Tuesday, May 31, 2005


A time-lapse machinima clip for an upcoming SL-based documentary...

From an empty space to a neon-lit fashion runway in a minute flat, constructed to the beat of funky electronica. I stumbled into the announcement of this ultracool clip in the SL Forums, and immediately IMd its creator, Pierce Portocarrero to give me some background on its creation. It's for "The Ideal World", a full-length documentary about Second Life incorporating in-world footage with live interviews, much of that focusing on the work of design legend Nephilaine Protagonist, and her bid to launch a new fashion line.

"Neph and I used FRAPS to record her building the stage," Pierce tells me. "The entire [filming] session took around two hours. Neph created most of the objects beforehand, much like Martha Stewart [does] before a cooking segment. While Neph focused on building the stage, I repositioned the camera in a variety of locations to ensure the footage would be visually interesting after we ran it through the editing process."

After the shoot, Pierce continues, "we brought the footage into post-producing. We used the compositing software After Effects to speed up the footage by using a feature known as time remapping. We incorporated the use of zooms and pans to add visual interest to the footage which originally was just a static image." The footage was shot at 1024 x 768 resolution, though the final movie was shrunk down to a much smaller 400x 300. "We needed to use such a large original-sized image in order to increase the quality of the movement effects," Portocarrero explains. "If we hadn't, then the image quality would have been severally degraded." Final cut in place, it fell to in-world musician Torley Torgeson, to score the scene with an MP3 file loaded with Torley's characteristically fat beats. The finished product is one of the more dazzling demos of the Second Life construction process (though speaking for myself, it'd be even cooler if we also got to see one of the prefab modules built from its original plywood, simple geometric form.)

Anyway, don't just take my take on it-- check it out here.

Posted at 11:43 AM | Permalink


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