How to create a video from a panoramic image


Part three: Animation definition and rendering

A few words to animation "newbies": You can get lost quickly of you have no plan what you are doing. Make a small timetable and storyboard and use it. You won't regret it!
Also, i suggest to switch off the "Auto-Key" function to have more control of your keyframes. Click on the lower-rightmost button to switch the Time/Selection palette. There is now a small triangle left of the button you pressed. Clicking on the triangle will open a menu where you can switch off Auto-Keying.

Keyframes will memorize a certain state of your scenery at a certain time.
The best way to use keyframes is, to move the slider to a certain time (or frame) in your movie, set rotation, FOV etc. of your camera and add a new keyframe.

  • Before doing anything else, you should now save your first keyframe. You have a button with a key-symbol on your Time-Palette with +/- buttons. "+" will add a keyframe memorizing the current scenery setup - and turn the key from grey to yellow.


Smooting the movement:
It would look a litte unnatural if we use a linear movement from keyframe to keyframe. So we will smoothen the camera movement - especially around the keyframes (where we would have an abrupt change of rotation, FOV...)


Don't care about Sky and Sun here. The only thing we need is the Camera.
Click on the camera. It will open the camera movement subcategories where we can smoothen rotation, FOV change etc.

In the upper area of the category display you can see a slider. Drag it around and you will notice small white lines in the colored bars. These are your keyframes. Most likely you will want to smoothen changes around these keyframes.
I will now show you an example to smoothen the rotation of the camera:
Click on "Rotation" (it will turn yellow). A small (at the moment linear) curve appears. The dotted horizontal lines are best understood as "changes" in your movement. Dragging the slider above the colored bars again to move the crosshair and learn about the correlation of the keyframes, the dotted lines and your movement changes.

-> Every time the direction changes in my example, the change is abrupt. So, what i do is simply flatten the curve before and after the keyframes. This slows down movement at will look more natural.

In the following screenshot the relevant information is underlined:


Ok - go back to the main screen. Again - in the lower area of the screen you will find a small symbol, representing a piece of film. This is the preview-button. You can create a small preview of your animation and look if everything works as expected.If everything is OK, you can now render your animation.

This is done by selecting the "File"-Menu and "Render Animation...". Select the desired format and render your animation to disk. It's now time for a short (or longer) coffee-break....


See a 30sec demo animation (Quicktime, 8 MB)

Download the Bryce scene file (800 KB, Zipped)