View Full Version : wire removal (how to?????)

12 December 2002, 07:17 PM
ok i want to get a jump on classmates in school could someone please point me in the direction of learning how to do wire removal in after effects????????

12 December 2002, 04:54 AM
There are a few ways to do this...

1) Use a plugin dedicated to this sort of work. ex) 'CW Wire/Rig Zapper' by Pinaccle Systems (

This however, will not yield perfect results, as the plugin fills in the space where the wire is by duplicating ajoining pixels... ie) You WILL lose details.

2) This is the prefered method. Before you begin shooting, completely lock down your camera. I mean COMPLETELY! You do not want the camera to move the slightest bit, and this includes the angle it is facing on a tripod.

Second thing to do before beginning, turn on manual everything on the camera... focus, exposure, aperture... EVERYTHING.

Now shoot some stock footage (this is known as a 'clean plate') of approximately the same length as the shot that you will remove the wires from. Make sure to not have any objects moving in the frame... Now tape you jumping on your classmate, and do leave all of the settings on manual, and do not adjust them at all...

It may be in your interest to tape the clean plate after the action shot, to make sure that your settings are all acurate for the situation.

Now make a composition in AE with the clean plate on the bottom, make sure to timestectche the clean plate out to make sure it is long enough to span the entire action shot.

You can now simply mask out the wires in the action shot, using a mask with a 2->2.5 pixel feather...

VOILA!!! Instant super jump!

Hope this helps... p.s. POST SOME STILLS!!!

01 January 2003, 05:42 AM
Yeah, that's how to do it. But why would you need to shoot the background plate as long as the shot is? If it's a steady shot, just take a screenshot from a very short amount of footage that you shoot, and place it on the bottom layer in a composition in AE.

01 January 2003, 06:43 AM
Whenever I'm doing any kind of wire removal or split screening, I record a background plate for atleast 1/4 - 1/2 of the time the final output is going to be. A still isnt the greatest thing to do because your background may have some movement you want to keep

for example, a flag swaying in the wind.

if you film your BG plate for half the duration of your final video, you can loop it and it should turn out okay.


01 January 2003, 06:49 AM
MacGyver, maybe I'm tired or what, but what you just said is completely untrue I think. Why not just film a very short background plate and take a screenshot of it? Not jpg because that's very highly compressed. Take a .tga or .tiff screenshot.

01 January 2003, 06:51 AM
What if you want to have movement though in the corner of the shot? A still would ruin it.

01 January 2003, 07:06 AM
Well, I was talking about for a STILL shot. So ha! I won the argument!

01 January 2003, 12:04 AM
Im sorry, but for a still shot, you still want video as your BG plate. Who agrees?

01 January 2003, 12:17 AM
Alright Guys,

I'm going to have to agree with AWB on this one...if you want to preserve motion like a flag waving in the bg plate (For wire removal only, we're talking!) shooting video to use isn't going to cut it. If you have the wire going over a moving part of the bg (which you should avoid) the motion in the forground isn't going to match the motion in the background, be it a still or video. You'd really have to do some sort of blending in those areas (and lose detail). I suppose you could argue that if it's a repeating motion and you shoot a video bg plate you could line it up in such a way that the objects would roughly line up...

I do agree that you should shoot video from which to extract your plates for about 10 seconds before and after your shoot so you have some options as to the frame you'll be using.

01 January 2003, 12:19 AM
Originally posted by MacGyver635
Im sorry, but for a still shot, you still want video as your BG plate. Who agrees?


EDIT: Didn't the author of this thread say this shot was gonna be IN SCHOOL ????

So what does flag movement in the background have anything to do with this shot? Yes, there can be a flag in the background in a school, but what wind will blow it?

01 January 2003, 05:35 PM
All righty fellas, here's my opinion about the discussion at hand. I'm no pro, but I have some experience in painting out stuff in AE.

And I say:

MacGyver635, the example of a flag may not be the coolest, for the reason NXTB said - the movement won't match anyway - however, I agree with you:

For painting out stuff, you should use a video plate, not a still.

