Tunnel VFX

Today I got to use Mocha with Pete and how simple tracking can be with different programs. I imported the file sequence and created a new composition from the files, after I imported the PNG graphics file from Pete’s company to overlay and use in the scene. I did that and then went into the animation tab and selected Track in Mocha AE and Mocha loaded.

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Which looks kinda different from After Effects but not too dissimilar. I then used the X Pen tool in the top bar to create the red outline on the wall where the trackers would be, and then selected ‘show planar surface’ to get the blue box up and then hit track backwards and then once it’s finished tracking hit track forwards to make sure I get everything in the video.

I exported it from Mocha by copying the export to the clipboard and pasted it onto a black solid, I pre-composed the black solid and put the png file on top of it in a different menu. In that menu I went into layer > transform > fit to comp to have the png file fit to the black solids size. The black solid is now in the main scene and is over the area I have tracked by copying it to the clipboard. In the main menu I turned down the opacity to 55% and changed it to colour dodge mode so it would better bled with the surrounding environment. After that it was pretty much it and I had finished this part.

I’m happy that I got to use Mocha for the first time and I’ve been wanting to use it for a while, I’m okay at navigating After Effects as I have Photoshop at home and use it daily. I would have liked to have done more VFX and maybe I would have gone into it if I had understood more about it or if it was covered during the first year. I could improve by following tutorials but I don’t have much time for that and there’s not much point to it now.

VFX Name Animation

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Today I finished my name animation in After Effects. I tried to finish it yesterday but I didn’t have enough time. I created the person in Photoshop and made the words in Illustrator. I then imported these files into After Effects and created a new composition. With the words I turned them into a vector so this process would be easier. At 2 seconds I split the words layer, duplicated it, and split it again.

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So it kinda looks like that, on one of the layers I turned the opacity all the way down so there was a solid background for the piece.

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I also duplicated the layer some more to make the animation look more full as it look too light and wispy. After I split the layers I added CC Scatterize to the layers. I then went to 2 seconds and clicked the stopwatch to start tracking it, I then went to 6 seconds which was the end and set CC Scatterize to 500 which gave the effect that it was exploding.

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After all that, I moved the layer to the right slightly to make it look a little neater so the timeline looked like this.

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I’m happy that it turned out good and looks good, I wish I had made the art differently instead of making the photoshop file at 1080, I could have used a higher resolution. I’m happy I got to do this as a piece that’s my own and not just something I was told to do, I wish I had done this sooner but I’m still happy with how it turned out.

Here it is in higher resolution.

VFX Name Animation

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Today I continued on finishing a VFX piece I am working on for Pete. I haven’t finished the painting yet but the plan is that I have my name across the middle and it disintegrates and gets blown away with a particle effect. It would fit with the painting and the way the air seems to be blowing. So far I just need to finish this in photoshop and fix some issues I’m having with colour. So far I’m happy with how this looks but I wish I could have drawing the other arm to give it some more depth.

Camera Tracking

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Pete was teaching us how track images but first he was teaching us how to make the camera look more stable. We dragged the composition into the box, with it highlighted, we selected the Warp Stabilizer tool and the Optics Compensation. This helps the blur some frames together to make it look smoother and the image looked like it was in kind of a fish lens, so that was to straighten it out a little.

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Working on what we did last week Pete taught us 2 point tracking on buildings. He said to get 2 points with contrasting colour, like 2 different windows, and use them to create a place for the image. Then we would have to render the trackers so they knew where they were through the entire clip.

This would leave me with what I have above, I think it worked pretty well and I’m happy that I got to do this it was an interesting task and understanding what I’m doing too. He also got us to do a second one so we knew fully what we were doing and understood all of the work.

 

Tracking

 

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In peters class he showed us how to do tracking for objects in After Effects. We used the pan behind tool and activated all the objects as 3D objects. First we imported the footage into After Effects and used the text tool to create some text, for this we wrote our names. Then we went into the options menu and selected a shadow catcher for the text to give it some depth. After that we activated the ray-traced 3D option and added a 3D camera tracker to the clip and waited for it to render. I then selected 3 seprate points and in the middle of those, that’s where my text would go. I rendered this again and now my name effectivly stays in one place.

I’m happy that this was a reletivly easy process to follow and I now know how to do this kind stuff. I’m good at navagating adobe software because I’ve been using it so long but I could be better at being creative with my VFX work.

VFX Moving Lines

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Pete asked us to create a weird animation for the sake of getting used to the way After Effects works. I made most of the layers except the nulls 3D and parented them to the null.With all of the lines layers we were able to start moving them around and tracking it so it would record the animation.

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It didn’t last that long but it was supposed to be a six second animation to make sure we knew what happened.

I’m happy that I got to practice a little in After Effects and understanding how the program works properly, I could definitely work on using this more and doing more complicated animations, I’m good at using the layers and understanding how they work.

VFX Lesson

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In a brief 20 minutes lesson we learned how to do this in After Effects with a skull. I started up Illustrator and used the pencil tool to create the vector art and started drawing out all the shapes. It took me about two hours to include small details so that it didn’t look so boring on it’s own. Once I finished drawing in Illustrator I saved it and left it so the vectors are still there, then I imported it into After Effects, turned it into a single vector object and then set it to reveal singularly rather than simultaneously. Finally I put it into Media Encoder to export it as a GIF.

I’m happy that my file saved after the computer crashed, and I could have been more careful about my line work. I’d improve it by using actual hair as a reference instead of just doing anything.