Falling Cities

I’m continuing to work on my Rise Another Leaf video.  Usually when I work on a video I come up with a ton of ideas and only some of them make it into the final vid.  The song in this case is just under four minutes long, which is short for one of Tom’s songs, so the available space on this one is much shorter than I normally have to work with.  Consequently I’m finding myself truncating alot of what I’d originally planned.

The original idea for the video was that we start off with shots of space with giant gears and mechanisms floating amongst the stars.

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We transition from the gears into shots of DNA composed of gears and then out to Tom with blood running down the side of his head.  I originally had an idea that there were mechanisms behind everything so I also wanted shot similar to the one below that I did a while back, where there are even cogs in his chest.  I’d like to have another go at this idea since I did this shot before I started using 3D objects so I think I can do a better job of it this time.

The song’s about time travel so the idea I had was that the time travel device would disrupt the mechanisms behind the fabric of reality and cause everything to start breaking down.  I have a few shots of giant cogs bursting from the ground and destroying the world.

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I still like all these ideas, it’s now just a question of how much I can fit into the video!  The idea of having the world be destroyed is staying, but I think the way it happens might change slightly.  I have an idea that activating the time travel device might cause one of my floating cities to malfunction and start falling from the sky.
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To this end I’ve been creating shots of a giant cogwheel city crashing into a city on the ground, which is proving quite fun 😉
Here’s an ‘in progress’ shot from After Effects.  This has been created using multiple layers of 3D elements using the Elements plugin for After Effects.  I’m slightly wary of doing so much in 3D as I’ve previously managed to explode a graphics card and basically destroy my computer by creating a scene that was too 3D heavy for the graphics card to handle.
However, my new computer seems to be handling all this quite well so I’m not too worried.  To reduce the load, where possible, I’ve been using flat 2D images in 3D space to fill in the backgrounds and sections of the ground that are far enough away from the computer.
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Here’s a more complete version of the same shot.  It possibly needs more destruction at the base of the cog, but I’m liking the look of this so far and it hasn’t caused my computer to explode just yet!


The ‘time travel device’ shot has sort of become the ‘signature shot’ of the vid, simply because it’s come together the best.  I’m just trying to work out what the actual time travel effect should look like.  Here’s a breakdown of the shot I’ve previously posted.

The original idea I had for this was that the fabric of reality would ‘fold up’ revealing large cog wheels –  the mechanism of the heavens – behind.  I might still do that, but I need to transition into it.  I’ve started adding lightning strikes to this to bring it to life.  I think the kind of ‘globe thing’ might expand and that could be the transition into ‘cog world’ – kind of like a shit matrix 😉



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