Views & Cameras

1 View

You can set the Stage window to show 1 or 4 views selecting the menu item Views:1 View and Views:4 Views or quickly pressing the / key (slash). Also you can click on the 1 View and 4 Views buttons on the Stage toolbar.

4 Views

Projections

Any view can display different projections as Top, Bottom, Front, Back, Left, Right, Work, Default and Sprites Movable Cameras (Composite, with the green icon on the left-bottom corner of the view). The Sprites Movable Cameras displays your animation shot by the Sprites Cameras you have defined on the Sprites window. All the other projections are static and you should use them to control and build your scene. To show/hide the view icons on the left-bottom corner, press the key ' (apostrophe) or select the menu item Views:Show View Icons. You can quickly set these views pressing the following keys:


  1. f: Front    (2D)

  2. k: Back    (2D)

  3. l: Left    (2D)

  4. r: Right    (2D)

  5. t: Top    (2D)

  6. b: Bottom    (2D)

  7. w: Work    (3D)

  8. d: Default    (3D)

  9. s: Sprite Movable Cameras    (3D)

Sprites Movable Cameras

A Sprite Movable Camera is a camera that you can animate as well as any other object on the Stage. You can use several sprite movable cameras such a way to display the animation from different and dynamic points of view. However you can shoot an object from one camera only at the same time. Thus any cross fade effect between two cameras is not allowed.

When you create a new animation it doesn't contain yet any Sprite Movable Camera, thus, even if the current view is Sprite Movable Cameras (look at the menu Views and at the left-bottom green icon on the Stage), Kinemac will shoot your model using the Default Static Camera (it's a kind of static backup view you can even modify when the animation is not playing).


Select the menu item Objects:Camera or click on the Camera icon on the Stage window Toolbar to add a Sprite Movable Camera to your animation. You will see a new Camera green sprite on the Sprites window. Put your camera sprite always above the objects to shoot with that camera in the hierarchical Sprites list, as shown here below.

In the example shown above, Kinemac will display the object Cube using the Camera A when the playback time is between 0 and 100. Then from the frame 100 to the frame 200, since there are no Sprite Cameras defined, it will display the object Cube using the Default Static Camera. Then from the frame 200 to the frame 300 it will display the Cube using the Camera B. Last, from the frame 300 to the frame 400 it will display a scrolling text using the Camera C as in a overlaying view, over the cube. We set the Camera C as static, without key frames. This way, even if you move the Camera B around your Cube, you will always see the scrolling text as statically positioned on the screen, as in a separated layer.

Animate a Sprite Camera

You can animate a sprite camera as well as you animate any other object on the Stage: assigning key frames to the camera parameters. Each camera has an eye point and a target point that you can see when the Camera sprite is selected on the Sprites hierarchical list. The eye point, defined by its x, y and z coordinates, is the point from which you are looking at the scene. The target point, defined by its x, y and z coordinates, is the point of your scene which will be represented at the center of the screen. Select the sprite camera then press the / (slash) key to set the 4 Views mode, then drag the eye and the target icons on one of the 2D views Top, Front or Left. Look at the real time result on the Composite top-left view. Let’s create now the 2 key frames to animate the camera.


  1. Firstly click and select the camera on the Sprites hierarchical list of the Sprites window.

  2. Move the time marker at the beginning of the animation (or press Command-Left-Arrow).

  3. Go to the Inspector:Camera panel.

  4. Click on the key frame button Eye to create a key frame for the eye point.

  5. Click on the key frame button Target to create a key frame for the target point.

  You can quickly create these 6 key frames (eye and target) simply pressing Command-K.

  1. Once created the 6 key frames, you can modify the positions of the eye and the target points (see the paragraph Edit a View here above). Furthermore, you can change the position of the eye and the target points directly dragging their icons on the static 2D views (Front, Top, Left...). The Composite top-left view will display the change in real time.


When the current frame is a key frame Kinemac will display the key frame icon close to the eye or target icon indicating that you can safely change the eye and the target positions because they are already key-framed. In facts when the current frame is not a key frame and you modify the eye or target position, the change will affect the whole duration of the camera sprite and not only that frame (open the Bezier window to see how).

  1. Move the time marker at the frame 100. You can easily snap to the 10-frames-grid holding down the Command key while dragging the Time Marker.

  2. Press Command-K to create the 6 key frames Eye x y z and Target x y z.

  3. Modify the positions of the eye and/or the target points.

  4. Now press the Command-Left-Arrow key to go to the frame zero and press the Space Bar to play the animation. You will see the scene shot by your moving camera. Later you can double click on the camera sprite and edit the Bezier curves describing the movement of the eye and the target points with more accuracy. See how to add, edit and remove the keyframes on the Animations support page.




