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easier way to render track mattes

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Fadi Baqieasier way to render track mattes
by on May 19, 2013 at 2:55:20 pm

I have a many layered composition and I want to render greyscale track mattes for layers that takes into account any foreground obstructions.

I am having to select the layer, apply a white fill to it, precomp all the layers in the front, and apply a black fill to that. This is very slow and I have to do this to a number of layers which means constantly applying and removing effects and all the headaches that precomping introduces.

Is there a simpler way of doing this that I am missing? A script or render setting that I have overlooked?


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Dave LaRondeRe: easier way to render track mattes
by on May 20, 2013 at 7:49:01 pm

Prerender the track mattes for the foreground layers. It will speed up the rendering process, especially if the footage is in a long-gop codec like h.264.

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


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Fadi BaqiRe: easier way to render track mattes
by on May 20, 2013 at 9:42:14 pm

Hey Dave,

I'm not sure how this is an answer to my question. I have background elements, foreground elements, and layers in between that I want to create greyscale track mattes for. To do this, I have to precompose all the foreground elements (which means ruining expression connections, arduously duplicating and selecting which layers should be precomped...etc...) then applying a black fill effect on the foreground comp, then selecting the layer I want the track matte for, and applying a white fill to it and rendering this whole composition. Then I have to redo all this for another layer.

It seems like a needlessly long process and I'm wondering if there are any workarounds.


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Dave LaRondeRe: easier way to render track mattes
by on May 20, 2013 at 9:47:34 pm

There are ways to do it, but they exist in a 3D application: you export a Depth Matte. But it now sounds as if you did everything in After Wffects. There isn't a good way to do it in AE, sorry to say...

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


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Fadi BaqiRe: easier way to render track mattes
by on May 20, 2013 at 10:07:48 pm

ouch. I was hoping that wasn't going to be the answer. Thanks for your help anyway.


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