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Removal of city lights in aerial shot

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Michael Bails
Removal of city lights in aerial shot
on Apr 7, 2011 at 8:27:28 pm

I have an aerial shot of a city skyline and having issues with eliminating the building lights and then re-rendering the same shot with the lights randomly coming on. Is there an easy way to do this in CS5? (Perhaps this has been addressed but I couldn't find a solution in the forum search.) Thanks!


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Dave LaRonde
Re: Removal of city lights in aerial shot
on Apr 7, 2011 at 8:48:13 pm

You could mask out the lit windows in the nighttime shot, revealing a dark comp-sized solid beneath, then animate each mask path from offscreen to their proper positions using hold keyframes.

Oh, but wait: you said "aerial shot". Is this shot in motion? I gave you the instructions for a static shot.

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


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Michael Bails
Re: Removal of city lights in aerial shot
on Apr 7, 2011 at 8:58:21 pm

Yes...it's a shot in motion from a chopper. About 3-4 sec long. What about the new Roto brush...could that work in some way?


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Dave LaRonde
Re: Removal of city lights in aerial shot
on Apr 7, 2011 at 9:22:16 pm

It probably could use Rotobrush; it sounds doable.

But you need to know this going in -- Rotobrush is in no way, shape or form intuitive in its use; you do so at your peril... and I'm making the assumption that you're already pretty well-versed in using AE. It's just too tricky to use to post step-by-step instructions here.

If you're up for some intense learning in a short time, there are links to Rotobush learning resources in AE 10's online help. You should check 'em out. Test the water before you take the plunge.

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


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Tudor "Ted" Jelescu
Re: Removal of city lights in aerial shot
on Apr 7, 2011 at 9:53:52 pm

I would try to see if you can key out the lights using a luma key. This way you can create a matte for the lights. You can then track the shot, create a bunch of rough masks around the lights on the matte layer, apply track data and animate the mask opacity to reveal the matte and bring back the light. (Basically Dave's first suggestion applied to a moving shot).

Tudor "Ted" Jelescu
Senior VFX Artist


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Roland R. Kahlenberg
Re: Removal of city lights in aerial shot
on Apr 8, 2011 at 9:49:38 am

Mocha + Mocha Shape should do this nicely. Track large chunks of the building separately, on their individual planes. Within each plane, create X or B Splines to mask out individual lights/windows. Export the shapes individually and paste them in AE, onto a duplicate of your backplate. Change the Shape Colour to a black hue and animate Opacity (with the effect) to bring on the lighted version.

Lots of shapes are required to export but once you've tracked a plane, you simply have to link it to the shape layers that cut out the windows. So, track once and you will be able to link the tracked data to any new shape within the same plane.

HTH
RoRK

AE Training in South East Asia. AE templates for sale and rental. Click here for more


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Michael Bails
Re: Removal of city lights in aerial shot
on Apr 12, 2011 at 8:05:29 pm

Thanks...I'll try the Mocha route!


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