Newbie fiddling around with green screening

Hello, everyone first time poster here, I've been learning to use Hitfilm on and off for a year or so, and I am really enjoying learning about video editing, especially learning how to chroma key, even though it's still pretty frustrating for me (green spill aargh!).  I wanted to share my first real effort -- I'm trying to make green screen work with my violin playing because I want to make fun promo videos for my performance work.  I can't always afford to film footage in a cool location, you know? Also I definitely have a problem getting my violin bow (and wireless cord) to show up all the time - as soon as I start messing with the alpha channel settings when I view the matte, my bow is the first thing that wants to disappear! I appreciate any tips that anyone would like to offer as I am a total noob, but I really want to get good at this!  Thanks in advance, I've added the link here My Green Screen Video


  •  @glennviolin ; Wow! You are fantastic with that electric violin.  Most excellent.

    My suggestions would be to add some backlight to further separate you from the background.  That should also help with keeping the bow and cord from disappearing.  Also, I would vary the background and camera angle for each song or piece.   You went to the  trouble of changing costumes so why not change the "venue" as well.  Adding some colored gels over the lights would further set the mood.

    If this is your first time with this stuff, then you have done well!

  • edited January 4

    @stargazer54 Thank you so much for the feedback, I will definitely add the backlighting and work on more angles (the virtual set I bought  only had one ☺️). This program is so powerful and I look forward to getting better. 

  •  Very nice! Stargazer is correct. Let me add a couple things. Make sure you have some distance from the green screen and evenly light it. You need to be far away from the screen so that the light from it doesn't affect you. Then light yourself with a key light, which mostly lights you. Add a fill light to even off the tones and then aim the back light toward your body so that you will see the edge of your body slightly glow. Kevin the basic filmmaker has a great youtube video called  Basics of Green Screen that would be a great one to watch. Great playing. Even if you didn't do anything fancier, it's still enjoyable. 

  • Triem23Triem23 Moderator

    Fiddling around.... Groan. 

    You can only own that pun because you are an INCREDIBLE musician! 

    I think Stargazer and Kiplake gave great advice. I'm only going to add this video which has amazing tips many others overlook.

  • This thread reminded me of an old conversation we had about these particular issues. This app in particular may help that I found quite useful back then. I have not kept up with it's development or even know if it's still in a stable version, but worth mentioning I thought!



  • @Kiplake ;— thank you for the compliment and the tips on distance and lighting. My problem is definitely distance related: I can’t fit my body  and my full bow range into the shot and still stay in front of the screen even though I have the screen stretched all the way across my basement! I haven’t figured out the right camera angles I guess.  I will review Kevin’s video as per your suggestion. 

    @Triem23 thanks for your kind words, and also for the video tutorial you linked! Sorry about the pun, it was just too hard to resist LOL

    @CNK  thanks so much for the links! I am addicted to getting this right. 

    I really appreciate you all taking the time to comment and I hope it’s ok if I share again once I’ve had a chance to learn some more technique. Thanks. 

  • Stargazer54Stargazer54 Moderator
    edited January 8

    @glennviolin ; Everything in video production is a process.  But you are in good hands with this group.  Look forward to seeing what you post next.  Good luck with your project!

  • Triem23Triem23 Moderator

    Never apologize for a valid pun. I tease.

    Unfortunately separation from the greenscreen will be key to keying (pun intended). If you're too close the green will reflect in the shiny lacquer, and get removed by the keyer... It's a common issue with home setup.

    Can you post a short raw (pre effects) clip? That will help us see what you start with and might inspire suggestions. 

  • @Triem23 so sorry for the late response, I just saw your comment. I will be sure to post some raw footage the next time so you can see, but I am absolutely certain that I’m wayyyy too close to the green screen because I definitely have a lot of spill that I have to adjust for.  Also I’m poorly lighting myself! I’m going to work on some test shots tonight and I will be sure to post a sample in a few days. I truly appreciate your helpfulness. 

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