3 Replies Latest reply on Apr 30, 2014 10:45 AM by bkcoughlin

    Help blurring an area


      This is my first time using After Effects, (this version is CC), and I've been studying the tutorials, but even though I follow the workflow precisely, I get stuck.


      So, I have an interview who is right against the mirror, and the mirror has a very visable smudge on it.  I'm trying to blur the smudge to decrease the effect.  Though the smudge doesn't move, the subject sometimes moves into the area.


      I've created my comp, added the adjustment layer, and then applied a blur effect to the adjustment layer.  According to the tutorial, the whole image on the layer should blur.  Mine does not.  Here's a screen shot with the blur cranked up and no effect on the layer image.




      The other workflow I attempted was this:  I created the layer, and then created the mask first.  The rest of the image disappeared on the layer, which I expected, but it also disappeared on the comp.  In this case I succeeded in blurring the mask, feathering, etc., but I could not blend it with the whole image.


      I'm sure I'm just making newbie mistakes, but I'm not having luck working them out from the tutorials, and any help would be greatly appreciated.





        • 1. Re: Help blurring an area
          Rick Gerard Adobe Community Professional & MVP

          First, you are looking at the layer preview not the composition so you cannot see any effects applied to your project, you can only see the footage layer.


          Second, if you want to only blur the reflection and the subject or the camera moves at all you are going to have to do some rotoscoping to separate the foreground and background elements. Rotobrush, AE's automatic roto tool, probably will not work very well with this shot because of the mirror, but there may be enough of an edge to get started. Any kind of roto will require some time.


          If you do not know what rotoscoping is then look for some tutorials. This explanation of the process buy Scott Squires is the best that I have ever seen, even though he does not use AE. The workflow for roto by hand is exactly the same. Be sure and dig through both parts.


          Here's a very quick demo of the process I did to show you how I roto by hand in AE:


          • 2. Re: Help blurring an area
            dswift743 Level 1



            Many thanks.  I look forward to getting into the details of roto at a later date.  At the moment, my issues seem to be simpler.  So I was looking at the wrong layer.  That helped a lot and got me going.  Now I have enough of blur to suite me.  I just need to feather the edge of the mask.  But where's the feather command? 


            Thanks so much for your help, and sorry for the really dumb questions.




            Many thanks,



            • 3. Re: Help blurring an area

              Select the layer with the mask and type "F".