The Devil and the Tailor.

This is a new project with several strands, I have a new album coming out, and intend to use Blender to help produce the promotional video for the single that will be coming out first. The song is finished, and is called “the Devil and the Tailor”, hence the name of the thread. The song is traditional dating from the 18th century, so I thought that setting the video in a vintage British Pub might be a good idea, of course the pub has never existed outside of my computer, but if it did, you would probably find me inside. As it is I shall have to fake it with my trusty greenscreen, which I bought on ebay a couple of years ago for about 80 quid.

I have used the project as a vehicle to get to grips with the new principled shader, I have been taking a crash course in cycles, as my very lovely wife bought me a GTX 1060 for christmas.:smiley:

Below are some views of the pub interior. If anybody can think of a name for it suggestions would be welcome, as well as any help in improving the quality of the materials, as I am still on a steep leaning curve.

Here are a few more pics,

The plan is that I set up inside the pub, as if for a gig, except that all the band members will be me. I will probably be the audience as well :o. All that is except for the drummer. people who have heard my albums will know that I tend to use programmed drums, this is mostly because I don’t have the kit or the room to record real drums, however some purists have in the past railed against the use of robot drums, so what can I do? Actually for this song a sci-fi drummer would not be appropriate, so I am considering using either Mephistopheles, or a scarecrow. (the lyrics will add some sense to that last statement). In the meantime, I have had some interesting results, using rigify, and will post soon.

This is the result of an evenings mucking about, the track is the last part of the drum track from the Devil and the taylor, It is pretty simple so makes a good testbed. It is a bit rough around the edges, but shows some promise. The rig is rigify, and the rather weird body is courtesy of the new skinify addon.

I don’t have anything really useful to say because this is all very far above me, but this looks awesome.

I’ve appended the drumkit into the pub, needs an old bit of carpet though, also for the video I will probably have to composite the live parts onto stills of the pub, render time stands at 6min and 18 seconds which is effectively too long for any animation. I might see what i can do with the new shadow catcher, to blend the drums into the back ground.

Had a busy week but have now got a bit of time to move this on. The length of render time on the pub was becoming a problem with each render averaging between four and six minutes depending on the camera view. A partial solution to this has been to create an environment map of the pub. This is something I hadn’t done before, (in fact I only found out how to do this last week). In order to get it of a sufficient size and quality took multiple renders, which I had to stitch together in photoshop, as I was getting out of memory errors on my GPU, which is a gtx1060 with 6 gig of ram. The whole process took about 4 hours but as the first of these short videos show, with background enabled and then rendered in open gl on the materials setting, I was able to render this camera pan in almost real time.

The second video is a short piece of the drummer doing his thing, in the end I went for a scarecrow, I have a few details to add to the figure yet. but this is mostly good enough for what I need. Again the pub is rendered as an environment map, with only the drumkit and the scarecrow being actual geometry, I also used the new shadowcatcher to add the shadows from the scarecrow and the drumkit, and it has the added advantage that the rendertimes are reduced to below 30 seconds per frame, with motion blur. which is an acceptable speed for the project.

Tomorrow I will start work on the greenscreen, which should take a few days, (I am borrowing the drama studio at the school where I work over half term. That will give me the live footage that I need to work out my subsequent camera angles.

Nice progress since last time I visited this thread. The idea with the environment map is great. I’ll have to keep that in mind for the next time I’ll eventually do an animation. I like the mood of the lights in the scene, looks much like a pub. Warm, cosy and welcoming. The moves of the scarecrow drummer are a bit uneasy, imho, especially for the chest/neck (0:06) and the left shoulder (0:01). At 0:01 the arm moves without affecting the shoulder when he reaches up. It’s better at 0:05 when the upper body is turned a bit to the left. You did a good job in making it synchronous with the sound. Very believable.

[QUOTE The moves of the scarecrow drummer are a bit uneasy, imho, especially for the chest/neck (0:06) and the left shoulder (0:01). At 0:01 the arm moves without affecting the shoulder when he reaches up. It’s better at 0:05 when the upper body is turned a bit to the left.][/QUOTE]
Definitely a work in progress, I actually animated the entire song (of course this is only the drumtrack that is audible), but I’m still attempting to work out a sensible workflow as I am trying to work out a way of doing this that is economical of time and resources.
I am going to shoot the greenscreen this week, as I think that it is the live part (so to speak) that will carry the video, and once I’ve got the live footage, I will be able to work out where the drummer will fit in. The idea is that he will always be in the background of the main shot, rather than featuring, and that it will only be gradually that people will realise he is not real.
If all goes well, it might end like this.

