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Using LUX for Headlights and Tracking It

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Eric Kirk
Using LUX for Headlights and Tracking It
on Dec 18, 2010 at 10:28:53 pm

Hello,

I've recently purchase Trapcode LUX. I also have particular and warp and running AE CS5.

I can pretty well figure out how to make the headlights like for a car but am not sure how best to track and add the lights for a moving car. So far, I don't see many LUX tutorials out there.

A great example is this BMW commercial, which includes a short behind the scenes thing.

It would be the second link just below the one paragraph on this page: http://www.studiodaily.com/main/news/7306.html

Appreciate any help.

Thanks,
Eric

Eric D. Kirk
http://www.kirkproductions.com


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Mike Park
Re: Using LUX for Headlights and Tracking It
on Dec 19, 2010 at 7:09:33 pm

The best way, absent true 3d match moving is to track each headlight using the built in tracker and then apply the data to a null. Next, picwip the light xy position to the null position and then set the light z depth to 0. Now do the same for the other headlight and add another layer and apply lux to it. Adjust your settings and you should be good. To add more realism and some flares, check out Knoll light factory.

Hope this helps,

Mike


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Eric Kirk
Re: Using LUX for Headlights and Tracking It
on Dec 19, 2010 at 7:17:08 pm

Mike,

Thanks. I meant to mention or ask whether the Mocha AE would be of any help as well or whether AE motion tracking works better?

On the light z depth at 0, just curious what that does? The only reason I ask is on the car test shot I am doing, it's basically a straight on shot comging from a distant, straight at the camera.

If that matters. :)

Thanks,

Eric

Eric D. Kirk
http://www.kirkproductions.com


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Mike Park
Re: Using LUX for Headlights and Tracking It
on Dec 20, 2010 at 12:27:36 am

Mocha is a planar tracker. It is used to generate 4 corner pin data to map a 2d texture onto a 3d plane. It is not necessary to use it for this. You only need one point in this instance. Also, moving light z depth to 0 will make your light track properly. By default the light is set to -444 in z and will screw up your 2d track.


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Eric Kirk
Re: Using LUX for Headlights and Tracking It
on Dec 20, 2010 at 2:02:06 am

Mike,

Thanks. I am giving this a try. I never seem to have much luck with the AE tracker.

So, place a null first, then track that portion of the car, apply tracking data to x,y position, then parent the light only to the null? Is there any need to parent the solid that LUX is applied to as well to the null?

Secondly, my Z seemed to already be at 0 so not sure I am in the right spot. I assume you mean in the light transform properties?

And finally, assuming I can get this tracked, how do you make the light so that it is smaller in the distance and gradually increases in size as the approaches?

You meantioned the Knoll Factory. Is that even better for headlights than Lux?

Thanks,

Eric

Eric D. Kirk
http://www.kirkproductions.com


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Mike Park
Re: Using LUX for Headlights and Tracking It
on Dec 20, 2010 at 7:40:35 pm

Ok, let me see if I can tackle all of these:

Dont parent the light to the null, picwip the xyz position of the light to the xy position of the null after tracked. The z position of the light will then be set to the y position. Just alter that to be 0 instead.

You dont need to mess with the layer lux is applied to. The effect will track the lights itself. It will screw up the position if you move the solid layer.

As for making it bigger or smaller, you need to do that yourself. Remember, this is not a true 3d track, but only tracking a 2d plane or image of 3d elements. You just need to keyframe the brightness or size of the lux element to get the feel you are after.

And, yes, in my opinion, Knoll would make much better headlights. You can get anamorpic flares (the sidways blue streaks) which are so often used these days and make it look much more believeable. Of course, you can do this inside AE, but you would have to create all the flare elements yourself. I did this type of think in a digital juice tutorial where I created an flare from scratch a couple of weeks ago.


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Eric Kirk
Re: Using LUX for Headlights and Tracking It
on Dec 20, 2010 at 8:08:24 pm

Mike,

Thanks. Very helpful and I think that should assist in getting that all set up.

Now, just to get a good track with AE Motion Tracker. As I mentioned, I always seem to have mixed results in using it.

I guess on a good note, it is just test footage and I wanted to add lights and track for practice.

Eric

Eric D. Kirk
http://www.kirkproductions.com


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Eric Kirk
Re: Using LUX for Headlights and Tracking It
on Dec 20, 2010 at 8:23:04 pm

Mike,

On another note, I just stumbled on this Foundary tracking tutorial by Bill O'Neil. Two questions on that, first, would that solve my light tracking issue even better than the 2D tracker in AE? And second, where do I find this and how much?

Appreciat the help.

Eric

Eric D. Kirk
http://www.kirkproductions.com


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Mike Park
Re: Using LUX for Headlights and Tracking It
on Dec 23, 2010 at 7:58:28 pm

What tutorial? There is no link or address.


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