Learn about combining the keyed foreground over a new background and improving the result with additional color effects and edge wrap.
- [Instructor] We've keyed our unicyclist and now he's ready to be placed over a new background. In fact, we can place him over a project we worked on earlier. Let's give that a try. Right now, I'm working on project 4_4, and I'm going to import an older project. So down to the project panel, right mouse button click, Import File. I'm going to go into the 03_Warping folder into aeFiles, and select 3_1_End.aep. When you import a project, it gives you a new folder, has all the compositions and all the source files.
Now before I combine him with the new background, I need to turn off the red solid. When I do that, I should probably double-check the edge of the mat, and in fact the red solid was disguising something, I didn't see this before, and that's this double edge. This means that one of my properties is turned up too high. I'm going to go back to the center layer here, back to the Chroma Key Studio effect, then go down to the bottom. This is probably caused by a Gray Soften that's too high, so I can lower that.
Now if that section closes, I can re-expand it, grab that slider one more time, and then reduce it. That looks better now, no double edge. I'll leave that set to 50, and I think that will work. All right, so now back to the imported project. I'm going to open the Shovel composition, and this has the shovel against the new hazy sky, courtesy of the Spotlight effect.
This would be a good place to add the unicyclist. So I can drag the Unicycle comp into this one and nest it, and leave it on top. He's too big, I want to shrink him down and put him in the foreground, somewhere over here, so I'll grab a Scale, reduce that, let's say 60, and move him over on top of this rock right here, somewhere around, I think 434 looked good, and 680, and now he is being a daredevil in the construction zone.
All right, now one thing that becomes immediately obvious is the fact his colors are really different from the environment. He should be much more yellow-brown, a little bit darker also, maybe less saturated. I could go back to the Chroma Key effect, it has a component for Color Correction. Back to Unicycle composition, go to Layer, back to Chroma Key Studio, and towards the bottom is Color Correction, I could turn that on, and this section has Brightness, Contrast, Hue, Saturation, and so on.
I think I need to really tint him pretty heavily, yellowish-brownish, so I'm not sure I can do it here. This is a great feature to have built-in, but I'm going to turn this off. Go back to my Shovel composition and add a new Effect. I'm going to go back and get the one we've used before, which is Color & Tone, 3 Way Color Grade. This has those three color wheels for GAMMA, LIFT, and GAIN. I'm going to pull these towards the yellowish area of the wheels, not too close to the green, not too close to the red either.
That looks okay. I think maybe he's still too saturated, too much color, particularly on his skin. I'm going to reduce the Saturation, let's say -20, that helps, and also he feels a little bit too bright. Look at the white of his shoe, so maybe -1 on the Exposure. That feels better in terms of his brightness compared to the shovel which is a little bit further back, or maybe his brightness compared to the shadows in the rocks. All right, now, that looks better, but I'm not getting the feeling that he's being lit by the sun over here.
It'd be great to get some edge light or edge wrap on him. That'd be a thin rim of light coming from the source, which in this case is coming from behind him. Now there's also a built-in component for that. If I go back to Unicycle, middle layer, at the very bottom of the Chroma Key Studio, is a Light Wrap. If I turn that on, it will start to function, although I do need to tell it what background to use, so I can use the same green screen source, and then turn up the Lightness, and you'll see that there's a rim on all his edges, all the way around him.
Again, it's a great feature that's built-in to this effect but I don't want the edge on both sides of him. I really just want it on his back but not on his front, so here I'm going to turn this back off and get a different effect. Back to Shovel, back to Unicycle layer, Effect, down to Lights, and here's a lighting tool, Edge Lighting, apply that. You'll see it adds a bright edge on one side and on the opposite side, it adds a shadow.
It's a bit strong to start with, so we need to adjust it. First thing to adjust is the Light Direction. I want to make the light come from the upper right, so let's say 20 for Light Direction, and then I need to turn down the Intensity, and that's in the Highlights and Shadows section. I'm going to raise the Highlight Post Blur to soften that edge, 10, and then reduce that Intensity, four. That's lookin' better. Now, again, the opposite side of the bright edge is a dark edge, and that looks really too dark.
Let's adjust the Shadow Intensity and Post Blur. Actually, if I just increase the Post Blur to 20, that'll look better. All right, so that's starting to work. All right, so last step is to look at the final composition for this sticker project. Let's go back to the Project tab, open up the Comp 1 comp, which is the final composition for that, and here he is in the scene.
He is part of the heat wave, so Heat Wave effect is between the camera and him, and he's also underneath the Lens Flare. Let's play it back. Okay, there's our daredevil unicyclist in a hot dusty, dangerous work zone. Shows you you can key something and use additional color effects to better integrate it.
VFX expert Lee Lanier begins by exploring shared Boris Continuum controls, and then shows how to apply stylistic effects. He explains how to work with the PixelChooser and Boris Lights, and discusses how to color grade and warp footage. He also takes you through using the Boris Chroma Key Studio and working with Mocha Pro for motion tracking, as well as how to add particles and work with 3D text.
- Overview of Boris Continuum
- After Effects preferences
- Applying stylistic effects
- Relighting with Boris Lights
- Adjusting colors
- Changing the time of day
- Warping footage
- Keying green screen
- Motion tracking
- Adding particles
- Working with 3D text