CanvasFX Animation

Introduction

It is not possible directly to produce an animated canvasFX filter because layer operations and transformations cannot be animated. I suggest you try this for yourself. For example load a bitmap or a canvas to layer and try to rotate the layer with the animate button on. Satori will switch the animate button off and rotation will apply to every frame in the animation.

However. it is possible to produce an animated canvasFX filter by using nested canvases. Essentially you have to produce a series of canvasFX filters which are not animated and then use the CanvasFX option on the Geometry actions pallet to apply those filters to another canvas which is animated.

The Details

With the animate button off create a series of rectangular CanvasFX filters as below. I have cropped each one to a circle.

Rotate 60 Deg. FX

Rotate 120 Deg. FX

Rotate 180 Deg. FX

Rotate 240 Deg. FX

Rotate 300 Deg.FX

Then create a new canvas, also a rectangle, "Rotate 60 Degrees Per Frame" and with the animate button onapply each individual Canvas FX filter to a separate frame using the CanvasFX button on the Geometry sub-pallet in the Actions pallet.I used "snap to grid" on the grid toolbar to make sure that each Canvas FX filter was centred and applied in exactly the same way.

Rotate 60 Deg. Per Frame FX

Rotate 60 Degrees Per Frame Canvas Structure

Rotate 60 Deg. FX

Applied to frame 1

Rotate 120 Deg. FX

Applied to frame 2

Rotate 180 Deg. FX

Applied to frame 3

Rotate 240 Deg. FX

Applied to frame 4

Rotate 300 Deg.FX

Applied to frame 5

If you apply Rotate 60 Deg Per Frame FX to a canvas such as the photograph I have used below then each frame from 1 to 5 will be rotated by an extra 60 degrees . 

The same method can be use to produce an animated canvas FX filter from any effect which can be saved as a filter such as fades and colour corrections.

Advantages

The advantage of working this way is that it allows you to animate a canvas FX filter at all.

Drawbacks

The drawback of working this way is that it is a workaround which would not be necessary if Satori allowed the user to animate a canvas directly by applying layer operations and transformations from the actions pallet. It is also inflexible: having animated (say) frames 1 to 10 one cannot then apply the Canvas FX filter to frames 11 to 20. There are no equivalents of "loop to start" or "reflect" for canvas FX filters. Those options only apply to sequences of bitmaps and canvas files loaded to layer.

It is a practical workaround for short frame sequences but it quickly becomes very tedious on 'longer' sequences i.e. more than a few seconds. Perhaps a future release of Satori will make the whole process simpler? It would be even better if Satori could cope with applying changes at the rate of n degrees per frame or n% per frame so one did not have to apply everything manually to each frame.

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 Nigel Sutton