Profile Picture

Creating a graphic novel in IClone

Posted By mindprints 2 Years Ago
You don't have permission to rate!
Author
Message
mindprints
mindprints
Posted 2 Years Ago
View Quick Profile
Distinguished Member

Distinguished Member (1.1K reputation)Distinguished Member (1.1K reputation)Distinguished Member (1.1K reputation)Distinguished Member (1.1K reputation)Distinguished Member (1.1K reputation)Distinguished Member (1.1K reputation)Distinguished Member (1.1K reputation)Distinguished Member (1.1K reputation)Distinguished Member (1.1K reputation)

Group: Forum Members
Last Active: Last Year
Posts: 54, Visits: 288

I just made an AI-themed graphic novel using IC7 for the scenes. I added the text bubbles in Inkscape and created a story in cartoon format. It's here the static cartoon
Of course you can do text bubbles in IC using for example the billboard but that is not as flexible a solution especially if you (like me) are tweaking your dialog lines constantly.

IClone users will recognize the scene background in the story. I knew my audience would never stumble upon the original demo version of the loft scene so I took the eazy route.


https://forum.reallusion.com/uploads/images/126fc502-c31c-4cd0-a636-b6cc.jpg

I then decided to make a video of the graphic novel in my video editor (Vegas Pro) just panning and zooming on the rendered stills from IC.  
I thought I would share some of my experiences. 

1. I was not consequentially sequential when I was making the stills in IC. One excuse for that is that there are no markers on the mainscreen time bar which I could tab between. Yes there are stop and start flags but they are rather awkward and lack snap positions. I didn't feel like doing keyframes in the timeline because I find the timeline awkward. If any of you also work in a DAW you know how an intuitive timeline should feel. No comparison.

2. I wasn't careful about being consequential with lighting. I just kept throwing in point lights whenever I felt the need and tweaking light intensities without keeping track of what I was doing. I don't thing that shows up that badly in the comic version but it does in the video.

3. I hadn't left enough room around the characters to do any large scale panning and zooming in Vegas. this was exacerbated by the choice of a 4/3 screen ratio for the comic version while I wanted to do the video wide-screen for youtube and avoid letterboxing.

Here is the final video  

In my next chapter of this story I am going to try to plan better and do almost everything in IC. I am still going to go for static scenes (no character animations) but instead of panning and zooming 2d renders in my video program I am going to do them in IC so that they will be in 3d. I will do the text bubbles as PNGs in Inkscape as before, but now I will either add them as a top layer in Vegas or paste them on billboards in IC. I haven't decided yet. In IC I would have to adjust the billboards every time I did a pan/zoom. That would be slightly easier in Vegas and give me more flexibility if I wanted to change anything in the dialog.  

If you are thinking about doing something with text bubbles in IC yourself don't forget to do them in PNGs so you get the transparency around the bubbles automatically. 

I'll keep you posted on how the next video goes. 

I am of course interested in any of your experiences that are related to this.  

animagic
animagic
Posted 2 Years Ago
View Quick Profile
Distinguished Member

Distinguished Member (19.2K reputation)Distinguished Member (19.2K reputation)Distinguished Member (19.2K reputation)Distinguished Member (19.2K reputation)Distinguished Member (19.2K reputation)Distinguished Member (19.2K reputation)Distinguished Member (19.2K reputation)Distinguished Member (19.2K reputation)Distinguished Member (19.2K reputation)

Group: Forum Members
Last Active: Yesterday
Posts: 11.3K, Visits: 19.5K
A quick comment (I will look at your stuff later).

I have done one comic book as video (in iClone 6), which was interesting. I approached it as I would making an animation movie in iClone with different scenes for different locations. With the start and stop markers I got two options for a still, so that is what I used (I think). You can set markers on the timeline, but you cannot simply step through them, which would be useful. As I have been animating for a long time, key frames aren't really a problem...Whistling

I used the Toon Shader and the Tone Map HDR effect as a way to get the comic book look. I used Comic Life to put the stills and the images together. I used a widescreen format with one scene per page, so different from a regular comic book.

