how t replicate this

Posted by Aaron Zander 
how t replicate this
May 30, 2006 05:41PM
what im trying to do is replicate a similer effect, except with dozens of styles of socks (yes socks) on a model, as she walks the socks change, now is this a matter of just having her walk the same path so many times it's identicle or is there something else

any help is much apreciated

Amateur Teacher
Re: how t replicate this
May 30, 2006 06:05PM
Look for the tutorial for the "Pleasantville effect" on this site for some ideas. Same technique, except in your case you want to isolate just the socks and modify their color. The trick to doing this right is for the model to have distinctly colored socks on for the shoot, a color that is strong and uniform and won't be found anywhere else in the scene. They you key on that color and change it to whatever you want, whenever you want, without changing any other colors in the scene.

This will simply change the color of the socks she is wearing, it won't change "styles" if that means different patterns, length, etc. Others may have some great ideas on doing something more complex, but I'd say having her walk the same path over and over again will not work to anyone's satisfaction, because she can't do it.

Re: how t replicate this
May 30, 2006 06:47PM

The only method I can think of is brute force. You shoot your model in the differnt socks walking the same path in front of a chroma key background. Have them hit the same marks on each pass. Then frame by frame you will have to replace her leg with the new sock.

If the camera is moving you will also have to track the camera moves.

If you do this plan on spending some time with it.

Re: how t replicate this
May 30, 2006 06:56PM
aah i was fearing this, and jus changing color, is wl, not that easy, were talking some crazy crazy socks here.

i was thinking of hae her walk like 8 steps in 20 odd locations, and the switch between locatons and socks wll be so abrupt it migt "mask" any leg variances

Amateur Teacher
Re: how t replicate this
May 30, 2006 07:02PM

Probably the video was made by using Motion Tracking.
The camera is on a tripod that is command by a computer. You shoot several times and the camera movement and time will always be the same.
In Post you must sync the desired takes and cut according to the story-board.

Rui Barros
Editor Colorist Trainer
Lisbon, Portugal
RTP Post-Production
Apple Certified Trainer FCP 7
Apple Certified Pro FCP 7
Re: how t replicate this
May 30, 2006 07:23PM
That's what I thought too. Automated camera and Rotoshapes (Shake).

Can you shoot her on a treadmill and sync that with the camera that you shoot the environment with? The walking path on a treadmill is much more consistent and easier to keyframe than in a natural environment. Also takes more concentration on the model's side to avoid the typical treadmill walk (bouncing torso).
Re: how t replicate this
May 30, 2006 09:34PM
that's slick
yes, motion control.

passes for each of the talent,
PLUS a pass with no talent.

then a diffence matte can be genertated,
enabling total extraction of the talent.
they could then be morphed to further perfect the matching positions.

the door may be hooked up to some repeat rig, too.

just guessing, of course.

you'd need more than FCP to pull it off as well as this spot does.


diffferent location might mask the jump cuts,
but not that well.
think about the lighting changes that'll take place, too
shoot a little bit wide so you can re-position if needed

use a music guide track when shooting to get the rythm similar each time.
hard to match camera tracking/walking speed & lock in the length of each stride,
i'd suggest a very thin tether surgicaly attatched to her shin bones smiling smiley


Re: how t replicate this
May 30, 2006 11:05PM

, wll let me just change up a little bit

here's what we've come up with for the iea, it would be A girl walking infront of awhite (or keyed) area, and the socks would simpaly change on her feet.

would i still need this fancy automated camera, cause thats way way way out of the price for his shot.

Amateur Teacher
Re: how t replicate this
May 30, 2006 11:46PM
Your main problem is that the actor will never hit the same marks at exactly the same time in each shoot. Unless you're willing to spend a lot of money on the shoot you'll never get this effect that smick.

You could get something vaguely similar, with a lot of work and a bit of luck. Make sure the camera is locked off. Make the actor do the walk lots of times, preferably hitting marks on the ground (and with fishing wire hobbles?) so she's in about the same place. Maybe even have a metronome going so she can get her timing right. Use a green screen so you can key in the background, because things in the background re likely to change over the shoot - unless you're shooting indoors.

Choose the frames that are the closest to perfect match between sock types as you can find for each cut. This is the reason for the multiple walks in each sock type - to give you more than one go at it.

