Article – The making of DSML-Coast, Part 2

An entry for the TMU Writing Contest. Part 2 of 2. First read Part 1! Written by Dutchman.For the intro I wanted some flight scenes over/along parts of the track and some still shots for the breaks. According to the music (listening and counting), I need:

  • one flight scene from water to high above the track, showing the whole track from above (camera not moving at the end)
  • 4 still shots for the first strikes
  • one flight shot along a track part (bridge over water)
  • 2 still shots showing parts of the track
  • one flight scene
  • 4-5 still shots again
  • one flight scene acros the track
  • some more still shots of another flight scene followed by two still shots

The first camera block (no target, no anchor) is a flight close above the water, over the yacht to a point high above the track, overviewing it. A single keypoint prevents the camera from raising to soon.

DSML 1 Click to enlarge.

The second camera block just holds the camera in the end position of the first block. The next two camera blocks provide to still shots.

DSML 2 Click to enlarge.

The next camera block shows a flight scene from the harbour along a track part (no target, no anchor). As usual, I placed the camera, inserted the block, adjusted the camera at start point and copied the camera settings to the end key of the block. Then I adjusted the camera position at the end key. The general movement path for the camera is set now, so I can tune the path by inserting some keypoints an carefully change the positions at these points. This is the way to get smooth moving cameras!

DSML 3 Click to enlarge.

With another two still shots and one flight scene along a track part, this first replay is saved.

DSML, Image 4 Click to enlarge. (First two pics show the still shots, rest shows the flight scene)

I rendered the replay to a video with 720×480, 30 fps in unkompressed avi and renamed the video file to DSML_01.AVI (same name as the replay – good organisation!). Then I switched to the video editing software and seperated my scenes from the video file.

I used a painting software to create a picture for use as a title to introduce the video, placed it at the start of the video track and put the „Magnum” soundtrack onto the audio track. Then I started to add my scenes one by one, accelerating, shorting and overlapping them as I need it to match the music, added the title for the first track…

DSML, Image 5 Click to enlarge.

5. Further shootings and montage

Then I edited the second replay (DMC_02) to get more scenes for the intro, the three approchings to the start matching the soundtrack from 0:18 to 0:20 and the first race scenes. Like I did in repaly DMC_01, I placed a key with time value = 0 in the timeline to freeze the action. For every camera block showing race scenes, I put a key into the timeline and set the time values as I needed them to get the cars into position. There are three camera blocks showing the first jump over the harbour. For each block, the time value of the start key in the time line was set back. This is the way to show the same event from different cameras – a thing you can’t do in an outro.

I rendered the replay into a video, renamed it, seperated the scenes in the video editing software, put the scenes on the video track, accelerated or cut them, let them overlap for a transition, watched the result, changed something, watched again – over and over until i was satisfied.

The same procedure with replay DMC_03, DMC_4 and DMC_05. It took me 6 hours to complete the first part of the video and I spend half an hour watching the result again and again and again…

I did basically the same work with the replays SCM_01 and SCM_02. I shot some flights the track as intro. The scene, where the cars start to race has a flying camera too – a strong connection to the intro scenes. According to the soundtrack, everything is smoother, transitions and camera movements are soft. I mostly use a free cam without target or anchor, except for the scene where the cars go through the loop. For the scene from 1:49 to 1:53 in the video, I used a special trick:

The camera should show the cars passing the curve, then overtake the cars on their way straight to the ramp to show all cars get off the ramp. But the cars were to fast: When the last car passes the curve, the first is almost off the ramp. The camera is too slow to catch the first car. A little modifikation on the timeline was the solution: with two additional keys with only a short difference in time values, the cars were slowed down while the camera moves to the ramp. Take a look at replay SCM_02, second camera block.

S= Start key, E=End key, X, Y=Keypoint, C=Camera block

DSML, Image 6 Click to enlarge.

The timeline key X has a value of 36,5 (like it should), key Y was changed from 38,4 to 37,3 – so the time values have a difference of 0,8 seconds. The replay time for X is 19,32 while for Y it is 21.26, a difference of 1,94 seconds. So while the cars proceed for 0,8 seconds, the camera has more than one extra, additional second (1,94 – 0,8 = 1,14) to overtake them!

If I set the time value of key Y to 36.5 (the same value as key X), the cars would not move for two seconds – an FX called „matrix” or „bullettime”. But stopping the cars would have ruined the flow of the scene. A little slow motion was all I needed and is not noticed by the viewer.

6. Final editing and publishing

After another 4 hours of work, I was ready to create the final video. I had rendered the replays in 720×480, the resolution I chose now for rendering the video. I decided to use WMV so anybody can watch the video and set the bitrate to 1,5 Mbit/s for a good quality. The file has a size of 25 Mb and was uploaded to filefront:

http://files.filefront.com/DSML+coastwmv/;7935596;;/fileinfo.html

I uploaded the video at youtube too (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3Z9d_F7Rcx8) and spread the news to the german Deep Silver forum, the international forum, the french forum and the forum at TMX.

Enjoy!

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One Response to Article – The making of DSML-Coast, Part 2

  1. Dutchman says:

    ? And what do you mean by that? (besides spamming ….)

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