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Animation - real hand footage - no green screen

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Johannes SchwarzAnimation - real hand footage - no green screen
by on Nov 20, 2012 at 9:34:39 pm

Hi there,

I'm trying to improve on my current method to combine an animation with
real life footage for a project I'm working on.

This is a test sample - pause to check out what the hand looks like at 0:26 for example:

https://vimeo.com/50238330

What I did:
light green screen -> glass plate fixed 1 yard in front of green screen -> light hand -> take stills of my hand with a GH2 so I have 4k footage that I can shrink for better overall quality (and smoother keys) -> combine stills to sequence (or use single image) -> keylight in AE and composite - parent to null - eg. have null follow a stroke.

Why I'm not happy:
- well the green spill in some of the hand shots (-> might be resolved by increasing distance - which is not so easy in my small home studio and with the small green screen I'm using)
- the unnatural shadows (hard edges and then doing a drop shadow in AE)

What I would like to try: -
It would look most natural if I could just have the shots taken of the hand as it rests/simulates writing on a white sheet of paper. Then use a transfer mode (lighten/luminance??) to transfer the hand and the shadows to the grey paper background (see video above) in AE. Is that possible? Wouldn't the background shine through the highlights of the hand? Could I remove the "shine through" problem by adding a second instance of the footage with a feathered mask along the border of the hand but this time use an "add" transfer mode?

I guess I could just try, but before re-arranging my whole studio (risking to lose the current settings to match new footage with footage already taken), I thought someone more experienced might be able to tell me if the above "solution" appears viable. Or has anyone done something like this and can suggest a better work flow?

Thanks and greetings from Liechtenstein,
Johannes


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Stephen SmithRe: Animation - real hand footage - no green screen
by on Nov 20, 2012 at 10:59:16 pm

Play with the Screen Balance settings in Keylight. That increases or decreases the green spill color in a key.

Stephen Smith
Utah Video Productions

Check out my Motion Training DVD

Check out my Vimeo page


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Johannes SchwarzRe: Animation - real hand footage - no green screen
by on Nov 21, 2012 at 4:22:45 pm

Thanks Stephen,

I've been playing with the settings, but was not satisfied. I decided to do shoot some test samples outside the studio and use the method I described above. It is a more painful process to work with layers of duplicated and differently treated RAWs, but the result is definitely worth it.

Johannes


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Stephen SmithRe: Animation - real hand footage - no green screen
by on Nov 21, 2012 at 4:47:56 pm

That's great to hear. I'm happy everything worked out.

Stephen Smith
Utah Video Productions

Check out my Motion Training DVD

Check out my Vimeo page


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