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Camera moves – Bringing cinematic shots to the web

Bringing cinematic shots to the web – Camera moves

Now that you’ve got the actors laid out, you are ready to design a “multiplane camera” shot.

An innovation from Disney (also the alleged birthplace of the first story board), a stand that slides along a track attaches to the multiplane camera in a traditional animation, which gives directors the power to truck in and out on their animation levels, adding depth to the viewing experience.

In Toon Boom Studio™, you can also create multiplane shots without special, expensive equipment or highly-trained camera operators. And, when you truck the camera in or out, Toon Boom Studio™ automatically resizes the objects in your element layers based on their position from the camera, just as though you are using a real camera.

To draw your audience into the scene, truck the camera in on Jane as she speaks to Shadow. You will move the camera from just over Shadow’s shoulder to get a close up on Jane.

For all of the changes you create over time in Toon Boom Studio™, you’ll use “pegs,” which are similar to guides in Macromedia Flash. Pegs allow you to create motion paths through all three dimensions (enabling multidimensional tweening), as well as change the size or rotation of the elements attached to them.


  1. Click the Add Peg button on the Timeline window. A new peg element appears in the Timeline.
  2. Click the Show/Hide button next to the new peg to display it in all the View windows.
  3. Drag the edge of the peg’s trackbar to the right to extend its duration to 30 frames.
  4. In the Timeline window, select the “Dynamic Camera” element and drag it on top of the Peg element you just added. By dropping the camera on top of the peg, you attach the two elements together so that the camera will follow the path of the peg.

  5. Select the Peg element you added in the Timeline and then switch to the Motion tool (Tools > Motion). Use the Motion tool to create motion paths for pegs.
  6. In the Top View window, press the X key on the keyboard to zoom-in on the window and then drag the last key frame of the peg back and to the left just a bit. When you select the last key frame, you will see its Offset values in the Motion Point tab of the Properties window. The Offset values we used are: 1.78 N, 2.32 W, 1.75 B.
  7. You might have to adjust Jane’s position again to make sure that she is still in the camera frame. In the Top View window, press the X key on the keyboard to zoom-in close to the Jane Peg element and use the Select tool to move the peg so that her torso is in the camera frame, which you will see best in the Camera View window.
  8. Click the Play button on the Interactive Playback toolbar (or press the default shortcut [P]) to playback the shot. See how cool it is to truck in on Jane as she is speaking!
  9. Save your animation.

Now you are ready to import your animation into Macromedia Flash MX to add the dialog box, the dialog, and the scripting that will make it all work together.

Note: In each scene, we added a variety of Cameras so that you can see what the scene might look like with different framing. To see what those cameras see, select their name from the Camera drop-list and/or select their names in the Timeline window.