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Chapter 8. Making the Transition > Spatial Transitions

Spatial Transitions

In a spatial transition, you give your viewers the feeling that they are actually moving into your movie. You can achieve this by using a combination of tweening and scale changes. Spatial transitions are especially effective when you are trying to draw your viewer into an experience. These types of transitions create an immersive effect.

Exercise 8.4 Creating a Spatial Transition

This time, you’re going to build on Exercise 8.1, the “Fade in from Black” exercise. You’re going to transport your viewer from the subway escalator into the subway itself and from the depths of the subway into a dream. To do so, you’re going to be combining a series of techniques.

1.
Open the file you created in Exercise 8.1 or you can start with FadeFromBlack_final.fla in the Chapter_08/Assets folder on the CD.

The first part of the transition will be taking your audience into the subway. You’ll start by setting up a simple tween, and then you’ll give it some edge by superimposing additional images over the tween.

2.
Add a new layer beneath the Escalator layer and name it Escalator Down.

You’re going to create a simple tween that takes you down the escalator, and then use scaling to make it appear that you are moving into the station.

3.
Insert a keyframe in frame 73 of the Escalator Down layer and open subwayImages.fla (Chapter_08/Assets folder) as a Library. Drag a copy of the Escalator2 graphic onto the Stage. Use the Info panel to position the graphic with its X at 0 and its Y at –613.

4.
Insert a new keyframe in frame 98 of the Escalator Down layer and reposition the graphic in that frame with an X position of –441 and a Y position of 0.

5.
Select the graphic in the Escalator Down layer in frame 73, and use the Effects panel to set its Brightness to –100%.

6.
Select any frame between your two keyframes, right-click or Control-click, and then select Create Motion Tween.

7.
Insert another keyframe in frame 115 on the same layer and use the Transform panel to scale it to 200%. Set the X position to –1460 and the Y position to –450.

8.
Set the Brightness for the graphic in frame 115 to –100%. Then, select any frame between your two keyframes and apply a motion tween.

If your viewer tested your work now, he or she would see the effect of moving down the escalator and into the dark confines of the station itself. (See Figure 8.10.)

Figure 8.10. By combining a simple tween with a tween and scaling, you give your viewers the impression that they are moving into the subway station.


9.
The program is okay as it stands, but you can give it a bit more of an edge by continuing the tween in the overlying layer and selectively removing frames from the tween to reveal the underlying tween.

The Escalator layer stops with a shot looking up the elevator. You can set up a tween that looks like you are descending into the station while looking up the escalator. If you selectively remove frames you can flip back and forth between the perspectives of looking up the escalator and looking down as you descend. It gives a nice surrealistic feel.

10.
On the Escalator layer, insert a keyframe in frame 98 and reposition the graphic so its X position is at –260 and its Y position is at –965. Go ahead and add your motion tween.

11.
You want to remove frames, but you don’t want to lose your tweened positions, so beginning with frame 96, insert a keyframe (F6). Insert the next keyframe at 94. Use the < key on your keyboard to make stepping back through the frames easy. Keep stepping back in this fashion all the way through the tween you created.

12.
Replace the odd numbered frames (73–97) with blank keyframes (F7).

13.
Now test your movie. You have the beginnings of a pretty cool transition. (See Figure 8.11.)

Figure 8.11. By setting up a secondary tween and selectively removing frames so that you can see the tween below, you get a much richer and more textured effect.


14.
You can add one more piece to the escalator portion of the transition. If you were sinking into the subway, you might take a quick look back toward the top before you were swallowed up completely. To make this happen, add a new layer beneath the Escalator Down layer and name it Escalator Back. Insert a keyframe in frame 115.

15.
If it’s not still open, open subwayImages.fla (Chapter_08/Assets folder) as a Library and drag a copy of the Escalator3 graphic onto the Stage. Leave this Library open. You’ll be using it again.

16.
Position the graphic so that its left side is aligned with the right side of the Stage. (See Figure 8.12.) Use the Info panel to make sure the Y position is set to 0.

Figure 8.12. Position the graphic so that its left side lines up with the right side of the Stage.


17.
Insert a keyframe in frame 121 and reposition the graphic with X at 285 and Y at 0. Add a motion tween between the two keyframes.

18.
Insert a new keyframe in frame 122 and set both the X and Y positions for the graphic to 0.

19.
Insert another keyframe in frame 132. Reset the X to 650 and leave Y at 0.

20.
Set the Brightness for the graphic in frame 122 to –100% and add a motion tween between the two keyframes. Then, insert a blank keyframe in frame 132 of the Escalator Back layer.

You’ve created the transition into the subway, but to what are you transitioning? To sleep. To make this effective, you need to add the sleep sequence.

21.
Add a new layer above the Escalator layer and name it Sleep.

22.
Insert a keyframe in frame 132 of the Sleep layer and drag a copy of the dougSleeping graphic from the subwayImages Library onto the Stage.

The whole feel for this piece is somewhat surrealistic and you want to maintain that. An easy way to do that would be to distort the image.

23.
Select the dougSleeping image on the Stage and use the Transform panel to increase the width to 330%. Reposition the image so that its left side lines up with the right side of the Stage, and then use the Effects panel to change the Brightness to –80%. (See Figure 8.13.)

Figure 8.13. By distorting the dougSleeping image, you add to the surrealistic feel of this transition.


24.
Insert a new keyframe in frame 142 and change the setting for the width on the Transform panel back to 100%. Reposition the graphic with X at 5 and Y at 0. Then, create a motion tween between your two keyframes.

25.
Insert a keyframe in frame 151 and shift the image to an X position of 360. Leave the Y position at 0 and set up a tween.

26.
Add one more tween. Insert a keyframe in frame 160 and use the Transform panel to stretch the X axis again. Set the width to 475% and reposition the graphic so that the right side of the graphic lines up with the left side of the Stage. Then, add a motion tween between the two keyframes.

27.
Add a new layer and call it Sleep2. Duplicate the frames you created in the Sleep layer and paste them into the same position in the Sleep2 layer.

28.
In the Sleep2 layer, move the current keyframe that’s on frame 142 to frame 143. Reposition the graphic so that its X position is at 292. Leave Y at 0.

29.
Move the frame that’s on frame 151 to frame 152 and change its X position to 356.

30.
Go ahead and test your movie. In doing so, you’ll descend into the dark confines of the subway through a series of transitional steps until you merge with Doug’s dream.


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