12 Replies Latest reply on Dec 17, 2009 11:23 PM by John Ratard

    Replace an image with background

    John Ratard Level 1

      I have converted 1950s 8 mm film from the South Pacific to DV.  Unfortunately a section of spider web from inside the 8mm movie camera appears in the top left corner of the frames.  I would like to replace the spider web throughout the video with the background using a method I was shown at a video presentation several years ago.  I believe that this method used the Professional version of After Effects. I will be using Creative Suite 4 Production Premium.  I tired searching for a post dealing with my problem but I am probably not using the correct terminology.  Is it possible to do this and how? 

        • 1. Re: Replace an image with background
          Todd_Kopriva Level 8

          If I'm correctly picturing what you're trying to do, then I recommend using the Clone Stamp tool to paint the spider web out.

          1 person found this helpful
          • 2. Re: Replace an image with background
            John Ratard Level 1

            Hi Todd,

             

            I have not yet tried the exact clone stamp tool technique in your

            recommendation.  Using the older Adobe Video Collection standard tools, I

            have previously tried a clone technique to remove an object in a frame by

            replacing it with pixels beside the object.  This technique was able to be

            extended for the length of a stable clip.  It was not successful for

            following different clips because the clone stamp retained the pixels from

            the first clip that was used. Your particular recommendation may be

            different and work for me.  I will try it when my recently purchased

            Creative Suite 4 Production Premium is installed on my new Quad PC.

             

            The tools that I was hoping to find were used in a presentation several

            years ago. One tool was used on car headlights that were replaced by a

            different headlight image or effect.  This technique was able to track the

            headlights of the car and replace them with the new image as the car moved

            throughout the frame.  Another tool was able to remove a person and replace

            him with an estimated created background using surrounding pixels.  If my

            memory is correct, I believe the tools were in the Professional version of

            After Effects.  Unfortunately, I did not note the tools at the time because

            I did not have the Professional version.

             

            These tools may be included in your recommended method.  If not, can you

            advise me what these tools are?  If not in After Effects, where else?

             

            Regards,

             

            John

            • 3. Re: Replace an image with background
              Mylenium Most Valuable Participant

              Depending on what is actually visible, it may also be enough to create a gradinet in that particular corner to cover it up...

               

              Mylenium

              1 person found this helpful
              • 5. Re: Replace an image with background
                John Ratard Level 1

                Thanks fellows for your suggested solutions to my problem.  I just received the DVD software of the CS4 Production Premium so I have not been able to install it yet to try your suggestions.  My new wireless keyboard just failed so I will have to wait till tomorrow to get a replacement.  Is the After Effects in CS4 Production Premium the same as the Professional version for all this to work?

                • 6. Re: Replace an image with background
                  Todd_Kopriva Level 8

                  There is no distinction between Standard and Professional versions in recent versions of After Effects.

                  • 7. Re: Replace an image with background
                    John Ratard Level 1

                    I have installed the CS4 Production Premium on my Quad PC.  Included with the software was a free copy of 'mocha for After Effects'.  I was able to view the tutorials that were included with the mocha offer for upgrade to version 2 at $220.  There are a number of rotoscoping techniques presented including removal of an unwanted person in a clip who was replaced by the background,  replacement of a face, image stabilization etc. Following the tutorials was a little overpowering at first but the techniques look reasonable.  Does mocha provide more powerful methods to enhance videos as a plug in for After Effects and is it worth the cost?

                    • 8. Re: Replace an image with background
                      Mylenium Most Valuable Participant

                      Well, it depends on what you do. you are certainly referring to mocha AE v2 with the Shape plug-in, which adds trackable masking to AE, a feature it doesn't provide natively. If you are doing these things a lot, it may be worth spending the money, but generally you can already do a lot of this with AE's own masking system, AE's built-in tracker and mocha AE v1. it may just require you to use some scripts like Tracker2Mask and overall of course be a little slower to implement and not as straightforward due to extra steps required. I would first explore these options before spending any money. Of course, if you have the budget and don't mind it, you can take the plunge right away.

                       

                      Mylenium

                      • 9. Re: Replace an image with background
                        John Ratard Level 1

                        It would be nice if I could just consider how often I use the software.  I find that such expenses as this $220 mocha intellectual property cost for my continuing education tends to be much less than formal education.  I am greatful that Adobe offers the CS4 software at such a reasonable price compared to the 'Adobe Video Collection standard' available several years ago.

                         

                        Thank you so much for your help.

                         

                        John

                        • 10. Re: Replace an image with background
                          John Ratard Level 1

                          Mylenium,

                           

                          I am back at editing my video project after a long pause.  I have been working through After Effects training and considering your suggestions.  My problem with removing a fixed spider web showing in the top left hand corner of numerous clips does not appear to be an easy solution.  A duplicate copy with masking and time shifting in After Effects will not work in the time line because none of the frames provides an exposed background behind the web.  If I feather the corner out, the frames will look strange.  The only solution that appears to me to be workable is to apply the clone tool to sequences that have a similar detailed background behind the web and to have After Effects apply the cloning throughout the sequence.  Some frames will have to be cloned separately.  This will be a long slog for 50 ft of telecined 8mm movie film.  You may have a better idea.

                           

                          I do have a problem with the clone tool that has plagued me for several years in Photoshop CS and now in After Effects CS4.  It is time I learned what I am doing wrong.  Sometimes when I click the clone tool and try to apply it to a photo or frame, the clone tool does not function.  I just used the clone tool yesterday in the AE Composition window.  It worked on the frame as expected and was successfully applied for the length of the selected sequence.  I tried what I thought was the exact same sequence of steps today and now it does not work.  When I click the clone tool, it highlights in the tool box but when I bring it to the frame in the Composition window, then using an Alt + Click, the selection tool remains active with no signs of a clone function.  I only have one layer that is active in the time line.  What am I doing wrong?

                           

                          John

                          • 11. Re: Replace an image with background
                            Todd_Kopriva Level 8

                            > When I click the clone tool, it highlights in the tool box but when I bring it to the frame in the Composition window, then using an Alt + Click, the selection tool remains active with no signs of a clone function.

                             

                             

                            As with all paint tools, you use the Clone Stamp tool in the Layer panel.

                             

                            See "Use the Clone Stamp tool".

                            • 12. Re: Replace an image with background
                              John Ratard Level 1

                              Todd,

                               

                              Bad habits are hard to break.  I did read the section on the clone stamp tool yesterday.  Then I searched the tags in the Composition Window showing (none) for the Footage and Layer tags, so I assumed there were no layers.  I have now discovered the Open Layer selection under the Layer menu,  This is not mentioned in the clone stamp tool instruction.  Opening a layer placed the frame that was in the Composition tag in the Layer tag.  I have no idea how the clone stamp tool worked yesterday since I did not purposely open a layer then.

                               

                              Thank you for pointing me in the right direction to find how the clone stamp tool is supposed to work.

                               

                              John