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Rear projections effects

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Elliot Beach
Rear projections effects
on Aug 21, 2012 at 7:15:11 pm

Hi there guys,

For a section in a music video I will have two actors in a car that I would like to have the effect of it moving. Due to budget, ease and safety though I don’t want to actually have the car moving so I am going to test out how rear projection will look.

I don’t need to look realistic as that is not the feel I am looking for but rather have colored light trails (thick), star fields or nebulars, etc, as the background to give it a out of this world stylized look. I would also prefer to use the rear projection effect than green screen as I prefer to do in camera effects. Still I will need to get the right light trails/stars for the backgrounds.

My aftereffects knowledge isn’t up to that standard yet so is anyone can give me some tips, links of video tutorials, key words to search for or stock videos that might be what I need it would be much appreciated.


Thanks in advance

Elliot Beach @ 1911 Films
DP

Youtube.com/1911film
Vimeo.com/1911films


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Dave LaRonde
Re: Rear projections effects
on Aug 21, 2012 at 8:37:21 pm

I believe you'll find a couple of free After Effects Templates that will do something nice for you on the Adobe web site.

Unless you plan to shoot at night, you may find rear-projection results unsatisfactory. There are no video projectors that can outshine Mr. Sun.

If you have a nice camera, you could also look into hanging a green screen behind the car. If you arrange it so the green surface is in shadow, Keylight could do a fine job for you. Then it's a simple matter of adding running footage shot separately into the shot.

As always, test before you do it for real unless you KNOW it's going to work... as in, "I've done this before under these conditions, and it worked like a charm."

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


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Tudor "Ted" Jelescu
Re: Rear projections effects
on Aug 21, 2012 at 10:14:09 pm

I agree with Dave- although I'm all for in camera fx, if you do not have the perfect setup you're better off with a chroma shoot. If you can get a top of the line projector that can be nicely balanced with enough light on the subject, and you have an experienced crew that has done this before, then go for the live shoot.If not, chroma will give you more options. Even from a art direction pov, you may want to shoot tests on chroma and comp in a few versions of the moving background to see how it all looks together. Best thing- you have complete control and you can always change the background. If you do all in camera, the only option if you do not like something is to re-shoot.

Tudor "Ted" Jelescu
Senior VFX Artist


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Walter Soyka
Re: Rear projections effects
on Aug 22, 2012 at 1:34:57 pm

[Elliot Beach] "I would also prefer to use the rear projection effect than green screen as I prefer to do in camera effects."

In that corner, a director of photography. In this corner, a forum full of VFX artists...

Perhaps there are some circumstances here that make the "poor man's process" in-camera effect the better choice for your production, but of course, without knowing more, my bias is to do this as a chroma shot, too. May I ask why you'd prefer to do this in-camera for this shoot?

Since this will be an art-directed element rather than a full-motion background, I'd suspect it would be more liable to change through the process, and I can see someone like one of us here roto-ing the talent and car interior to swap out the projected backgrounds in post.

Doing the work in post also gives you the advantage of not creating more than you need, and it allows you to direct the generated elements specifically for the needs of the final shots with a degree of flexibility you don't have creating the elements in pre-production for the shoot.



[Elliot Beach] "I don’t need to look realistic as that is not the feel I am looking for but rather have colored light trails (thick), star fields or nebulars, etc, as the background to give it a out of this world stylized look... My aftereffects knowledge isn’t up to that standard yet so is anyone can give me some tips, links of video tutorials, key words to search for or stock videos that might be what I need it would be much appreciated."

You may not need it to look photo-real, but presumably you also don't want it to look so physically wrong that it pulls the viewer out of the fantasy.

Think about the PMP projections for a moment; you need correct and synchronized perspectives for every window in the shot -- windshield, driver's side, passenger's side, and rear window.

You will need to build your streaks/stars/nebulas in 3D space in AE and "shoot" them with a virtual camera rig to get the perspectives you'll need for the PMP projections. In addition to the projectors and RP screens, you'll also need synchronized playback on-set with continuity across takes.

My recommendation would be that rather than jumping straight to AE tutorials or stock footage, you consult with a VFX specialist to plan out the shot.

Walter Soyka
Principal & Designer at Keen Live
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
RenderBreak Blog - What I'm thinking when my workstation's thinking
Creative Cow Forum Host: Live & Stage Events


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