I added music and sound effects and used a page-turning effect in Sony Vegas to go from one panel to the next. I think it came together nicely:





https://forum.reallusion.com/uploads/images/1a09220f-ab50-42ac-ad1a-33ec.pnghttps://forum.reallusion.com/Uploads/Images/d14339d0-cd32-4b35-88f9-40a0.png


mindprints
mindprints
Posted 2 Years Ago
View Quick Profile
Distinguished Member

Distinguished Member (1.1K reputation)Distinguished Member (1.1K reputation)Distinguished Member (1.1K reputation)Distinguished Member (1.1K reputation)Distinguished Member (1.1K reputation)Distinguished Member (1.1K reputation)Distinguished Member (1.1K reputation)Distinguished Member (1.1K reputation)Distinguished Member (1.1K reputation)

Group: Forum Members
Last Active: Last Year
Posts: 54, Visits: 288
Wow. you put a lot of work into that. I didn't choose toon shading in my film but I noticed you ended up with some fairly stark toning differences between characters like in the bar scene.  Did you notice that you made your lead character 9 years old on his tombstone dream :-) 

I think you should have chosen either sound fx or sound fx graphics - it seems a bit superfluous to use both.  I didn't know about Comic Life. I will take a look at it. 

Thanks 
animagic
animagic
Posted 2 Years Ago
View Quick Profile
Distinguished Member

Distinguished Member (19.2K reputation)Distinguished Member (19.2K reputation)Distinguished Member (19.2K reputation)Distinguished Member (19.2K reputation)Distinguished Member (19.2K reputation)Distinguished Member (19.2K reputation)Distinguished Member (19.2K reputation)Distinguished Member (19.2K reputation)Distinguished Member (19.2K reputation)

Group: Forum Members
Last Active: Yesterday
Posts: 11.3K, Visits: 19.5K
mindprints (10/21/2017)
Wow. you put a lot of work into that. I didn't choose toon shading in my film but I noticed you ended up with some fairly stark toning differences between characters like in the bar scene.  Did you notice that you made your lead character 9 years old on his tombstone dream :-) 

I think you should have chosen either sound fx or sound fx graphics - it seems a bit superfluous to use both.  I didn't know about Comic Life. I will take a look at it. 

Thanks 

Ha, Pinhead's age... That's a little inside joke. Pinhead has been conceived in 2006 by some people who wanted a common character to create movies around. So hence his age. 

Interesting comment about sound fx versus sound fx graphics. I felt it helped move the story along as I sort of control the pace of the viewer/reader by turning the pages. Thinking like a filmmaker...


https://forum.reallusion.com/uploads/images/1a09220f-ab50-42ac-ad1a-33ec.pnghttps://forum.reallusion.com/Uploads/Images/d14339d0-cd32-4b35-88f9-40a0.png


justaviking
justaviking
Posted 2 Years Ago
View Quick Profile
Distinguished Member

Distinguished Member (15.2K reputation)Distinguished Member (15.2K reputation)Distinguished Member (15.2K reputation)Distinguished Member (15.2K reputation)Distinguished Member (15.2K reputation)Distinguished Member (15.2K reputation)Distinguished Member (15.2K reputation)Distinguished Member (15.2K reputation)Distinguished Member (15.2K reputation)

Group: Forum Members
Last Active: 1 hour ago
Posts: 7.5K, Visits: 23.0K
@Mindprints...

Thanks for sharing.  That was pretty well done.

It took me a little while to get used to the panning/zooming from one text bubble to the next, but I accept it as an artistic choice.  Did you render in 4k, so you had "extra" resolution for when you zoomed in?

At 2:07, your reference to an "off-camera" discussion sort of took me away from the moment, and reminded me that I'm watching a video.  Even in the graphic novel style, I recommend avoiding that, unless you plan to do it regularly (like in Ferris Bueller's Day Off).

I participated in the same project as Animagic, and I really had a great time doing it, and it remains one of my favorite projects because the end result was almost exactly what I was hoping to achieve.  I would like to have added a couple sound effects (waterfall in the distance, and upset tummy gurgling).

Based on Animagic's recommendation, I also used Comic Life for the speech bubbles.  I wish I had learned to figure out the "multi-bubble" like what Animagic used at 1:54 in his video, but I was running out of time and wanted to get my project turning in before the deadline.  (It probably would have only taken minutes to learn it, but I didn't need the distraction.)  I just overlapped my text bubbles.  If I had thought of it at the time, I could have used an image editing tool (even MS Paint) to erase the border where they overlap, but I suspect you wouldn't have even noticed it if I hadn't mentioned it.

