I recently finished up two compositing projects. In both cases, I was asked to replace the screens in the videos. The videos are below with a description of my process for each. Continue reading
Superpose is a plugin from Keller Software for The Foundry’s NUKE and Adobe After Effects that automatically cleans up backgrounds and removes unwanted foreground objects. It does this by statistically analyzing each pixel and recreating the background behind moving objects in an image sequence or video clip. It is not meant to create a perfect, end result but can create very good results. Continue reading
Perhaps you’ve seen in the media recently about a meteor appearing over Oklahoma City. Or maybe you noticed the story on Reddit? These videos have been revealed to be part of a campaign by Digital-Tutors to promote their training courses. They have also created a FREE After Effects training course to show how they accomplished the effects.
So check out DT’s original post on the fake meteor below, watch the videos, and perhaps leave a comment below.
Imagineer Systems, makers of popular planar tracking software mocha, have released a new training video with product specialist Mary
Poplin, comparing mocha with the new Adobe Mask Tracker. The Mask Tracker works by drawing a mask and then telling After Effects to track the area within the mask. Mary discusses many of the pitfalls and limitations in the new Mask Tracker; however, it is also pointed out that the tool works adequately for tracking some objects, mainly rigid surfaces.
My personal conclusion is that the Mask Tracker is a quick-and-dirty, yet inflexible, tool for simple planar tracking tasks with limited movement. Despite its limitations, however, this may be a tool with yet unrealized potential and one that Adobe may develop further.
Broken Reality is a new short film that I am working on for my senior animation project at Huntington University. It uses a mix of live-action and animation to create the film’s visuals. The film opens with two thieves breaking into a futuristic computer facility and hacking into one of the computers. They succeed, but are spotted in the process and must escape while being chased by robot guards. It climaxes with a confrontation between human responsible for setting off the alarm and his robots and the two thieves.
The CG elements in the film will mainly consist of set extensions to enhance the exterior environments (buildings, trees, etc.), 3D modeled and rigged robots, screen replacements, and fully CG interiors. Most of the 3D work will be completed in Blender, while also using Maya, Photoshop, and After Effects.
The target date for completion of Broken Reality is May 2012. The work will be done primarily by myself with some assistance from fellow 3D artist James Clugston. Because of the small team and the complexity of the effects work, the full film has been broken down into approximately 7 shots. This should allow for a high level of quality to be achieved.
AtomKraft is a fantastic plugin for After Effects. It provides an alternative to the native Classic 3D and Ray-traced 3D renderers, using a 3D unbiased renderer based on the Renderman-compliant 3Delight application. As such, it is really excellent at previz, making composites, and 3D motion graphics. It supports OBJ, Alembic, and RIB file formats. You can find out more at Jupiter Jazz, the makers of AtomKraft.
I have a set of tutorials about AtomKraft, although I apologize in advance for the poor quality. I will hopefully have a better series on AtomKraft 1.0 shortly.
Live Photoshop 3D is a feature that allows loading 3D layers in Photoshop into Adobe After Effects. It’s costly in terms of performance and now outdated by plug-ins such as Element 3D and AtomKraft and the new 3D tools in CS6, but it can be an option if these tools are unavailable. Note however, that this feature has been removed in CS6.
These are some tutorials that briefly explain how to bring in 3D Photoshop documents and work with them.