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Digital Matte Painting: Changing a Scene From Summer to Winter

Reformatting and rendering the scene


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Digital Matte Painting: Changing a Scene From Summer to Winter

with David Mattingly

Video: Reformatting and rendering the scene

I'm almost ready to render this out, but in order to put plenty of detail in this piece, I painted it a lot larger than I needed it for the final render. So, I want to reformat this to a more traditional cinematic dimension, and at the same time, I can add a nice camera move to it. I want to go to the top menu and choose Composition > New Composition. And for this composition, I want to choose HDV 1080 29.97. Press OK to accept it.

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Digital Matte Painting: Changing a Scene From Summer to Winter
1h 48m Intermediate Jul 03, 2012

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

In this course, well-known author, teacher, and illustrator David Mattingly demonstrates his production-proven matte painting techniques and shows how to turn a summer daytime scene into a wintry nightscape using Photoshop and After Effects. David shows how to take a plate, or a still shot from a film, and alter key elements to change the season and time of day. Using advance digital matte painting methods, David removes all of the greenery from the mountains, fields, and trees, and covers them with snow. Then he replaces the sky, and adds realistic touches such as chimney smoke, icicles, and night-lit windows. In the final chapters, you'll discover how to create an animated scene that cross-dissolves between the two versions.

Topics include:
  • Making precise selections using the Color Range command
  • Controlling reference material through layer masks
  • Creating custom brushes
  • Painting snow, icicles, and trees
  • Painting through a high-contrast matte
  • Replacing the sky in an image
  • Animating smoke and falling snow
  • Reformatting and rendering a scene in After Effects
Subjects:
3D + Animation Illustration Video Digital Painting Compositing Visual Effects
Software:
After Effects Photoshop
Author:
David Mattingly

Reformatting and rendering the scene

I'm almost ready to render this out, but in order to put plenty of detail in this piece, I painted it a lot larger than I needed it for the final render. So, I want to reformat this to a more traditional cinematic dimension, and at the same time, I can add a nice camera move to it. I want to go to the top menu and choose Composition > New Composition. And for this composition, I want to choose HDV 1080 29.97. Press OK to accept it.

I want to drag the comp that I set up all of my animation into the new comp. And you can see it's too big, so I'm going to scale it down and then position it in the frame and then open up all of the Transform properties for the layer. Set both the Position and Scale keyframe at frame 0 and then move to frame 500 and scale it up a little bit and center the chalet in the frame. Let's scrub through it. That looks good.

I still want to set an ease-in and ease-out on the camera move, so select all of the keyframes and right-click on one of them, scroll down to Keyframe Assistant and choose Easy Ease. As you can see, this changed the shape of the keyframes and this will make for a much smoother camera move. The camera will start slow, accelerate through the middle of the move, and then slow down at the end. Let's zoom in one more time and do a quick RAM preview.

The reformatting has given us an effective push-in on the scene. Now it's time to render. You can either add the composition to the Render Queue by going up to the top menu and choosing Composition and then Add to Render Queue, or press Command+Ctrl+M on the Mac or Ctrl+M on Windows. The Render Queue will automatically open. Click on the word to the right of Output Module to open the Output Module Settings. Then click on Format Options to open the QuickTime options.

Render out your preferred codec. I'm going to use the default animation codec with a keyframe every 20 frames for excellent quality. Then choose a name for your animation. I'm going to name it 4_Finalrender.mov. Then press Render. If you're a Premium member of lynda.com and want to compare your work with mine, there is a copy of the final render in the exercise files, along with my final After Effects project in the After Effects folder. And let's take a look at the final render.

In this tutorial, you learned how to take a plate from summer to winter, a basic skill for a digital matte artist. And hopefully you've picked up some tricks and tips that you can use on any matte painting project, including how to make selections using alpha channels, how to use the Color Range command to select areas of color, and how to use and create custom brushes that will speed up the creation of your digital matte paintings. This is David Mattingly. Thanks for watching!

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