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Subject catching digital objects

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Carl StensonSubject catching digital objects
by on Mar 10, 2011 at 1:40:26 pm

Greetings all,

First time poster, long time listener.

Here is my issue.

I'm trying to create a comp comprised of video of on-screen talent on green screen and mix it with digital solids built in AE falling from the sky. The tricky part is the talent will be catching these solids in their hands, and the slowly stack up enough to eventually cover their entire upper body.

My question to the community is what is the best way to go about shooting this and then executing it in After Effects?

So far I've run a few tests in Mocha just tracking the talents hands and dropping solids into them. However, since the talent was not actually holding anything and the track followed every slight movement of their hands it looked like the boxes had no weight what so ever.

I'm considering shooting the subject with a 9x12" poster board that has track points and then replacing that in AE, but I haven't figured out how I will reproduce and make them fall from the sky.

I'd be very appreciative of any thoughts or suggestions the community can offer.


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Tudor "Ted" JelescuRe: Subject catching digital objects
by on Mar 10, 2011 at 4:27:38 pm

I think the key in making the objects look like they have weight is to direct the actor to mime the catching of a heavy object. Have him/her practice a couple of dozen times with various weights and then mime the action. Shoot him/her while catching the real objects and then do a quick track /comp when miming the action. Sit down and analyze together the two and fine tune. It may be a lengthy process but other than having boxes covered in chroma cloth/paint falling down and the actor catching them I do not see another way.

Tudor "Ted" Jelescu
Senior VFX Artist

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Roland R. KahlenbergRe: Subject catching digital objects
by on Mar 10, 2011 at 7:39:04 pm

Your talent has to actually catch something - an object. Ensure that the object is 'keyable'. Expect to track+roto (fingers). It's going to be a tough job. Try to lessen the number of objects that will be caught.

Good Luck

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Carl StensonRe: Subject catching digital objects
by on Mar 11, 2011 at 1:20:53 am

Thank you, I appreciate the advice!

- Carl

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