.net ean 128 Tutorial: Compositing the Ship s Passes in Software

Drawing QR in Software Tutorial: Compositing the Ship s Passes

Tutorial: Compositing the Ship s Passes
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Let s begin by compositing all of the spaceship s passes that we rendered in 27 The process will be similar to the one we used in 19 to build up materials in the Hypershade, except that now we ll be able to get real-time feedback instead of waiting for renders We will use the grunge pass as a mask on one of the main passes and then use one of the layer blend modes to affect the layers underneath
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Set Up After Effects
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We ll start by setting up After Effects:
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Launch Adobe After Effects You ll see the project window and a few floating pallets Choose File | Import | Multiple Files Navigate to the folder with the QuickTime movies of all of the passes (you can use your own or use the files provided on the DVD) Select them all and click the Import button All of the movies will appear in the project window Choose File | Project Settings Set the Time Base to 24 frames per second Now we ll set up our ship s composition Choose Composition | New Composition, and you ll see the Composition Settings window Name this composition Ship_Main Since we rendered the movies at 600 399, we will match this resolution here Set the Width to 600 and the Height to 399, and set the Duration to 5 seconds We will be editing this a bit at the end of the tutorial, but for now we ll stick to matching our renders The Composition Settings window should look like Figure 28-1
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Compositing in Postproduction
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Click the OK button and the composition will be created The Ship_Main Composition window and Timeline will also appear on your screen
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FIGURE 28-1 The Composition Settings window
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Composite the Diffuse Surface
We rendered two passes for the diffuse color of the spaceship The first, the soft diffuse pass, is used to describe the ship s basic surface color in the even lighting situation of the background plate It was rendered with Mental Ray s Final Gather rendering engine The second diffuse pass, the hard diffuse, was created with one light turned on so that only the surfaces facing upward were being lit, while the surfaces on the sides and facing the ground were much darker, almost black We want to combine these passes to create a spaceship surface that has been beat up a bit We will use the grunge pass to mask out areas where the shiny, reflective paint has been chipped away to reveal the surface underneath, which is the hard diffuse layer We will play with the contrast of the grunge layer to control the amount of wear we desire
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Drag the MCR_JYL_RP_Dif_Softmov file into the Timeline window, or the composition window, so that it snaps into the center Drag the MCR_JYL_RP_grungemov file into the layer above that so that it sits on top At the bottom of the Timeline window, make sure that the modes are visible by clicking the Switches/Modes button Click the TrkMat pull-down menu in the MCR_JYL_RP_Dif_Softmov layer and set it to Luma Matte MCR_JYL_RP_grungemov This will use the dark areas from the grunge layer to mask out the diffuse layer, making the soft diffuse layer a little more beat-up looking We will continue to use this same technique of using the grunge layer as a mask for most of the passes rendered for the ship s surface
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FIGURE 28-2
Clamp levels in the Histogram
The beat-up look might be a bit too subtle To sharpen it, increase the contrast of the grunge layer by adjusting the levels: select the grunge layer and then choose Effect | Adjust | Levels We are going to clamp the image so that the darkest color is black and the brightest color is white In the Effects window, move the sliders at the bottom of the Histogram so that they clamp the levels shown Your levels should look like those in Figure 28-2
The masked-out areas in the soft diffuse layer appear black However, the areas that are receiving more direct light from above should be a bit brighter This is where our hard diffuse layer comes into play Place the MCR_JYL_ RP_Dif_hardmov layer under the soft diffuse layer Now the masked-out areas on the surfaces facing up will be a bit lighter than those facing down The layers in the Timeline window should look like the following illustration:
Now we can fine-tune everything we have done so far by adjusting the opacity of the different layers We will continue doing this throughout the compositing process The settings we choose now may be changed later, but realize that this is part of the beauty of building your images in this way You can continue changing the look of everything by adjusting a slider instead of re-rendering the entire image For now, let s decrease the amount of the hard diffuse layer
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