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T-bat
03-23-2005, 05:00 PM
Hi,
I would like to learn compositing, but I don't have enough resources to buy both books right now. So which one would you buy first: Digital Compositing for Film and Video or The Art and Science of Digital Compositing?

Bob Gerber
03-24-2005, 09:50 PM
Hi,
I would like to learn compositing, but I don't have enough resources to buy both books right now. So which one would you buy first: Digital Compositing for Film and Video or The Art and Science of Digital Compositing?

... I know that is not the answer you want to hear, but:

1) do you have any experience with compositing, even with still images with Photoshop layers?

2) what compositing package do you intend to use?

If your answer to 1 is NONE and 2 is UNSURE, I am not sure either book will help you that much although the Brinkman book is more general and has more background materials.

If you don't have much experience and want to get started in the most common package -- After Effects -- I would recommend the Trish and Chris Meyers book, Creating Motion Graphics INSTEAD of either of these other great books.

If you have more experience and really want to look under the hood of some higher end NODE based compositor like SHAKE or Digital Fusion, Steve Wright's book is great. Unable to afford either of these terrific compositors myself, I am currently working through the Wright book with Combustion and finding it useful.

My two cents.

Good luck,

Bob Gerber
Gerber Grafix

jussing
03-26-2005, 07:40 PM
Ron Brinkmann's book is great for teaching a beginner the fundamentals of compositing, even if you've never had hands on experience. You'll be a better compositor than those who start by pushing buttons before learning the theory.

It might be outdated now, though... the basic concepts of course still apply, but he speaks a lot about what "presently" can and can't be done, and that has changed somewhat since the book was new.

Still, I love that book and highly recommend it.

- Jonas

T-bat
03-28-2005, 07:45 PM
I'm sorry. I should've asked which book is better if i know the basics and would like to know how it works under the hood, tips 'n tricks and so on.
Thanks for your time

Bob Gerber
03-28-2005, 11:11 PM
If you are using a node-based compositor or want to learn on one, I would recommend Steve Wright's book. It gives you a very applied and practical look. A group of us are actually going through the book and setting up node branches to work each of his examples.
But if you only know or care about a layer-based compositor like After Effects, it will be an extra chore to make the translation. Possible but hard work.

Brinkman goes into more detail about what happens inside many of the most common operators and also gives you a very thorough background in basic technical issues. Like others have suggested, Brinkman's observations about what is techically possible are more dated because the book is older. On the other hand, Brinkman has a fair amount of product specific detail in the appendices. Wright is absolutely agnostic. I have not found reference to a single product in his book, except maybe Photoshop.

Hope this helps,

Bob Gerber
Gerber Grafix

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