Here's my Pinhead "graphic novel," if you're interested:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GwZeAR1gXPM



iClone 7... Character Creator... Substance Designer/Painter... Blender... Audacity...
Desktop (homebuilt) - Windows 7, i7-3770k CPU, GTX 1080 GPU (8GB), 16GB RAM, Asus P8Z77-V Pro motherboard, 500 GB SSD, terabytes of disk space, dual  monitors.
Laptop - Windows 10, MSI GS63VR STEALTH-252, 16GB RAM, GTX 1060 (6GB), 256GB SSD and 1TB HDD

Edited
2 Years Ago by justaviking
mindprints
mindprints
Posted 2 Years Ago
View Quick Profile
Distinguished Member

Distinguished Member (1.1K reputation)Distinguished Member (1.1K reputation)Distinguished Member (1.1K reputation)Distinguished Member (1.1K reputation)Distinguished Member (1.1K reputation)Distinguished Member (1.1K reputation)Distinguished Member (1.1K reputation)Distinguished Member (1.1K reputation)Distinguished Member (1.1K reputation)

Group: Forum Members
Last Active: Last Year
Posts: 54, Visits: 288
justaviking wrote: 
>>Did you render in 4k, so you had "extra" resolution for when you zoomed in?
No, I rendered in low resolution to send out the cartoon on my mailchimp mailing list. I didn't know I would be doing a video
>> I would like to have added a couple sound effects (waterfall in the distance, and upset tummy gurgling).
As I mentioned in an earlier response, I don't think parallel audio- and graphic sound effects is a good idea. but to each his own. 
>> If I had thought of it at the time, I could have used an image editing tool (even MS Paint)... 
I recommend Inkscape / illustrator in this case. It is so easy to adjust bubbles exactly the way you want. (Inkscape is free open source and just as good as Illustrator for this purpose.)
... to erase the border where they overlap, but I suspect you wouldn't have even noticed it if I hadn't mentioned it.
I thought about it because I had had to deal with the same problem:-)
I've never tried Comic Life but it seems a bit confining when you already have IC and a video editor at your disposal.
I checked out your pinhead video. You'd done a better job of color matching than in the previous video. If I was to give advice I would recommend not jumping around with music themes as much as you did.
I reacted to your use of standard unaltered iClone scenery and Avatars, just as any IC worker would react to my use of the loft scene tutorial, but as I wrote earlier we can hope that a typical viewer wouldn't be  concerned by that.
I can't say much more since I have no experience whatsoever with the Pinhead Concept Thank you for commenting.


Edited
2 Years Ago by mindprints
justaviking
justaviking
Posted 2 Years Ago
View Quick Profile
Distinguished Member

Distinguished Member (15.2K reputation)Distinguished Member (15.2K reputation)Distinguished Member (15.2K reputation)Distinguished Member (15.2K reputation)Distinguished Member (15.2K reputation)Distinguished Member (15.2K reputation)Distinguished Member (15.2K reputation)Distinguished Member (15.2K reputation)Distinguished Member (15.2K reputation)

Group: Forum Members
Last Active: 1 hour ago
Posts: 7.5K, Visits: 23.0K
I understand what you're saying, I think, about the involvement of other tools.  Each person has to develop a workflow that fits both the project and their personal style (and budget).

For me, I am gradually using more and more tools.  I record audio in a separate application (Audacity) where I can do cleanup and other adjustments.  For the camping video, I rendered out STILL IMAGES from iClone, and then used Comic Life to add the speech bubbles.  Then I assembled the images, music, and credits in Pinnacle Studio (video editor).  A couple times I re-did my images from iClone to better accommodate my speech bubbles, but since I knew what I wanted, I was usually able to get the composition acceptable (to my standards) on the first try.

Your comment about the sudden and numerous musical changes is very valid, and I agree to an extent.  I remember struggling with the music.  I wanted it to match the scene, but in a short video like that, things change rapidly.  My music was a bit simplistic in that it coincided greatly with what was on the screen, rather than a couple overall themes.

