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Complex Composite Involving Hair, No GS, and a Screen Replacement!

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Tim Vanosdell
Complex Composite Involving Hair, No GS, and a Screen Replacement!
on Apr 30, 2017 at 7:02:59 am

Basically in need of feedback as to how to approach the shot. I've been tearing away at this one and in need of some opinions. Here are some frames as a reference to what I'm talking about. What I'm attempting to do is key hair without a green screen and replace the screen with some footage. I've created a clean plate by painting out the actress, but I can't seem to reverse this in order to salvage the fine hair surrounding the actress. Her hair is discolored because there is no light being reflected onto her, and ideas as to:
1. salvage the fine hair
2. repair the discoloration

thanks for any and all ideas!





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Tudor "Ted" Jelescu
Re: Complex Composite Involving Hair, No GS, and a Screen Replacement!
on May 1, 2017 at 10:34:14 am

You can create a matte by applying Levels to the footage and crush the whites and blacks a bit, Hue/Saturation to bring down the saturation all the way, and then Levels again to refine. You will get something like this:

You can then animate a mask on a white layer to fill in the hair section with white and a black layer with a mask to fill in the screen. Precomp the three layers and then assign that as an alpha channel to comp the footage on top of itself. Sandwich the screen in between. You can the create a light wrap for the top layer to blend in the hair (google creating a lightwrap in AE if you do not know what that is).

Tudor "Ted" Jelescu
Senior VFX Artist


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Dave LaRonde
Re: Complex Composite Involving Hair, No GS, and a Screen Replacement!
on May 1, 2017 at 1:47:58 pm

Ted describes building a procedural matte.

If you have the ability to shoot again -- for TWO reasons mentioned in a bit -- you can do the following to make life easier:
  • Remove the tracking markers from the corners of the monitor. You don't need them.
  • Fix the exposure -- give yourself as much dynamic range as you can. You can adjust it later.
  • Almost every video display device defaults to a blue screen if there's no input. You can key off blue, so turn on the TV and yank out the connectors.
  • Adjust the lighting so the blue screen is at about 65-70 IRE.
  • Now you can use Keylight to pull a chroma key off blue, and Mocha to track the screen. If you want the shot darker, you pull the key, nest it, and mess with the levels.

Oh, and those two reasons. One-- a better-looking shot because of better exposure. Two -- a more easily-tracked shot using Mocha.

Dave LaRonde
Promotion Producer
KGAN (CBS) & KFXA (Fox) Cedar Rapids, IA


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Mel Matsuoka
Re: Complex Composite Involving Hair, No GS, and a Screen Replacement!
on May 3, 2017 at 3:03:14 am

I would try the "Refine Soft Matte" filter. It often does wonders on chunky edge detail on stuff like hair...it can be indistinguishable from magic in some instances, or it can make things worse in others.


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