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In this course, author Ian Robinson introduces Adobe After Effects CS6 and the world of animation, effects, and compositing. Chapter 1 introduces the six foundations of After Effects, which include concepts like layers, keyframes, rendering, and moving in 3D space. The rest of the course expands on these ideas, and shows how to build compositions with layers, perform rotoscoping, animate your composition with keyframes, add effects and transitions, and render and export the finished piece. Two real-world example projects demonstrate keying green screen footage and creating an advanced 3D composition with the expanded 3D toolset, an important addition to CS6.
If you've ever gone on location and shot some footage, I'm sure you've realized that on occasion when you get back, your clients will inevitably choose the one shot that wasn't on a tripod or had noise or some other issue with it. Well if you're joining me from the last video, you may recognize this shot as one of those shots. If we scrub through, you can see I have some stabilization issues. This wasn't shot on the tripod and we also have some dirt issues like dirt on the lens.
Now in the last video, we did try and use the Clone Stamp tool to go through and paint out some of those dirty areas. So now in this video, we're actually going to deal with the stabilization issues. Now as a general rule, if you're trying to stabilize footage that already has an effect applied to it, you should select that layer and then go up under Layer and choose Pre-compose. Now I want to make sure to move all the attributes into the new composition so the effects that are applied are moved into the new composition.
When I click OK, now we have a clean comp for the Stabilize to work with. See, now the effect in essence is being rendered prior to this composition because it's in the pre-composition. Okay, so with Layer 1 selected, to apply the Stabilize effect, you can either go to Effect > Distort > Warp Stabilizer, or you could just go to Animation and choose Warp Stabilizer. Either way is correct, and notice the second you apply Warp Stabilizer, it will start to analyze the image.
If you look in the Effects Control panel, I get a status update as to how long it's going to take for the Warp Stabilizer to analyze all the footage. What it does with the footage is determined by these following switches and groups. So let's look at Result. The first two options, we have Smooth Motion or No Motion. Well if it was a shot that was supposed to be on a tripod, you want to choose No Motion. Now if it's a shot where you were walking or skiing or literally moving like a dolly shot or something, you want to choose Smooth Motion.
Let's choose No Motion, and the Method, let's click on that pulldown and look. We have four options. Position will just adjust the position of the Stabilize. It won't deal with any scaling or rotation issues. So obviously, the next one deals with Position, Scale, and Rotation. The Perspective option will deal with perspective issues. And Subspace Warp is probably what I use literally about 90% of the time. What this will do is deal with position, scale, and rotation, but it will actually warp the edges of the image and try and recreate a very stable shot on a pretty much pixel-by-pixel basis.
So if we let go for Subspace Warp, you can see now since the footage has been analyzed, it's stabilizing. The Framing options are kind of fun. Click on the pulldown and you can see we could stabilize the footage only, we could stabilize it and crop off any of the edges, or we could stabilize it, crop it and auto-scale, which is what I use about 90% of the time. Let's choose Stabilize Only and see what it looks like. See how we have these dark edges on the comp? If we load up a RAM Preview, you'll notice those edges will bounce around.
On your system it may take a second to load up the RAM Preview, so just be patient. Now I'm going to stop the Preview from loading and just press the Spacebar so it plays the frames that are loaded. Now you can see the edges are moving around and we have a relatively stable turbine in the middle of the shot, and I'm going to stop playback by pushing the Spacebar. Let's change the Framing to Stabilize and Crop, and you can see, now it's cropped in on the image so we don't see any of that waviness happening as it's adjusting the edges.
Now like I said, 90% of the time I use Stabilize, Crop, Auto-scale, where it'll then apply a scale, and then under Auto-scale, it tells you how much. Stabilize, Synthesize Edges is really cool because this will not only stabilize the footage, but it will analyze the footage and then recreate the edges of the image using a very similar technology to what Photoshop uses with the Content-Aware Fill. Now I just want to use Stabilize, Crop, and Auto-scale, so we'll set it to that.
If we take a peek at the Advanced section, you can see we could perform a Detailed Analysis by just adding the selection and then continue to refine the footage by reducing any Rolling Shutter Ripple. This is what happens if the shutter rate on your camera is set at a level to where you'll notice kind of tearing moving though the image. So most of the time I just leave that for Automatic Reduction, and then when it's finished, you can go ahead and load up another RAM Preview.
I'll rejoin you in a second after our Stabilizer has gone through and analyzed this image. All right, now the Warp Stabilizer has finished doing what it needs to do to process our image. Let's go ahead and load up a RAM Preview and see what the results are. All right, now again, I'm just going to press the Spacebar so we can watch the first couple of seconds that have been cached into the Preview. And as you can see, this shot is a lot more stable. So when it comes to using the Warp Stabilizer, just remember, you need to pre-compose any layer that currently has effects.
So the Warp Stabilizer has "a clean piece of footage" to start building the Stabilize on. Then it's just a question of pulling through the menus and deciding exactly how you want to scale the image, crop the image, or just how detailed you want your stabilization to be.
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