So were now at the end of week 7. I am working fevourishly on the first effects sequence of my project.
Here is a screen shot

For a simple 20 second sequence of a plane flying through clouds there is a lot involved.
Firstly the plane is a 3d model composited in using the colour difference plugin.
Then the fun began the plane just looked silly. Just bad
This is the plane composited without effects

To make the plane sit into its environment , I first worked on its lighting I set up an ambient light to reflect of the hull at certain times in the sequence. As you can see I have also colour corrected the hull of the 747 to reflect the colours of the environment around.
Next I added the shadow the aircraft throws and made it more see through. I animated some smoke utilising a particle generator , I then key framed it and manipulated it so it was going in the rite direction. Then to help the effect I smudged it using a heavy blur and lowered the opacity. I also have a camera move key framed into the animation to give it more of a dynamic feel.

So how did I come to use these techniques?
For weeks I have been mocking up scenes for my project. I have used tutorials , books and forums for answers to problems that have arisen. One such site has been a major help .

One sequence I have had the most issues with has been with this footage.

I have a sky I want to composite in and I have tried different techniques but the issue is retaining enough edge detail on the tree tops.
So I find this tutorial at video copilot

Basically the point I am trying to make is to learn After Effects I have had to understand conceptually how things fit whether it be light and how it moves , to colour casts and real world object behaviours. Then I have gone forward researched and sampled different techniques for the same scene. There are so many techniques that I have thrown many attempts away until I have found something that works for me.

University week 3 post Keying in After Effects

Today I started layering elements down for my After Effects project.
After a bit of research I came across Mocha which is a plugin for After Effects.

As you can see from the screen shot above I was in need of a simple way to key in a sky

After effects work in progress

Mocha provides a simple way to mask and key in your desired elements.

The process is relatively simple, it reminded me very much of the pen tool in Illustrator.

Simply right click on the file you wish to do this process on within the finder and select open with Mocha.

Then click on the “create spline layer tool” and start tracing out the outline of the area you wish to replace.

After you have fully traced out the area you wish to replace , then you export the meta data to your clip board.

Go back into After Effects create a new null layer, then paste your clipboard contents into your null layer.

You should then be able to mask your sky into place.

This method isn’t perfect as there are some hairline problems around the edges.

To improve upon the initial composite I will endeavour to do multiple color keys , with the eye dropper tool. This will enable me whilst zoomed in to get better edges. Also I contemplate that applying a blur to the edges of the composite will help greatly.

The next job will be to start adding texture to the foreground. As this is a still , the sky does not look believable yet because there is no foreground movement to add some element of realism to the reality I am attempting to build.  I will start working in my green screened flowers which will begin to add the texture that is desired.

Whilst I am discussing compositing I wanted to touch upon a particularly bad composite job I viewed recently. It was on a drama called the Ringer. As you can see the subject is supposed to be on a bridge in Paris. But intact it is obvious she is in front of a green screen the only thing they have done to sell the illusion is provide a small piece of this supposed bridge behind her shoulder.

So how would of I approached this differently , firstly having something in the foreground to join up with the background and secondly having everything out of focus makes it look even more bogus. I also thing the lighting doesn’t look correct on the actor I would probably have her more in shadow. For a pitch black scene she looks to uniformly lit. These are all things I will keep in mind as I develop my skills. It just goes to show even the most experienced can produce flawed work.

%d bloggers like this: