7 Replies Latest reply on Aug 27, 2011 7:54 AM by Rick Gerard

    Compositing an Energy ball to a footage?


      Hi, this is my first post


      I'm wondering how to composite an energy ball to my hand in After Effects. I have already created it and the whole ball is in one composition. When I choose the blending mode screen all the blacks gets keyed out but it loses a lot of detail and you can barely see it. Can someone please help me a better way to composite than using a blending mode?



        • 1. Re: Compositing an Energy ball to a footage?

          Sounds like you used a black solid as the backdrop in the energy ball comp, couldn't you just turn that off, leaving transparency?

          Alternatively, use the ellipse tool to mask around the energy ball.

          • 2. Re: Compositing an Energy ball to a footage?
            Rick Gerard Adobe Community Professional & MVP

            Show us your energy ball. If it's on pure black screen or add should do it for you. Ma.king the project 32 bit will also help.

            1 person found this helpful
            • 5. Re: Compositing an Energy ball to a footage?
              HinkikProductions Level 1

              Hi, thanks for the tips.


              This is how the energy ball look a like:


              Energy Ball.jpg


              I have tried to make it transparent. But it was the same results. And I have tried masking it out with the eclipse tool but it looked strange.


              Would making the background green and key it out wiht keylight be a good idea? LOL

              • 6. Re: Compositing an Energy ball to a footage?
                TimeRemapper Level 4

                The easiest way (if possible) would be to embed a proper alpha channel in the source. How did the energy ball originate?

                • 7. Re: Compositing an Energy ball to a footage?
                  Rick Gerard Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                  Your energy ball looks fine. I would probably have given it more detail. You can always add glow and soften edges later. It's much easier than putting detail back in. Even if your energy ball was created with an alpha channel as TimeRemaper suggested, you would still want to use add or screen blend modes in a 32 bit project to effectively sell the project. As long as your background is pure black the composite will work fine.


                  Setting the project mode to 32 bit is the first place to start. The second thing to do is to make some color adjustments to the background movie, add some adjustment layers, so a little masking and maybe a little roto work to sell the effect.


                  Here's a screenshot of something I threw together in about 5 minutes:


                  Screen Shot 2011-08-27 at 7.20.04 AM.png

                  I duplicated the movie layer (after.mov) and created a soft edge mask around her head shoulder and the blanket to I could place an energy ball behind her. then I set the back energy ball to ADD, duplicated it, added a fast blur to the top copy to to simulate light coming from the energy on the back of the couch. I then added another copy of the energy ball to the front, duplicated that layer, added fast blur, then used the blurred layer as a luma track matte for an adjustment layer with exposure control to simulate light coming from the front energy ball and falling on her face. More adjustment layers with exposure control were also added to the scene to adjust the look of the shot and sell the effect. As a final step, I added an unsharp mask to the top energy ball to increase the detail.


                  The point here is that you usually cannot sell a compositing shot with a single layer and a single effect. Here's a screenshot of the timeline for this example.


                  Screen Shot 2011-08-27 at 7.29.18 AM.png

                  I'd suggest that you take a close look at it, then start experimenting with your own project. I used nothing but screen and add blend modes to composite the ball and nothing but a little masking and some exposure control to sell the effect.