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After Effects from a N00b
  • We shot part of our first short film earlier last year as a bit of an exercise for learning film making. The rushes were adequate in quality, but there were things all over the place that were wrong...and still are :-). Oh, and we're doing the acting ourselves for now, as we don't have the heart to involve anyone who can even remotely act, to our amateur film crew. This exercise has put us a few steps closer to feeling more confident however.

    Anyway, in an effort over Christmas, having a little time to myself, I decided to embark on learning a bit more about After Effects. And what better footage to work on than our incomplete short. We'd done a few edits and quick grades, but nothing serious, so now was the time.

    First of all, the script called for this to be set at night time, and we'd shot in the daylight. Plus, there was supposed to be a character that magically appears in the garage, and we'd left the bloody side door open! We also wanted to add some form of special effects, knowing full well it would look cheesy, we just didn't want it to look like we'd drawn them on with crayons.

    I've put together a few screencasts of our learning process and what we did, and I just thought they might be useful to anyone that is very new to all of this. These are by no means tutorials though, just commentary around what we did, why and our learning experience.

    After Effects Door Removal Clone Tool (Part 1)

    After Effects Door Removal Clone Tool (Part 2)

    Learning After Effects Commentary: Crop, Levels, Day for Night

    Learning After Effects Commentary: Light Effects and Motion Tracking

    And here was the result of my learning efforts, which I was quite pleased with considering how much of a novice I am.

    Camera: Panasonic GH2 (Unhacked)
    Lens(es): Panasonic 14-140 4-5.8
    Software: After Effects/Premiere Pro CS5.5, 5DtoRGB Batch, Red Giant (Looks, Shine), Video CoPilot (Optical Flares)

    Hope its useful to someone.

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