsters I can create :slight_smile: thanks for the explanation … dan

You are most welcomed. I will eventually get to the function editor in my current Fundamentals series on Cartooning in Toon Boom.

I’m trying a “new” approach which like most things that I do is an evolving work in progress. I am trying to build a foundation of understanding TBS and how to use it to create animation. A logical approach but a difficult task because I keep finding people who come to Toon Boom and get caught up in learning to use the software without any animation background.

It is easy to appreciate the plight of those poor folks who have the task of writing user manuals. They are tasked with explaining how the software works but they are most often talking to an audience that doesn’t understand how animation is actually created in the first place. It isn’t just a software usage problem alone but actually a learning to produce animation problem with the software as a supporting tool problem.

I’m actually well suited to tackle that problem because I am not restricted by the daunting task of describing the features and functionality of the software but rather I can approach the subject of animating and just layer on the way a person can use TBS to achieve those approaches. So I try to work in analogies that transition the reader from the physical world to the computer world and that move from the artistic craft to the technical implementation.

Perhaps the most difficult aspect is that my audience of readers is only human and therefore not wanting to get mired in the details but rather impatient to reach instant gratification. I just plod along doing my best and knowing that over time I am making a difference and helping plenty of people. So I always appreciate both your interesting questions and your insights. -JK