And good luck. smiling smiley
Re: how t replicate this
May 31, 2006 12:05AM
Have you considered using editing, angles and camera reveals to achieve this? When you're aiming for a very high-end effect like this one with no budget, you'll often produce something worse than if you'd stayed within the range of your abilities rather than overreaching, missing and ending up with something cheesy. Special effects are a matter of resources, skills and time.
Re: how t replicate this
May 31, 2006 12:34AM
I think it could actually be cheaper to use digital doubles and mocap. Film the model walking and just replace the walking parts so you don't have to animate the breathing but just the legs. Depends on the camera focus you can get away with quite a bit.

Like having her turn on her heel, going close-up and cycle through a couple of socks while the cam is zooming in and her digital double turns.

OR just have the lower body scanned and match that to the walking footage by keyframing the animation.

Either way, you'll need Shake and a reliable 3D app that doesn't mess with your focus length (Maya with Renderman for Maya). Oh and some guys that know how to operate that stuff wouldn't be bad either smiling smiley

As said you can get away with a lot on inaccuracy with the right angles, so you could cut off a leg (not on the model, to be clear) and use the rotation tool to match the movement till it fits the next walking phase (2 or 3 steps). This would be for the model doing the walk a couple of times.
Re: how t replicate this
May 31, 2006 01:01AM
Let's see Aaron... How heavy is your cam rig? Chances are you can build this thing yourself with a couple of thick mic booms and a step motor (rent one) that has a "flow" kind of setting, no idea what that's called but it basically performs a steady motion. - This way you can have an orbiting cam that always moves at the same exact speed.

For example: 3 mic booms fixated so it looks like a fork when viewed from the top. one end is attached to the motor and you have a mount on the other end for the cam. Below the cam I'd suggest either a wheel with a broomstick or another boom to support the weight. If you don't have another boom, an intern on a unicycle will do, but less accurate.

That's a bit McGuyver-ish but very budget friendly.
Re: how t replicate this
May 31, 2006 12:07PM
wow, i had a teacher that wrote for mcguiver once i don't think that they could have ever come up with that rig

ok, well im gonna go discuss this with my partners and come up with something, well, more realistcly accomplished

Amateur Teacher
Re: how t replicate this
June 01, 2006 11:46PM
Here's my .02 Aaron. First, ditch the moving camera idea (as I think you've already decided). Obviously the motion tracking involved would push your budget pretty high, pretty fast.

Walk the model in front of a green screen on a treadmill. Shoot her in profile and play a beat oriented music track that she can walk to. The neat thing about beat tracks is it will actually contrain her stride to a very even and consistant stride if she has any rhythm whatsoever. There's no need for fishing wire hobbles which would likely make things harder because as she reaches the end of the wire, her legs would jerk unnaturally (think about what it's like to walk with your shoes tied to each other).

Also, if the socks are the point of the spot, shoot her from the waist down. It will excentuate the sexiness of her legs, and draw attention to the socks at the same time. In addition, you won't have to key out her hair and you can likely pull a much cleaner key.

Shoot your backgrounds on a steady, wheelled rig. Something you can pull or push preferably so that you can play the beat track and approximate the stride of the model. This won't be exact, but I think it'll be easier to match the background movement to the models legs, then trying to match the model's stride in 20 different locations. Also, you could find vertical or horizontal similarities between your backgrounds that allow you to transition seamlessly between the various backgrounds so that there can be a number of places, but that they don't pull attention away from the model.

Since the model was shot on a treadmill that did not move to the right or left of the locked down camera, you'll have no trouble whatsoever matching the shots with different socks. Keep in mind: Even if the length of her stride varies a little with each step, there will ALWAYS be a moment when both her legs are side-by-side, and that's where you can sync your shots to. Plus, shooting her in a keyed out environment allows you wriggle room along your verticle and horizontal axis as far as position when choosing your cut points.

Use a good motion stabilizer plugin to keep the vertical motion of the backgrounds in check. Apply the background to the keyed video and use the Time Re-mapping tool to make any fine adjustments to the speed of the background footage so that it looks like she's actually walking in those environments. This will undoubtedly be the most difficult part. But it can be done entirely in FCP, or AE if you have it. From a budget standpoint, it's completely doable and you can get a really professional result as long as you put the time into it and go through it frame by frame.

Not too difficult, I think. No costly or ungainly rigs, no 3d programs, no shake needed (although, of course shake would really do a good compositing job), and no motion control cameras.

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