High-Quality Video Output from Flash Flash

While Flash is primarily used to create interactive animations and presentations on the Web, you can also generate highquality output for other media uses. Macromedia began as a company called MacroMind, specializing in frame-by-frame video animation tools for desktop computers. Their flagship product, VideoWorks, eventually became Director, which was the first widely used Macromedia authoring product. Like Director, Flash also has some “hidden” video animation capabilities.

You can use Flash to create spinning logos for your own corporate, creative, or home videos. Or, you could export those shape morphs so difficult to create elsewhere to layer over other video content. As we have seen in the previous, Flash can output in QuickTime multimedia files. Flash can also generate numbered still sequences for use in other video-editing applications.

In previous Mac versions of Flash, 100 percent video-based (a.k.a. raster-based) QuickTime (QT) files could be directly rendered via the Export Movie command. Macromedia has added a more robust solution based on QuickTime 4 that exports Flash material directly to a Flash track for use in conjunction with video and audio tracks from other sources. This is wonderful if you want to create QTs for QuickTime 4-enabled applications. At the time of this writing, most Mac and PC applications that use the QuickTime architecture such as Adobe Premiere and Adobe After Effects will import QuickTime Flash movies. Some DV-only NLE (nonlinear editing) software, such as Digital Origin EditDV, will not allow you to import QuickTime Flash movies. For the best video results, you will want to export still image sequences from Flash instead of using QuickTime Flash files, or export traditional QuickTime Video files (available only on the Macintosh version of Flash) or .AVI files (available only on the PC version of Flash).

In the near future, it’s possible that animated material intended for higher bandwidth media such as television or film can be created and generated from Flash. Flash artwork is completely scalable and flexible for just about any media use. Combined with the QuickTime architecture, Flash artwork can be output to DV tape or motion picture film. If you think your project looks good in Flash, you should be able to repurpose that hard work into another format very easily.

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