Painting with a Live Running Movie using Pen Tracking

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This Generator option is actually quite simple. It returns path start positions based on the position of the current pen cursor. It’s designed to be used with Auto-Painting using the Action button. When used with a normal mouse, it’s just going to playback the last mouse position used on the canvas (since clicking the mouse button down will stop auto-painting instigated by the Action button). So the movie brush would play back live in a static position on the canvas when the Action button was pressed until you stopped auto-painting by pressing the spacebar.

But remember, we said that the Wacom tablet supports pen repositioning while the pen is in proximity (hovering over the tablet without actually touching it). So, when you use the Pen Position Live Track option for the Path Start Generator, you can dynamically change the path start positioning of the auto-painting in real time. This lets you run a live movie brush that live plays a movie loop while being able to dynamically move the position of the live playing movie brush in real time. You change the position by moving the Wacom pen position above the tablet without actually touching the pen to the tablet surface.

Here’s a link to a canvas screen capture video I took of first manually drawing with this custom movie brush paint preset, and then using Action drawing in combination with working with a hovering Wacom tablet and hovering pen, which allows me to paint in real time with a live playing movie brush.

At this point we’re starting to move into the realm of digital painting as a live performance as opposed to being means to achieve a final end state for a painted canvas. There’s an additional Pen Position Live Track MP option for the Path Start Generator that allows you to interactively define and move around multiple path start points. So this would give you the ability to have multiple live movie brushes dynamically paint in real time, and to be able to dynamically move the live playing movie brushes around the canvas in real time as they live paint.

We’ll explore how to work with the multi-point (MP) pen positioning in tomorrow’s post.

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