Super-Fresh Transition Animations in Cinema 4D! Part 1 | Stereo Stan | Skillshare
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Super-Fresh Transition Animations in Cinema 4D! Part 1

teacher avatar Stereo Stan, 3D Artist & Animator Stuck in the 80's

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

    • 1.

      Intro Video

      1:10

    • 2.

      Set Up & Basics

      4:53

    • 3.

      Motivated Jump Cut

      8:02

    • 4.

      Whip Pan

      5:33

    • 5.

      Edgar Wright Style Zoom Cut

      6:09

    • 6.

      Foward Facing to Top Down

      6:55

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About This Class

Learn how to create 4 different animated transitions using Cinema 4D to connect your story together!

This class is useful to anyone who wants to learn how to create energetic transitions between scenes in their 3D animation projects. The 4 different transitions you will learn include:

  • Motivated Jump Cut
  • Whip Pan!
  • The Edgar Wright Zoom Cut
  • Transition from foward facing to top down

You will learn how to make your 3D animated transitions fresh & fun!

How? By getting the right amount of speed and distance into your transitions.

Working as a 3D animator every day I have been asked to animate a wide variety of animated stories. This made me realize how important transitions are to telling a 3D animated story and keep the audience engaged.

When you use different types of transitions throughout your animation, it helps guide your audience on their journey. 

You will also learn:

  • Fundamental animation principles like using keyframes and animation curves.
  • How many keyframes to include in a typical transition ( at 24 FPS )
  • How to animate cameras.

The skills in this class can be applied to other types of animation programs like After Effects or really any type of animation program that uses keyframes and animation curves. 

Basic knowledge of the Cinema 4D interface is helpful. I am using Cinema 4D 2023 but you could use any version to complete this course, keeping in mind the interface will look slightly different. 

If you are an animator, I hope this class will help you tackle the transitions you battle throughout the week.

Let's get into this!

Meet Your Teacher

Teacher Profile Image

Stereo Stan

3D Artist & Animator Stuck in the 80's

Teacher

Hello, I'm Stereo Stan. AKA Chris Manfre.

 I am a 3D animator and designer heavily inspired by the '80s and '90s. 

I love learning, teaching, & creating. I hope to share some things I have learned along my journey as a creative explorer.

Lately, I 'm into slangin keyframes in 3D and busting out some smooth lookin animation curves. I hope you will join me on some fun 3D adventures.

I look forward to meeting you in my classes!

Until then, have an awesome day.

