Start learning with our library of video tutorials taught by experts. Get started

VFX Techniques: Tracking Objects onto a Face
Illustration by John Hersey

Disguising marks with grading and noise


From:

VFX Techniques: Tracking Objects onto a Face

with Lee Lanier

Video: Disguising marks with grading and noise

We have disguised the tracking mark dots on the actress's cheek by duplicating the layer, rotoscoping, and applying a blur. You can all the keyframes I have for the rotoscoping. There are definitely many more on the left side where she walks in the frame, and fewer on the right side where she comes to rest. So, it's working pretty well, but one problem is, if I zoom in, I can see that the non-blurry part of the frame, there's a lot of video noise and compression and actually she looks a bit more fuzzy, whereas the blur side is very smooth.

Watch this entire course now—plus get access to every course in the library. Each course includes high-quality videos taught by expert instructors.

Become a member
please wait ...
VFX Techniques: Tracking Objects onto a Face
2h 42m Intermediate Jan 28, 2013

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

VFX Techniques introduces common yet critical visual effects techniques that are used in film and television shows on a regular basis. This installment shows how to build complex composites with Adobe After Effects and mocha, where motion graphics are mapped to live-action footage of an actor. Author Lee Lanier starts by combining rotoscoping and effects to digitally apply makeup to an actor to disguise motion tracking marks. Then discover how to transfer footage into mocha and generate planar tracking data that you can use to motion track graphics to the moving face of the actor. Plus, learn how to build and adjust motion graphics to create the look of a virtual tattoo and a pair of holographic heads-up glasses.

Topics include:
  • Disguising tracking marks with rotoscoping and effects
  • Preparing footage for motion tracking
  • Planar motion tracking a face in mocha
  • Applying tracking data to artwork in After Effects
  • Fine-tuning motion tracking curves in After Effects
  • Animating text and graphic elements
  • Applying color and light effects
  • Batch rendering the final comp
Subjects:
Video Compositing Projects Visual Effects
Software:
After Effects
Author:
Lee Lanier

Disguising marks with grading and noise

We have disguised the tracking mark dots on the actress's cheek by duplicating the layer, rotoscoping, and applying a blur. You can all the keyframes I have for the rotoscoping. There are definitely many more on the left side where she walks in the frame, and fewer on the right side where she comes to rest. So, it's working pretty well, but one problem is, if I zoom in, I can see that the non-blurry part of the frame, there's a lot of video noise and compression and actually she looks a bit more fuzzy, whereas the blur side is very smooth.

So, that's a problem. We can disguise this however, if we apply a grain tool. So, I'm going to pick the CheekMask layer, go to Effect and go to Noise & Grain. In this case, I'm going to use Match Grain. When you bring up Match Grain, it gives you a little preview window so you don't see really see the result right away. You can click+drag the center of that window and move it over to the part you're working on. I don't see much of a change, so I have to adjust it. The first thing I need to do is make sure it's pulling the grain from some other layer.

Initially, the Noise Source Layer is set to None. I'll switch that to the original Footage. Also, there's intensity. If you go to Tweaking, expand that, there's an Intensity setting. If I go really high, you'll see it right away, here's 10. The Noise Pattern is pulled out of the Footage layer and applied to this layer. That's way too intense though, so I'm going to try 2 instead, just a little bit of noise. We also have a Size setting and some other ways to adjust that grain, but those are good with the defaults in this case.

We're still in the preview mode of this effect, so if I want to see the final version, I'll go to Viewing Mode and change it from Preview to Final Output, and now that noise is placed every where. So, here's without the noise, very smooth, here is with. What's great about this, Match Grain will take the noise from every single frame of the source, so this noise will change along with the footage as it goes across the timeline. Now, this tool, or this effect, is fairly expensive. So, occasionally I'm going to ask you to turn off Match Grain just to save time.

