iPhone Video Enhancement in After Effects.

Posted by & filed under Portfolio, Quick tips.

Here’s a quick experiment with Adobe After Effects and Optical Flares (from Videocopilot). I captured this quick video on my iPhone on a recent stroll around Mt Maunganui. The sun was going down throwing a stunning gold light over everything and Ash couldn’t resist a quick paddle in the water.

When I got home, I checked out the video and was pretty impressed with how it came out. Not a bad little camera on the iPhone. However, it didn’t quite have that ‘golden times’ feel that I wanted. That meant it was time to crack into some After Effects 🙂

Making a sunset

So the first thing I wanted was a real sunset look. And for that, I needed a sun. Enter Optical Flares from Video Copilot.

I tracked the video clip with After Effects built in tracker and that gave me a position to fix the lens flare to. I had a couple of small issues with Ash running in front of my tracking points and the tracker getting confused.  The way that I got around that was to make 3 tracks, attach them to null objects and parent them together. It seemed to do the job quite nicely.

Once I had that tracking data, I created a new solid in AE and applied Optical Flares to it. I chose one of the presets and changed a few of the elements around (must buy that new Pro-Presets 2 pack) to get the look that I wanted.

Then I created a new light and parented that to the 3d null object that held the tracking data. That made the light move along with the video but a problem that I had was that the actual sun was off the edge of the clip .. it wasn’t visible for the vast majority of the shot.  So I had to move my light off to the edge of the clip about where I figured the sun would be. By using a simple expression I could leave the light moving with the clip and the move it about 400px on the x axis to push it off to the side. All good.


Finishing the look

I’d love to say that I spent a reasonable amount of time creating the right color look. But I didn’t. I just opened up Magic Bullet Looks and chose one of the presets. I dropped the saturation a little and fiddled with another couple of settings and until I was happy with it. Took about 5 minutes. No real manual colour adjustment necessary.

I then added a subtle vignette and some film grain and rendered it out.

Nice and easy and a great way to kill an hour or so doing something creative with video.

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