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Level: Intermediate

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Transcripts

1. Intro Video: Hey everybody, My name is stereo Stan, aka Christmas. I'm an animator and designer obsessed with the 1880s. Currently, I work at a motion design studio in Salt Lake City. And I'm also a teacher at a local high school and community college. At the beginning of this video, I shared one of my favorite projects. I loved it because it forced me to where I had a transition between different parts of an animation. I believe transitions help keep a 3D animated story interesting and energized. In this class, I'm going to teach you a few of those techniques I've learned while AN immediate transitions, we're going to talk about cameras, keyframes, and matching animation curves as we look at four different practical examples of transitions. This class is for anyone who wants to make their 3D animated transitions fresh. And I'll do my best to explain everything I do. But I recommend students having the basic understanding of the Cinema 4D interface before beginning this course. By the end of this course, I hope you have the confidence to tackle any kinds of 3D animations that come your way in your everyday life. I can't wait to start. See you in the class. 2. Set Up & Basics: In this tutorial, I just wanted to quickly show you how to get set up and running for this series. And just talk very briefly about a few concepts. So normally with dooming transitions, if I was doing this just on a project with a team or working on a project by myself. I would normally set up each of these files, sorry, each of these scenes in their own Cinema 4D files. So for instance, I would transition from Cinema 4D file one to Cinema 4D file too. But for this tutorial series, I am keeping everything inside of one Cinema 4D file. Each scene, they're both in one file. And that's just to keep it a little bit easier for setting up a tutorial and just doing some practice stuff. But I did want to mention that normally the way I would set it up is I would render out each scene separately and then combine both of those into After Effects. The basic setup that I have for these files is I have a null and there is seen one. And all the things for scene one or in that null and then have another null called seem to. What we will do is we will transition from scene to scene two. And we also have two different cameras. So I will create two cameras. So what we wanna do for these cameras is we want to put these inside of a null. And let me tell you why. Because if you have a camera in Cinema 4D, It's kind of a weird thing and you want to animate the rotation. So I go to the coordinates and I want to rotate the rotation. It gets all messed up. It looks weird, right? The way it's rotating. One simple way to fix that is to zero out your camera. I'm just going to zero everything out. I'm going to delete this other camera just for a minute. And what we wanna do is put it inside of a null. So here's a null object. I can grab that, drag the camera and drop it into the null. And so it's really important that the camera is zeroed out before we put it inside of the null. The null is also zeroed out on the position and the rotation. I can click on the camera. And right now we're right in the middle of the scene. If I click this little button, will come out of the camera so we can see what's happening. There is our camera. It's right inside of the cube, which is also at zeros, zeros, zero. And so what we wanna do is get our camera and we're just going to back it out on the z-axis. And we can also move it up a little bit. So you can kinda see what's happening there. Let's look through the camera again. And there we go. So what we wanna do is use the position coordinates to animate the camera. And then on the null, watch what happens now when we animate the null, we've got a lot nicer of a rotation happening here with our animation. So we'll use the null to animate rotation. It's kinda like a tripod. So that is the way the cameras will be set up. They'll all be inside of a null and that is the reason for doing that. The last thing I just want to mention is what we want to do is we want to have a camera for s2, in a camera for scene one. And what we'll be doing is animating scene one on and off by coming over to the basic tab. And there's this thing called viewport visibility and render visibility. So we want to animate both of those on and off to transition between the scenes. And then to animate between the two different cameras. We're going to use something in Cinema 4D called the stage object. So a stage object is pretty simple. Basically, if I click on it, go to the Object tab, we can just animate different cameras right here. So at the beginning of our animation, we would probably start with camera one. So I'm going to grab that camera and drop it in. And now we're looking through camera one. So I'll record that by clicking this little diamond, which is a keyframe. Wherever we want to switch to camera two, we will just go to that frame and we'll drag in camera two. And then we will record camera two in there. And now you can see we're looking through camera to not looking through camera one. If I go back one frame, now we're looking through camera one. And if I go to camera two, Let's just change this so we can kind of see a different angle. Maybe this one's like something like that. So as we go back, there's camera one. Camera two. Alright, so I'm excited to get started, so I will see you in the next tutorial. 3. Motivated Jump Cut: In this tutorial, we are going to be doing a motivated jump cut. So the idea for this is we want to start outside of this house. And then we're going to use a motivated jump cut to jump inside. So I've got a scene here for the house. So this is seen one. Let me turn this off by double-clicking these little stopwatch things. There were a little circles in open UP s2 from an hiding these. And so this is what s2 looks like. We're inside of the house and it's basically just going to be a kitchen. Let me hide that again. I have my camera is right here, so we're going to jump between camera one and camera two right here. So they're both inside of a null. And let me click on the camera one. And so if you remember from the last tutorial I talked about, we're using the cameras to animate the position here is X, Y, Z position, and then null to animate rotation. So I click on the camera back at frame zero. If I can hit Control or Command D, it'll pull up the frame rate so frames per second. So all of these animations in this tutorial series are at 24 frames a second. That's