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Photo-Based Art Emulating natural-media painting techniques

Animations, Morphs, Composites and Slide Shows

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  #1  
Old 01-29-2006, 12:51 PM
Craig Walters's Avatar
Craig Walters Craig Walters is offline
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Animations, Morphs, Composites and Slide Shows

there is no forum or sub-forum for animations, morphs and composites; at least not as an individual theme. we see a few of these in various threads and i've even posted an animation or two here and there. but it might be nice to have a (sub) forum dedicated to this. we dont see a lot of these; animations and the like can be time consuming to do. and, not everyone is interested nor does everyone have the software necessary to do them.

i use animation shop 3, originally from jasc (of paint shop pro fame, now corel), and it works quite nicely to produce .gif type animations, but again, it can be QUITE a bit more work than just a single frame image.

i also just recently installed (have had it on the drive for a while), and tried, meesoft's 'smart morph'. this is one amazing program! it was simple to install and simple to use. i did have to read the tutorial to get going, but after that it was a piece of cake. the guy(s) at meesoft is(are) really quite good.

the native save extension is .smo. i saved my work in that, but i also saved it in .gif. this was so i could edit and compress it in animation shop (AS). AS has a very nice means of optimizing the file size, and more than one way to do it if you cut the image sizes down to start with.

the posted animation started as an 11 meg file. it had about 45 frames in it and looped front to back and back to front. in other words, it morphed both ways. in animation shop, because of the 11 meg size, i eliminated the back to front morph. i also trimmed the image sizes down to 25% of the original. i then used the optimization wizard to trim the file size down to roughly 280k. now, that's a LOT of trimming... 11 megs to 280k. hopefully, when i post this it will still retain enough quality to be worth watching.

the animation address is: *removed by request by author* *one image contained a copyrighted image*

i'm also posting one frame of the original animation as a single shot. *also removed*

so, to danny, would having a dedicated (sub) forum be warranted here or not?

craig

Last edited by Craig Walters; 02-12-2006 at 11:23 AM.
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Old 01-31-2006, 01:18 PM
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Craig Walters Craig Walters is offline
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this is one i did quite a while back using Macromedia's studio mx. i just had the trial version and therefore access to it for only 30 days, or something like that, so, it's not very refined. the learning curve is a bit steep there nonetheless, it's fun stuff to work with.

the file is now located on my own web server and may not always be accessible, since my machine isnt always running currently. just try again later if that's the case. click here

warning! there is a bit of nudity in this, so those that might find this offensive dont click. and if the moderators find this at all objectionable, let me know by pm, please, and i'll remove it.

craig

Last edited by Craig Walters; 02-16-2006 at 04:57 PM.
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Old 01-31-2006, 01:41 PM
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Craig Walters Craig Walters is offline
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alright, here's the full version of the woman to cat morph. this is a LARGE file, so those with slow connections beware. it's in the .avi format and shld play with windows media player, if that's your default player for .avi's. otherwise it shld play in whatever is your default.

this one is also on my home server, so may not always be accessible. just try again later.

*removed by request* *one image in the morph was a copyrighted image*

if the image is jumpy, not smoothly showing the morph, just download it instead of trying to play it directly as a streaming video and it shld be fine.

craig

Last edited by Craig Walters; 02-12-2006 at 11:25 AM.
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Old 02-01-2006, 03:36 AM
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Craig
just to let you know i am trying to view this but so far i am having no luck but will keep on trying

Palms
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Old 02-01-2006, 05:36 AM
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Craig Walters Craig Walters is offline
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palms,

which one wouldnt load or access? on the last one, the big woman-cat one, if you wish to load and run it, when the window comes up and asks you how you want to handle the file, pick the option of 'open with default application' or whatever your browser says that's close to that. you may have to wait while it downloads to your application before anything will happen. it's a BIG file, 36 megs or so, so give it some time. but i've chcked it several times and it does seem to work.

if, when you clicki it, you dont get any window or box that comes up, then either the route is down to my machine, the machine itself is down, or there's something going on on your end.

also, if my machine is off or in the process of rebooting, or i suppose even under heavy load at the time, it wont work.

i have checked each of the 'click here' buttons and the links are right. they do work. so, other than that, i was probably down for the night or rebooting. i did reboot once yesterday. if you have any more problems with it, do let me know.

craig
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Old 02-01-2006, 01:56 PM
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HI Craig
just to let you know i got there on both of them ( probably didn't give them enough time as it didn't look as if anything was going on ! ! !)
Miss Monroe i thought was good especially with the choice of music. And the morphing was way cool,
I did dabble a bit with the animation in psp when i was running it but didn't really have the patience.
Any way well done

Palms
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Old 02-01-2006, 10:05 PM
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Craig Walters Craig Walters is offline
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thanks palms

yes, animation takes a lot more work than a single image. same with flash stuff. the music is from the computer game, "Morrowwind". quite amazing music in games sometimes.

now that i've got this server i may post the full size animations i've done here on retouch that i had to compress quite a bit.

craig
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Old 02-07-2006, 11:01 AM
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Cameraken Cameraken is offline
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Hi Craig.

These are great. Well done.

