Hi all, I have been trying out Stop Motion Studio on the iPad/iPod which is a great app. I'd like to try green screen but I'm not quite sure where to start with it. Does anyone know of a good tutorial?

Also, this is our first animation:

https://stimsonstopmotion.wordpress.com/2014/02/23/pac-man-the-movie/

And this is how we made it..

https://stimsonstopmotion.wordpress.com/making-of-pac-man/

I hope it's useful to someone just starting out, and I would love to get any feedback on from some experienced animators.

Cheers,
Richard.

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Hey Nick.. Sorry for the delay.. been super busy with my animation.. I bet you have too with the Ray Harryhausen 100th birthday tribute.. how's it going.. 

owe yeah I didn't think of that.. could build a little 6" platform in front to bring the feet level with the green screen, but like you said it's only 2xmtrs.. I decided not to go for it.. I still want to get the GREEN SCREEN set up.. just been off my mind this week, because I been doing other things.. you know what it's like.. and I'm thinking of going to Uni now in September to do animation, if the world still isn't in lockdown mode.. I must be bonkers because I got everything I need right here.. a lovely home, plenty of space to do my animation, and I'm talking about running off to uni now.. I can't even cope with the courses I'm already doing online.. I wish I didn't have to do anything except animate now.. I'm really enjoying it, and I think I should just do this.. and practice... I think it's my strength now.. I was told that by a senior lecturer this week I had a Skype interview online and she said animation rather than set building and puppet design is my thing, but to be fair I haven't had enough time banging away at it to know really what I could be good at.. anyways, to finish replying to this email... 

talking about table height.. what height do you tend to work at.. are you sitting down when your animating, standing, on a high stool or just normal desk level / chair.. I think it's a really important thing to work out, because you can have all sorts of problems with back, knees, elbows, I'm working at normal desk level now, sitting on a chair, with everything in reach, but I have to be more careful now though cause the tripod / camera is right next to me.. and also I noticed I'm casting shadows on the set I'm using right now.. pro's and con's isn't there..   

Do you use that app GREEN SCREENER is it?  is that where your getting those numbers from? 

thanks for explaining all that.. do you use DF for keying, it's only a drawing tool thing I understand that.. can't be permenent..  and the incremental editor.. do you use this tool?

yeah I hear you about apple and their cables... I was talking with an apple expert last week.. and he helped me so much... on his guidance... my head is so much more clearer.. he told me to unplug everything.. and only use the one apple lead.. to connect my DSLR and only back up onto the 8TB external HD your time machine once a week, but if you want to be paranoid over protective then do it at the end of the working day.. but make sure you use the internal SSD HD to save everything especially for FCP, and I got DF saving direct now to the computer, he deactivated the apple iCloud Drive.. and everything is working so much more smoothly, FCP is not quitting on me now, I don't get the eject messages because the drives are not always plugged in, and I just backup once in a while.. I'm not going to worry about it.. but this is so much more easier.. omg my head was fried before.. now super smooth workflow.. and I'm not getting confused over the files and folders... makes the world of difference.. I'm so glad it's sorted now with the help of that apple guy... I'm going to try and post my animation I been working on, on here.. I never tend to post anything on here because I post on Youtube and FB and Instagram... I been using a winder I bought off Simon T.. it's great.. my first winder.. so nothing to compare it with.. but so much better than not having one.. it's pretty cool... 

You could certainly devote more time to just animating at home, than at Uni where there would be all sorts of other stuff to cover.  But i enjoyed Uni, and it was good to get to know others who were also into art (weren't any animation courses then, where I was, and certainly not stop motion).

Table Height:  I animate standing up.  I have the computer on a wheeled trolley, and position it well back, so I don't cast a shadow.  I have now made a second set of shelves on it, so I can place the keyboard and monitor at a comfy sitting height, for when I do post production.  My old Mac Pro 2008 machine is too out of date to go in the house and connect to the internet now, so it does the frame grabbing in the studio.  But lots of my software only works on it, the  2013 iMac has been updated to the current 64 bit OS, so I have to do most of my post in the studio as well.  

Table height was 3 ft (900mm) stage rostrums, but I have added lockable castor wheels and extensions to the legs to raise them to 1 metre.  That's an ok height, it's more comfortable for longer when I animate on a 150mm green platform on top of that, but for the main set if it is too high I can't reach as far back into the set.  So it's a compromise.  A desk with a crank might be a good base for an animation table, raise and lower it to suit.

A long day with hard-to-reach puppets, at the back of the set or having to reach through doorways or between trees while twisted to an odd angle, certainly does give me back pains.  (Lots of that animating Wolf Moon.)  It means I can't do 12 -16 hour days any more.  But with the simple green screen platform up higher and easy to get to, it's not such an issue.  I usually animate a shot, then do some model making, to break it up.  

I use Keylight in After Effects for my green screen keying.  Either AE CS5 on the old mac, or AE 2020 on the iMac, because my partner gets access from the uni she worked at until last year.  Hasn't been cancelled yet so I keep using it.  Never heard of Green Screener App. 

I have done a crude key in Dragonframe a couple of times, animating pterodactyls interacting with actors for Peter Montgomery.  So I had to load in the live action plate as a background image so I could match the moves. (One guy whacks a pterosaur's with a rifle butt, so had to make the head fly back at the right time and right angle.) That DF key is only for the live view preview, the actual keying was done by Peter in AE.

DF drawing tool - you mean placing a dot where the puppet has moved to, or should move to, to measure the moves?  Occasionally, but mostly I can judge it by toggling from live to last 2 frames.  Or I put my finger on the screen to see the size of the move, then again for the last frame, if it is hard to tell.  I don't know what the incremental editor is, so I probably don't use it.  What am I missing?