at 24. And then when you do the render, you just want to come up here and make sure that your render is also 24 frames a second right there. Alright, so I'm gonna go back to the camera. We're going to animate on the z. So I'm going to click a keyframe for where we're currently at. And we're just going to slowly go forward, maybe up to right around 30. We're just going to do just a slow movement forward, something like that. Then from 32, 36, we're going to start our transition. So I found that a good number for these transitions at 24 frames a second are right around 12 frames. For the full transition. You could do more or less. But I just found that to work pretty good. And it also depends on how far you're traveling. If you're not traveling that far, you want to make that transition even shorter to make it look like it's going fast enough. But let's try. This will go up to 36. And then we'll move all the way up right to the door. Then click the keyframe on z right there. Now we've got our keyframe there. So let's rewind this and check that out. Alright, so that's looking pretty good. So this is on the first side. Then what we're gonna do is we're going to jump two, scene two, right here. So what we wanna do is come up to scene one, go to the Basic tab and right here is where we could animate the viewport and render visibility on and off. So we need to do both of those. So right here I'm going to click a keyframe for that. So we want those to turn off on that keyframe. And then the frame rate before that. We want those to be on, record, both of those keyframes. So now we go on and then we turn it off. Then on C2, we will do the opposite. We'll click keyframes right there, and it's currently off. Then the next frame, those will turn on. So let's rewind that, check that out. There we go until we're inside of the kitchen. So what we wanna do here is we want to animate this camera. I'm going to look through this camera, click on it, go to the Coordinates tab, and we want to start zoomed out. We're going to basically finish that quick movement. And it go close. Right here will start something like this. So right there. And then we'll go about six frames, 123456. Finish that quick movement in. Click that keyframe. And then we'll just do the rest of this animation. We've got 72 frames and this animation, and we'll just slowly pan forward. Then we'll record that for the very end. So let's check that out. So you notice that we won't see this first camera animating right now because we're just looking through this. And so the way we can switch between cameras, it's using something called the stage object. So that is right here. So just grab that stage. If I click on the stage and go to the Object tab, this is where we can animate through different cameras. So at the beginning of our animation, we want to be looking through camera one. So I'll drag Camera one in there and record that. So now camera one right here, this camera is inside of here, and I should probably name this camera to go back to the stage, go to the object. Here we are. So there's a keyframe for camera one. And then at 36, right when we switch, we want to switch to this camera. So I'll drag that camera in at 36 and record that. And now we switch cameras right there. Alright, let's check that out and see how that looks. Alright, so that's working and you do notice that there's a little bit of a stutter as we do that transition. And that's because of the curves of the animation. So I do have a full course on curves. So if you want to check that out, it's here on Skillshare. And we talk a lot about curves, but let's look at the curve editor so we can open that up by clicking this little diamond right here. And when I do that and pull this up right here, we'll see representation of our keyframes just like they are down here. But this is just a little bit of a better view. We have more details happening. And what we can do is also look at the curve editor right here. If I click that. And what I like to do is you can click on these. And you can see, I can see part of that curve. And what I could do it to frame this as clicked the H key. So if I click h, Now we see the curve for camera one. And I click that click H, I see the curve for camera two. So for camera to, what we can see, what's happening with this animation curve is when you have an animation curve that's going horizontal, it's slower. And when it's going vertical it's faster. So what we wanna do is grab that curve. For all of our transitions. We basically want the starting point for the one of the animations basically be exactly the same as the ending point of the other transition part. If I click that camera, click H, what we wanna do is have this when it's ending right when we get to the door. So these little squares right here are basically keyframes, are the same keyframes we have down here. So this is where we hit the door, right on 36, where it's happening right now, is it slowing down right as it hits the door? And what we want, we want this to be more linear and going a little bit faster and more continuous. So right here, this part right here is going to match. Go to there, click h. What's happening at the beginning of this one? That would be good to continuous movement there. And that's the trick with doing these transitions. So if I rewind that hit Play, there we go. And now that's a lot smoother. So basically what you can do next, if you wanted to, you can adjust the timing and do more or less keyframes to make it either go faster or slower. I think that looks pretty good for this first transition. I will see you in the next tutorial. 4. Whip Pan: In this tutorial, we are going to be doing something called a width pen. So one thing that's gonna be a little different in this tutorial than some of the other ones, is we are going to actually just have one scene. And what we're gonna do is we're going to use this whip pan to start from something smaller in our scene, and then whip around and then reveal a whole world. So hopefully this will be helpful in doing some kind of transition where you need to do a tight shot that goes to a wide shot that's all in the same world. So you can see I've got my two cameras right here and we just have this one scene. And inside of this scene is, let me come out of this camera. If I scroll out, you can see inside of this scene is just basically this kind of big world with some hills and a few different trees. We're going to start focused in on this one flower. This flower is in the center of the scene. Zeros, zeros, zero. And we're just gonna do a slow rotate around this. So what we're gonna do is we're going to use our null