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Faking a translucent window

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Matthew SonbergFaking a translucent window
by on Sep 21, 2012 at 6:26:28 pm

Hey folks! I have a project where I'd like to fake a translucent window. The goal is to have a subject walk toward the window and then as they get close enough they will peer in. What I'd like to do is just overlay a still shot of my window design but I want it to appear translucent. I guess I'll use some sort of noise layer or a blur or combine the two? I also want to try to shade the window as the subject gets closer to make sure that I'm ending up with a realistic shot.

Any suggestions?

Is there a totally different way to approach this?

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Vishesh AroraRe: Faking a translucent window
by on Sep 21, 2012 at 7:18:24 pm

Watch this tutorials from Video Copilot.

This will help you to achieve the desired effect.

Vishesh Arora
VFX and Motion Graphics Artist


Demo Reel(3D):

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Matthew SonbergRe: Faking a translucent window
by on Sep 21, 2012 at 7:38:32 pm

Thanks for the quick response! I took a look and the tutorial will be helpful.

Take a look at this link:

I guess I should have done this in the first place.

I'll be showing how the film on the left provides privacy because it is frosted or translucent while the film on the right is transparent (minus the opaque bamboo graphics). So I was going to just shoot a guy walking toward the camera and acting as though he were looking through the window. Then just overlay the transparent version, apply mask paths and then add effects to the transparent space to create the translucent layer... make more sense?

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Dave LaRondeRe: Faking a translucent window
by on Sep 21, 2012 at 8:26:23 pm

If your talent was shot on green screen...
...and your exterior shot is on its own layer...'re in great shape: simply key the talent and put him between the background and the window.

Didn't plan the shot that way? You're not such great shape.

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

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