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compositting shadows

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malcolm DeSoto
compositting shadows
on Feb 23, 2012 at 8:13:20 pm

I have a job coming up in which I'll need to composite a full body actor into a different environment, upon which, they'll have to walk around.

Aside from matching perspective, I've always found getting the shadows right to be difficult.

Usually, I motion track my actor into the scene, duplicate the layer, and then rotate the duplicate down on the X axis until the duplicate is under the actor to some extent. Tint the layer and blur it out a bit and you've made a fairly accurate shadow cast.

The second step is to create a darker shadow under the actor's feet by keyframing a mask around a black solid.

This method has proved to work fairly well, but it is time consuming.

I'm just curious if anyone has any preferred method or has seen a tutorial that may present an easier/more effective way to achieve this affect.

Additionally, any notes on matching perspective would be appreciated as well.

Currently, I just take notes on the camera's angle, height and lens mm and then try to recreate that when I film other components of the scene.


"The secret to creativity is knowing how to hide your sources." --Albert Einstein

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Tudor "Ted" Jelescu
Re: compositting shadows
on Feb 24, 2012 at 11:28:06 am

You may find this plugin (Shadow from Warp) useful (especially when it come to the shadow being cast on 2 separate planes:

Tudor "Ted" Jelescu
Senior VFX Artist

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