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Old August 10th, 2010, 04:46 AM   #1
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simulating fireflies

Anyone have a suggestion for creating something in Vegas 9 that might pass for fireflies at night? Glowing dots over a dark sky moving around? I have a feeling it'd even be hard in Maya, a software that for me is incomprehensible in price and understanding. Vegas?
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Old August 10th, 2010, 02:52 PM   #2
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How about adding a Text layer above, making sure it's set to Source Alpha, put a single period and change the font size to an appropriately sized dot, then animate it moving around by changing it on the placement tab? A few layers of that should look OK. You might have to play with the colour/blur to simulate atmospheric conditions and DoF, but it might work.
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Old August 10th, 2010, 05:53 PM   #3
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I don't know about Maya, but this would take about 1 minute in AE, using particle playgrounds. If you ask nicely enough in the Adobe boards somebody might even do it for you and email the completed video file to you. Then you'd just have to drop it on your project and change the compositing mode.
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Old August 10th, 2010, 06:25 PM   #4
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Yeah, I think your best bet is to go with After Effects. I've barely used it, but even I could probably figure out how to do convincing fireflies in just a few minutes. It really is an amazing program. As for Vegas, it's great for editing, and in the hands of someone with a lot of skill, can be used to create great special effects, but for the most part I find After Effects much more powerful for that type of thing.
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Old August 10th, 2010, 07:17 PM   #5
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Do you mean something similar to this but a lot more of them and a lot smaller?

YouTube - ‪Walt's Imagination‬‎

(Jump to about 3:25)

That was suppose to be Tinkerbell. It was done with a combo of Photoshop for the base outline and star shape and various Vegas filters. I'd have to go back and talk to my son to remember how we got to this final effect. It can be don in Vegas but it was not quick.

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Old August 11th, 2010, 01:51 AM   #6
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Try this for an easy fix, might be what you want, may not...
go to media generators,
noise texture, preset starry night,
change the settings-
Leave colour A as is, or change it to white from yellow if desired.
Change colour B to transparent, wont change in preview but it is now an alpha channel.
Change Noise parameters to Min = 0. Max = .010
In Progress set keyframe on start at 0, then another at 5 or 10 sec and change to .06
Shift B (ram preview), you now see your fire flies.
Now you can apply FX to suit, Maybe some Glow or Glint or Light Rays or combination.
If you just want a moving swarm, Duplicate your track, have Fx on the top track with a circular Mask that circles around the screen. You now have a moving swarm.
Render to Uncompressed with Alpha channel, or save as a Vege.
Overlay on your footage
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Old August 11th, 2010, 04:26 AM   #7
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Yes, something like the Tinkerbell video Garret. Gerald, I'll try it. and the punctuation thing too.

Thanks for the advice.

btw I've never been able to make heads or tails or fireflies out of AE.
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