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Need to create a matte out of footage w no alpha

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abie silva
Need to create a matte out of footage w no alpha
on Jun 22, 2011 at 9:02:34 pm

A soda bottle spins around from full frame and the camera zooms out until the bottle is in the center of the frame. Problem is they didn't provide a matte. The bottle is just on a black background. But of course since the soft drink itself is of a darker color this poses and interesting issue as well. I'm using AE CS3, what would be the most efficient way to create a matte for this? The footage is only 5 seconds long; can I create a batch in PS that will select the black area, create a alpha channel, close the current frame, open up the subsequent one and repeat the process until all the frames have an alpha? If there is a faster more intuitive way to go about doing this, I'd really like to here it. Hope this all makes sense, Thank you.


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Michael Szalapski
Re: Need to create a matte out of footage w no alpha
on Jun 22, 2011 at 9:21:47 pm

Can you pull a luma key from it?
You could try Auto Trace.
You could try the 30 day trial of CS5 and try the Rotobrush on it. (Read up on it first [link])
You could resort to traditional rotoscoping. Lots of tips and tricks here [link].

- The Great Szalam
(The 'Great' stands for 'Not So Great, in fact, Extremely Humble')

No trees were harmed in the creation of this message, but several thousand electrons were mildly inconvenienced.


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Dave LaRonde
Re: Need to create a matte out of footage w no alpha
on Jun 23, 2011 at 3:38:31 pm

[abie silva] "A soda bottle spins around from full frame and the camera zooms out until the bottle is in the center of the frame. Problem is they didn't provide a matte. "

Your description makes it sound like it was an effects shot to begin with. Very few people can spin bottles with enough skill to stop at a perfect vertical, to say nothing of coordinating a zoom out while doing so.

Without clarifying details about the shot, I'd go out on a limb and say it's time to bug the people who provided the footage to get the elements you need to create a proper matte.

Dave LaRonde
Sr. Promotion Producer
KCRG-TV (ABC) Cedar Rapids, IA


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Mark Spraker
Re: Need to create a matte out of footage w no alpha
on Jun 24, 2011 at 6:55:17 am

If it's on a black background you could try using a Difference Matte. Just throw a Black Solid under the footage layer and use that as the Difference Layer.

It'll need some fine tuning, sure, but it's a start.


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abie silva
Re: Need to create a matte out of footage w no alpha
on Jun 24, 2011 at 1:30:57 pm

I appreciate all of the input. I opted to just go ahead and roto everything by hand. The shape of the bottle was consistant throughout so it wasn't very difficult to do. I just hate when clients make my job more difficult than it should be. But oh well that's what we over here call..."pain in the butt fee"...and it was just a 5 second tag so it wasn't too much of a pain. The client didn't have access to the matte and this particular client was so non-technical they didnt' even no what a matte was or what I could possibly be talking about so I didn't even bother to pursue the issue. Pretty much your typical client. Anyway, thank you all for your help.


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