It was a one man band shoot where joe was the director, the dp and the actor. He also cut the whole thing himself and did the sound himself. It really was a great example of how you can pull off something with just passion and creativity. So definitely take a look in the notes below to watch joe’s short film and our episode where he shows how he made that short film. Of course, joe, did have some help like with the visual effects which was done by our own ryan thompson. He added all these insane ufo or ship shots, and, after several of you requested it, i thought it’d be great to take a look at how you can add some alien goodness into your own project, we’re not going to go button by button here. Instead, i want to take an overview look at what we did, then you can take these ideas and put them in your own style and vision, so let’s jump off with this shot off the bat. One thing we know we’ll want to do is replace the sky to give this more of a dynamic look lucky for us. This is a locked off shot, so we don’t need any camera tracking and can jump right into sky replacement and our go to site for getting royalty. Free stock photos like this one unsplash.
com and pexels.com, because you can find great images like this one and you know it’s free, so we’re going to drop it in and once we like.
The scale and placement we’ll use a couple of masks to keep only the area that we want. Then we’re going to adjust the color to match our footage better like so, and you can use whatever plug in you like for that. The idea is just to dial in that style that you want for the piece now to put the sky behind the buildings. You can either use your masks or, depending on your original shot. You can duplicate the footage and place this above our sky image, layer and then we’re, going to use tint and contrast to get a good mat like this. Then we’re going to set the sky layer to luma mat. So it will show only within the white areas and to clean this mat up. We’Re, also going to use feathered, masks to fade off some areas for the ufo we’re using element 3d and this model from turbosquid. There are, of course, hundreds of models out there, even free ones, and you could even use an image depending on your shot. If you have something that’s far away with little to no movement, there really is a lot that you can get away with. But with our model we scaled down and moved the element world until we had a nice scale and placement of the ufo in the distance and because it’s above the city, we wanted to match the colors and contrast to help it fit in more and in this Shot the city is almost a dull silhouette, so we can use tint and curves effect to really dull down our ufo until it’s, nearly in a solid silhouette, then a subtle blur and noise effect will help us glue this into the environment as well.
Now, for the style and field joe wanted, we want the ufo to be surrounded by clouds, so we’ll duplicate our sky layer then delete any masks and roto around any clouds that you want in front of the ufo next we’re going to feather those masks. Slightly then apply roughen edges effect and tweak the border scale and sharpness. Until you have a detailed and convincing edge, then you can use multiple masks with different levels of feathering to add more of a fade, giving it a nice atmospheric look and the final step is to add a globe to feel like that. Sunlight is shining through the clouds right here and you can use after effects glow effect plug in, but we really love the red giant optical glow effect. I just think it gives a much more professional result and lets you retain any blown out highlights after that we’re going to add a lut to get the finishing look and, of course this is supposed to be a golden hour shot. So we wanted those deep oranges and reds which the glow layer really helps that sunlight feel too. So we have it looking pretty good already, but we’re gon na take a look at adding lights to the ship and finishing up after we thank today’s sponsor. So this episode is sponsored by accusonus, who has a new app on the app store right now, which whole purpose is just to correct the sound that you have on your phone and that’s.
Why i’m shooting this on my iphone in my front yard in a sound area, that’s not exactly ideal, to see how much this can clean it up. So we bring this into the app and then we can add things like balancing, which is going to balance out that audio enhance, which we can select male or female. We can denoise it, we can de ess it, we can increase the volume and they have the new function of deepener, which, if i add this all the way up, you can see it deepens my voice. But if i add just a little bit, it adds a nice little bit of weight to my voice. But one of the most impressive things is the denoiser on here, it’s, just as good as their one button denoiser on their actual plug. In so for people who do things like tick, tock or instagram, this is a really easy way to correct your sound very quickly and have something a lot more polished for wherever you’re posting so definitely jump to the notes below to find the link for where you Can go to check out this app for yourself logo. So at this point we could be done, but if your ufo has some lights – and you do want to see those – you can duplicate the layer, remove the color effects and set elements output to only show illumination. Then set the blending mode to screen. This gives you more control over the lights and you can add, glows change, the colors and so on, and we use a similar process for all of the ufo shots.
That roughen edges technique can be very useful for getting the clouds in front of the layers without those edges feeling too solid, but you can also use smoke. Stock assets like we did here to have more detailed and animated clouds element. 3D’S fog effect can also be really useful in creating a depth and giving that impression of a larger scale, ship or object in the distance and, of course, like i said before, you really want to make sure to match blur to your shot. For instance, here the whole city is out of focus so to match that we’re going to use the camera lens blur effect and change the value until the bokeh size matches the city, then you can adjust the highlights with these settings to make it pop and just To show you what that does here, it is without and then with, if the area in your shot, where you’re comping your object, is a touch blurry like this and you keep the object in focus. It’Ll never really feel like it’s there. So you know do that and finally, for those ufo beams, we used mass solid shapes with trap code shine to aim them in a direction then use the luma matte technique from earlier to make it look like they’re behind parts of the ufo it’s really just another Way to again glue everything together and bring life to your shot, but that’s it some simple tips to getting a convincing object like a ufo in your shot and now, of course, we haven’t really talked about the most important aspect here and that’s the actual shot itself In these shots, joe found incredible composition that gave depth and scale to the shot without giving that thought to what the shot will be.
What that final end result, you want will look like and spending that extra filmmaker brain time to analyze what it is within that practical shot that will set the stage for the post to have the most chance of success that is what’s going to really ultimately make Or break your final image, and a great thing to do just like anything else in film is to look for inspiration, find films like district 9 independence day or battle, los angeles. Anything that has a feel that you’re going for it doesn’t have to be the exact look. The most important thing is the feel the look can be altered easily enough. But what is it that’s happening within the frame to make you believe that shot and also keep in mind that it’s, not just that shot, but the moments around it as well, the hole that will sell the pieces and, of course, that doesn’t just apply to ufos That really applies to any kind of compositing that you do, and this was an overview more of that than a button by button. But i think it is important to look at concepts, general ideas and the process, and to that end we want to see your sci fi shots. It could be a ufo or any futuristic. Sci fi vehicle we’ve got a link in the notes below for you.