VD2TS .04 Beta
Last update: May 27, 2005
Email frank@frankladner.com if you have any questions.
Overview - Updates - Workarounds - TODO - Additional Information - Downloads

 

Overview

What is it?   VD2TS is a script file translator written specifically to bridge the gap between trueSpace and the freely-available Voodoo camera tracking/matching software.
 
 
   
How does it work?   VD2TS works by reading a Maya Script file exported from Voodoo and converting it into a trueSpace Python file.
 
 
   
Why would I use it?   If you are a trueSpace user and would like to be able to integrate 3D elements into live-action footage, but don't have thousands of dollars to spend on Boujou or MatchMover then this is for you.
 
 
   
What do I need to get started?  
  • trueSpace (any version that supports Python scripting) (COMPANY WEBSITE)
  • Voodoo Camera Matcher (DOWNLOAD)
  • VD2TS (DOWNLOAD)
  • Some footage to track (VooDoo comes with samples)
 
 
   
What is the workflow?   In Voodoo
  1. Import footage (TGA frames)
  2. Track footage
  3. Export file (File->Save->Maya Script)

In VD2TS

  1. Load exported Maya Script (.ma)
  2. Export to trueSpace Python (.py)

In trueSpace

  1. Load and run exported Python script
  2. Set original TGA sequence as background
  3. View from camera and scrub to check the match
  4. Place 3D elements using the imported feature points as guides
  5. Render (either as 32 bit TGA frames, against green, etc...)

* The last step would be to load the background footage and rendered sequence into a compositing app (After Effects, Premiere, Vegas, etc...) *

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
   
   
   
   

 

Updates
 
   
05/09/05 Uploaded some test footage:

Shot 1


Shot 2

These shots are only a second each (long enough to check the object registration). I plan on doing a longer, multi-shot track soon.
05/06/05 Version .02 Beta released
05/06/05
Started working on version .02 Beta.
05/05/05


Screengrab showing tracked scene in trueSpace 5.1
(Sample footage packaged with Voodoo)

   
05/02/05 First working version of VD2TS written

 

Workarounds
 
Q
  I'm ready to render my scene but I now have 1000 feature point objects to delete. What's the fastest way to do that?
     
A
 

You can select one of the objects and Ctrl+Drag+Select the rest, or you can use the following plugin from Pixel Machinery:

    http://pixelmachinery.com/Products/Cleanit.zip
Q
  The camera moves (translates & rotates) propertly, but the zoom/scale doesn't match.
   
A
  #1 From the KFE, do the following:
 

Select all scale keyframes


Press delete
  #2 Go to frame 0, view from the camera and, using the right mouse button, adjust the zoom. Once satisfied, set a keyframe.
 

Before Scaling


After Scaling

 

TODO
 
 
  • Camera and feature point modifiers (to change orientation, etc...)
  • Feature point grouping/parenting (for easy removal of objects prior to render)
  • Export to SCN file (python scripts with 1000 or more feature points take a while to load & run in trueSpace)
   

 

Additional Information
   
  For more information about the Voodoo Camera Tracker, visit http://www.digilab.uni-hannover.de/docs/manual.html.
   
  If you require more control and advanced tracking, I recommend SynthEyes, an excellent tracker which sells for $349 USD and can export to many applications, including trueSpace.