Tuesday, January 27, 2009
I love the multiplane camera shots in Disney's classic cartoons such as Pinocchio or Bambi. The multiplane camera was invented by the Disney people to create a sense of depth to what is essentially a two dimensional medium. This was done by painting layers of artwork on panes of glass and then moving them horizontally and vertically in front of the camera giving the illusion of enormous space. Eventually with "The Rescuers Down Under" in the early 1990's, the effect was created digitally using a computer using Pixar's CAPS system.
I've been playing with a program called Moho, which is now called Anime Studio 5. Anime Studio allows you to place various pieces of artwork along the Z axis, which gives a wonderful sense of depth as the camera moves side to side or in and out.
As an experiment, I quickly created a scene in Photoshop. Each layer of artwork was created on a Photoshop layer. The various elements were easily made using some wonderful brushes I downloaded from deviantart.com. Each layer was then saved out as a PNG file, imported into Moho and then spaced out along the Z axis. The effect worked wonderfully and I'm going to really try this effect out more extensively in the near future!