You can always turn it back on later. Now, it's working fairly well, especially with the Match Grain, however, we can still see a little bit of the dots showing through, not only because of the color, because there are white dots, you can see that area where the dots were is a little desaturated, right here, right here, and so on. To solve that, or combat that, what we can do is make another layer based on our current CheekMask layer and do some color adjustment on that. So, I'm going to select CheekMask, Edit > Duplicate, and I'm going to call this new layer CheekMask Color.

Now, all the effects were copied over at the same time. I'm going to add one more though, and that's a Hue/Saturation, Effect > Color Correction > Hue/Saturation. Now, instead of using the normal master sliders up here at the top, I'm going to colorize, and that's a tint, where it tints the entire layer. So if I spin the Hue to 20, 20 for the Colorized Hue, and increase Saturation to 60, what I'm doing is making sure that entire area is much more brownish red.

Now, it's incredibly intense right now, so to reduce that what I can do is go to the Layers Opacity and reduce that. Let's try 40. I'll zoom in. If I turn it off, here is before. You can see some of those white areas where the dots were. If I turn it on, there's more even color with that entire area. Since I copied CheekMask up, I get the mask for free. So this new layer is going to be in the right place the entire time.

We've added Noise & Grain and also a Hue/Saturation Effect to a separate layer, to help improve the quality of our digital makeup patch. We'll be able to use this technique again to help disguise your remaining dots.

There are currently no FAQs about VFX Techniques: Tracking Objects onto a Face.

 
Share a link to this course

What are exercise files?

Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course. Save time by downloading the author's files instead of setting up your own files, and learn by following along with the instructor.

Can I take this course without the exercise files?

Yes! If you decide you would like the exercise files later, you can upgrade to a premium account any time.

Become a member Download sample files See plans and pricing

Please wait... please wait ...
Upgrade to get access to exercise files.

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

Learn by watching, listening, and doing, Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course, so you can download them and follow along Premium memberships include access to all exercise files in the library.
Upgrade now


Exercise files

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

For additional information on downloading and using exercise files, watch our instructional video or read the instructions in the FAQ.

This course includes free exercise files, so you can practice while you watch the course. To access all the exercise files in our library, become a Premium Member.

join now Upgrade now

Are you sure you want to mark all the videos in this course as unwatched?

This will not affect your course history, your reports, or your certificates of completion for this course.


Mark all as unwatched Cancel

Congratulations

You have completed VFX Techniques: Tracking Objects onto a Face.

Return to your organization's learning portal to continue training, or close this page.


OK
Become a member to add this course to a playlist

Join today and get unlimited access to the entire library of video courses—and create as many playlists as you like.

Get started

Already a member?

Become a member to like this course.

Join today and get unlimited access to the entire library of video courses.

Get started

Already a member?

Exercise files

Learn by watching, listening, and doing! Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course, so you can download them and follow along. Exercise files are available with all Premium memberships. Learn more

Get started

Already a Premium member?

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

Ask a question

Thanks for contacting us.
You’ll hear from our Customer Service team within 24 hours.

Please enter the text shown below:

The classic layout automatically defaults to the latest Flash Player.

To choose a different player, hold the cursor over your name at the top right of any lynda.com page and choose Site preferencesfrom the dropdown menu.

Continue to classic layout Stay on new layout
Exercise files

Access exercise files from a button right under the course name.

Mark videos as unwatched

Remove icons showing you already watched videos if you want to start over.

Control your viewing experience

Make the video wide, narrow, full-screen, or pop the player out of the page into its own window.

Interactive transcripts

Click on text in the transcript to jump to that spot in the video. As the video plays, the relevant spot in the transcript will be highlighted.

Are you sure you want to delete this note?

No

Notes cannot be added for locked videos.

Thanks for signing up.

We’ll send you a confirmation email shortly.


Sign up and receive emails about lynda.com and our online training library:

Here’s our privacy policy with more details about how we handle your information.

Keep up with news, tips, and latest courses with emails from lynda.com.

Sign up and receive emails about lynda.com and our online training library:

Here’s our privacy policy with more details about how we handle your information.

   
submit Lightbox submit clicked
Terms and conditions of use

We've updated our terms and conditions (now called terms of service).Go
Review and accept our updated terms of service.