I am thinking of setting up my own server like you have done. I have a registered name but as yet no web space to point it to.
Could I point this name to my own PC?
Are you still using Abyss Web Server as you mentioned in another thread?
Do I need anything else?
Would you recommend a separate PC? Or can I use part of my hard drive?
If I can use part of my drive then how safe would the rest of my PC be?

Ken
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Old 02-07-2006, 01:29 PM
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Craig Walters Craig Walters is offline
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ken,

thanks

re your first question, i'm no expert on domain names and dns lookups, but i believe if your name is a registered name you can set up the server and have it recognize your domain name and thus any dns lookup will point to your server and find it. as to the specifics on just how to do this, i'm not really sure, but it shld be in the docs that come with the software.

yes, i'm using Abyss Web Server for windows xp. it installs very simply, has a decently simple interface and was fairly easy to set up and get going. i did have one small issue with my router which i had to figure out and fix, but other than that, it installed and ran pretty easily. if you do have a hardware router and a software firewall you'll need to configure each to allow the server to be seen and utilized. one nice thing about the software is that a person entering your server is not really ON the server, they can ONLY access and read. so, security seems to be their top concern.

yes, i would recommend a dedicated computer for the server, if possible. this just adds another layer of security for the most part. you can then just put on the server what you dont mind losing (or have a backup for). the old adage about no lock is pick-proof applies here. the Abyss software seems fairly secure, but again, i'm no expert and we all know by now that vulnerabilities can exist and thus be exploited, so caveat emptor applies here.

if you have a lan set up, this might be the ideal solution for the server. set up one machine on the lan as the Abyss web server. set up your other(s) for file sharing so that you can transfer files easily between all computers. done through a router, this would be fairly safe. done with a cross-over cable, i'm not sure, as i've never done a lan that way.

if you dont have a second computer, Abyss works like any web page system. you put your index.html (htm) file in the appropriate spot provided by the software and hopefully no one can hack from there to anywhere else. so, yes, you could set up a dedicated partition, for example and put the software and subsequent web pages on that partition.

what you really want to know is how safe is this thing. in all honesty, i cant answer that accurately. i feel relatively safe using it. when i read the docs and their web site i felt safe enough to install it and use it and that's about the best i can answer. they point out that it's a read-only type system. i'm sure one could get scripts for ftp and other web services and that might make it less safe. they also have anti-leeching built in, which is good. there is also an anti-hacking feature built in, but i havent explored that much yet. it seems to be built on number of failed attempts to log in. if a dedicated hacker really wanted to get into my system, i'm fairly sure it could be done. routers, firewalls, and so on can all be breached by someone that knows how and is really persistent. there are password crackers out there that just endlessly try to crack systems. given enough time, any system can be cracked. so, the best solution for a home based server is probably one that even if they got in, so what? if there's nothing there to steal, wreck, alter or otherwise mess with, they gain nothing. so yes, a dedicated machine, not tied to a lan, is isolated from anything else, with a hardware router/firewall combination and a software firewall, would be the ideal solution here. put nothing on it you cant afford to lose and do FULL backups daily.

i've set up a dedicated server once or twice before, usually game servers. i've not had any problems with hacking. hackers are basically like thieves and muggers; they generally want easy targets or BIG prizes. a router/firewall and software firewall make you not in the easy category. if your router or firewall can also make you semi-invisible, that's another step. and if you have no real prize on your server, then that's yet another step. use really oddball passwords with odd characters in them if possible. make them long and a combination of alphabetic, numerical and oddball characters. this will prevent most auto-crackers from getting in or at least make the task so formidable that it would take trillions of attempts.

oh, one last thing i just thought of on the Abyss server. it also has a built in anti-denial of service feature when someone tries to spam you to death. it simply blocks that address from even coming in any more. so, like i said earlier, it seems fairly safe. they (Abyss) seems fairly aware of and concerned with security and that's always the first consideration.

and one last item of note. i'm using the free version. they do have a pro version. the free version is limited to one domain name or address. so, if you had a retouching site and a personal home site and you wanted both on your own machine, the free version would require that you had a main page and then from there you could link out to both the retouch and personal, where the pro version you could set up both separately without a main page as a header to both.

so far (knock on wood) i've been quite happy with Abyss. it's fairly simple and not as full featured as some, but as a starter server and being free, it currently serves my needs quite well.

if you have any more questions on Abyss, i'll try and answer them. one of the ways i "pay" for freebies is by helping to support and advertise them, so let me know if i can help.

craig
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Old 02-07-2006, 07:41 PM
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Cameraken Cameraken is offline
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Hi Craig.

Thanks for your detailed reply Craig.

I will definitely have a go at this. I have a (few) spare PC’s but they are quite old and may not be up to XP. Most are running Win98 or ME. Did you say that Abyss is XP only?

One thing that did concern me was that your IP address shows in your links. I did try to ‘get in’ but I couldn’t get past your index page. But I would not really know how to go about getting further.

So I’ll try and get something running. It seems to me too make a lot of sense to have your own server rather than paying for web space.
I know there is free web space but from what I have read it is unreliable or full of ads.


Ken
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