I am using an internal SSD, one of the replacement drives on the old Mac Pro, for my capture now.  Hoping that lasts longer! But with the final edit being done in Da Vinci Resolve on the iMac, I have the HD frames on both computers.  Don't have any portable SSDs yet, they are still pretty pricey, but thumb drives of 32GB or 64GB are pretty reasonable, so I use one of those to transfer files from one computer to the other, and leave a copy on there as another backup.

Hey Nick.. So on the Uni question.. you know now that we all have the internet and online animation forums like this one, and the explosion of social media outlets now i.e. YouTube, Facebook, instagram etc.. there is more than enough stimulation, information, help, interaction etc.. there's a whole world to get lost in online now.. do you think that puts a totally different slant on needing / wanting to go to Uni.. because you can get that sense of interacting with people online now, I do, I feel connected with you right now.. and your part of this animation world to me, so I don't know still confused abit about whether I should make the change or not.. I have so much to give up and it's going to be so much work to prepare to go, and the way it's looking right now anyway out there Uni may not be an option, although the teacher did hint at the fact that they may do remote learning.. so I could still do uni but online, but I can't even do the couses I'm signed up for now.. I was talking to a Laika animator and he was saying you could still carry on as you are and work from home, but you will need to learn to work in a team and time manage under pressure, work to deadlines, if you want to work in a studio one day for a big company like Laika.. I feel like I'm being told I have to join the arm if I want to be a film animator, it's sort of like that... yeah Chuck D. was saying that he didn't have any access to University to do animation either it was too expencive in L.A.  different world now isn't there with online social media... so much more choice nowadays...    

Arghh standing, I tried that on my first animation setup.. but the tables I was using one on top of the other was way too high.. I read the perfect height should be between your navel and your chest - would you agree with this -  the finished height your working at there is in-between my navel and chest... that's what Simon said to around that height... I need to build something more permanent again.. I'm just using what I got at the moment.. it would be ideal to have some kind of adjustable table.. I have got easels which you can adjust maybe I should try that for a base for now..  "  A desk with a crank might be a good base for an animation table, raise and lower it to suit. " is that what you meant.. like an easel that can be adjusted... ?   that's a good idea setting a limit on how much animation and then break up your time doing model making or whatever.. gives time to relax more.. sit down etc.. 

GREEN SCREENER APP.. you have too buy it off apple store.. it's £9.99, but this guy swears by it.. so I went for it..  the link below:  

https://youtu.be/OH8TWTt51W8?t=331

I want to learn to do stuff like that.. using live action plate as a background image on DF.. I want to interact with the puppet..  yeah that's what I meant that DF key is only for live view, it's just on the drawing tool panel.. sorry I called it the wrong thing..   

The incremental editor:   https://youtu.be/VtE87CNs-O0?t=296

How do you find Da Vinci Resolve..  Simon told me about it.. but never checked it out.. 



StopmoNick said:

You could certainly devote more time to just animating at home, than at Uni where there would be all sorts of other stuff to cover.  But i enjoyed Uni, and it was good to get to know others who were also into art (weren't any animation courses then, where I was, and certainly not stop motion).

Table Height:  I animate standing up.  I have the computer on a wheeled trolley, and position it well back, so I don't cast a shadow.  I have now made a second set of shelves on it, so I can place the keyboard and monitor at a comfy sitting height, for when I do post production.  My old Mac Pro 2008 machine is too out of date to go in the house and connect to the internet now, so it does the frame grabbing in the studio.  But lots of my software only works on it, the  2013 iMac has been updated to the current 64 bit OS, so I have to do most of my post in the studio as well.  

Table height was 3 ft (900mm) stage rostrums, but I have added lockable castor wheels and extensions to the legs to raise them to 1 metre.  That's an ok height, it's more comfortable for longer when I animate on a 150mm green platform on top of that, but for the main set if it is too high I can't reach as far back into the set.  So it's a compromise.  A desk with a crank might be a good base for an animation table, raise and lower it to suit.

A long day with hard-to-reach puppets, at the back of the set or having to reach through doorways or between trees while twisted to an odd angle, certainly does give me back pains.  (Lots of that animating Wolf Moon.)  It means I can't do 12 -16 hour days any more.  But with the simple green screen platform up higher and easy to get to, it's not such an issue.  I usually animate a shot, then do some model making, to break it up.  

I use Keylight in After Effects for my green screen keying.  Either AE CS5 on the old mac, or AE 2020 on the iMac, because my partner gets access from the uni she worked at until last year.  Hasn't been cancelled yet so I keep using it.  Never heard of Green Screener App. 

I have done a crude key in Dragonframe a couple of times, animating pterodactyls interacting with actors for Peter Montgomery.  So I had to load in the live action plate as a background image so I could match the moves. (One guy whacks a pterosaur's with a rifle butt, so had to make the head fly back at the right time and right angle.) That DF key is only for the live view preview, the actual keying was done by Peter in AE.

DF drawing tool - you mean placing a dot where the puppet has moved to, or should move to, to measure the moves?  Occasionally, but mostly I can judge it by toggling from live to last 2 frames.  Or I put my finger on the screen to see the size of the move, then again for the last frame, if it is hard to tell.  I don't know what the incremental editor is, so I probably don't use it.  What am I missing?

I am using an internal SSD, one of the replacement drives on the old Mac Pro, for my capture now.  Hoping that lasts longer! But with the final edit being done in Da Vinci Resolve on the iMac, I have the HD frames on both computers.  Don't have any portable SSDs yet, they are still pretty pricey, but thumb drives of 32GB or 64GB are pretty reasonable, so I use one of those to transfer files from one computer to the other, and leave a copy on there as another backup.

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