help with dpx pipeline in ae cs4

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  04 April 2010
help with dpx pipeline in ae cs4

Hi there,

I'm an animation compositor, and am working on my first foray into a live-action animation mix. I want to ensure that i don't degrade the beautiful 2k footage i'm working on, while ensuring that the effects and animation i am creating in after effects are reproduced correctly. I have just been given the caveat that my client wants to colour correct the footage, SEPARATE to the effects I'm putting on. Their budget is low, and they couldn't afford a pre-effects and a post effects grade.
I'm using a lot of transfer modes in my effects, and i'd be real grateful if someone could take a look at my pipeline, and double check i have everything ok. I feel like I may be over-complicating, and am nervous of the log-lin aspects of this.

So here goes.

Import .dpx footage into ae.
32 bits per channel float
Colour workspace linear srgb iec61966-2.1 (D65)

Apply cineon converter, log-lin and bring highlight rolloff down to 0, as recommended by Pete O'Connell on this website (can't find it now)
apply exposure effect, bring down exposure by eye. Without this my footage is still too washed out for some reason.

Create effects, (to simulate overblown light leaks and film scratches) using transfer modes etc.

I'm stuck here.

If the client wants to grade the footage separately, I don't need to actually render the live-action footage, I'm just using it as reference. So all i need to render is my effects.

I render out each layer, using the naming convention of scenename_layerorder_transfermode. The grader can then re-build the scene as I intended it to look, with the ability to grade each layer as he sees fit.

The grader says he wants my effects as a dpx sequence. As far as i can see, i don't have the option to export dpxs from after effects, is it ok to render out cineons? Also, do i have to put a lin-log on my effects to render out? I'm assuming not, but just in case.

Sorry about the length of this, but want to be sure i'm clear, and want to get rid of any redundant steps i may have built in.

Thanks for your time,
  04 April 2010
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