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Stabilization of complicated dolly move

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David BeardStabilization of complicated dolly move
by on Jan 4, 2013 at 5:41:01 pm

Hello Cow Community,

Thank you in advance for any help anyone might be able to offer. I'm hoping that someone has an effective method of helping me stabilize some footage I recently shot for a short film we were toying with. This is a low angle dolly push and pull, that was shot on Epic-X, using a PS Technik Skater Dolly. During the dolly move, there are some unwanted bumps that we experienced, and I would love to be able to stabilize this shot. Here is the shot. https://vimeo.com/56767496
Password: Traced

I'm messed around a little with warp stabilizer, and it absolutely butchers the shot.

I'm working in an Adobe CS6 workflow. If someone would like the actual file to play around with, let me know, and I'll send it off to you.

Thanks again for you help.

Dave


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Tero AhlforsRe: Stabilization of complicated dolly move
by on Jan 4, 2013 at 6:27:16 pm

It's a private video so I can't view it. Have you tried stabilizing it in smaller parts?


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David BeardRe: Stabilization of complicated dolly move
by on Jan 4, 2013 at 6:36:41 pm

My apologies. I changed it so it is now password accessible. Password is traced.


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Dave LaRondeRe: Stabilization of complicated dolly move
by on Jan 4, 2013 at 6:52:53 pm

Ouch. That isn't a good candidate for stabilization, sorry to say. There are a few reasons:
  • The bumps are few and far between.
  • The overall camera motion of the shot is very subtle: Warp Stabilizer doesn't know exactly what should be stabilized, to put it in anthropomorphic terms.
  • It's really dark, and most of the time, there isn't much bright-dark contrast which would help.
  • It's really long! That's a boatload of work you're giving AE.
The good news: I still think you can smooth out the shot a bit vertically OR horizontally, but not both at once. Check out the Motion Tile effect, nest the shot in a comp, apply Motion Tile, and reposition the shot vertically (or horizontally, but not both) to smooth out the bumps. It could work!

Hey, it's worth a shot. And in the shot's defense, it doesn't look all that bad in the first place. Go back and look at at the great big boom up in the opera scene of Citizen Kane and see what you think.

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


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Tero AhlforsRe: Stabilization of complicated dolly move
by on Jan 4, 2013 at 7:08:18 pm

So what exactly do you want to stabilize? The only thing I'd stabilize is the dolly moves at the end of the clip and I got it pretty smooth with Warp Stabilizer set to stabilize position.


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David BeardRe: Stabilization of complicated dolly move
by on Jan 4, 2013 at 7:09:46 pm

I would like to stablize the vertical bumps in the dolly move.


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Chris WrightRe: Stabilization of complicated dolly move
by on Jan 5, 2013 at 7:26:52 am

you can precomp it, add timewarp 50%, the timestretch the precomp 50%. This smooths out the bumps. I tested your clip and got good results.

Also, virtualdub's deshaker works on dolly moves and it's free!
Stabilizes horizontal/vertical panning, rotation and zooming.
http://www.guthspot.se/video/deshaker.htm


another option is syntheyes that supports 3d keystoning correction while stabilizing.
http://www.ssontech.com/content/stabile.htm


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Angelo LorenzoRe: Stabilization of complicated dolly move
by on Jan 4, 2013 at 7:11:34 pm

I agree with Dave. Not a great candidate for auto stabilization because the largest object in the frame is moving counter to the camera. Since Warp Stabilzer is a pixel effect, even if you tracked a version where you mask out the guy, you may not be able to apply it to the original footage.

With that said, it may be worth masking out the guy and trying a 3d camera track. I recall something like making the footage a 3d layer then using expressions to invert the 3d camera's movement, and you can use the keyframes to ease motion (like your normal operator's moves) back into the shot.

http://www.videocopilot.net/tutorials/stabilize_shaky_footage/ lays the technique out.

--------------------
Angelo Lorenzo

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Darby EdelenRe: Stabilization of complicated dolly move
by on Jan 4, 2013 at 8:02:15 pm

The Warp Stabilizer may help in another of the transformation modes.

If that fails then you can try and use a camera tracker to stabilize the shot. This requires a good camera solve though.

Once you have the solve you'd duplicate the solved camera, make the footage a 3D layer, parent it to the lower of the solved cameras and apply a smooth() expression to all of the top solved camera's transform properties (position, rotation, etc.).

To keep the footage from ever leaving the frame you'd also need to either scale up the footage layer a bit or zoom in on the top (active) camera.

Darby Edelen


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