Not really because of big, moving objects, since the movement most likely won't match (like the flag example), but because of the LIFE OF FOOTAGE. Be it film grain, video noise, compression artifacts - WHATEVER, a still won't do it.

Film and video is alive - a still is dead.

Having said that, obvisously in some shots a still might just actually solve the problem perfectly, depending on movement of the wire, the size of the wire in frame, the compression and resolution of the final comp, the audience, etc, etc. (ie, if it's a project for your kids, and you're low on disk space, by all means use a still)

But for a "global technique" I'd always recommend footage, and not a still.

And if the camera is moving all over the place, try using the actual SHOT as it's own background plate, only a couple of frames earlier or later in the timeline. In my experience this can solve most things, although you might end up doing very manual tweaking on some frames.

Cheers :) ,
- jonas

01 January 2003, 04:31 AM
okay still observing all post i will let you know how it turns out

01 January 2003, 04:58 AM
McGyvr is right. 2d movement is wanted. use video as your background.:buttrock:

01 January 2003, 08:19 AM
Interesting.....I think both are right, it really depends what you are doing and how you are doing it? :thumbsup:

..but if you material is grainy you should definitely use video as your background at least if you are masking large areas. IMHO


01 January 2003, 11:00 AM
I prefer video for the lack of artifacting etc but what is tricky with video is colour correcting your two clips to match each other. It's alot easier to correct a still to follow your main action lighting. Just a thought guys. Had this problem when I completed a clip of me fighting myself. The light changed suddenly on one of my clips making it difficult to animate the lighting change.

01 January 2003, 09:31 PM
Originally posted by kraal
ok i want to get a jump on classmates in school could someone please point me in the direction of learning how to do wire removal in after effects????????

Do you guys realize this is a jump in school? This IS NOT a moving background, at least it shouldn't be. Why don't you TRY to do some wire removal or cloning effects with a still background FIRST instead of making SHITTY ASSUMPTIONS

And this is why.

You know what happens when you assume?



01 January 2003, 10:18 PM
huh... :surprised

There is no law that denies moving backrounds when shooting in school... chill out dude.


01 January 2003, 10:46 PM
I thought the idea of this forum was to try and help each other out and give our opinions on the way we would do things. Guess I might stay out of it in future if we're gonna have posts like that.

01 January 2003, 12:11 AM

sorry for the cursing

um......, we were talking about STILL backgrounds, therefore you wouldn't need a VIDEO background, but a STILL background

01 January 2003, 05:57 AM
Even a background that doesn't move around, might have movement. Such as - as previously mentioned - film grain, living compression artifacts, whatever. I'm talking about FOOTAGE LIFE that you don't get from a still.

Besides, I've never understood why you don't think anything can possible move in a school... :surprised

I went to your homepage - I think it's incredible for a 13 year old kid to pull off stuff like that, and I'm sure you're the very best among your friends. But if you don't WANT to learn new stuff, then you'll definately never get better. ;-) So you might want to try and open up to new ideas.

- jonas

01 January 2003, 03:34 PM
Originally posted by kraal
ok i want to get a jump on classmates in school could someone please point me in the direction of learning how to do wire removal in after effects????????

ok, am i the only one who's reading that as "i'm trying to get ahead of my classmates so i want to learn this" not "i'm actually going to jump on bobby so how do i remove the wires?" :D and calm down guys, there's more than one way to do everything...


01 January 2003, 09:45 PM
You're right, FIG... about both things! ;)

- jonas

01 January 2003, 10:49 PM
Well, if you want the dv artifacts, which I don't personally like, then you can render as dv avi or dv mov, and it will have all the artifacts, right?

And about me being 13, bah. I just turned 14 today. :)

And thanks for the compliment on the stuff I've done considering my age, but, I had to clear up my age.

01 January 2003, 07:02 AM
by the way fig you read it Right ...I did not want to say anything because i was just reading all the different ways that it can be done by all the i will not be setting up any rigging in my far as the hostility please save that for someone elses post

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