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Convincing text on brick wall

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Nico JonesConvincing text on brick wall
by on Apr 21, 2010 at 5:09:09 pm

Hi guys,

I'm trying to put some text onto a hi-res picture of a wall. I have a suitable paint-esque font, and I'm trying to make it look like the text is painted on the wall.

I've tried all kinds of approaches with combinations of alpha mattes, levels and blending modes, and adding some lighting to the final comp but it just isn't looking right.

Has anyone achieved this effect before?



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Dave LaRondeRe: Convincing text on brick wall
by on Apr 21, 2010 at 5:14:13 pm

Check out using a Displacement Map. It can be marginally tricky to use, so read up on it before you start fiddling with it:

And remember: the precomp is your friend.

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

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Steve RobertsRe: Convincing text on brick wall
by on Apr 21, 2010 at 5:26:38 pm

... and:

Tried soft light/hard light mode?
Tried using noise or fractal noise as a luma matte to degrade the text?
Tried using a bit of roughen edges?
Tried really lowering the opacity/contrast?
Have you studied reference photos to know your goal?

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Tudor "Ted" JelescuRe: Convincing text on brick wall
by on Apr 21, 2010 at 6:14:02 pm

What usually helps me achieve a realistic look is to use the text as a mask and comp the brick layer on top of itself then color correct. This makes the text keep the texture of the wall. If you have more than one color for the text or outlines/shapes/etc use several masks.

Tudor "Ted" Jelescu
Senior VFX Artist
Bucharest, Romania

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Nico JonesRe: Convincing text on brick wall
by on Apr 22, 2010 at 8:12:55 am

Ah yes I did try displacement maps, which really helped...but not quite enough to make it believable. I'll try the suggestions above - many thanks for the help, chaps!

Nico J BB

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Chris BobotisRe: Convincing text on brick wall
by on Apr 24, 2010 at 3:02:58 am

Not sure if this is wahat you are looking for but try Freeform for this kind of effect. See:

I use a solid in this example but it could just as easily been a photo.

This shows teh 3D Dispalcement mapping feature.

For even more advanced use of FreeForm see:



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