Game Development Reference
In-Depth Information
The Distort effects all bend, warp, and otherwise disfi gure
pixels. What's not to love? The Distort effects can be used to dis-
tort characters for things like facial expressions, or even body
movements. Some of my favorite Distort effects for character ani-
mation are Displacement Map, Liquify, and Puppet.
They can also be used to distort objects like clothes, fl ags,
the surface of water, or chimney smoke to simulate movement,
such as being blown in the wind, for example. Distorting objects
like these can be great for bringing matte paintings to life. Often
times, to make a matte painting look like video, all you need are
some slight movements, such as rippling water or smoke com-
ing out of a chimney. If your matte painter (or you, if you are the
matte painter) separated these objects on to separate Photoshop
layers, it would only take a moment with one of these Distort
effects to bring that object to life in a realistic way. If you want to
experiment with some of them, try Turbulent Displace, Ripple,
and Wave Warp.
Distort effects can also be used on simple, geometric objects
to bring them to life so that they can be used as motion graphic
elements. For example, all you would need to create a beautiful
spiral is a rectangular solid and the Twirl effect. You can also use
effects like Bulge and Polar Coordinates to create beautiful graph-
ics from simple objects.
Because of the diversity of purposes that the Distort effects
can be used for (and also because I love them so much, actu-
ally), we'll be looking at a couple of different examples for most
of these effects. That way you can see them in action in a variety
of ways. I've created a project called Distort.aep that you'll fi nd in
the Chapter 7 folder. This project contains a comp with motion
graphics elements with a gradient background and another comp
that contains a funnel of fractal smoke. There's also an HDR comp
with a glowing bar for those Distort effects (like Twirl) that oper-
ate at 32 bpc. Before we jump into the effects, let's take a look at
Figs. 7.1-7.4 to see what these objects look like without effects
applied to them.
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