Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Snow Scene Composite

Second post on the same day. I followed a tutorial by CMIVFX (thanks guys, you rock!) on compositing and giving life to a static image in Fusion. What I did was look through the tutorial once, then look through while taking down brief notes and finally made the composite based on the notes I made. So let me explain the process briefly.

To start off, this is the original image, in HD 720p format.

The first thing I did was animate the clouds using the grid warp feature in Fusion. This took me quite a while because I was new to this feature. But it wasn't difficult, it just took a little bit time to get the motion right. Next, I masked out the clouds and color corrected them to make them look as if they are lighted up by lightning behind. Then I created a small mask to create a lightning "patch" on the sky and animated the mask to have the effect of random lightning across the sky. This is what it looks like:

Before moving on to doing more stuff, I decided to color correct the image a little because I felt that I did not quite like the blue that was in the image. Next, I went onto creating the background snow, using the SpeedSix plug-ins. Once I adjusted the parameters to make it look believable, I had to make the snow collide with the ice berg. So I masked out the ice berg:

And color corrected the mask to make it look white so that it would serve as a matte or an alpha channel for the snow to collide on:

Next, I created the foreground snow, which was meant to look a little bigger and falling at little faster rate than the background snow, just to create and fake the effect of depth. Below are two images that compares the scene with and without foreground snow.

Background snow only

Background and foreground snow together

Finally, I made the water animate using the SpeedSix plugin again. This was a tricky part, and I feel that it doesn't look quite right. But if its a shot for a few seconds, then I guess it should be okay:

And this is what the final shot looks like, with animated clouds, snow falling and settling on the berg, water, lightning and color correction.

This is by far the most complex composition I've done so far, because it's very different from the other previous compositions I worked on. The node flow is very different and very complicated too. I had to watch the tutorial a few times before understanding the workflow and then trying it on my own:

But it was a very good and valuable practice on compositing. Anyway, here's the video for the composite. Forgive the low quality though, I don't feel like uploading it on YouTube yet. Enjoy, and more later! =)

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