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Floating objects above people's heads

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Phil BeastallFloating objects above people's heads
by on Sep 8, 2010 at 8:36:41 am

We want to shoot a video with people walking around on the street, in moving shots (panning and tracking) and above them, they will need to have 3d objects floating above their heads, which follow them as they go. So i have a few questions.

1. What will we need to place on the person (if anything) to help the motion tracking process?

2. Whats the best software package to use to motion track the person?

3. Is Boujou suitable to replicate the motion of the camera so that this can animate the 3d object in Maya correctly.

4. Can I composite in After FX?

Thanks in advance


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Tudor "Ted" JelescuRe: Floating objects above people's heads
by on Sep 8, 2010 at 6:56:20 pm

Boujou or Syntheyes will do the trick for you, if you want to replicate the camera move in Maya and/or AE.
You may not need to go this far- if the camera movement is tracking or panning and the subject moves on parallel paths, Mocha will do, or even the AE native trackers.
AE is a compositing package- so yes, you can composite in AE.

As far as the production goes- if you can make sure that the people you need to track are visible at all times, and they have some distinct feature that can be used as a tracking point (a hat, a bag...). If you really want to get precise, use a thin stick with a ping pong ball attached on the upper end over their heads - it will mean a lot of roto work in post to hide the part of the stick that is not covered by the 3d objects.

Tudor "Ted" Jelescu
Senior Compositor/VFX Artist
Bucharest, Romania

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