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denwell

Signature simulation

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I wonder - is there a simple method of simulating the writing of a signature in PTE? Not unlike the moving route on a map I guess (which I've yet to master!).

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Actually, there is not a really good way to do this without using outside software.  You can "reveal" a signature by using a moving mask, but that's not quite the same thing as actually writing. It would be possible to go into Photoshop or other software and create a video mask which revealed script writing in a similar way to which it was written, but that would require screen capture of the video and that requires a decent screen capture software.

Perhaps the best way is to use an outside product such as CaptionsAlive Pro by David Fitzgerald because that's precisely what it does. This product is available for a reasonable price along with two other useful products HIghliter Pro and VisiSketch Pro here:

https://www.mediadigitronics.com/

Here's a sample:  You can change the size, change the location, rotate, whatever by adjusting the mask container in O&A

 

B

Lin

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Personally, I would slow down the reveal a little, but I doubt you would get much better than that this third party software would you? Looked fine to me.

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Hi Barry,

Since it's a video mask, it could be slowed down a great deal. The software creates an uncompressed avi file and an optional alpha mask. The alpha mask is just a pure black background with white text video and the video can have any color text of the available few fonts with bold, embossed, texture, 3d simulation and any color. The uncompressed avi files, of course won't work in PTE - they were designed for video software or for Proshow Producer which can use uncompressed avi's. One can simply convert them with freeware such as Video Pad Video Editor (the one I use) to wmv files which are tiny. The alpha mask can then be used in PTE as a video mask (stencil) with the video as the content. Or, if the color white for the text is OK, then the alpha mask can be used both for the mask and the content. The tiny files can then be saved and used with any image or show. The size and position is adjusted by just adjusting the Mask Container. The program also creates "flourishes."

Best regards,

Lin

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Thanks all for the information and comment. I'll take a look st the software you recommend Lin, even though it appears a little complicated. Would it work with a scanned signature or must we use one using an installed font?

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1 hour ago, denwell said:

Thanks all for the information and comment. I'll take a look st the software you recommend Lin, even though it appears a little complicated. Would it work with a scanned signature or must we use one using an installed font?

It only works with the provided fonts and really only one is script. If you send me a copy of the signature you want to use, I will create a video for you using the same font you see in my example above which you can use in any PTE show to place the signature and size and position it as you like. The advantage of having the software is that you can choose the background image then the color, etc., for yourself. If I make a video for you it will only be of the color you choose and you place it on a PTE image using video masking as described above. I will also make you a little video tutorial to show you how to use making (very easy) to size and position the signature.

Best regards,

Lin

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Tutorial For Dennis and Others On Signature Video..... I have added a very similar video to PTE Made Easy - in the Tutorials Section along with a tutorial on how to use Captions Alive Pro to export the uncompressed avi signature files and how to convert them to wmv, etc. to use with PTE. See Tutorials section of this forum...

Lin

 

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NOTE

For those interested in this I have posted two video tutorials and explanations on the Tutorials and Articles forum. One is quite similar to the one above and the other is a brief explanation on how to use CaptionsAlive Pro to output the files necessary to create the video mask and then convert these uncompressed avi files so they can easily be used with PicturesToExe. These video tutorials are at the bottom (numbers 72 and 73) of the PTE Made Easy - Continuously Updated thread. They are embedded YouTube videos so easily seen right on the forum.

Best regards,

Lin

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Lin,

Maybe I am missing something here?

Why are you using the second Video in the Mask Content when it works perfectly well with a rectangle or another image in the the Mask Content?

DG

 

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Hi Wideangle,

Thanks!

It "is" possible to create your own signature using Photoshop or other image editor, but it's awkward. The way it's done is to use a screen video recorder. First, you open Photoshop, create a "new" black image and set your brush to white. Once that is done start the recording and paint the signature or text in white on the black background then stop the recording. What has then been recorded is a white text painted on pure black. This being saved as a video file is used as the video mask. A pure color image is then used in the mask container and when played back reveals the text as it was written in white on the currently loaded image in whatever color(s) were used as the mask content. If this is put under a frame just as with the samples in my tutorial, the signature or text can be moved, sized, slowed down, sped up, etc. The problem with doing it this way is two-fold. First it's awkward if one doesn't have a Wacom Tablet or something similar to write with. Doing it with a mouse just doesn't work well. Secondly, there will be a cursor which you can't eliminate when you use the image editor. You really can't do much about that so the completed effect is less that ideal. Really, the best way to write any text as one would see in a real example is to use software such as CaptionsAlive Pro. It greatly simplifies things and does it perfectly. 

Best regards,

Lin

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Hi Dave,

The second video as shown in the tutorial is a simple color or white, but the program allows a variety of options for the text which I didn't discuss for simplicity. You can have bold, embossed, 3D and other text effects which, of course, can't be done with a simple color rectangle rather than video text in the mask content. For "only" a color signature one could use a simple rectangle of the desired color, but when people purchase Dave's software, they will learn to use the other options and they can only be realized with two videos rather than the video mask plus a color.

Best regards,

Lin

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I understand what you say about effects, but you haven't shown any in your examples so the one stencil video would have sufficed.

My experience with it also shows that some manipulation of speed within pte is helpful.

DG

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Hi Dave,

I didn't delete anything?  I answered your post, but I didn't delete it???  It's visible to me right above my reply to wideangle???

