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UTORIAL
• JULY 21, 2000
Three Strokes

Multiple PASeq processing in Synthetik Studio Artist 1.5

by Jean Detheux
Special to Creative Mac
jd@vudici.net

In the following tutorial, I am going to try to show some of the ways in which something new is creeping into the way in which artists use digital media, something that demands a different way of imagining images, a different form of intuition that is relatively hard to come by when one has been, like me, immersed for decades in the boundaries imposed by natural media.

Studio Artist is, to me, a new way of creating images.

Most people still try to use digital tools in the same ways they've always used natural media. (I certainly have.) I can't define exactly what the differences between analog and digital image making exactly are, but I definitely can feel that something needs to change in my approach, and, if I had my first indications that the computer was a new way to work when discovering Painter a few years ago, Studio Artist has really confirmed my original impression and offered unsuspected avenues.

In order to keep file sizes manageable in this tutorial, the material I will present will remain very simple. The very same process can be (and has been) applied to much more elaborate images, movies and Paint Action Sequences, only limited by one's RAM, hard drive space and imagination.

The idea is to paint an image and create a QuickTime movie by recording the paint strokes while simultaneously recording the painting process as a Paint Action Sequence (PASeq), and then to process the resulting movie with that same PASeq.

In this case, the original resulting movie (Three_strokes.mov, 98 KB) was processed with the original PASeq and saved as Three_strokes_1.mov (1.4 MB). This movie was itself processed with, again, the original PASeq and saved as Three_strokes_2.mov (1 MB). Again, this latest movie was itself processed with the same PASeq and saved as Three_strokes_3.mov (878 KB). (It may be best to download these files to disk in order to view them side by side, the differences between the movies are sometimes fairly subtle.) This could have gone on almost forever. (I have done similar work with other larger movies and PASeqs, upwards of 50 times, resulting in very surprising images/animation. See samples of that here.)

The Tutorial

1.

I opened a source image and the "Paint Action" window. (That source image is viewable here; it was created in Studio Artist.)


2.

The contents of the Paint Action window were erased, and the "Record" box was checked. (This will record each action used in creating the image, enabling me to apply it to subsequent images and/or QuickTime movies.)


3.

In order to record the painting of the image as a QuickTime movie, I first selected the "Start Movie To File."


4.

Then I selected "Write Frame Flags > Write Frame Each SubAction." (This will create a QuickTime movie showing all the paint actions used in creating the image.)


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