Filmmaking Basics/3D Storyboard/Creating depth of field inside FrameForge

Messages for students
This school is:
Narrative film production - Wikiversity Film School
This course is:
The basics of narrative filmmaking
This lesson is:
Lesson: 3D Storyboarding
Pages of this Lesson:
Storyboarding using 3D software
Introduction to FrameForge 3D Studio free demo version
Getting started with FrameForge 3D Studio
Page 1 - Getting started storyboarding "Seduced by the Dark Side!"
Page 2 - A simple example
Page 3 - Building a movie set inside FrameForge
Page 4 - Creating depth of field inside FrameForge free demo version
Before and After: corrections by instructor
The corrections for Sir Mok
All the completed storyboards by students
The amazing storyboard from Gare Cline


Depth of field with FrameForge 3D Studio

Creating depth of field effect

FrameForge 3D Studio free demo version has an extremely useful feature which shows you the actual depth of field for the lens you are using.
Extremely logical
This feature was design by an engineer. Therefore, it is a very logical. After you know how the program works and where to find all the features of the option, it will seem very comfortable.
Finding the depth of field features of the program and learning how it works is not easy. But the reward is worth the effort because this option is very useful.
Don't give up! You need this.
Using the depth of field option in FrameForge 3D Studio

The menu item
You can select this option only when the windows are set up correctly.

The options window
Once you have selected an object in the frame, you can set the other parameters. Try 2.0 for wide angle and 8.0 for telephoto. That is about average.

Step by Step

1. To use the "depth of field" feature, you must look at the main program window of FrameForge 3D Studio Free demo version. This does not work in the Storyboard Shot Manager window.

Setup the desired image
Sometimes, you want to add the depth of field effect to an existing shot. When you look at the the main window and if you do NOT see the shot you want,

you must go to the STORYBOARD SHOT MANAGER window and select the picture you want. Once you have selected the picture you want, you must then click on EDIT ON SET button on the screen. Once you do this, everything on the main window changes to match how the shot looked when you saved that shot. The old movie set is restored and the shot you want is restored to when the image was taken. All later changes are ignored.

Those strange blue dots are a button!!!!

Click on the blue dots to hide or show whole sections of the Shot Manager Window.

WARNING: Missing pictures in Shot Manager
If you cannot see your pictures (your individual storyboard frames) on the STORYBOARD SHOT MANAGER, you must click on very tiny area with blue dots on the STORYBOARD SHOT MANAGER window. This is VERY hard to find. You must look up and down the screen in the middle of your computer screen to find the blue dots in a small area between sections. These buttons are two small areas of tiny blue dots. Try them both so you learn how they work. Very strange!!!!!

2. To use the depth of field feature, the picture in the middle of the screen must be what the camera sees (not the picture of the floor plan which is the picture in the upper left corner.) If you see the floor plan in the center of the screen, double click on the correct pictures at the top of the screen (NOT the floor plan picture on the top left.) (See the picture on the right for more details.)

3. Next, you must go to the menu item "VIEW" and select "RENDER DEPTH OF FIELD". (See picture above.)

4. Next, you must put the cursor over one of the actors in the picture so that you see the new cursor. (Remember, if the cursor is NOT in the middle of the picture in the middle of the screen, you will NOT see the new cursor.)

This is the most confusing step of all. The cursor will not be the correct shape if you fail to do this properly. If you do this wrong, absolutely nothing seems to happen so it is impossible to tell that you failed to move the cursor to the correct location (into the correct frame) or not.

5. Next, you must click the cursor on one of the actors (or objects) in the picture. You can change your mind and click on the other actor or another object in the picture. Just moving the cursor over the correct actor does NOT work. You must actually click on the actor.

As soon as you click on the actor, you will will see a new menu (see above). You can change the F-STOP if you wish. I suggest that you select a realistic number. "1.4" or "2.0" to get a strong depth of field effect for wide angle. "5.6" or "8" to get a strong depth of field effect for a telephoto lens.

You do not need to change anything else inside the depth of field control window. The default settings are OK.

Once you click on an actor, the picture on the computer screen will change. If you are using a telephoto lens, hopefully, you will see some of the objects (or people) in the picture become fuzzy. This is the depth of field effect.

Note: Even though you see this effect, YOU HAVE NOT SAVED THIS. You still must do more steps before anything actually happens.

6. To save a picture with this depth of field, you must click on the STORE THIS SHOT button.

Warning: Before you do this, you must be careful that you have selected "INSERT FRAME" in the lower right corner (unless you want to

replace the old frame.)

The controls in the lower left of the window work like a tape recorder. You must always be careful where the new shots go when you select STORE THIS SHOT. The controls in the lower left of the screen show you where the image will go.

Note: On the demo version, you can store only 20 pictures (INCLUDING the pictures which are deleted BUT STILL NOT PURGED.) When you delete a picture, it is NOT thrown away. Instead it is only hidden. You must PURGE DELETED SHOTS to get rid of deleted shot. But the menu item PURGE DELETED SHOTS does not work when you are looking at the SHOT MANAGER window. You must be looking at the main window (the project window) before PURGE DELETED SHOTS will work. Most confusing!!!!

7. Once you click on STORE THIS SHOT, the depth of field effect disappears from the screen. Do not worry because the shot has been saved (hopefully) with the correct depth of field. Look at the Shot Manager window to see the new picture.

8. Now that you are finished, you can export the storyboard frame or look at it in the Shot Manager Window.

To create the depth of field effect for shots is very easy ONCE YOU UNDERSTAND HOW IT WORKS. Before you learn ow this works,

it is very confusing.

Setup for this option

The "depth of field" feature works only one way. If you cannot get this option to work, check that you have the correct window is open, etc. If anything is NOT correct, this feature will NOT work.

This is what you should see when you begin.



You must be seeing what the camera sees, not the floor plan.
Wide angle over-the-shoulder shot

Without depth of field effect

With depth of field effect

Telephoto over-the-shoulder shot

Without depth of field effect

With depth of field effect

You need to record the dialog next.

The next lesson

Hopefully, by now you know everything about storyboarding with FrameForge 3D Studio FREE demo version. Complete your storyboard and submit it.
Look at what other students have done. LessonPage:FrameForge:Teachers corrections
If you have not done so already, go to the lesson on camera lenses.
Then go to the lesson for recording the dialog for the animatic.

Contact your instructor

Your instructor for this filmmaking class is Robert Elliott. You can email me by clicking here.