for the rotation. So I'm going to click on the null, go to the Coordinates tab. Then let's look and see what we want to animate. So I'm just going to use this, each value right here to animate this. And so we'll start with something maybe like that. So rewind it to the beginning. Click the keyframe. Then we're gonna go forward. We're going to go to about 30 and just slowly rotate around, something like that. Then from 32, 36, our goal is to do about six frames on each side of this transition. So a total of 12 frames. Again, you can address that. Something else if you want. That's just a number that I found that it looks pretty good. Then for this, for these transitions to work really well for this movement, we wanted to go pretty far. If we don't go that far, it's not going to end up looking as good. So we're gonna go pretty far. Something like that. We may adjust that a little bit more. Then at 36, what we wanna do is switch cameras. So I'm gonna come over to this little thing and grab our stage object. So click on the stage, go to the Object tab. And then this is where we want to drop our cameras. So at the very beginning of the animation, we will be in this camera one. Record that there's a keyframe. Go to right at our transition point at 36. And we'll drop in camera to camera two. I actually want to be zoomed out pretty far so we can see our whole world. And so I'm gonna click on the camera. Remember we want to move the position of the camera and the rotation of the null. We want to always keep that in mind. And then what we wanna do here is click on the null and we'll continue that movement. So I'm going to click on the H key frame. And actually let's start this back over here, and then we'll rotate around to the front. So we'll click there. And then we'll go 6123456, something like that. And then we'll continue on. Let's change this down to 75. And then we'll just slowly move around after that. Let's give that a shot and see what that looks like. Alright, so that's looking pretty good. What we need to do next is adjust our animation curves. So I click on this diamond right here to pull up this timeline. I'm going to click on this camera. It's open these up. Click on the curves. Alright, I probably could have done a better job naming these, but there's no four, that's that camera right there. If I click the H key, that'll just frame this up so we can see what's happening with our curves. So here's our first keyframe. That's what those little orange squares are right there. Here's where we start our transition. The problem that we're having here is this slowing down, right? When we transition. So we just want to smooth that out, make it pretty linear. So it's pretty much straight there, so there's no easing. And then become too. There are other transition point where we're transitioning to this bigger scene. Click the H key, that will frame it. If you don't see it, just click the H key right in this window right here. Here is, we're starting with, it's slowed down in this transition and then going faster. And what we want, we want to match this beginning to if I click H, this end, alright, so we have that same seamless movement happening there. Now we don't have that weird kinda slow down when we transition. Okay, so that's looking pretty good. So I will see you in the next tutorial. 5. Edgar Wright Style Zoom Cut: Okay, In this tutorial, we are going to do an Edgar Wright style transition. In my project, I basically have this stage object here that it's going to, that's going to allow us to switch between these two cameras. And then I have two scenes. Both of these scenes are using this kitchen kind of model that I have here. The only difference is that I have this scene. One, the center of the scene is where this oranges, that's what we're going to be zooming into. Unseen to seem too is we basically will have a top-down view of this knife. And the knife is at the center of the scene. That's just a good practice that I like to follow. Just keeping the main part of the animation in the center of the scene. It just helps with when you're doing rotations and things like that to keep everything nice and clean. I'm going to turn seen one back on, go to camera one. And for this project, what we're gonna do is we're going to animate the focal weight instead of the position. So I'm at 36 mm right here. So I'm going to click a keyframe to record that. And actually that should be at frame zero. And what we're gonna do is hold on that for about six frames. So record 35, 36 mm again. And then we'll zoom in. So let's try to go to about 14. Let's see what that looks like. Zoom in. Pretty darn close the chord that, and let's rewind that and see how that looks. Let's quickly check out our animation curves to see what those are looking like. So I'm going to right-click Show F curves. And I actually liked the way this looks. We will see how it looks in the transition. So one other thing you could do if you don't want this to ease out right here is you can just grab this curve and just make this linear so it comes to a stop a little bit faster. Let's check that out. I think on this one, it just depends on the style you want to go for. I'm going to undo that. Let's check it out with the easing at first and see how that looks. So what we wanna do next is we want to animate switching from camera to camera two. So at the beginning, let's rewind. Dropped camera one in their record. And when we switch, we want to switch cameras. Now one thing I did forget to do is what we want to do actually is hold for just a few frames on this shot before we transition to match that style that we're going for here. So let's go to frame 20. And I'm going to hold that number in there just like we did at the beginning. So we're holding, moving, holding, and then we're going to move and then hold. So let's check that out. So we'll hold right there. So at frame 20 is where we want to switch to our other camera. So I'll drag that in, record that. And then the next thing we need to do is switch our scenes. A basic right here on 20. We want this to actually be off. And then we'll come back one frame and we will turn that on. Then we'll do the opposite on s2. So that will be off right there on frame 19, and then it will turn on there. Let's check that out. Right there we go. That's looking pretty good. So let's go to frame 20. Let's grab this camera and let's pull this back to our starting point. So I'm just going to go up on the z-axis to something like that. Then what we want to do is go to our object tab. Okay, so let's go to camera two. And what we want to do is we're going to animate this focal length and we're not going