Someone asked a question recently about art mapping a movie with a folder of sub movies using MSG Evolver recently. And as i was thinking it occurred to me that you could do something similar in Studio Artist directly. The trick is to use 2D index mapping in a movie source brush or movie background texture.

Let's say you have 5 different sub movies you want to work with, and they are all 50 frames long. The you could make a movie brush were they are strung back to back. The movie brush would be 250 frames, the first 50 frames being the first sub movie, the second 50 frames being the second sub movie, etc. The you can set up the 2D index mapping for the movie so that the individual sub movies frame advance and you use some visual attribute to index between them. I ran some simple tests using source luminance to map the movies and it does work. I used time particles for continuity through time for the paint nibs. But you could use a fixed sampling grid for the path starts.

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Wow, cool! Do all the movies have to have the same # of frames?
Yes, all the movies have to have the same # of frames. Since you are mapping them into a 2D indexing scheme. 1 index maps between movies and the other index maps through the frames in any of the sub movies you've index into.
So do you take the 5 separate movies, and then combine them together into a single self-contained movie first, and then make a movie brush out of it?
Yes. You build one movie that contains all the individual movies of the same length pasted back to back. You can use Quicktime Player Pro to paste them together. Or you can load them as source in Studio Artist 1 by 1 and output them to an open movie stream.
OK that's what I thought, thanks, I am going to try it
"The you can set up the 2D index mapping for the movie so that the individual sub movies frame advance and you use some visual attribute to index between them."

OK I got to work, sort of, maybe I have some setting in the paint synth wrong. I made a 250-frame movie, each 50 frames are an abstract swirley a different color, & made a 2d indexed movie brush, Mod A is Lum, Mod B is AnimFrame Cycle Fwd, Index is Sequential. When I process a movie, it does try to approximate the color/lum/values of the source movie with the frames (just a movie of me moving a lamp around), but the movie brush itself isn't frame-cycling-forward (frame advancing) in the individual colors, they are static. It is painting the different colors where they "should be", but they are just static frames from the respective 50 frames of the color animations. Does this make sense??
You might need to swap your indexes or the A dimension. Index A would be the sub movie index, and the A dimension would be the # of sub indexes, not the # of frames in a sub index. This is a little confusing i know.

So i set the A index modulator to Lum and the B index to AnimFrame Cycle. You can also use TimeParticle Lifespan for the B index modulator if you are using time particles.

I'll add a RGB mapping index for 2D modulation in version 4 and then you could do the true color mapping.

If your source movie has an embedded alpha channel then you could use the source alpha brush type and have animating shapes associated with the movie frame transitions if the alpha mattes track a moving or changing object in the sub movies.
"the A dimension would be the # of sub indexes"

So I should set the "A Dimension" to 5?
Yes.
Thanks John!
OK, i added the RGB mapping option to 2D indexing in version 4, so something to look forward to.
Neat!

So, under the "A Dimension" control, there is a control called "Index". Should it be set to "Sequential", "Luminance", or "Orientation" to do the process we have been discussing?

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