I bought this book this past summer called “How to Cheat in Motion” by Patrick Sheffield. It’s essentially a book of Tutorials to push the video creator into some highly creative uses of the Apple software Motion (part of the Final Cut Studio suite of video production software). Over the years, I’ve learned a lot from Sheffield’s advice and projects via the Apple Motion discussions forum, including tricks like how to make an image appear to be reflecting on water and how to make a video wall. This book has this ‘cheating’ theme, because most of the lessons in this book are not immediately obvious, even if you’re an experienced user of the program. But the tutorials are not hacks either – it’s just a case of getting right into the nuts and bolts of the software’s controls, and really pushing the creativity envelope. When I have a moment here or there, I’ve been trying to do some tutorials. Here, then, are some of my results – and don’t judge the book by what I’ve done, since my skills are relatively novice.
#1. Cellular Jungle – based on “Roll Your Own” tutorial – first of all, I followed the tutorial, then I tweaked various settings – really like the techno-organic look of this clip, like some outer-space foliage.
#2. Bouncing Audio Circles – based on “Audio Oscilloscope” tutorial – followed the basic tutorial (used the same music, too) about using Motion’s audio/image-effect sync settings. I then tweaked the settings and came up with this. Really like it. Too bad Motion isn’t made for live video effecting, as this effect is cooler than what I can generate with my VJ software.
#3. Wall Peeling – based on “Holiday Mosaics” tutorial – followed the tutorial, but used some different colors and background image. Pretty basic, but has a neat look. Not sure when and where I’ll use this, but for sure it’ll be a nice element at some point.
#4. Flock of Birds tutorial – this tutorial was supposed to teach how to add a flock of birds to a still photo. I used a church in Koreatown Los Angeles, since the original tutorial also used a church-like building. Anyway, I screwed up somewhere, because these birds I made spin around strangely and don’t flap. I’ll try again later.