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How to achieve a zoom and swap?

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Bobby Kay
How to achieve a zoom and swap?
on Jul 29, 2011 at 2:14:38 pm

Ok I know there is probably a real name for this effect but if I knew it I might have an easier time searching for how to accomplish it. What I need to accomplish is something to the effect of having a camera on the talent, zooming into maybe their shirt, and then without cutting zoom back out to someone wearing the same shirt. I don't need a tutorial as much as just the concept on how to achieve this and make it look LEGIT.


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Tudor "Ted" Jelescu
Re: How to achieve a zoom and swap?
on Jul 29, 2011 at 3:39:48 pm

The trick is not only in matching the closeup on the shirt but the lighting conditions as well. Having the actors in the shade would eliminate shadows and will make it easier to match. Once you do the zoom in keep the actor still and do not move the camera. Stick some transparent tape on the viewfinder and mark some reference points out (a easily recognizable feature, like a chest pocket). The next shot should start using those reference points to zoom in on the same spot. You can easily help that with a zoom in post up to 120%, to better match the two shots. Better yet, if you have access to a RED, or similar, shoot 4k and then you have plenty of resolution to match with a digital zoom in post for HD.

Tudor "Ted" Jelescu
Senior VFX Artist


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Bobby Kay
Re: How to achieve a zoom and swap?
on Jul 29, 2011 at 3:59:27 pm

Ok that's definitely doable. I'll give it a shot. Guess After effects wasn't the right forum after all!


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Todd Kopriva
Re: How to achieve a zoom and swap?
on Jul 29, 2011 at 9:25:43 pm

Tudor's advice was all good (of course), but you can use After Effects blending modes and distortion effects to fudge a little bit at the transition if things don't quite line up between your two shots.

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Bobby Kay
Re: How to achieve a zoom and swap?
on Jul 29, 2011 at 10:50:45 pm

Well that's a little more what I was originally thinking/asking...can u elaborate on blending modes/distortion approach please?


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Chris Tompkins
Re: How to achieve a zoom and swap?
on Jul 30, 2011 at 5:24:56 pm

Many, many times you see this not as a camera move but the actor moves.

They walk right into the camera, filling the screen with black and then transition to another scene...

Chris Tompkins
Video Atlanta LLC


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Bobby Kay
Re: How to achieve a zoom and swap?
on Jul 31, 2011 at 10:37:00 pm

True but that is not what I wa looking to accomplish. That would be a nix transition but I'm looking for a "special effect". Trying to give the illusion of seeing a person then zooming in and back out revealing a new person in one shot.


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