Cinema 4D / BodyPaint 3D Program Documentation Tutorials Camera and Render Settings Tutorial
Function available in CINEMA 4D Prime, Visualize, Broadcast, Studio & BodyPaint 3D

Film Offset

The Film Offset X and Film Offset Y values let you offset the view. When doing so the perspective of the objects viewed remains the same. If we were to change the position of the Camera object itself, this perspective would also change. For example, if you should run into a situation in which a model is partly protruding out of your field of view you can use these settings to adjust your field of view to include the entire object without affecting your view’s perspective.

This is especially helpful for correcting aberrant lines, i.e., the tapering of parallel lines to a third vanishing point when the camera is angled slightly up or down.

Correcting Aberrant Lines

At the top left of the image below is a children’s slide viewed from a camera placed on the ground. The camera’s angle of view is directed upwards toward the top end of the slide, which causes the two-by-fours on which the roof rests to appear askew (referred to as aberrant lines). Similar effects can be seen on photographs made of high-rises. Below the camera view is a fromtal view of the slide and Camera object, in which the angle at which the camera lies can clearly be seen, as well as the cemera’s settings from the Attribute Manager.

To correct such aberrant lines the camera’s angle of view must lie perpendicular to these vertical elements. In our example, this means that the camera’s angle of view must lie parallel to the ground (or the XZ plane). This will, of course, cause the top part of the scene to lie outside of the camera’s angle of view. Moving the camera vertically upwards would change the view of the model completely and is therefore out of the question. We can however use the Film Offset Y value to center our selected motif to the field of view without having to reposition the camera. The vertical elements will also be miraculously "straightened". This can be seen on the right half of the image above. Here also a frontal view of the slide, including the camera and its Attribute Manager settings, has been provided for reference.

This can also be useful when visualizing interior spaces. The camera from which the scene below was rendered was angled slightly downward in order to achieve a slanted look for the rendered image. This is illustrated by the black lines in the top image below.

After repositioning the Camera object parallel to the floor and subsequently adjusting its Film Offset values the image was rendered again. The result is shown in the bottom image below, in which the previously aberrant lines now run parallel.

Circumventing Resolution Restriction

Although you will probably never run into a situation in which you have to circumvent the restriction on maximum resolution, Cinema 4D does offer a way in which to do this.

The maximum resolution for rendered images is 16000 x 16000 pixels. Extremely large print jobs, for example, may require an even larger resolution. Since Release 15, Team Render can not only distribute rendering of animations across several computers within a network but can also do so for still images; the resolution limits apply here as well. However, there is a solution available for this - again, thanks to the camera objects’ Film offset: A special XPresso Expression named Tiled Camera, which can be found in the Presets|Prime|Presets|Tools & Helpers menu, can be used to render an image in tiles, which in turn will be rendered as a virtual animation. Individual images can either be rendered successively by a single computer or distributed across multiple computers using Team Render. The image below shows this Expression’s User Data. All you have to do is drag the existing Camera object into the Reference Camera field and enter the number of tiles you want to be created into the Tiles per Axis setting. After enabling the Use Tiling Option the Tiled Camera will snap to the Camera object’s position and jump to the first tile.

Don’t forget to make the virtual Tiled Camera the active camera by clicking on the black switch icon in the Object Manager. The image tiles will now be rendered as individual frames of an ,animation’ for the Tiled Camera, which is configured via the Edit Render Settings.... The number of images for a given animation reflects the number of tiles defined. If a value of 2 is defined in the X and Y directions, respectively, four images will be rendered, i.e., frame 0 to 3 of the animation. If 3 tiles is defined, nine images will be generated, i.e., frame 0 to 8 of the animation. The individual images must then be combined using an image editing software. Since the Expression also uses the Camera object’s Film Offset values to define the tiles the images will fit exactly, down to the pixel.

In the internet you can find Photoshop scripts that automate the process of assembling the tiles rendered by the Tiled Camera.