VISUAL EFFECTS FOR DIRECTORS
These 5 sample chapters are a tiny sampling of the almost a thousand techniques covered by Visual Effects For Directors. There's a lot of free training here, so enjoy!
HOW TO PLACE TRACKING MARKERS
These two chapters talk about everything you need to know about tracking markers and matchmoving on a green screen.
We first talk about color, size and shape of tracking markers, then about photogrammetry and depth-placement, and finally we walk through an entire Virtual Set process from start to finish. Then we wrap by talking about how to prevent emergencies, and what to do if a shot ever fails.
This is almost a half hour of training, so get a cup of coffee!
Want to play around? Download the free Green Screen Plates!
Crowd replication seems so simple, but it's actually a science. Many people rely on difference keying, which is a terrible method.
This chapter talks about how to do crowd replication that is easy to composite, how to maintain station-points and crowd continuity, how to use motion control, and how to do massive crowds with a million people using Particle Instancing.
RECEIVING SHADOWS AND LIGHT
This is one of many chapters on matching lighting, which is a critical aspect of visual effects, and it has to be done right on the set -- it can't be fixed in post.
This chapter covers a very difficult situation, which is having shadows fall on a live-action person on a green screen. It would be dangerous to shoot a plate like this without careful thought, because an unusable plate could mean a reshoot.
HOW TO SHOOT FOR PLANAR TRACKING
Things like corner-pinning and replacement used to be done with 2D tracking, which was really an awful way to track.
But a Planar Tracker tracks the whole surface instead of just points, and that results in a whole new set of rules for how you have to shoot inserts and elements that have to be replaced -- which is all the time.
This chapter covers in great detail exactly what to do on the set for this to be easy and safe.
Want to try your hand at tracking these shots? Many of them can be downloaded for free on the Tracking Plates page!
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"After watching and ingesting all the DVDs, I must say that you did an AMAZING work. This is probably one of the best educational materials on the market. As a trainer and tutorial guy myself, I can imagine the hard work, planning, scripting and shooting that you put into this.
So once again - RESPECT. I think it is a must for anyone who wants to be professional in this field."
Eran Stern, Stern FX, Creative COW Contributing Editor
"Should be common knowledge ... The set fills a niche that has been sorely vacant for too long."
Mark Christiansen, Pro Video Coalition Review
"Without doubt, all colleges and universities offering majors in filmmaking
must use these DVDs in their classrooms."
Homer B. Pettey, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Film and Television Studies, School of Media Arts, College of Fine Arts, University of Arizona
"The two Green Screen Intensive DVDs are worth more than my 4 years in film school learning VFX. Also, I have read every issue of Cinefex and thought I knew how to make a great green screen shot; I was wrong.
The comparisons of film vs video color space, paint selections for cycs, how to test your colors in photoshop, etc. the list goes on. I really learned how much I didn't really know or understand. This series is what every filmmaker, not just Director or VFX Supervisor, needs."
Geordie Martinez, Technical Director, Fantastic 4: Rise Of The Silver Surfer, Character Finaling Lead, ImageMovers Digital
"A must-watch for everyone in film who wants to know more about this area."
Dayne Cowan, Co-Head of 3D, Double Negative VFX (Harry Potter, Batman, James Bond)
"In a word: Fabulous! Visual Effects for Directors! is 11 hours of the absolute best training on the subject I've seen anywhere. This seven DVD master course is a must have for anyone interested in the practical, real-world application of VFX technology. Per Holmes has created a indispensable tool for cinematographers, directors, producers, and VFX supervisors at any level. Worth every penny!"
Dale K. Myers, VFX Supervisor and Animator, Lead Character Animator on M&M commercials
"As a seasoned professional in the film industry, I went into this series being rather skeptical. To my surprise, not only was it great, I picked up a few new tricks for my toolbox along the way."
Cesar Dacol Jr., Modeling Supervisor, Fantastic Four, 300, Journey To the Center Of The Earth, Disney's The Wild, Barnyard, Species
"Visual Effects for Directors is a must have and must see for anybody who works with CGI in films. It is a precise, comprehensive and hands-on explanation of the basics of modern visual effects and greenscreen shooting.
Guido van Gennep N.S.C (Netherlands Society of Cinematographers) Director of Photography
"We are skilled 3D CGI experts and there are cameramen among us, too; however, the DVDs present all the concepts which bind our skills together and add more. Highly recommended!"
Stepan Kment, Lead Engineer, www.motioncapture.cz
"I'm a big fan of your course materials."
Jeff Light, Dreamworks Animation, Rigging/Mocap Supervisor, Star Wars Episode II, Harry Potter, The Mummy, Jurassic Park, Terminator II