I’ve spent the last week doing some green screen sessions at the school where I work. as it is half term, I was able to use the old drama studio, as it wasn’t being used for anything else. This enabled me to leave the gear set up over the week, and I would come in in the evening after work and get going with the minimum of preparation time. In addition to the greenscreen, which I bought on ebay a few years ago, for about 80 pounds, including the fill lights, I used the band PA, to play the music on, and a set of three led parcans that also belong to the live setup. These are especially usefull as they are RGB lights, and when used in conjunction with a controller , enable you to be able to produce most colours. The controller also recieves midi information, so it can be synced with a sequencer, allowing you to do multiple camera takes, secure in the knowledge that the lights will allways change at the same point in the song. The camera I am using is a standard canon home camcorder worth about 200 pounds. It can suffer in low light, but this is more than made up for in ease of use, and low light can be faked pretty effectively in post production. Here is a pic of the setup in action.


This is a great project, the work you did on the pub and drummer so far look really good. - I will for sure follow your progress, I am quite curious how the final video will turn out.

You are not only a one man band, but also the complete film, special effects, editing and promotion department. ^^

The problem is that the other project I’m working on has taken 3 years, and this is an excersise in trying to produce something in a few weeks, something I’m pretty rubbish at, but I made a promise on facebook that the album would be out by the end of November, so I’ve given myself a deadline. As this will be the promo video, it has to be ready by then. The only complication is that the album itself still has a few edges to iron out, and until the video is done, I cannot go onto that either.:o

So here I am with a week of putting together the composites of the various things that I did with the greenscreen. This has taken somewhat longer than I hoped, mostly because I managed to make some really stupid mistakes.
The worst which absolutely had me tearing my hair out, was in I animating the scarecrow. I left the rendering time to 24fps which is the default on the render tab. My camera however runs at 25fps. Of course over a fairly short run, the discrepancy doesn’t show, and it was only halfway through that I realised that the drummer was pounding his way through what was supposed to be the quiet bit, of course when I looked at the earlier takes, I realised that they were all out of kilter.

At that point I thought I would have to redo the complete animation (Which originally took about 10 hours), Thankfully Blender came somewhat to the rescue. I have the song imported into Blender on the VSE, so I noted the frame number of the last beat and added a marker, Then I set the cursor to the start of the song, and then in the action editor, I scaled up the animation so that the final frame matched the marker. After several attempts it came in at 104 precent of the original length, so actually a very small increase, but over the length of the song this amounted to about 3 seconds, so very noticable by the end, I had my doudts as to this as a solution, because the keyframes will move to the nearest frame, rather than expand the exact percentage, but in the event it worked far better than I expected. The only trouble is that I am now having to rerender all the bits I have already done, and this is going to take a while. Anyway here are a couple of shots of composites, I’ll go into how I put them together in the next post.

I am hoping to finish this today, the deadline (Self imposed) for the album is a couple of weeks away, and it’s not quite ready, so this will have to go ahead as it is. In the last week I’ve been adding elements of the story, which is a pretty simple folk tale. In order to get it done I’ve used resources from other projects, the figures come from the hunters moon project,

with a few tweaks, and the houses come from my entry for the recent blenderguru fantasy competion,

most of the animations are motion capture from the carnegie mellon database,

athough at one point I did have to hand animate the devil playing a pipe organ,(But that’s another story).

Brilliant work my friend and I think your materials look really nice. I shall watch with interest here!

If I can be any help in the music sync side of things, let me know.

Cheers, Clock.

Well for better or worse it is up on you tube, I’ll put it up in the finished artworks, with some info tomorrow evening, right now bed is calling, and If I hear this song one more time, I may take a leaf out of one of the protagonists books.

Well I saw the video on a friends monitor, and it was too dark, so I’ve had to upload a new version, and delete the original. I hope this one is better.
Now posted in finished work

Nice work, the synchronized lights are a nice way to tie the different elements together. Everything was very well executed, and the song is fun too!

That has turned out fantastic! I second, what SterlingRoth said. The combination of CG lighting and the real stage lighting works great. And I love the scarecrow.

That is just fantastic…

Brilliant - well done Sir!

Cheers, Clock.