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greenscreening workflow

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Daniel Panzergreenscreening workflow
by on Mar 6, 2011 at 8:40:23 pm

Hi all,

I have a big greenscreen project on my hands. It's going to be about 15 hours of footage, made up of 1-4 minute clips, and all of which need to be keyed out and exported via AE.

The keying process itself is very simple and will not really change from shot to shot (Just a single static shot of a person speaking), so basically once I've keyed one I've keyed them all. It's the logistics of getting through all these clips that I'm having trouble with. The best way I've been able to come up is to make a composition for each clip, copy layers, masks, effects, and settings from one composition to the next, etc. This works, but it's extremely tedious and time consuming, as I can't simply copy/paste everything I need at once.

I know AE has some pretty complex scripting built in, but I'm not quite up on it. Is there any way to automate this more easily? I basically have a ton of little clips that need to be in the same duplicated comp. I feel there must be an easier way to do this.

Any help is much appreciated!

- Panzer

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Tudor "Ted" JelescuRe: greenscreening workflow
by on Mar 7, 2011 at 12:16:55 am

Why not just open the master comp, save as- the name of new clip- an then just replace footage and adjust work area/comp length to accommodate the footage... no need to copy.

Tudor "Ted" Jelescu
Senior VFX Artist

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Spencer TweedRe: greenscreening workflow
by on Mar 7, 2011 at 12:36:53 am

Yo Daniel,

I often do large keying projects at once (10-75 inerviews). From my experience it isn't really a "one key fits all", unless everything is shot on one camera with the exact same lighting. Even then, though, what people are wearing and their skin color can drastically change your results. For example, a white blond girl is a much different key than a black girl with black braids.

That said, here is my workflow. I start by degraining my footage, this is done in a totally separate project. Then I import all of these rendered files into a new project and make a comp for each footage item (each key). In this comp I key everything, precompose it all and then use this comp to actually composite my key with my background (depending if I am doing this, or our editor does it in Avid and I just render out the 'Key' comp). So I basically end up with 2 compositions for each person - one for keying and one for compositing.

To more directly answer your question:

Once you work out your 'template' composition you just duplicate it (ctrl + D) and swap out the greenscreen footage (select it in the timeline and alt + drag the footage from your project window).

- Spencer

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Daniel PanzerRe: greenscreening workflow
by on Mar 9, 2011 at 4:43:48 pm

Spencer - That alt-drag trick was exactly what I needed. I'm three presentations in and rolling.

Thanks guys, for your insight.

- Panzer

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