… for Apple Motion

Tip #1220: What is the Active Camera?

Larry Jordan – LarryJordan.com

The Active Camera is the shot that’s currently displayed in the timeline.

The Camera view menu with two different cameras applied to the scene.

Topic $TipTopic

Apple Motion allows us to add multiple cameras to any project; which means we need to understand the “Active Camera.”

When you switch between views in Motion, the top option is called Active Camera (Shortcut: Control + A). If you only have one camera, this choice is all you need.

But, if you create a scene where you have two or more cameras, as the screen shot illustrates, you need more choices.

Active Camera is the shot currently displayed at the position of the playhead.

Other cameras are on stand-by, waiting for their turn in the spotlight. For example, here, I have two cameras: Front camera, recording this airplane from directly in front of the nose. Then, halfway through the project, I cut to a second cameras, presenting the image from the side.

NOTE: Using the new 3D shapes, multiple cameras make for a very interesting scene change.

In this camera view menu, I can choose:

  • The camera under the playhead; this is the default>
  • The front camera, whether it is active or not
  • The side camera, whether it is active or not

These camera selection options make it easier to align elements regardless of whether the camera is active or not


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