Compositing 3D Models

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  • @GrayMotion ,

    For anyone that wants to make anything cgi appear realistic when working with Blender and Hitfilm, that is a hard yes and an absolute must. Otherwise you're doing everything purposely the hard way... trust me I know.  :)

    However I didn't read the post were @HeySiri mentioned an actual Blender to Hitfilm pipeline/workflow. He asked specifically about lightwrap in his initial post so I only left my two short replies. Sorry again, I didn't see the Blender mention. :)

     

  • edited September 2019

    @spydurhank

    He didn't mention the work flow outright actually...like you said he mentioned light wrap...he hid his intent in the phrase "color correct it more to my scene" and then he finally got around to blurting it out in his last post 😀

  • Ah okay, I've gotcha. No worries, I've got old man eyes today apparently. :)

  • @GrayMotion @spydurhank well I'll explain my intentions:

    Scenes in which I have to composite 3D models and my footage, I'm going to use Hitfilm, because it has a very nice UI and good effects for compositing and so I wanted to know how to use light wrap and stuff with 3D models so I could composite my scenes best :)

    But, I do have some scenes where everything is 100% CGI or at least 90%. So, I prefer to work with Blender for those because it runs a lot faster on my computer, and I don't need to be doing any serious compositing that I would normally use Hitfilm for.

    To sum it up: using Hitfilm for 3d models/footage, using Blender for completely CGI :D

  • Thanks @HeySiri , excellent workflow. :)

  • @spydurhank thanks! Yep, I'm trying to pull off a pretty ambitious project that I started last June, and it's been such a long journey in the making, but it's happening this year and I'm super excited!

    In the end, I'm making three about fifty-minute films, all being filmed within a few months, to create an epic trilogy...

    I start filming in the winter seasoning, and in the meantime, I'm working on a few other much smaller projects to get ready...

  • That is fantastic @HeySiri , I look forward to viewing your work. :) 

  • @spydurhank and I look forward to actually doing some work 

    Here's a brief history of production leading up to this film:

    June 2018, I think up the plot for my movie.

    November 2018, I actually start writing the script. Get a couple of friends as the cast. It was actually a twenty-minute two-parter at first. It was called Invasion at first and was two ten-minute halves that went together and it was honestly just a small little project.

    November 2018, approx. one week later. I've already written the script and assembled the cast. I'm talking with my lead actor and one of my best friends, and he has some script change ideas. I listen, and I love the ideas. But it's a major rewrite. Which I go through with. And then I had an approximately fifty-minute short film 

    Dec 2018, I start putting together all the fun stuff like a budget and start raising money.

    March 2019, fundraising completed. Buy a ton of stuff.

    April 2019, the first day of filming.

    April 2019, later that day, I realized all my footage was horrible and I'm sad :( I have no clue what I'm doing. It's time for more research.

    May 2019, I have spent HOURS doing actual research and I make a ton of production stuff, including a lot of detailed spreadsheets. Also, I now have a shot list so I know what I'm doing :D

    At the end of May 2019, I find out some friends who are in my movie are all moving in summer, so there's no time to film my movie :( we delay the film.

    Throughout the summer of 2019, I start working on the script for the next two sequels. And here I am now, a few months away from filming with my new cast, and I'm super excited. This has been over a year in the making and I hope it pays off!

  • Very cool journey @HeySiri .

  • edited November 2019

    @Triem23 Okay like two months after you wrote those incredible and lengthy replies regarding compositing 3D models with footage, I've hit a snag.

    So I'm trying to place a 3d Model Cabin into a clearing in the woods. I'll provide my footage in a link. The model was just a $4 one off Turbosquid. So, I'm honestly not sure what to do. Should the cabin be 2d, 3d plane or 3d unrolled? How should get the lighting right inside of Hitfilm? Etc. I'm honestly not sure what to do.

    Footage: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1ozsRQ8eC9WQ25glP1uhgDOiHxgq1Qipp/view?usp=sharing

  • @HeySiri first I recommend reshooting that plate... You see that nasty jiggle/blur for a couple of frames five seconds in? That type of blur is really hard for Foundry to track (point trackers don't like blur), and I'm not totally sold on the trees giving enough good information for mocha to track.