to animate the position, so we'll have our starting point. Let's try going back to right around, right around there. And I'm going to click a keyframe to record that focal length. And then we will hold for a few frames, will record that again, so no movement. And then we'll go forward a few frames. And then we will zoom into this, something like that. And if you didn't notice, I do have this little cross hair right at the center of my camera. And that helps me place things right in the center of my scene. And the way I did that, if you didn't know, is if I click on the camera, go to Composition, I could turn on this thing called grid. And it defaults to three right here. And so you get this kind of grid like this. And what you could do is go down to two, and it just puts this little cross hair so you can see what is at the center of your scene, which is kinda nice. Alright, back to object. We've got our Zoom going in and then we'll want to hold. Then we'll switch back to our next scene. And then we'll hold right there. And I'm going to actually just put this whole project just to end at 37 right there. So we can see it looping just to see how that would look in case we wanted to add more of these types of transitions where maybe we had three or four objects that we're going to do this transition width, which would actually look a little bit better. But just to keep the tutorial simple, I thought we would just do two. Alright, let's check this out. Alright, so I think that looks pretty good. You can of course adjust the timing. You can adjust the easing if you want a little bit more. Easing. No easing. I actually liked the way that ended up. So I will see you in the next story. 6. Foward Facing to Top Down: In this tutorial, what we're gonna do is figure out a way to transition from a scene where we're moving on the z-axis, kind of going back. And then our next scene is a top-down view. So what we want to do is be able to match that top-down view as we transition. So the first thing we wanna do is basically set up our basic scene that we have or we're animating before with the transition happens. So for this one, I'll just say we'll just stay where it kind of zoomed in kinda close. So I just put a keyframe on z at the very beginning. And what we're gonna do is just slowly Dali back. So let's say we'll go up to around frame 30. So we'll just slowly be pulling back here, something like that. And then right here is where we need to transition to our top view. That way we can match me, show you what's happening in scene one. Scene two. We can match this view where we're looking straight down on this turntable and a cup of coffee. Okay, let's look in camera one again. Turn on scene one. Okay. So we've got our movement on the camera going to a z. So we're just pulling back. And then right here we're going to pause for a second and then we'll do a start at transition rotating up. So I'm going to click on the null. And we want to rotate on that access, but on this axis right here, and just rotate, something like that. So we'll start that right there on Thursday. We'll go forward about, let's try six frames there. Rotate up. And so what we wanna do is we want to do half of this here to something like that. And then we'll finish that rotation in the next, with the next camera. So we'll finish that way. We end up at -90 when the transition is complete. So I'll record that right there. So let's go in and let's scrap our stage object. Rewind the camera one in there for the beginning of the animation. And then right at 36 where we want to switch will drop camera two in there. Then what we need to do is animate seen one off. Right there. Go back one frame where it should be on to be animated that on. So now it goes on right there, it turns off right there. Do the opposite for s2. So it is off on frame 35, 36. Turns on. Rewind that, check that out. There we go. So that's switching now we have to finish that camera move. So what we can do is go to the null on camera two. And what we want to do, I'm going to go to the camera. And that one, I just want to zoom out a little bit more, something like that. Maybe frame that up a little bit better. Let's go to the camera, turn on our grid, turn it down to two so we get that center point so we can see where the center point of our scene is. And let's just use our camera to match that up a little bit better. Then what we'll do is go to our null. And then this is where we want to animate this movement. So let's start. I think we're right at 50 at the last one, but I'm going to actually start a little bit earlier than that and just see what that looks like. We may have to go to 50 and we'll go forward six frames, 123456, and then we'll go up to -90. So we're top-down, it's there. Alright, let's check that out. The last thing that we wanna do is we want to finish some kind of camera movement on scene two. So we're not just stuck right there. So let's do something similar where we get on camera two and go to the position and maybe we can just animate pulling back a little bit on the z-axis. So right after we finish or rotation on 34, Let's start a z position animation. So we'll do that. And then we'll just slowly pull back all the way to the end of our animation. I'm going to fix this again. So we don't see that edge. Alright, let's check that out. One thing we can try is we can also try to start this as z animation on this camera. At the same time that we started our rotation. Let's just check that out and see what that looks like. So I'm just going to move the Z position back. So it starts at the same time. So we're doing that and rotating at the same time. So a little bit of a difference there. I think one thing that could help this, instead of easing into that Z position, if we grab our curve for the z position of the camera and just make that linear. So there's no easing at the beginning. And I think we should do the same thing for our rotation. So I'm going to click rotation, click H to frame this up. And you can see that we've got a little bit of easing. Zoom in a little bit at the beginning of this rotation, which we don't want. We want that to be linear at the beginning. And we also want our camera. Right-click Show F curves on this, no rotation. We want this to also not ease in as we're leaving this transition. We want it to be linear at the end there too. There we go. That way It's a little bit more snappy and we can ease into it. But then at the end, it's linear matching. Right-click on this right-click. Show F curves matching this curve that we've got at the beginning right here. Alright, so that's it for this tutorial. I will see you in the next one.