I had this wonderful article all planned out on the Rule of Thirds, something we should all know about and have been practicing. To explain my project,
I needed a Rule of Thirds grid in Blender. Now I remembered reading in Roger Wickes' booque “Foundation Blender Compositing”, that he rou-tinely used a Rule of Thirds grid to line up his projects. So I grab his book, only to realize that I seem to have misplaced the DVD that goes with it.
No problem, it can't be that hard to set up. So I fire up blender and make a grid, line it up with my camera, set it to wire and... nothing. No grid lines. Obviously I have done something wrong. Where is that disc? More looking, still can't find it. Hmmmm.
Okay, I go to the Friends of Ed website and down-load all the tutorial files. Boy that was a big down-load. A quik search through the files gets me to the right blend file, but this really isn't my day, because
I can't for the life of me find the promised grid.
Okay, Roger and I can't be the first to want a grid in blender, so I run a google search. Yay, Andrew Price covered that on his site BlenderGuru. Awww, nuts his technique would be helpful in many situations, but not for what I had in mind. This shouldn't be this hard. Okay, I am a fairly smart woman, and Blender always provides more than one way to accomplish anything. I just need to sit down and
thinque about this.
What I want is a visible grid parented to the camera that I can use to line up my shot. So after a little brainstorming I came up with a simple idea that should worque just fine.
Rule of Thirds Grid:
·Add a plane and resize it so that it is long and rather skinny.
·Duplicate it and move it over (hold down control and move it one major grid unit)
·Duplicate both planes and rotate them 90 degrees and line them up on the grid (fig 1)
·Join all the planes into one object
·Go into camera view and re-size the grid to fit in the camera view
·In side view, move the grid object closer to the camera, resize if necessary and parent to the camera.
Now when ever and where ever you move the camera, the grid object will automatically move as well.
In the outliner window, toggle off the “restrict renderability” icon (the little camera). Now the grid object will not render in your final image.
You can add a simple material, I chose a basic blak or depending on the scene red might be better, set to 0.250 alpha, then checked the Transparency option in the Display settings of the Object properties panel. This way you can see it, but it won't overly interfere with you scene visibility.
Alright, now I have a grid and I can finally get on with my article. So we all know that there are four main “power points” when using the Principle of Thirds.
A viewer's eye is automatically drawn to whatever lies in that magical area. By controlling what is framed there, we can focus our story image and the message received by the viewer.
I ran across a very cool website- visualstorytelling.com, for the book, Visual Storytelling by Anthony C. Caputo, (which is unfortunately out of print.) On his site he had a great example that explained the Principle of Thirds.
While it is a very simple example, it does show clearly how simply moving what is contained in the power center changes the whole message of an image.
I modeled a quik simple scene to illustrate how easy it is to change the focus of your image and what will catch your viewer's attention first.
This first one is all about the sunset (sunset image).
The second one is all about the road (road image).
And the last image is all about the sky (sky image).
All three images have exactly the same elements, yet tell different stories due to how each one is framed.
In Blender it was very easy for me to set up a Principleof Thirds framing rig to create these examples. Once I had created my Principle of Thirds camera grid, I sim-ply added an empty and made the camera trak the empty. Now it was too easy to adjust my framing to achieve just the effect I was going for.
Hmmmm, thinque I’m going to save that rig for future use.