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Teleporting with shakey camera

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Scott O'Hara
Teleporting with shakey camera
on Jan 16, 2012 at 7:46:18 pm

Hey all.

So ive gotten down teleporting using some turtorials but I wanted to do this effect with a handheld camera. Basically I want to film someone teleport then move the camera to find them as they reappear. Problem I'm not sure how to get this because my understanding is the movement would have to match exactly with the other shots of filming the same teleport spots with the actor not in them.

I hope I'm making sense. I tried to find some turtorials on this but all the teleporting I've seen has been with stationary cameras. Wasn't sure if AE had some tricks to make this happen or if it just comes down to matching the camera movement exactly for both takes.

Thanks
Scott


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Dave LaRonde
Re: Teleporting with shakey camera
on Jan 16, 2012 at 11:02:30 pm

[Scott O'Hara] "I tried to find some turtorials on this but all the teleporting I've seen has been with stationary cameras."

There's a reason for that: using anything other than a locked-down camera introduces new and very painful levels of complexity to the shot. You could even make it impossible to accomplish in AE depending on the circumstances of your shot.

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


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Andrew Somers
Re: Teleporting with shakey camera
on Jan 17, 2012 at 12:25:02 am

I wanted to do this effect with a handheld camera. Basically I want to film someone teleport then move the camera to find them as they reappear. Problem I'm not sure how to get this because my understanding is the movement would have to match exactly with the other shots of filming the same teleport spots with the actor not in them.



I can think of a couple ways to handle this shot.

The "standard" way is to use a motion control rig (i.e. not hand held), and do the move with the actor(s), and then repeat the move for the second portion of the shot. With motion control, each pass will match and it is then trivial to blend from one to the other.

A "second" standard way would be to shoot the actor entirely on a green screen stage (hand held) with tracking marks on the green screen set. Then extract the 3D camera, build a virtual set around the actor, etc etc.


--- BUT

Assuming you don't have a mocon rig at your disposal, or a large green screen stage, here is a LOW BUDGET method for the hand-held version:

You need three elements for the shot:

1) A clean plate with the hand held camera motion and the pan from point A to point B and NOT the actor that transports.

2) The actor walking up to point A before he disappears (shot locked down, and shot with a wider lens from the same relative camera position.)

3) The actor walking away from point B after he reappears (shot locked down, and shot with a wider lens from the same relative camera position.)


Now, 3D track the hand held shot using PFtrack, Syntheyes, BouJou or whatever. Set manual markers at the actor's location for point A and point B.

Import that 3D camera into After effects, using the manual markers for Point A and B as null objects for reference.

Now take the static elements, and add them at the locations of the null markers. Adjust as needed so that the static shots are locked solid to the motion track.

Roto around the actor to get a good blend into the clean plate, and add whatever FX you want for the transporter energize bit.


Note that for this method, you can be hand held, but you'll pretty much need to stick to a pan, or at the very least, limit your Z axis movement for the portions where the actor is going to be in shot.


That is, you could plan the shot that you you were handheld, but essentially in one spot for the disappear, and then you walk around and are in another spot for the reappear.

MARK both of these spots, and use *that mark* for the lock down tripod locations for the two elements with the actor. Overall this will work best with wider compositions, a decent distance from subject to reduce perspective errors - if you want tighter, then shoot and work at a higher res, and crop/resize later.


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Conrad Olson
Re: Teleporting with shakey camera
on Jan 17, 2012 at 1:45:58 am

There are loads of ways to do it depending on your camera move.

You might get away with just shotting 2 or 3 'similar' plates, then picking one as your hero, stabilizing the other two then match moving their motion to the hero. The success of this would depend on the complexity of your move and the environment you are in. In the simplest scenario you could just get away with 2D tracking and stabilizing if you are just panning.

You can do the same tracking/stabilizing/matchmove techniques in 3D if you have a more complicated move.

Another option would be to shot it in one take, with two similar looking actors (twins would be perfect). Then paint the first one out of the shot after he teleports and paint the 2nd one out before he arrives.

---

conradolson.com


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Tudor "Ted" Jelescu
Re: Teleporting with shakey camera
on Jan 17, 2012 at 8:06:57 am

Here's another idea:
Put the camera on a tripod.
Use a pan to transition from the point where the person disappears to the point where he/she appears again.
Keep the camera in the initial position to create the disappearing, then pan and stop, have the actor come in and continue the action after the appearing.
Add camera shake (either enlarge the plate or use Motion Tile to cover the empty areas that will show on the edges), a bit of comera zoom and Lens Blur.

Tudor "Ted" Jelescu
Senior VFX Artist


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