View Full Version : High School animation lab - need advice

05-13-2009, 05:31 PM
The school I work at will be buying a bunch of Macs and they are planning to do claymation, animation, audio etc. I was wondering if anyone has any suggestions on what software is powerful and easy enough to get good results in a short amount of time - remember we're talking about high school kids....they don't want to wait for anything.

I was also wondering about VFX software for doing green screen, compositing, perhaps motion capture/tracking etc. Any free software on the net that is any good?


05-13-2009, 07:09 PM
I use Lightwave for animation, audacity for sound and iMovie or final cut express for video editing.

They all work great, the Dongles are a royal pain & break often, because there is no way to hide inside the case. I zip tie to mouse cord & that does OK. I also threaten them within an inch of their lives... LOL. I actually explain that they are not USB Flash Drives & thus of no use to them. Best of luck.

05-13-2009, 07:38 PM
Take a look at Blender. It's also good because students can use it at home if they want because it's free. No dongle. No software protection (in college we had to reactivate certain software whenever it would lock itself due to an unauthorized attempt to copy it.)

It has a compositor, but I don't know about a keyer.

Maybe your editing software (if you buy Final Cut Studio) will have something bundled to meet your needs. Or since you are on Mac, for a few hundred dollars SHAKE is available. Which is a professional compositing program that was even used on Peter Jackson's KING KONG.

Good Luck.

05-14-2009, 02:46 AM
Apple motion which comes with final cut pro has some motion tracking capabilities and there's a plugin called conduit which lets you do nodal compositing including some pretty good keying with de-spill. Not as advanced as Shake but if you're needing to keep costs per workstation down.

Also it's rumored Final Cut studio 3 will be out in the next couple of months and there also may be news about whatever apple are bringing out to replace shake with (as shake was actually eol'd a couple of years ago and they said they were working on a replacement)

So it may be worth you waiting until then. They may even include the replacement in the FCP suite.

05-14-2009, 04:17 AM
For your claymation consider

Great software easy to use.

05-14-2009, 05:06 PM
thanks all