Adding a filmic glow
Video: Adding a filmic glowOkay, we are partway through our client change list, and I just realized I haven't saved in a while. So let's go ahead and make sure we save our current project. And indeed I might go ahead and Increment and Save again just so I can have a version to go back to in case I don't like the changes I make from here forward. Now, I am up to Final Project 3. I will go back to the Final Comp and another comment that our client had is he felt everything looked a little too--well clean and video and graphic--and they wish they had a bit more of a hot, intense glow.
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This course pulls together the skills you've been learning in the previous After Effects Apprentice installments to create a real-world video promo. Trish leads you through building the artwork and components used in the final piece, and then Chris shows how to assemble these precompositions into a 3D world, timed to music. Along the way, Trish and Chris also share their thoughts as they design a video project, including unifying the overall look and handling change requests from clients.
The After Effects Apprentice videos on lynda.com were created by Trish and Chris Meyer and are designed to be used on their own and as a companion to their book After Effects Apprentice. We are honored to host these tutorials in the lynda.com library.
- Building a 3D world
- Working with layered Illustrator files
- Synchronizing to music
- Using text animation presets
- Rendering strategies
- Working with widescreen video, including 4:3 center cut and safe area considerations
Adding a filmic glow
Okay, we are partway through our client change list, and I just realized I haven't saved in a while. So let's go ahead and make sure we save our current project. And indeed I might go ahead and Increment and Save again just so I can have a version to go back to in case I don't like the changes I make from here forward. Now, I am up to Final Project 3. I will go back to the Final Comp and another comment that our client had is he felt everything looked a little too--well clean and video and graphic--and they wish they had a bit more of a hot, intense glow.
What they're describing is more of a filmic look, which usually means overexposed and saturated. Well, we can do that. And there's a trick we taught you a little while back called Filmic Glow. Let's run through that again. Filmic Glow works really well when you already have an edited together series of layers. You just go up to Layer > New > Adjustment layer. It's over your entire composition, including all of the layers below, including your transition. That's great! Now let's add an effect. I usually use blurs for filmic glow, both Box Blur. And one of the Lens Blurs are good candidates.
I am going to start with Box Blur since box shapes are a theme that we're running throughout this video. I will select that, set a Blending mode such as Overlay--my usual starting point. You see how intense things got already. Then start increasing the blur radius. This is where the glow part comes in, from sharp to still sharp, but now some shadows and highlights going on. When Iterations are set to 1, that blur has a boxy pattern, which kind of echoes our grid look.
You can even turn the mode off for now to see how boxy it is. I will go back to Overlay. Higher Iterations give smoother blurs. About 3 is similar to a Gaussian Blur and now we just have a soft glow, 0, and a little bit of value. So that's another part. Just get a little bit of that in there. Then very high iterations just give a very puffed out look. It also takes longer to render. Since I am trying to go for this boxy theme here, I am going to go back down to 1 Iteration and then pick a blur radius that seems to match something like a half, third, maybe even a quarter of the size of those grid elements.
Now, this is a very intense look and there are a couple ways of backing this off. One is, you can just press T to reveal the opacity for this layer and fade the hold of the effect in and out. I might go for something around, say here, and check how it looks at other points of my composition. This is without; this is with. Yeah, that does add some contrast; it does kind of adds an intensity to it. Let's go back earlier in time here in this first comp, without, with, and I do think that's making an improvement.
If you think this is making everything look too dark, we've shown you some ways you can take this further. For example, you could duplicate this adjustment layer, put the top copy into something like Add or Screen, get some intensity, and even add different blur amounts and softnesses to treat your highlights separately from your shadows. Press T and blend in those highlights separately. Really blown out, soft look, maybe somewhere around there to balance off. And there are other tricks you can do by applying additional color correction effects, levels to change the Gamma, et cetera.
But compared to before and after, I think we've accomplished the client's goal of making this look hotter, more intense, more saturated, more "filmic".
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