Carrara Studio: Making Animations

Carrara Studio is versatile software for creating designs in 3D and also for animations. It has a professional toolset and an easy interface, which makes the workflow simple and fast. Here is a brief tutorial to get you started in making animations in Carrara Studio.

Step 1: Initialize Carrara and Know the Interface

After you have initialized Carrara Studio, you will find the work space on your screen. On top is the menu bar and next to it are several icons, which are used for opening Rooms that can edit objects. These are also used for rendering the scene. You will find the tool bar just below the menu bar, from where you can insert objects in your scene.

On the left is the vertical menu bar with icons which will help you move your objects and also help you change the viewpoint in your scene. To the right of your screen, you will find a handle--dragging this will open the Properties Tray, which will show you detailed info about the selected objects. At the bottom of your screen is another handle which has the Sequencer Tray. This tray has the Animation Timeline and also an organizer for all the objects in your scene.

Step 2: Insert an Object You need to Animate

You can design an object and insert it into the scene, or you can choose a predefined one from the Tool bar. You can also insert an object by clicking on Insert in the menu bar and selecting the object from the drop down list. Here, we will insert a sphere.

Step 3: Choose a Frame Rate

Pull out the Sequencer Tray and click on the Frame Rate button, which is on the top right corner above the timeline. Then, select 18 fps, which are 18 frames per second. When you render an animation, the software generates one image per frame. Here, we will be doing a two second animation, which means there will be 36 images generated.

Step 4: Light Your Scene

You can change the intensity of light on an object during different times of the scene. Here, we will make the sphere appear dim in the beginning and appear brightest at the end of the scene. To do this, click on Light 1 under Universe in the Sequencer Tray. Place the marker at the beginning of the timeline. Pull out the Properties Tray from the right, move the slider control for Brightness to the left, and choose around 15. Now, move the marker of the timeline to the end of the scene, and move the Brightness slider to its maximum to the right.

Step 5: Animate the Sphere

Select the arrow icon, which is the first on the vertical menu bar on the left. Move the sphere in the work area by dragging on the square on its side. Here, we will increase the size of the sphere so that it looks like it has moved forward. Again, slide out the Properties Tray and increase the value in the Overall box by double.

Step 6: Render the Animation

Click on the Rendering icon, which looks like a piece of film. The screen will change to the default player, and you can see a dim sphere moving and becoming brighter and bigger. Click on the box next to the name of the file on top of the screen to save the animation.