Friday, February 25, 2011

Experimenting with Compositing Modes = Awesome!

So while tweaking my work reel I thought I'd find a way to make the colored animation tests of the acrobats doing their stuff blend in a little more seamlessly. Normally you would drop all the PNGs into After Effects and sequence them into a video there but I did it in iStopmotion as a test and planned to do it in AE later. Lo and behold something strangely cool resulted on this. Even though this images were PNG files (which preserves the transparency) and had no background, iStopmotion hasn't figured this out yet and just fills the empty space with black. This wouldn't be the case with After Effects. I put the test into the work reel for a temporary placeholder and I tried playing around with the compositing modes so you can at least see the watercolor background beneath it. I was surprised by the results.
This is what the original test looks like. Note the black background.

The watercolor painting is brought into Final Cut and placed beneath the video clip.

Right clicking on the video clip and then selecting Difference in the Composite drop down menu.

See the difference! (^_^ lol, no pun intended)

It looks really interesting now because the inverted texture of the watercolor in the background can be seen in the acrobat. So spooky! But now the colors need a little adjusting. In the Effects menu, scroll down to Video Filters followed by Color Correction and selected the Color Corrector filter.

Using this tool I can change the color and value a bit to make the acrobat a little easier to see. I'm just going to adjust the value and saturation controls.

Here are the comparisons between the different stages.

And here is the final product.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

A Little Help With Clean Up Animation

I'd like to Introduce CCS freshman Paul Blair aboard the Dark Circus crew. He has been a HUGE help so far handling clean up work while I focus on other animation and a bountiful source of enthusiasm for the project even when I'm feeling a little drained. Thanks a lot, Paul!

Cleaned up frame from Shot 73

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

OMG Colors!

Check it out! I colored a couple animations yesterday morning and I think they turned out all right. I had to re-learn batching in Photoshop in less than an hour though. With the exceptions of about three separate animations which are still in the roughing stage, this is the whole fourth scene of the film.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

So, What Have I been Up To?

Oh my! So long since my last post! That's because I've been doing a lot of animation for the acrobats scene. Normally I would just key all the shots out and then go back to them once the whole film is keyed but I'd rather do some damage now while I'm still in the loosey-goosey flow of things and just keep going. Some of the shots are keys, some are tied down, some are clean, and some aren't even here in the video. I'll have more tests up soon!

Man! Blogger is NOT KIND to video quality!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Motivational Meme

I found this while briskly browsing some of my routine internet stops. I found it quite motivational. This image and other meme-themed (hehe, that rhymned) goodies can be found at