Jennifer shows you how to create a magic wand effect using special effects and video green screen background software.
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Magic is real. We all know it. As video producers, we make magic every day. Today, we’re gonna show you how to turn an ordinary grandmother into a fairy godmother. Here’s how we did it; using Wondertouch’s particle illusion for the glitter, Boris FX for the stars, and Photoshop for the bubbles.
We first started with a well-lit green screen. This gave us the chance to choose whatever background we wanted that wouldn’t interfere with the glittery effects. We then made a clean key using Adobe’s Ultra keying program. This program keys so well that even individual highlights of my hair can stand out, which really helps sell the effect. To make a good green screen key, you’ll adjust transparency in the threshold to soften the image, and then mask shadows with the alpha curve.
Following the key set up, we then through in a predesigned virtual set, also from Adobe’s Ultra program. These sets allow you to create a panoramic zoom and tracking scene. As you’re editing, you would place key frames at the first and last point on both the virtual set and the green screened image, and they follow the track together so both background and subject always stays within the parameters on the scale.
After the virtual set was tweaked, we then went into two different effects programs to create our stars, glitter and swishy effects. We used Wondertouch’s particle illusion, and Boris FX for the stars. You can download trial versions of each of these from our website. The glitter effects required a frame by frame key to follow the wand, and we had to shoot several versions at different speeds to get this just right. Be patient because it takes several takes to achieve the look you’re going after.
After we were completely satisfied with all the graphical effects, we finished the video off with the sound effects one would imagine that a wand might make and some fun music to sell the scene. We provided you with some of the materials you need to play with the footage we made for this segment. You’ll find it in the DVD Rom content folder of this DVD. Remember to use your computer and not a DVD player to view these files.
Find out more about these effects and how to make your own at the following Video Maker stories; about particle illusion, Article Number 11001, about Boris Effects, Article Number 13223 and about Adobe’s Ultra, formerly Serious Magic, Article Number 10556.
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