look_at tool and (true?)constraints

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look_at tool and (true?)constraints // Tech Forum

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Post by Emmanuel // Jan 1, 2009, 3:58am

Total Posts: 439
In an architecture animation, my camera will fly through some woods. Trees are made of planes painted with a tree texture and alpha chanel.

I wish I could make the trees to always face the camera. Trees associated to the look-at tool to always show one face to the camera seems the way to go. But how can I constraint the tree object to keep vertical, and not bend as the camera moves above ?
See video attached.

I guess trueConstraints could do the trick, but I never used it before and I don't understand how to combine its Look At and Rotation Limit : all my attemps fail and I get a jerky tree.
Also, since I didn't purchased it from Chikara Kojima when his website was alive, I can't register it, and will get the 60 frames limit of its shareware version :(.

Does anyone know how to get trueConstraint to work properly ; or have an other idea to get that rotation limit in Modeler ?

Post by Leif // Jan 1, 2009, 10:13am

Total Posts: 276
I made an animation using trueConstraints sime time ago, and got some insight into this plugin.

I had a look at this...

For some reason, one rotation limit constraint is not enough. So I added two more, identical rotation limits. The wireframe box rotates only, as far as I have tested and seen, about its z axis, as it looks at the red box with its x axis.

Edit: There is indeed jittering around z axis when look at goal is moving up or down...

Edit 2: And also don't forget there is python scripting capabilities in model side



Post by Emmanuel // Jan 2, 2009, 6:43am

Total Posts: 439
Thank you Leif.

It works :)

I just start to understand the logic behind trueConstraints though ; like most of the "big" plugins by Chikara, it is hard to guess how it works. But once mastered I am sure it can help to animate complex machines.

Also, I love its intelligent options. For example, its Look_At tool allows for axis selection : you can choose between X, Y, Z, -X, -Y and -Z. What a good idea. I wonder why the Workspace Look_At does not offer that option :rolleyes:

Indeed, trueConstraints could deserve a dedicated topic :)

Thank you again !

Post by Leif // Jan 2, 2009, 10:39am

Total Posts: 276
Hey you're welcome,

nice that it works.

Edit: That green bird is funny!
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