Need insight for special effect

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    • #74456

      I've been trying to figure out how to reproduce the burst of light effect during the transformation in this clip of Wonder Woman from the late 70's. It should be easy but I'm totally stuck. 



      Any help would be greatly appreciated!!

    • #210037

      Ha! Linda Carter was the best.

      As for your 'light burst' that's not difficult long as you have software that will allow you at least two tracks of video and has the capability to let you 'Key Out' a background color on one of the video tracks.


      You have your video of the 'action' (i.e. spinning Linda') as your main video track. Above it you'll have your second video track because that's where your 'light burst' effect will be. The burst can be a stock video clip of a light burst or similar effect or as simple as a photo or graphic of something that looks similar.


      You'll place the clip/photo over the spot in the main track where you want the effect to be 'brightest'. Now the trick is to have the video clip with an 'alpha channel' or a background color that can be 'Keyed Out' using your software's 'Color Key' (if green/blue, black or white). Getting rid of the background is easier if there's an alpha channel in the clip, but Color Key works well if you've got a good CK plug-in. So when you remove the background color all that is left is your 'burst'


      Now you'll have to change the transparency of the burst so it apears and fades when you want it. You'll need to 'keyframe' the clip so it is transparent until time for it to appear. Again, your ability to do this will depend on your software's capabilities. But you'll time your burst to 'fade in to its full opacity' and then fade down to completely transparent again. If Keyed, Keyframed and the Transparency are all done properly, then it will just be the timing that needs tweaking to get the look you want.


      Of course, if you have multiple video tracks you can layer on multiple video tracks to get more interesting effects and looks for your burst. Keep in mind you'll have to still use all the steps I mentioned for each layer and time them accordingly.


      Here's an example of how I layered video clips with Keyed out backgrounds and transparency for effects:

    • #210089

      First of all, thank you so much for taking the time to reply. I have Final Cut Pro X and just got Adobe after effects. I've sifted through HUNDREDS of stock pieces and have only found 1 or 2 that are close. I'm not sure how much I can manipulate them. I found one that is a consistant light but I need it to "grow" and "shrink" to make the effect work.  I was able to set the light track to "overlay" which got rid of the black background. After Effects is very new for me so I'm not sure how I can do this.

    • #210112

      You could most likely do it in FCP, but AFX is the far superior choice for compositing VFX. You really wouldn't need hardcore stock images and what-not. You can actually build much of what you need rather simply in AFX. Here's a link to AFX Guru Andrew Kramer who explains this stuff far better than I.

    • #210113

      That was an amazing tutorial. Definitely advanced for me but I want to give it a try. The stock footage just isn't cutting it. Thanks again!!

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