This is plug-in month, featuring several tools (including some cool new ones) to help make you more creative and productive. We will also be showing your work - so polish off your latest reel, or dub off a recent project you want to share. And finally, we look forward to the return of Ken Locsmandi as our guest artist.
Make sure you check out the address and directions for BGT at the bottom of this page. Also, remember: there is free wireless Internet access at the theatre! Look for the network BGT Booth.
Our usual pre-meeting banter while folks get parked and seated.
GridIron Nucleo Pro 2 for Adobe After Effects CS3 & 7 gives you great new features like a Background Render Queue for 3D applications, Nucleo Pre-Composition Proxies and all the Nucleo Pro standards like Background Rendering, Spec-Render and Preview, and Commit To Disk. Steve Forde will be flying in from Canada to put it through its paces, and to give us general information about how to balance off CPUs versus RAM when configuring a multiprocessor or multicore machine.
Wes Plate of Automatic Duck will be demonstrating their new Pro Import AE 4.0 plug-in for After Effects, a new version that is just about to ship. This new version adds many new features and enhancements including support for FCP Multiclips, more effects translated from FCP and Avid, better Motion import as well as Universal Binary-ness and support for After Effects CS3.
A chance to stretch, network, return calls, peruse the prizes, and get something from the snackbar as we set up for the second half of the meeting.
Our dear friend Zax Dow of Zaxwerks will be back with us, showing off two of his new plug-in sets: 3D Warps and Layer Tools.
3D Warps contains two plug-ins, 3D Layer Warp and 3D Grid Warp. Layer Warp lets you bend and twist your AE layers. Many different warp types are built in and you can stack them to get warped-warps for some pretty cool looks. With Layer Warp you can now make your AE layers do page curls, page twists, curve your backgrounds, pond ripple and ribbon effects. Grid Warp has similar warping tools but can also generate resolution independent grid lines. Very useful for creating background elements where lines flow over warped surfaces. These plug-ins can render shaded or absolute color, in solid, wireframe or hiddenline modes. They also include reflection mapping and displacement mapping. Quite a package.
Layer Tools contains three plug-ins that operate as keyframe assistants. They help you do operations to AE's own 3D layers that are difficult if not impossible to do by hand. The Fit & Face Tools will take any AE 3D Layer and make it exactly fit the comp window no matter where the camera is currently sitting. The Layer Manipulator will let you move, rotate and scale any selected group of AE layers without having to link them to parents or run scripts on them. The Z-Distribution plug-in will let you take any Photoshop file and distribute the elements in Z without changing their screen size. You can also use it to distribute a collage of images in Z. This will scatter the images in space making the collage unrecognizable from a side view, but from the original camera angle the collage will still look perfect. A very unusual and cool effect.
Ken Locsmandi of Filmworks FX has been to MGLA several times in the past, showing off his work from big-budget movies to low-budget music videos. This time, he's been working on...a gingerbread man. Ken will be breaking down this new 30-second spot for us, which he directed. You can see the spot and read some of his comments on the creation of it at Group101Spots.
A chance to show off what you've been up to, and possibly land a new client or two! Bring your reels or recent projects; please limit the length to about 3 minutes or under. Best formats are DVD, VHS, and SVHS; we can also play back miniDV, DVCAM, and accommodate a computer connection or play back your QuickTime movie. Be prepared to talk about what you show, and bring a card or slip of paper with your contact information so we can include it in the meeting summary. Hand your reels to Warren Heaton or another one of our hosts before the meeting or during the break to get into the queue.
For those who share their reel with us, we have t-shirts from Zaxwerks and others. Those who share an actual project will also receive a Motionstream HD Sample Pack, which includes several royalty-free HD clips they can use on future projects. If you have a project, and need over 3 minutes running time, contact Warren Heaton so we can schedule accordingly.
Below is the exhaustive list of prizes that will be given away at the June meeting; the total value is roughly $6000! Note that it includes software from our three plug-in demonstrators: Automatic Duck, Zaxwerks, and GridIron Software.
As always, we will hand out free tickets during the second half of the meeting (a host will start a strand at the end of an aisle; take one ticket off the strip and pass them along). Winners get to pick from the remaining prizes in the order tickets are pulled. We will pull fewer tickets than there are prizes, so that the last winner still has some choice among prizes.
