09
Oct
08

Haunted House 3D elements, how to create Ghosts using Diffuse, Opacity and Glow maps with Flex Bases in iClone3

Ghost created with Flex Bases and custom Texture Map settings

Ghost created with Flex Bases and custom Texture Map settings

Greetings iCloners, today’s ghoulish tip is one that goes with my iClone Halloween screamfest and it focuses on something that a few of you may need this week for your Halloween Themed ani-movies, creating animated Ghost props using custom texture maps and Flex Bases. It’s obvious you can throw any old image on a 3D Block or surface and then add your Ghost image and Opacity and call it a day, sure. But, is that Ghost going to move, stretch and flex with your motion animation or wind settings? I think not, but using this fiendish method you will find that you will get a much more paranormal reaction from your Ghost and Spirits. It’s a an easy process and one I’m sure you’ll find many interesting uses for. Also, in a very strange way, because of the way we perceive the spiritual world to be, you are also creating super low-poly characters. To create a custom Flex Base Ghost of your own, follow the simple process below or watch the high-speed video build.

  • Go to the Set tab
  • Click the Props button
  • Select the Template tab
  • Open the Flex Base folder
  • Double click the Flex Base Template, for this example I am using
  • In the Modify panel scroll down and select the Diffuse Map
  • Click the Launch button to open the Flex Base Diffuse into an external image editor, for this example I am using Photoshop
  • Locate or create a Custom JPG Image to use as your Ghost or Spirit character
  • Open the image into your external image editor and Copy, and Paste over to the iClone Temporary image template
  • Use the Transform tools to properly fit the custom image
  • Save over the iClone Temporary image template
  • Return to iClone
  • Click the Update button to apply the edited Diffuse map to the Flex Base
  • Return to Photoshop
  • Use the new Diffuse map to create an Opacity Map
  • Select the area around your Ghost image with the Magic Wand tool
  • Fill with Solid Black
  • Strike Hotkey: Ctrl + I to invert your selection
  • Fill with Solid White
  • Go to File – Save As
  • Save as an newly named JPG file
  • Return to iClone
  • Click the Opacity Map to activate it for the Flex Base
  • Select the Open button
  • Navigate to your new Opacity Map
  • Double click to apply
  • Make sure the Strength slider is set all the way up for the Opacity Map
  • Click the Glow Map to activate it for the Flex Base
  • Select the Open button
  • Navigate to any custom or default colored Glow Map
  • Double click to apply
  • Use the Strength Slider to edit the amount of Glow effect that you wish for your Ghost to have
  • Once you are pleased with the map settings scroll down in the Modify panel and locate the Opacity slider and set a low Opacity setting for the entire material, this will make your Ghost transparent
  • Click the Flex Settings button in the Modify Panel
  • Edit the Flex Base settings to suit the motion of your Ghost
  • Click the Save Settings button to keep a record of the way this Flex Base reacts to this setting
  • Select the Close button at the bottom to close the menu
  • To save your new Custom Ghost Flex Prop click the Add button in the Content Manager

Haunted House 3D elements are gross amounts of fun to create and control in iClone3. There are a variety of new combinations of features and assets that when put together properly can totally accomplish some truly stunning visual effects. The same principle could also be applied to avatars as well to produce characters like the super-natural beings or even see-though cyborgs, or maybe communication holo-grams, again the options are endless for sure with this method. Plus, don’t forget, tis the season to be scary and take a chance or two. So break out of the norm and try to create that character this week you’ve had stuck in the back of your head, or see if that crazy idea you had about throwing a couple of props together will actually work. Flex Bases will give you the best outcome if you take this easy-going and adventurous approach I promise, give yourself the time to play around and go through some trial and error to make the Flex settings react the way you desire them to and you will see see something super, and maybe even super-natural. Muh Ha HA ha HA ah. (My best Vincent Price laugh) Below as always is a high-speed video example of how you too can resurrect a poltergeist or two if you like. Enjoy!

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