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Advice for tracking footage on a live action book page

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Matthew BattershellAdvice for tracking footage on a live action book page
by on Sep 27, 2012 at 1:31:59 am

Before I shoot test shots, I just want to make sure I'm on the right track. The goal is to have a character flipping through a notebook (camera at top looking down) and have live action/graphics on parts of the actual page as the character is flipping through.

Would the best set up be to green screen parts of the notebook page and composite that way? Would I need a tracking point?

Thanks.


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Vishesh AroraRe: Advice for tracking footage on a live action book page
by on Sep 27, 2012 at 4:50:07 am

Mr. Battershell

You can create this animation all in after effects too.
Have a look at this tutorial:

http://library.creativecow.net/articles/kramer_andrew/flipbook.php

You can create the book effect using this type of animation.

Also, Using Green Screen to cut out Live Book animation is a good way to composite but for that you have to use Perspective corner pin using Mocha or other Planer Tracking software to show that the character sticks to the page and also matches the perspective of pages when flipping.

Vishesh Arora
VFX and Motion Graphics Artist

Blog:
http://digieffects.wordpress.com

Demo Reel(3D):







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Tudor "Ted" JelescuRe: Advice for tracking footage on a live action book page
by on Sep 27, 2012 at 6:33:34 am

Green screen is not necessary - tracking points on the pages are though. If your pages are thick and stay pretty flat when turned it will be easier, and Mocha can help. However, if your pages tend to bend and have a curve when flipped you will need a 3d distortion tool like Free Form or FreeForm Pro to simulate that. Vishesh suggested a full AE generated book and that may be an option. In this situation create a book that is fully painted in chroma paint (or made out of chroma paper) with track points on it (darker chroma paint/paper). This will allow you to replace the book quite easy ( be aware that you will get a lot of spill though).

Tudor "Ted" Jelescu
Senior VFX Artist


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Roland R. KahlenbergRe: Advice for tracking footage on a live action book page
by on Sep 28, 2012 at 3:13:28 am

This is far from easy. I did this once and I required 7 layers to do a single page. Less work will be required if only part of the page will be replaced. If the entire page has to be replaced then lots of finessing will have to be done on the fingers and thumb holding/turning the page(s).

You definitely need tracking markers with perspective, corner-pin tracking data. Expect to complete a few frames with manual tracking or adjustments in AE when the tracking area's angle gets very acute, making it impossible to track such frames.

Don't be too extravagant cos the markers will have to be removed or better yet, overlay-ed with the insert graphic/video. Take note that inserting an element over tracking markers will make you lose blending mode options which is useful to creating reliable-looking composites, without additional work. Pick pages without lines to make it easier to match with insert elements.

Lots of issues with this simple-looking effect.

HTH
RoRK

Intensive AE & Mocha Training in Singapore and Malaysia
Adobe ACE/ACI (version 7) & Imagineer Systems Inc Approved Mocha Trainer


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Matthew BattershellRe: Advice for tracking footage on a live action book page
by on Oct 2, 2012 at 8:01:52 pm

Thank you guys so far for the advice. I need real footage, a CGI book from scratch is gonna look too digital, especially because the character sits down and opens the book.

I shot a light paper manual (had a lot of paper flex) with some semi green squares cut out with black tracking points on them.

I'm new to mocha, but got it to track, however the export tracking data was hit and miss for a null object in AE. Sometimes nothing would happen (3d object and parenting were correct). I ended up pasting on the actual shot to be composited. One issue that occurred was that it scaled really small once tracking data was pasted onto it.

Once the page is almost vertical, the clip is about gone, so it is just tracking the flex and warp to that point. If I use the green cutout I taped on the book page as a mask, invert it and then apply that mask to the tracked data on the composite clip, then that could help me with making the composite clip become less visible as the page turns, right? Instead of masking it out frame by frame?

Thoughts?


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Matthew BattershellRe: Advice for tracking footage on a live action book page
by on Oct 2, 2012 at 8:05:45 pm

My other thought is blending since, like you pointed out, the green paper is underneath with tracking points so now the composite cannot be blended to the page...


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