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8K RED VFX Workflow

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Ellen Donnelly
8K RED VFX Workflow
on Dec 30, 2019 at 5:03:46 pm

Hello, I am learning as I go on a short film in post-production.

I have edited 8K RED footage using camera-created proxies. It worked like a dream.

Now I want to do VFX and compositing in After Effects. What is the best workflow for this? Eventually I will want to do color in DaVinci.

I have tried to use dynamic link and then connect the proxies I already have in After Effects. They connect fine, but everything is so painfully slow, there must be a better way. Even with everything set to the lowest resolution, I can barely get a smooth playback with the proxies, let alone track motion and add effects.

Should I create different proxies specifically for after effects to use? Should I just accept that everything is going to take hours?

Here are specs of my machine:
Mac Pro
Processor: 2.7GHz 12-core intel xeon E5
graphics: AMD FirePro D700 6144 MB
and using a Promise Pegasus 9TB external harddrive


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Tero Ahlfors
Re: 8K RED VFX Workflow
on Dec 30, 2019 at 8:14:37 pm

If you're doing VFX work you should be using either the original file or EXR sequences.

[Ellen Donnelly] "Should I just accept that everything is going to take hours?"

What is your delivery resolution? Even though you have 8K footage doesn't mean you have to work in 8K.

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Eric Santiago
Re: 8K RED VFX Workflow
on Dec 30, 2019 at 9:00:34 pm

I would also suggest trimming the fat on the clips.
In the past I had to supply TIFFs, then ProRes422 and now ProRes444 exports from an NLE.
At times I had to supply a new RED clip but you would have to do that in RCX.
EXR is the top format but has never been asked to that party ☹

Tero is right about the resolution.
Depending on the target is what VFX people want.
I've gone from HD up to 2K DCI.
I have yet to send a full 4K DCI to VFX.
A little complaining would be had if it was the case.

I was in VFX years ago when it was all sequential TIFFS at the lowest possible pixel res.

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Ellen Donnelly
Re: 8K RED VFX Workflow
on Dec 30, 2019 at 11:57:46 pm

@Tero Ahlfors It will probably be living on YouTube or Vimeo, so I can definitely lose some resolution, but I don't know how to do that.

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Andrew Somers
Re: 8K RED VFX Workflow
on Jan 2, 2020 at 1:05:29 am

Hi Ellen,

You list some of your machine specs, but not a critical one: how much RAM do you have?

Next, what settings and resolution are your proxies at?

What is the resolution and colorspace settings of the AfterEffects project?

What specifically is "slow" in AE? and What specifically are you trying to do?

What do you mean by "everything is set to the lowest resolution?"

NOTE: AE is not like Premiere, it is not a real-time editor. Don't expect to push play and have realtime playback without rendering first.

Andrew Somers
VFX & Title Supervisor

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