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Compositing liquid animations from C4D with live action footage in After Effects - how to achieve realistic refractions?

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Thomas Aitken
Compositing liquid animations from C4D with live action footage in After Effects - how to achieve realistic refractions?
on Aug 25, 2019 at 7:14:09 am

Hi all, first time poster here!

I’m currently working on a music video which is to include some liquid animations created in Cinema 4D with RealFlow as well as live action footage of the artist performing.

I want the animations to run over the top of this footage and feel integrated, producing realistic reflections and refractions of the footage but I have no idea how to achieve this.

I have so far been exporting videos with an alpha channel and compositing them with live footage in after effects but the results are dissatisfying, as the animations feel very disjointed and there is of course no interaction between them and the footage.

Does anyone know how I can create a composite in which the liquid properly refracts my video underneath? Should I be looking at importing the live footage into cinema perhaps?

All suggestions very much appreciated, I’m working with R20 by the way and the latest version of After Effects.


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Graham Quince
Re: Compositing liquid animations from C4D with live action footage in After Effects - how to achieve realistic refractions?
on Aug 26, 2019 at 10:01:41 am

Hi

Honestly, I think the best way to achieve this would be to have your video layer as a Plane or Background object within C4D. The renderer can than build more realistic refractions. Alternatively, you can fake this to some extent using the water rendering as a distortion map in AE, which will give you greater control of the final look rather than waiting on C4D's rendering, but if you want the computer to do the heavy lifting, then export your video layer I reckon.

http://www.YouTube.com/ShiveringCactus - Free FX for amateur films
http://shiveringcactus.wordpress.com/ - FX blog


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Richard Garabedain
Re: Compositing liquid animations from C4D with live action footage in After Effects - how to achieve realistic refractions?
on Aug 26, 2019 at 3:45:16 pm

can you make a black and white displacement map of your liquid and then use a displacement map to transfer the refractiveness to your video or picture


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Thomas Aitken
Re: Compositing liquid animations from C4D with live action footage in After Effects - how to achieve realistic refractions?
on Aug 26, 2019 at 7:44:00 pm

Many thanks for your reply. What would be the best way to go about making that displacement map in cinema 4D?

Would you just use the alpha channel?


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