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visual mirror effect

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rob john
visual mirror effect
on Sep 8, 2010 at 9:13:34 pm

Hi there all, I was just wondering, what would be the most efficient/effective way to make it appear as though someone walked into/out of a mirror? I would like to include this in a production i'm doing!

Thanks in advance
Rob


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Chris Wright
Re: visual mirror effect
on Sep 8, 2010 at 10:55:05 pm

freeform would be perfect for this.

http://technicolorsoftware.hostzi.com/


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Tudor "Ted" Jelescu
Re: visual mirror effect
on Sep 9, 2010 at 8:42:24 am

Is the mirror on the floor, suspended on a wall, in the middle of a room?
Do you have access in production to a motion control rig, to be able to do multiple passes?
How does the set in which the action takes place look like?
The storyboard of the scene?
All the above are crucial to determine the techniques you will use to make this happen- that is if you did not shoot already.
Best is always to go into production knowing exactly what you want to achieve and how you will do that from start to finish.

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


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rob john
Re: visual mirror effect
on Sep 9, 2010 at 10:48:29 am

I was thinking the mirror would be on a wall or in the middle of the room.
I am also unsure what you mean when you say a motion control rig for multiple passes? I do know what a motion control rig and passes are indivudually though- The production is low amateur/low budget so a motion rig is unlikely.
I was thinking more along the lines of is there an effect in After effects for e.g. that could simulate this? and if so,how would I need to shoot the footage to execute it efficiently?

Thanks


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Dave LaRonde
Re: visual mirror effect
on Sep 9, 2010 at 4:03:37 pm

[rob john] "I was thinking more along the lines of is there an effect in After effects for e.g. that could simulate this?"

Nope. At the very least, you need two cameras running simultaneously.

Why?

Think about it: your shot will show the subject, AND it will show the subject in the mirror. You see the subject from two different perspectives: from the point of view of the camera, plus the point of view of the mirror. AE can't recreate the subject from a different angle: it can't invent visual information it doesn't have.

You can't rely on doing separate takes from different angles, either. There's no way the subject can perfectly match movement, position and timing from take to take. You'd blow the effect right then and there, because the viewer would smell a visual rat: mirrors work perfectly, not sort of perfectly.

Thus, you need two cameras.

This is a very tricky shot to set up, and you'll want to plan angles, think hard about green screen placement, run tests, and go back to the drawing board a couple-three times... ESPECIALLY if you haven't pulled an effect like this off before.

Once you've done that, it ought to be a very cool effect.

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


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Tudor "Ted" Jelescu
Re: visual mirror effect
on Sep 9, 2010 at 5:18:50 pm

I was referring to multiple camera passes with a motion control rig- one with a real mirror and no actor, the second with real mirror and actor starting to walk from right in front of the mirror, and third with no mirror and actor steps through an empty frame. Still, you would need the second camera- like Dave mentioned for exact reflection.
You could get away with a locked on shot, RED 4k, and do a digital pan/zoom in post for a HD or 2K output, using the 3 passes mentioned above.
Or, you could build a simple virtual set in AE, have the actor shot on chroma, and have the camera move designed in such a way that you see the reflection of the actor only a few frames when he steps out of the frame. This way you can use the same shot and invert the footage of the actor and have real reflections from the animation in AE shot with a camera positioned opposite your main camera, using the same move.

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


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rob john
Re: visual mirror effect
on Sep 9, 2010 at 7:32:42 pm

Thanks guys, given me some food for thought with the camera angles.
The placement of the Green screen and the 2nd camera is what is throwing me at the moment, but like Dave said I guess it will be a case of trial and error
Thanks


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