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ehoch
01-09-2006, 06:58 PM
I need a little assistance with my workflow in AfterEffects. Our film is using a combination of HD 1080 archival footage and HD 1080 CGI footage. For realtime editing purposes, we are using 720x480 DV footage as proxies.

To save time in conceptualizing and editing, we have decided to render our first passes at the CGI footage at DV resolution, and when all is locked down, we will re-render the footage at HD1080 in Maya.

So now I have image sequences of 720x480 RLA files. Later I will have sequences of HD1080 RLA files. I want to make one After Effects file where I can composite the images together once and output to DV now, but to HD later using the hi-res files, without any additional fuss or muss of reconnecting media or altering parameters or keyframes.

How do I need to set up my After Effects files to achieve this?

So far, I haven't been able to get my head around how to approach this, and I would appreciate any help your collective experience can provide. Thanks in advance.

beenyweenies
01-10-2006, 09:56 AM
I need a little assistance with my workflow in AfterEffects. Our film is using a combination of HD 1080 archival footage and HD 1080 CGI footage. For realtime editing purposes, we are using 720x480 DV footage as proxies.

It's tough to use DV-sized proxies that will eventually be replaced with HD since the two use totally different aspect ratios. Not only that, but you will have to do scaling tricks with nested precomps (the source of your current conundrum) to make replacing the proxies painless. A third issue is that this can cause problems with settings (blurs, for example, will have a different look on the scaled up proxies than on true HD size comps).

A better approach might be to render out at final output size (HD) but use dramatically lower quality settings in Maya.

That said, compositing or doing any post-work outside of tests, editing etc. with proxies is a really risky idea due to the detail and quality that is needed to make solid compositing/color correction/production decisions. Your composits will be based on fuzzier, color-compromised files and once replaced with HD footage will need major adjustments. If you are doing heavy compositing or other effects work on these files, I would NOT use proxies, period.

Hope it turns out well~!

ehoch
01-10-2006, 03:41 PM
Thanks very much for the reply BeenyWeenies. You bring up some great points.

Our primary purpose in rendering to DV from Maya is to get to rough-cut faster (since HD renders take much longer). In that regard it helps.

But as you mentioned, blur settings and such won't translate well between the formats. Since the CGI footage is 100% CGI, I think color-correction and some compositing concerns will be avoided. It is clear that if we were comping with any practical elements the DV proxies would only complicate things.

So you have me thinking that proxies is not going to be worthwhile. I think I will proceed by creating two Composites in After Effects for each sequence: one in DV for the rough cut, and then after all edit and color correction decisions are made, I will redo the work in HD for the final cut.

Thanks again for the insight.

beenyweenies
01-10-2006, 11:42 PM
Thanks very much for the reply BeenyWeenies. You bring up some great points.

Our primary purpose in rendering to DV from Maya is to get to rough-cut faster (since HD renders take much longer). In that regard it helps.

But as you mentioned, blur settings and such won't translate well between the formats. Since the CGI footage is 100% CGI, I think color-correction and some compositing concerns will be avoided. It is clear that if we were comping with any practical elements the DV proxies would only complicate things.

So you have me thinking that proxies is not going to be worthwhile. I think I will proceed by creating two Composites in After Effects for each sequence: one in DV for the rough cut, and then after all edit and color correction decisions are made, I will redo the work in HD for the final cut.

Thanks again for the insight.

No problem, and good luck!

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