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Masking with brush on Adjustment layer

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David ZappaMasking with brush on Adjustment layer
by on Dec 5, 2013 at 1:35:31 pm

Hi, I immediately apologize if this is a stupid question but I'm pretty new to AE. As a photographer I come from PS and was wondering if it's possible to mask out an adjustment level in AE using the paint-brush tool like you would do in PS.

I read that normally you double click on the layer you want to mask, set the paint panel to Alpha and simply paint brush like you would do in PS.

But if I do that on an adjustment level I don't have the ability to brush and by double clicking on it I get a white layer which makes sense as it is the alpha of the adj level. But why can't I mask it with the brush.

Using shapes even with the feather tool seems (to me) a less cleaner mask.
I'm sure I'm doing something wrong but I'd like to have total control on my mask.

Thank you.


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John CuevasRe: Masking with brush on Adjustment layer
by on Dec 5, 2013 at 11:28:30 pm

Not sure of your workflow, but one solution might be to create a solid, paint on the alpha channel of it, place that layer above your adjustment layer and change the adjustment layer track matte to alpha matter(or alpha inverted

Johnny Cuevas, Editor
Thinkck.com

"I have not failed 700 times. I have succeeded in proving that those 700 ways will not work. When I have eliminated the ways that will not work, I will find the way that will work."
---THOMAS EDISON on inventing the light bulb.


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David ZappaRe: Masking with brush on Adjustment layer
by on Dec 6, 2013 at 12:50:49 pm

John thank you for your kind reply. I was thinking of going that way but I was wondering if there was a more "direct" way.
To see what you are doing on the layer that needs to be affected by the adjustment layer I guess I must not double click on the adjustment layer to preview it's alpha otherwise you don't see the underneath most important layer.
Don't know if I was clear enough.

I also thought that maybe a solution could be to make a freeze frame export to photoshop, create adjustments layers and their mask and then import these into AE then position track them

Does that make any sense?
Thanks


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John CuevasRe: Masking with brush on Adjustment layer
by on Dec 6, 2013 at 5:39:30 pm

Is it possible for you to just make a duplicate of the layer you want to adjust, place that over the adjustment layer, and do the painting on it's alpha channel---and use that as a trackmatte? Then you could see the areas you need affect.

As for your idea, I've never tried it, so I'm not sure if you can bring in masks and adjustment layers from PS to AE via a psd.

Johnny Cuevas, Editor
Thinkck.com

"I have not failed 700 times. I have succeeded in proving that those 700 ways will not work. When I have eliminated the ways that will not work, I will find the way that will work."
---THOMAS EDISON on inventing the light bulb.


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David ZappaRe: Masking with brush on Adjustment layer
by on Dec 7, 2013 at 1:01:12 pm

Yes, no problem on making a duplicate as track matte. Excellent idea. I'll give it try and let you know. Thanks.
Is it possible to paint on the alpha channel without double clicking on the layer which shoes you only the white alpha without being able to see the layer?
Well no need to answer to this as I'll figure it out myself as soon as I'll try. :-)


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David ZappaRe: Masking with brush on Adjustment layer
by on Dec 11, 2013 at 8:30:27 am

Ok, I did try the way you said but probably I'm still doing something wrong as I don't think there isn't a better way to do this...
I duplicated the layer to be color corrected selectively, put it above my adj layer. Then I wanted to paint brush the alpha channel, but to do so, as for I have seen, you need to double click on that layer which opens it alone not showing you the rest of the comp.
The paint brush tool isn't active until you double click on the layer.

I know, I'm missing out on something here.
sorry if I'm still so clumsy with this.


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John CuevasRe: Masking with brush on Adjustment layer
by on Dec 11, 2013 at 4:55:25 pm

No, you are correct you have to double click the layer to use the paint brush.

I guess I don't understand, don't you need to see the video layer you double-clicked, to use as a guide. Then just in the paint brush dialogue you would change the "Channels" to "Alpha". Or is there a bunch of composited above the video that needs to be avoided?

Johnny Cuevas, Editor
Thinkck.com

"I have not failed 700 times. I have succeeded in proving that those 700 ways will not work. When I have eliminated the ways that will not work, I will find the way that will work."
---THOMAS EDISON on inventing the light bulb.


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David ZappaRe: Masking with brush on Adjustment layer
by on Dec 11, 2013 at 5:24:10 pm

Ok, I have moved to another footage now so I can't really show you how it was set up but since I haven't solved the problem I might need advice for future similar settings.
I'll try to describe how it looked.

I have a composite scene, whereby a background layer interacts with a foreground layer. This foreground layer needs to match the changing light of my background. Imagine street lights and color which need to "spill" on my added foreground. (in my case a shoe :-) ).

So, for e believable composite in photoshop I would create adjustment layers which would be masked using soft brushes. affecting the foreground until it matches the scene and so on. I would simply paint brush on the adj layer layer mask.

In AE, as I understand, it's tricky as you can't paintbrush on an adjustment layer plus, even if you could you can do this only by double clicking it which shoes you only that layer's alpa channel.

So, your idea of duplicating the to be corrected layer and putting it above the ADJ layer and using it as its TRK Mat is perfect.. BUT being it a trkMat you can't see, while you paint, how the adjustment layer will look as the layer you are painting on is in the main window (don't remember how it's called) of AE isolating the view of the layer from the global composition.
If I only knew the right names of the different panels of AE I could explain myself a bit better and for this a apologize profoundly. As said I'm a pro-photog and know my way in PSD but not yet in AE.


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John CuevasRe: Masking with brush on Adjustment layer
by on Dec 11, 2013 at 8:25:30 pm

What you need to do is open both your comp window(this is your final rendered window) and your layer window(where you paint on the alpha channel) at the same time. When you double click your layer, grab it's tab and move it so it's adjacent to your "Comp" window. Now when you paint in the one window, you will see how it affects your final composition.

I have a dual monitor, so I would one window full screen on one monitor(Layer--so I'm not constantly adjusting the view) and the other one as large as possible on the other side(Comp).

Johnny Cuevas, Editor
Thinkck.com

"I have not failed 700 times. I have succeeded in proving that those 700 ways will not work. When I have eliminated the ways that will not work, I will find the way that will work."
---THOMAS EDISON on inventing the light bulb.


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David ZappaRe: Masking with brush on Adjustment layer
by on Dec 11, 2013 at 9:50:22 pm

As simple as that! Obvious.
Thank you!!!!!!!!!


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