    Otherwise, for the cabin model, once it's in, it can be 2D. You're comping it over a video plate and any shadow catchers can go on a layer under the model.

    Lighting on this shot is actually pretty tricky. Looking at the footage I feel like this was an overcast day, or the available light is being diffused a lot by taller treetops out of frame. Either way, there are no cast shadows on the ground to really give away the direction of the sun, and the overall lighting is very even. Great for outdoor portrait photography, actually pretty hard to light in a computer.

    Ok, so, in the foreground you have that dark branch. in the midground that "triangle of trail." which is where I assume the cabin goes. Behind the trail trees to the left look like the highlight on the trunks is more on the left side. Trees to the right have the highlight on the right side. Was this shot near mid-day? It's just a tricky one to figure out where the key light is!

    I've grabbed a free cabin off Turbosquid. Let me take a look in Hitfilm, because, as I've said twice, this type of diffused lighting is trickier digitally than a strong light.

     

  • @Triem23 does it need to be tracked? It was on a tripod. I only need about two seconds from the clip so I can find the best, most stable two seconds.

    It was shot at about 4:00 pm!

  • Yeah, you'll need to track. Tripod or not, the camera is moving, so, unless you want to hand-adjust the cabin.

    But, knowing you only need two seconds helps. You can avoid that camera bump in the middle.

    4pm. Huh. So, overcast? It's just such diffuse lighting!

  • @Triem23 a cloud here and there. It’s mostly just the trees diffusing the lighting.

    At noon when the sun peaks through the trees there’s literally rays of sunlight coming down and it’s really amazing. 

  • The sun is from top left to bottom right at around 12° to 17°, you can see it in the trees that are in the midground and background. The trees are leaning in all kinds of directions but you can see the shadows and highlights in the branches. And you can also see it in the large hill behind all of the trees and you can see it in the leaves on the ground. Tough to use the leaves on the trees as they are facing in many directions but the leaves on the ground are on a somewhat flatter, planar surface 

    Put a light at the center of the scene after you've tracked your footage, then start rotating the light direction so the light source is aimed a tiny bit to the bottom right of the screen. This normally wouldn't make sense but you're shot is practically on a mountain or at least a very huge hill or incline. 

    Eyeballing the shot is the best you can do so choose a tree in the far left of the scene and a tree in the far right of the scene. Compare the light direction or "shading/shadows" and then average that out to get the sun direction. 

    Or you could go out to the location today or on any day, at 4:00pm and then take note of the Sun location.

    You sure this is 4:00pm? Daylight savings maybe?

  • @spydurhank yes I’m on daylight savings time 

  • @Triem23 have you been able to have any luck compositing the cabin?

  •  Oh, right, I forgot to post!

    I got pretty good results with two directional lights, light gray, to the left and right (and above) the cabin. The left light was set to an intensity of about 50, the right about 30. I turned up diffuse reflectivity to 50 in the model's materials and used the video layer as the environment map. had to turn up shadow diffusion a bit.

    Diffuse lighting is still tricky.

  • edited November 2019

    @Triem23 Working on compositing the cabin right now. I managed to get it looking pretty good by masking leaves from around the clip and covering up the edges of the model but now I'm having trouble getting the lighting right. It's just a lot of tweaking to get it just right.

    Also having trouble with shadows.

  • Yup. Diffused lighting is a pain to dial in.

  • edited November 2019

    @Triem23 Just updated my last post but in case you didn't see it. I'm having trouble with shadows...

    Edit: just finished as much as I can do right now before adding shadows but how does this look?

    https://drive.google.com/file/d/1M7u1a0viLwhVe_njfz0Vh5z4J3c3n1cb/view?usp=sharing

  • The placement along the perspective line of that incline is magnificent, This placement  is selling the shot at the moment. all you've gotta do is some shading on the cabin and reflections on the windows, it will look pretty awesome.

    Again, very nice job on the placement. :)

  • @spydurhank thank you! Perspective was hard to get right for sure. 

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