After Effects AWESOMENESS!

Hey guys! I’ve been using After Effects a lot in Film School recently.
And I did a pretty cool trick in the first shot of this short film.
Check it out :slight_smile:

I used After Effects to simulate a light switching on.
The very first shot was actually filmed with the lights on the whole time. Our actor only pretends to flip the light switch on.
So with After Effects, I tracked an image of a “flipped-on” switch to the “flipped-off” switch and made it follow it right as the actor fake-flips the switch on.
I also adjusted the curves, brightness, and contrast in order to make the shot go from darkness to brightness right as the actor fake-flipped the switch :evilgrin:
After Effects is SO powerful! I love it!
Let me know what you guys think.

Subscribe to support me fellow Blender-ers! :yes:

I also adjusted the curves, brightness, and contrast in order to make the shot go from darkness to brightness right as the actor fake-flipped the switch

Sorry, but I don’t notice any time where there is a transition from a dark classroom to a bright one.

I see total darkness, then I hear what sounds like a light switch at 3 seconds, then more darkness. Character starts talking, while in total darkness, at 5 seconds. Then the other character flips the switch (and I hear the light switch sound again) and I see the bright classroom. I just don’t see any in-between.

It would be different if we could see them while they walk into a dimly-lit room, then flip the switch, but all I see is nothingness…

ym… How did you do that Switch is not working?

I tracked an image of a “flipped-on” switch to the “flipped-off” switch and made it follow it right as the actor fake-flips the switch on.
I don’t see the point. The room is pitch black so why track a switch that you can’t see ? Why is the room so dark anyway, there is light coming in through the windows.


Another good question is how is this a Blender or 3D discussion?

Harley: the lights turning on is After Effects. The lights didn’t really turn on on camera. If I had left the footage “as is,” then the room would have been lit from the very beginning and the switch would have been flipped down the whole time, even after the actor “flipped” it up. Also, the sound in the beginning is the door opening. The second click is the switch noise.

Kramon: I’m not exactly sure what you’re asking. Would you mind rewording? :slight_smile:

Richard Marklew: I agree that you can’t even see the switch when it’s dark. And once he flips the switch on, you can only see that it’s flipped on for about 1.3 seconds. It wasn’t exactly “necessary.” But I wanted to be precise and detailed with my work. I wanted to go to the extreme to fix every level of detail that I could. I also just wanted some more experience with After Effects :wink: You can only see the hard work for about a second. But I think it was worth it :yes:

Jonathan L: The title of this Forum is “Blender and CG Discussions.” Since CG stands for “computer graphics”, and After Effects falls under the category of “computer graphics”, I thought it was suitable to share some After Effects work. But if you’re looking for Blender work in the video, then I guess you could watch the logo at the end :slight_smile:

Thanks for commenting guys! I hope I didn’t sound sarcastic in these replies. Wasn’t meaning to :slight_smile:
I do thank you all for watching and for providing feedback.

the lights turning on is After Effects

I realize that, but it appears as if you used After Effects to render the room completely and utterly pitch black, which doesn’t exactly require After Effects. Any editor can make the video fade to black. It would have worked better if the room had been light enough that we could have seen your characters walking in. Light enough to actually see the actor flip the switch. THEN lighten it up.

Also, the sound in the beginning is the door opening

You might want to re-record that audio effect.

What light did the actors turn on? The lighting fixtures near the windows? The only room lights I could see weren’t even on! All the shadows were raking across their faces not coming from the ceiling.

Last time I made an effect for fake light switch it was to animate the flicker of a flouro tube as it comes to life. That was a random mix between on/off.

Glad you like AE, but I bet it would have been much better in Blender :wink:

Harley: Your monitor must have dark or “contrasty” settings. I can see the room and the actors on my screen even when the lights are off.

3pointEdit: The actor turned on the ceiling lights. However, I realize that you can see the lights in certain parts of the film and notice that they aren’t actually on. That was the fault of the DP (Director of Photography). We were never actually supposed to “see” the ceiling lights in any of the shots. And yes, there are terrible shadows cast by poorly placed lights. But once again, that was the DP, not me :frowning:

I simply posted this to get feedback on the AE implementation of tracking an inversed light switch to it’s original.

I also found it hard to se the first part of that shot sorry. I could just make out the walls but not the talent. Have you checked the ped value (black point) against the black of the Youtube frame? Perhaps it is a bit to close.

3pointEdit: you’re probably right. Did you find that the whole video, overall, was a little too dark? Or just the first shot when the lights are off? Cuz I’d like to fix it or either just keep it in mind for future videos. Was it all too dark? Or just the beginning?

I can see it fine on my monitor… however, have you looked into the blender compositor / sequencer? both are able to achieve the same effect.


Your monitor must have dark or “contrasty” settings

Yes, you are right. Sort of. I turned up my monitor to “torch mode” and I can now see that the scene isn’t completely pitch black. Almost, but not completely…

I took a frame from underexposed and correct exposure, and placed it in the UV/Image viewer with scopes. I think that you are probably too crushed and the pedestal could come up another 10-15%. But it’s personal, I guess it’s an issue if your distribution platform (YT) is not conveying the story adequately.

i…hate…after…effects (totally worthy post)

In addition to the moment of happiness when first encountering a brand-new toy, this seems to have diverged safely into the discussion of a particular CG/SFX effect which could be of interest to anyone. The notion that “Blender could do it, too” is self-evident, and “Blender vs. After Effects,” graciously, doesn’t seem to be the intended point.

As for “too light” vs. “too dark,” for either or any of these products you’ll need to familiarize yourself with tools such as Histogram, Luma and Chroma/Vectorscope, all of which give you an objective measure that you can also make-consistent throughout a scene or a production. Your eyes alone won’t do it. Over the course of many days or weeks of effort required to do pretty-much anything, the only way to get a good exposure and to do it consistently is through measurement.