I look forward to seeing another clip from you.  Keep up the good work.  Smile



iClone 7... Character Creator... Substance Designer/Painter... Blender... Audacity...
Desktop (homebuilt) - Windows 7, i7-3770k CPU, GTX 1080 GPU (8GB), 16GB RAM, Asus P8Z77-V Pro motherboard, 500 GB SSD, terabytes of disk space, dual  monitors.
Laptop - Windows 10, MSI GS63VR STEALTH-252, 16GB RAM, GTX 1060 (6GB), 256GB SSD and 1TB HDD

mindprints
mindprints
Posted 2 Years Ago
View Quick Profile
Distinguished Member

Distinguished Member (1.1K reputation)Distinguished Member (1.1K reputation)Distinguished Member (1.1K reputation)Distinguished Member (1.1K reputation)Distinguished Member (1.1K reputation)Distinguished Member (1.1K reputation)Distinguished Member (1.1K reputation)Distinguished Member (1.1K reputation)Distinguished Member (1.1K reputation)

Group: Forum Members
Last Active: Last Year
Posts: 54, Visits: 288


So this is the latest episode. I tried a different course of action this time . thinking  I might do all the transitions between panels in iClone rather than Vegas.  this is  slightly  a good idea in order to attain consistent lighting, but adding the text bubbles as billboards created a lot of extra work as they of course don't follow the camera moves like everything else in the scene. 
I wanted stills for each panel of the strip as in episode 1, but I thought it fun to add very slight movements. Panning in IC6 gives a nice 3d depth which I don't get panning in Vegas.

I gave up on transitions -- slides and pushes etc. 

 My workflow is to start with some storyboard slides and then move over to ableton and get the music going. Once i have a reasonable audio  track I return to IC and start developing the story. The text bubbles are created in inkscape   and one nice feature is that I can edit and save them in inkscape and they are automatically updated in IC. From there I bounce between Vegas, Ableton Live, Inkscape and IC 7

For some unknown reason I ended up with a 36 hour render time in IC7 for a 3 and a half minute film  which has never even come close to happening before. don't know it it ic7 or what that is causing that to happen. 

At the end of the video I let the characters dance to some streetdance  animations I bought for another project.  Probably not a great idea but I find it so humorous to watch Beany and Shayla dance I couldn't help myself. 
paulg625
paulg625
Posted 2 Years Ago
View Quick Profile
Distinguished Member

Distinguished Member (2.0K reputation)Distinguished Member (2.0K reputation)Distinguished Member (2.0K reputation)Distinguished Member (2.0K reputation)Distinguished Member (2.0K reputation)Distinguished Member (2.0K reputation)Distinguished Member (2.0K reputation)Distinguished Member (2.0K reputation)Distinguished Member (2.0K reputation)

Group: Forum Members
Last Active: Last Year
Posts: 388, Visits: 1.3K
Your second episode is pretty cool. you have a decent format.

a few notes when dealing with human minds you need to focus on one thing so when text is up and camera is moving its distracting and hard to follow. This is a directorial rule only show someone one thing at a time. using movement only when something isn't happening in the scene to give people something to look at. So to be clear either push in or out then pop up text and then give time to read or put up text wait till have moment to read then move this way only one thing going on at a time (IMHO)

also save some of your movements don't just move to move and save some of your motions for the characters in other words reaction like when female character said Sushi ? she should have transitioned to a questioning face. so make some of the movement character expressions or gestures instead of camera push in or pull outs. Think timing an expression change or gesture to your word bubbles.


keep up the good work looking forward to more...
justaviking
justaviking
Posted 2 Years Ago
View Quick Profile
Distinguished Member

Distinguished Member (15.2K reputation)Distinguished Member (15.2K reputation)Distinguished Member (15.2K reputation)Distinguished Member (15.2K reputation)Distinguished Member (15.2K reputation)Distinguished Member (15.2K reputation)Distinguished Member (15.2K reputation)Distinguished Member (15.2K reputation)Distinguished Member (15.2K reputation)

Group: Forum Members
Last Active: 1 hour ago
Posts: 7.5K, Visits: 23.0K
Interesting.
What does she see in him?  He sure married "up" above his class.

I enjoyed the "subtle" movement of things in otherwise still images.  It adds a touch of life to the graphic novel format.  Needs to be done with great care, as Paul pointed out about people being able to focus on only one thing at a time.  But as long as it's not overdone, I think it's a nice touch.

Thanks for sharing.



iClone 7... Character Creator... Substance Designer/Painter... Blender... Audacity...
Desktop (homebuilt) - Windows 7, i7-3770k CPU, GTX 1080 GPU (8GB), 16GB RAM, Asus P8Z77-V Pro motherboard, 500 GB SSD, terabytes of disk space, dual  monitors.
Laptop - Windows 10, MSI GS63VR STEALTH-252, 16GB RAM, GTX 1060 (6GB), 256GB SSD and 1TB HDD




Reading This Topic