29. August 2008

Step-by-Step Video of a Matte Painting by James McWilliams / Digital Animosity


Ancient Bathhouse von James McWilliams

A matte painting commonly refers to a painted or drawn piece of scenery used in movies or animations. They belong more or less to the standard repertoire of special effects.

James McWilliams created an interesting short video which shows the progress of such a painting. In several steps he first paints the scenery of an “ancient bathhouse” (read: mysterious ruins including a water fall). Then the painting is projected onto simple 3d geometries and a short tracking shot through the scenery is animated.

The video is a nice insight into how such effects are created. The download size is kinda hefty, though: 65MB.

» Digital Animosity / James McWilliams

(via The Reaction)

See also

(This article is also available in German)

Topics: compositingeffectsmattepaintingvideo

22. August 2008

Photo-Compositing Step by Step


Webseite von Taylor James

Recently I stumbled over the site of Taylor James. He has step-by-step illustrations of the different photo editing stages involved in creating complex compositions.

» Taylor James (see Retouching > Case Studies)

I am especially fascinated by the amount of manipulation that is involved in each picture. Usually I only wonder how certain outstanding elements have been inserted into a picture. But in this step-by-step show you can see that almost nothing originates from the same picture. Backgrounds and even floors are composited from numerous completely different photos.

Some but few of these compositions have accompanying explanations which are also very enlighting.

I am wondering what the source is for all those single parts that make up the whole image. Buying them from stock photo agencies would be excitingly expensive – but traveling around to photograph them by oneself wouldn’t be much cheaper.

(via The Reaction)

(This article is also available in German)

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