Liquify Image Effect
       by bAkedSOda@in2mind : 9 September 2004

The action script used to make this effect is amazingly SHORT (only 26 lines of code). We'll apply the basic lens effect we saw in part 2. Let's do it.

Here's what the movie should look like right now:


  1. Pop open your action script window let's add these first lines of code:
//Liquefy an image ////////////
//make an empty movie clip
var theRubberizer:MovieClip = this.createEmptyMovieClip("theScene", this.getNextHighestDepth());
//set up the max num of copies to make (20 is comfy)
var maxImages:Number = 20;

Pretty self- explanatory:
We created an empty movie clip called 'theRubberizer', and a Number variable named 'maxImages'.

  1. create a function called 'dupeAndPlace()' with one argument called 'image'
dupeAndPlace = function(image:MovieClip):Object{
var arrHolder:Object = new Object();
arrHolder.pics_arr = new Array(0);
arrHolder.masks_arr = new Array(0);

The function takes one argument called 'image' and returns an Object. Flash will expect that whatever we pass into this function as 'image' will be a MovieClip.
Created a new Object called 'arrHolder', and stuck two arrays onto it. This is the Object that the function will return.

  1. Start filling up the function by adding a for...loop to it:
for(var i=1; i< maxImages; i++){
var dnm = "image" + i;
var mnm = "mask" + i;

A simple beginning to a 'for...loop'. Note we didn't close the '{' bracket yet. Every time this loop iterates (repeats), it creates a new variable called 'dnm' and another 'mnm'. And this loop will iterate 20 times, since that's what maxImages is set to.

There's also a reason we started the loop with 'var i=1' instead of the usual 'var i=0'. We'll mention that later.

  1. We need our loop to do some other stuff besides creating those two variables. So let's add more code in there! Here are five more lines, followed by an explanation:
var imgObj = {_x:image._x, _y:image._y, _xscale:100+(i*1.5), _yscale:100+(i*1.5)};
var maskObj = {_xscale:Math.floor(100/i+3), _yscale:Math.floor(100/i+3)};
var theDupedImage = image.duplicateMovieClip(dnm, theRubberizer.getDepth()+i, imgObj);
var theDupedMask = mask_mc.duplicateMovieClip(mnm, theRubberizer.getDepth()+ (i*50), maskObj);

(Keep in mind that every line up there happens 20 times in a row, extremely quickly since it's inside a for..loop):

First we make an 'init object' to stick inside the duplicateMovieClip() call. It tells each duplicate where to be placed:
var imgObj = { _x:image._x, _y:image._y,
_xscale:100+(i*1.5), _yscale:100+(i*1.5) };

(the same _x and _y of the image we'll pass into the function, at _xscale and _yscale of 100% + (whatever i is at *1.5). (slightly larger each time the loop repeats)).

The second init object tells the duplicates of mask_mc what to look like:

var maskObj = {_xscale:Math.floor(100/i+3),
_yscale:Math.floor(100/i+3), _x:this._xmouse,

Same _x and _y as the mouse, and slightly smaller than the original mask_mc with each repeating of the loop.

When you're using a loop and using the loop's own 'i' to divide, be careful of 'Infinity', it's what you'll get when you divide by 0. But that's not the only reason we're using 'i=1'.

In the next line we duplicate image, giving it an instance name of 'dnm', a depth of 'i' above the Rubberizer's depth, and use the imgObj to place the copies:

var theDupedImage = image.duplicateMovieClip(dnm,
theRubberizer.getDepth()+i, imgObj);

We duplicate mask_mc, giving it an instance name of 'mnm', a depth of the Rubberizer's depth + (i*50), and use the 'maskObj' to place the copies:

var theDupedMask = mask_mc.duplicateMovieClip(mnm, i*100, maskObj);

We didn't use the shiny new '_root.getNextHighestDepth()' to place the copied mc's ? If you apply this effect to one image, and then to another, you'd have copies of images and masks created at progressively higher depths every time you applied the effect.

Then: theDupedImage.setMask(theDupedMask);
Which sets each 'theDupedMask' as the mask of each 'theDupedImage'.

Easy Enough
Remember the 'basic lens' effect in part 2? We took an image, put a copy of it on the layer above at a slightly bigger size, and then masked that copy. Well that's exactly what we're doing above, but we're doing it 20 times. Every time our for...loop repeats, it puts a copy of image on top of the original image at a slightly larger size. And gives each copy a mask of a slightly smaller size.
  1. Last but not least, add these lines. We're still in the loop, which is inside the 'dupeAndPlace()' function:
} //the loop is closed
mask_mc._visible = false;
//return the object
return arrHolder;
}; //the function is closed


In the first line, we push 'theDupedMask' into the arrHolder Object's 'masks_arr' Array.
('push' adds something to the end of an array)

Then push 'theDupedImage' into the arrHolder Object's 'pics_arr' Array.

and close the for..loop with a ' } '

Then we made mask_mc, mask1, and image1 invisible. 'mask_mc' is on the Stage, this function did not add it to the array of masks, so we can hide it. Then close the dupeAndPlace function with a ' } '.
And lastly, return the arrHolder Object:
return arrHolder;

At this point:
You have 20 duplicated images, masked by 20 duplicated masks. What's left to do? MOTION.

Let's go to the Next Page.

page 3 of 4


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