* New York City Aerials 2 stock footage library, courtesy Artbeats ($699 value)
(Note that Artbeats has a special for the month of February where if you buy any collection worth $399 or higher, you can also get Monster Waves for $299 or Monster Waves HD 1 for $399, which is a $3-400 savings.)
* Red Giant Software's LIGHTfx Bundle plug-in bundle, which includes Knoll Light Factory, Trapcode Shine and Trapcode Starglow, courtesy of new MGLA sponsor Red Giant Software ($499 value)
* Automatic Duck's Pro Import AE plug-in set for importing NLE and Motion projects into After Effects, courtesy of Automatic Duck ($495 value)
* a bundle of FrameCycler Professional 3.5 film resolution playback and color channel viewing software plus SpeedGrade OnSet "look management" (color correction, etc.) software, courtesy IRIDAS ($448 value)
* GridIron Nucleo Pro render acceleration plug-in for After Effects, courtesy GridIron Software ($395 value)
* a Lynda.com Online Training Library 1-year Premium Subscription, courtesy Lynda.com ($375 value)
* a 6 month membership in the Pixel Corps ($300-350 value)
* a bundle of the winner's choice of either the screenwriting software Final Draft or the script processor software Final Draft AV ($129-229 value), plus a one-year subscription to Script magazine ($25 value), both courtesy of Final Draft
* dvMatte Pro keying plug-in for After Effects, courtesy dvGarage ($199 value)
* 3D Warps plug-in set for After Effects, courtesy Zaxwerks ($199 value)
* Layer Tools plug-in set for After Effects, courtesy Zaxwerks ($149 value)
* Conduit nodal compositing plug-in for Apple Final Cut Pro and Motion, courtesy dvGarage ($149 value)
* LME Collections set of 100 animation presets & comps for Trapcode Starglow and After Effects, courtesy Little Men Entertainment ($99 value).
* Voice & Vision: A Creative Approach to Narrative Film and DV Production book by Mick Hurbis-Cherrier, courtesy Focal Press ($55 value)
* Cinema 4D Artist's Project Sourcebook (second edition) by Anne Powers, courtesy Focal Press ($50 value)
* After Effects Apprentice book by co-hosts Trish and Chris Meyer, courtesy Focal Press ($40 value)
*Creative Background Design Training Bundle by John Dickinson, courtesy Toolfarm ($40 value)
* 2 copies of the After Effects Expressions Series 1 Training Bundle by Harry Frank, courtesy Toolfarm ($29 value each)
If you're not already on our email list, click on the Join MGLA button to the left and get on it now, so you can get first word of what's going to happen.
And again, thanks to Adobe's sponsorship of MGLA this year, admission is free!
Chris, Trish, Tony, Warren, and Ko
Your MGLA co-hosts
Barnsdall Gallery Theatre and Art Park is a facility of the
City of Los Angeles Cultural Affairs Department
The Gallery Theatre at Barnsdall Art Park
4800 Hollywood Boulevard
(between Vermont and Normandie)
Hollywood, CA 90027
* coming South/East on the 101: exit Hollywood, head East
* coming North/West on the 101: exit Vermont, head North, turn left (going West) onto Hollywood
* coming from the 5: exit Los Feliz, head West, turn left (going South) onto Vermont, turn right (going West) on Prospect, Prospect becomes Hollywood
Enter through the gate on the South side of Hollywood Blvd. just East of the light at Edgemont, or West of the light at New Hampshire (which is just West of where Prospect and Hollywood come together). The theatre is at the top of the hill, adjacent to the art gallery (they have separate entrances).
Parking is free. There is parking at the bottom of the hill, but first try to find a space around the perimeter of the park at the top. Please park closely together, at an angle (regardless of how the parking spaces are painted!) to allow more cars to park. Click here for a PDF map (300k) of the grounds that points out the parking areas and includes other helpful hints.
Wheelchair access (or if you are carrying a lot of gear): Park in the lot next to the Hollyhock house (you will see a handicap parking sign - there are also spaces for loading etc.), come into the theatre entrance, and take the elevator down. There will be space in the front of the theatre for wheelchairs.
Click here for a Google interactive map, including the ability to get directions from your location to this address. There is also a Metro Red Line station at Vermont and Sunset, about a block and a half from the park's entrance.
Before or after the meeting, there is a fine restaurant row on Vermont between Hollywood and Franklin (just around the corner from the park). There are also a number of funky ethic eateries along Hollywood.