January 29, 2011 by   | 16,725 views | Comments (23)

As I mentioned in the previous breakdown, shot selection for this kind of look is very important. This time all of the selected shots were better suited for the look I had in mind, because the type was placed over the talent, rather than to the left or right.  Watch Movie  

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Layer Breakdown

The original shot.

The edit (created in Avid) was imported into Photoshop Extended, where each freeze frame was deep etched, the background cloned then duplicated, with a Watercolor filter applied. The deep etched character, cloned background and watercolour background were all placed in a Layer Set, ready for import into After Effects.

The cloned background. Cloning out the character or at least the edge of the character was important for a clean composite of the deep etched character back over the shot. Here it was easy to remove the character completely.

The cloned base was converted to a Smart Object in Photoshop, allowing the use of Smart Filters (filters that you can modify after they have been applied). Keeping the filters live is important if you may want to come back and make changes later.

The basis of the look was created using free watercolour stills sourced  online.

These stills were combined with the cloned background using After Effects Blend Modes.

Next, After Effects Curves effect was used for colour grading.

The composited background was then combined with the Photoshop watercolor version using a soft feathered mask.

Digital Juice Motion Designers Toolkit 6 provided realistic watercolour style animated elements.

The watercolour splats were used as mattes for the background composite…

…and added on top using After Effects Blend Modes.

The last 6 frames of each shot before the freeze frame were rotoscoped using After Effects Rotobrush tool. This allows the watercolour transition to start slightly before the freeze frame, for a smoother transition. After Effects masks were used to clean up the fingers.

The deep etched character from Photoshop was combined with watercolour layers. These get heavier towards the end of the clip, making the character appear to be “mixing in” with the canvas.

Red Giant Software’s Key Correct Matte Feather EZ was used for a more natural composite of the foreground into the background.

The title (Avenir Heavy) was combined with Digital Juice splats, filled with white and masked to certain areas of the type.

The type comp was then used as a matt for watercolour background.

In the final composite, the text was treated with After Effects Texturize effect, with Curves and Magic Bullet Mojo for the final colour grade.

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