Link Eye To a Sprite
More than animating the eye point defining key frames, you can link the camera eye to an object moving on the stage such a way the eye will always move together with that object (plus an additional movement you might always define by the camera Eye key frames). To link the eye point to an object, select that object from the hierarchical list of the Link Eye pop-up menu. For example you can draw a Path and link the eye of the camera to that path. The eye will move along that path (see how). To unlink the eye from a linked Sprite, click on the Unlink icon
.



Link Target To a Sprite
More than animating the target point defining key frames, you can even link the camera target to an object moving on the scene such a way that object (actor) always virtually stays on the center of the scene, no matter where it moves (plus an additional movement you might always define by the camera Target key frames). To link the target point to an object, select that object from the hierarchical list of the Link Target pop-up menu. For example you can draw a Path and link the Target of the camera to that path to make the camera Target move smoothly along that path (see how). To unlink the eye from that Sprite click on the Unlink icon 
.
 

Camera Eye

Camera Target

Default Static Camera

We have seen here above that when no Sprite Cameras are defined at a given time, and the selected view is Sprite Movable Cameras, you will see your model through the Default Static Camera. This camera is a kind of static backup view which ensures that your animation will be always shot by a camera. This camera is automatically set as a frontal perspective view, but you can change it as your wish.


• Select the Views:Default Static Camera menu item or quickly press the d key.

  1. Translate, rotate and zoom this camera as well as you do with any other 3D view (see here above how).

  2. To set back the Sprite Movable Camera view (composite) press the s key.

WireFrame

The Views menu lists the menu items Polygon Fill and Polygon WireFrame to let you set the Stage to display the objects as solids or as wire frame (see picture aside). You can quickly toggle the polygon mode Fill/WireFrame pressing the key . (the dot). You can set the mode to Fill and see all the objects as solid, and, on the Inspector:Object Parameters, with an object selected on the Stage, mark the check-box WireFrame to draw that object only as wireframe.

Orthogonal & Depth

Mark the check-box Orthogonal and unmark the check-box Depth on the Inspector:Camera panel to make a sprite camera shoot all the sprites underneath it as in a flat 2D space. The advantage to draw in a 2D space is that the objects will be represented with their original size as you were paginating an object on a sheet. You can also create a folder (on the picture here aside we called it 2D Layer) and put within it a 2D Camera as first sprite. Then all the following sprites in the folder (as 2D Text) will be drawn in a 2D space. As you can see by the picture here below, the cube is normally represented in a 3D space because the first sprite Camera is not Orthogonal, then the orthogonal Camera 2D shoots the 2D Text sprite in a 2D space. The result is that we have a 2D layer overlaying the cube. The sprite Cone at the bottom of the list doesn’t belong to the 2D Layer sprite folder, so it will be shot by the first sprite Camera at the top, in a 3D Space, as well as the Cube, and it will be drawn over the 2D Layer since it gets drawn after the 2D Layer. Please remember to turn off the check-box Depth of the 2D Camera to get this done.


 

Edit a View

When working with 4 views you have to firstly click to select a view. The selected view will show a white border. Then you can press one of the keys listed here above and set the view you like. You can modify the current view.


Rotate: you can rotate the Work projection, the Default projections and the Sprites Movable Cameras projection only since they are 3D views. Hold down the 1 key, click and drag the mouse on the view to rotate the eye point around the target point. Hold down the 1-Shift keys together (firstly 1 then the Shift), then click and drag the mouse to rotate the target point around the eye point.


Zoom Eye: hold down the 2 key, click and drag the mouse on the view to zoom the projection in and out. You can also rotate the mouse wheel when the mouse pointer is over the view to zoom it in-out. This task moves the eye point along the axis eye-target closer or farther from the target point, while the target remains on the same position. The distance between the eye point and the target point cannot be less than zero. Therefore in some cases you could need to go closer or farther from your model moving both the eye and target points along the eye-target axis.


Zoom Eye and Target: hold down the 2-Shift keys together (firstly the 2 key then the Shift), click and drag the mouse to move both the eye and the target points along the axis eye-target. This way you translate both the eye and the target point along the eye-target axis, and the zoom effect is virtually infinite. Please note that in this case the position of the target changes so any next rotation of the view around the target point will change as well.


Translate: hold down the 3 key, click and drag the mouse. The eye point and the target point will be both translated.

Wire Frame Representation

KINEMACkinemac.html

Click and select the sprite Camera

Click on the key frame btn Eye and Target