As I said in my reply above, and if you saw my tutorial on the tutorials page, I didn't get into all the possibilities with CaptionsAlive Pro because it would take WAY too long to demonstrate them and it wasn't important. When people purchase the package of three programs (VisiSketch Pro, CaptionsAlive Pro and HighlighterPro) they will learn about the options for different text effects. CaptionsAlive Pro allows not only something simple such as a signature, but it's possible to write an entire screen of text and one can change the effects on each line if desired. People who don't purchase the programs will have no interest unless someone creates a video mask for them using the program. Those who do purchase the programs will want to create them as in my tutorial otherwise they would not be able to take advantage of any of the effects possible. In my post to wideangle I explained how it could be done with Photoshop by capturing a video of a signature then using it as a video mask and a simple color file as the content  which is what I think you are saying. Yes it can be done this way with the alpha mask only and a color file or rectangle in the mask content, but my own experience as an  educator was that when there are multiple ways to do something and one way is more inclusive , it's more expedient to teach that way than to get into alternatives.  Also if you saw my tutorial in the tutorials section, I cover changing the speed of the videos.

Best regards,

Lin

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It is ok. This forum has a habit of hiding posts under certain circumstances. I looked and found your reply but my post was missing. I  went to another site and when I returned, so had my post!!

I haven't looked at the tutorials, but I went on my experiences over the last month or two.

I am not sure how much use I will ever get out of the software - it seems to be a bit of a "one trick pony". Used in moderation it will be useful.

DG.

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Hi Dave,

Yes, it's always difficult to decide whether one "needs" certain features or whether they would just be fun to play with sometimes. The fact that you get all three programs in the bundle made it attractive to me because I like to play with new ideas and was intrigued by the way Dave Fitzpatrick uses bitmapped bmp's to create the uncompressed AVI files. In some ways it reminds me of the bezier curve software written by our French friend which Igor was considering adding something like to PTE. Dave F. was (is?) a long time user of Proshow and I think his primary intent for this software was for users of that program. Proshow Producer accepts a wide variety of files including uncompressed AVI files and when these are made into a video or exe file the uncompressed AVI's get compressed so other than a huge RAM hit before the compression, they work well with Producer. Fortunately for us, when compressed in WMV format they are quite small and seem to work well with PTE that way. Looking back at many of the shows created with Producer, the type of effects with these three programs fit right in. For competitive AV folks and PTE, not so much. The flourishes, twinkle screens, and particle type effects are pretty common with many of their users and such is rarely seen in serious PTE shows. On the other hand, we may end up with many who are accustomed to this so I thought it might be useful to demo a few possibilities. If I get the time I'll make a demo of a full screen text effect. The primary reason for Dave F. using the alpha channel mask is that Producer doesn't support alpha channel video so programs such as Bluff Titler which allow the user to create AVI alpha channel video (which PTE supports) could be used by including an alpha matt (pure black and white video) to use as a mask through which a regular video could be run as the mask content. That is Producer's way of getting around not supporting alpha channel videos. I'm hoping Igor will include other codecs and alpha channel video other than the antiquated AVI alpha channel for version 10. There are just many possibilities that many users may be interested in. 

It's just something to keep me busy with - I don't have much else going on .........

Best regards,

Lin

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Just a sample of how this can be used for a photo signature, etc.  I've made samples for a couple of forum users. It's really a neat program and comes with Highlighter Pro and VisiSketch Pro for about $39 USD, so well worth it if you want to play with effects, easel painting, glitter, etc. 

On the other hand, if you would just like to have your signature available as a video to use with PTE and don't want to purchase the program;  if you email me at data2@lpbroadband.net and send me your name as you want it to appear, I'll be glad to make you a quick signature video which you can use as a video mask stencil with any color rectangle as the mask content.  It's no big deal and only takes me about three minutes or less. 

Best regards,

Lin

 

 

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Dave Fitzpatrick contacted me today for feedback on the software package.

I told him about the current interest here and suggested that he take a look.

One of the things I mentioned was the need for more fonts. He suggested that he might add further output options.

Let's hope that he decides to call in and gather more suggestions.

DG

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Yes, I just sent Dave a lengthy email too. I explained that potential of greater sized HD resolution would probably we welcome with the next version of PTE because of the 64 bit change. I also sent him a Youtube link to the sample show I made using VisiSketch Pro so he could see the current capabilities using the 640x480 video and feathered masking in PTE. Hopefully more fonts will be forthcoming.

Best regards,

Lin

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My original question has certainly caused some interest! The downside of the software seems to be that the output does'n look like a 'genuine' signature, which I can understand. Maybe when new fonts are considered then 'handwriting' script fonts are chosen. This will give a closer approximation to a written signature.

Well done Lin for your help and offer to produce video text for members.

DW

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Lin,

Just wanted to say thankyou once again, this time for this set of helpful tutorials. Brilliant once again.

Although initial interest seems to have centred on adding one's own signature, thinking about it, it would not surprise me to see this ability 'pop up' in a Wedding Style where we see a copy of the Marriage Certificate and then the happy couple sign the register.

Just opens a new line of possibilities.

Many Thanks Lin,

 

George

 

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As some of you my know me from ProShow days, let me say that I have not had much opportunity (or need) to build video slide shows lately.  Coupled with the uncertainty of Photodex's future, I viewed the future of my video products to be questionable.  As such, most (if not all) of my programming time has been spent elsewhere developing a product that targets photo and creative enthusiasts who express themselves in ways differently than through video media.

That said, I did write some past purchasers of my video products and ask them for insight as to what features they would like to see incorporated into my suite of video products.  Some of those I contacted frequent this board,  and I thank you for your comments.

As for the theme of this thread, the prevailing thought is a request for more fonts.  As I explained to those I contacted, CAP fonts are very tedious and time consuming to create.  I estimate that a full font set takes between 40 - 60 hours of concentrated time on Photoshop to build.  That makes is questionable as to whether it is, shall we say, worth it.

I have given some thought to ways in which this process could be speeded up some, but unless I can devise a way to greatly decrease the level of effort it takes to produce a font for CAP, I doubt that I will be making any in the near future.  I'll let all know if and when any new fonts are available.

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