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Anchor text in tracking shot

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Josh HamiltonAnchor text in tracking shot
by on Feb 2, 2010 at 5:26:03 pm

I'm your typical do it all editor, who isn't quite a master with AE just yet. However my clients want to upgrade their title look for their spots by implementing their logo within the shot rather than a traditional title card, but of course they decided this after shooting. At the end of each spot there's a subtle crane or dolly move along a granite countertop surface, so there is some movement. I'm trying to anchor the logo/text to a spot on the countertop and add a realistic reflection. The reflection I've got down, its the tracking im having trouble with. It seems a bit shakey and unrealistic in the environment. Ive seen the same effect recently in spots and in movie titles like "Moon". Anyone have any advice or tutorials to reference? Kramer's have helped with the reflection and the 3d shadow tut helps, but offers no tracking advice.



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Dave LaRondeRe: Anchor text in tracking shot
by on Feb 2, 2010 at 5:28:44 pm

What version of AE are you running? Your reply will greatly influence a useful response.

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


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Josh HamiltonRe: Anchor text in tracking shot
by on Feb 2, 2010 at 5:30:42 pm

Sorry, CS3 is my current version



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Dave LaRondeRe: Anchor text in tracking shot
by on Feb 2, 2010 at 5:54:52 pm

[Josh Hamilton] "Sorry, CS3 is my current version "

Well, then Mocha is out, unless you like paying through the nose for it. Bummer.

In addition to what's been mentioned already, you might look into Syntheyes, which is 3D Matchmove software. I believe there's a trial version. Depending on the nature of your shot, it could do the trick.

But try the other suggestions first.

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


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David FranklinRe: Anchor text in tracking shot
by on Feb 2, 2010 at 5:41:49 pm

It really depends on the angle of the camera move to the countertop.

If you have a relatively flat move (i.e. side-to-side relative to the picture plane) then AE's tracker could probably help you.

I suggest Andrew Kramer's demon face tutorial, as it's a good basic intro to how to use after effects' built-in tracking tools:

http://library.creativecow.net/articles/kramer_andrew/Demon_Face_Warp/video...

However, if there's more of a 3D move involved, you may need to expand your tools a little outside of AE. If you have CS4, then I think it came with Mocha for AE, which is a planar tracker from Imagineer which might be able to handle the shot by tracking the plane of the counter top.

A good tutorial on using Mocha is here:

http://library.creativecow.net/articles/rabinowitz_aharon/Mocha_Tut_1.php

Hope this is helpful.

http://www.artisanaltelevision.com
Made With Care In Brooklyn, NY


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David FranklinRe: Anchor text in tracking shot
by on Feb 2, 2010 at 6:08:33 pm

Dave is, again, correct. :) And a faster typist than me.

What I'll say is that SynthEyes is great. But having worked with it for about 9 months now off and on without fully mastering it, I can say from experience that it's quirky. It's also probably not worth spending $399 on for a single shot.

Mocha AE is actually slightly cheaper, but at approx. $320, it's also somewhat pricey for a single use.

However, if you were to upgrade to CS4 (for $299) you'd get Mocha AE as part of the deal. Then you'd have the latest version of your main software AND a tool for tackling these kinds of shots. For the money, that seems like your best option.

http://www.artisanaltelevision.com
Made With Care In Brooklyn, NY


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Josh HamiltonRe: Anchor text in tracking shot
by on Feb 2, 2010 at 7:16:48 pm

Thanks guys for the response. I'll suggest these upgrades to the bossman and see what happens. For now ill keep trying with AEs tracker



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Roland R. KahlenbergRe: Anchor text in tracking shot
by on Feb 2, 2010 at 10:18:27 pm

What you're trying to do sounds possible with AE's tracker. Essntially, the completed effect should have some parallax between the inserted graphic and other objects (wall countertop etc) in the shot.

Oftentimes, you do not need a 3D tracker to achieve such an effect. The trick is to track something away from the area where you would like to place the inserted graphic. After tracking and applying the tracked data, you use a Null Layer to offset the tracked layer away to its final destination. If the shot has some perspective in it then even better to sell the parallax effect.

This is obviously different from tracking exactly the spot where you want to insert another layer. Oftentimes, such tracking may look great but at other times you lose parallax and end up with a solid track but the results look uninteresting.

I talked about this in a review for Pete O'Connell's COW Training DVD -
http://store.creativecow.net/p/77/motion_tracking_and_stabilization_in_afte...

I referred to the effect as "Induced Parallax". The entire DVD is great and should interest anyone wanting to learn more about tracking in AE and Mocha. I'll have to check with Kathlyn on the state of the review.

Good Luck
RoRK

Sell your AEPs with broadcastGEMs' DVD series of templates. Click here for more


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