I hate After Effects and want it to die. Stabilizing help please.

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by rawdawg, Mar 9, 2010.

  1. rawdawg macrumors 6502

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    #1
    Now I'm no expert with AE, obviously. But I've never found a program so unfriendly to work with in all my life. I know FCP proficiently and have found the learning curve to understanding AE similar to comparing scuba diving to sky diving. I have "Wasted" hundreds of hours trying to make sense of this program.... and yet I feel I it is the best program to do what I am trying to do.

    I am trying to stabilize a video about 12 minutes long. The camera was locked off so it's not a lot of movement, just a few bumps on the tripod. Simple right? First off, the stabilizer in the program is crap, not to say I've found a good one elsewhere. I've tried messing with the options, but I can't get it to work effectively. It works for a little bit but the tracker always wanders. No problem, after wasting a few days of my life trying to understand how to get it to operate correctly I decided since in this case it's only a few small bumps I will do it manually frame by frame readjusting the keyframes manually.

    I've performed 3 corrections successfully. Well I think so considering I have to export the entire sequence before I can even see it. But I "Think" it worked. Now I've been attempting a 4th correction and all hell broke loose. It looks at first like I did it correctly. Created a "tracker 4", stablize with position, rotation, and scale. Since the scene changed a little I selected a new feature/search region. Performed frame by frame analysis. Okay, looks good. Click on "apply" and WWHHHAAAAAAT?!? There is a stupid little box with crosshairs in it near the top of my frame that has now drawn a dotted line to where my new feature/search region is on my first tracker..

    Needless to say when I preview the area (frame by frame because this wonderful program can't do it realtime) my entire frame moves around.

    Now some of you pro's are laughing. Because I KNOW this is simple. But I've wasted 4 hours trying to figure out what is going on and why it didn't happen the other 3 times I successfully stabilized.

    Can someone PLEASE help me understand what the HECK is going on!?!?!?! I don't know why or what the little box with crosshairs is for, what it's doing there, and why it hasn't bothered me before until now. Can I get rid of it? I DON'T WANT IT!
     
  2. rawdawg thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #2
    it's this thing [​IMG]

    It was sitting by itself minding its own business... but now looking at my timeline I notice for some reason this little pugger between my 3rd and 4th stabilizings started creeping from one part of my frame towards the middle.

    The location of it at first corresponds with the location of my 1st tracker. Where it starts to creep to is the location of my 3rd tracker. But it doesn't start moving there until between my 3rd and 4th tracker locations. I don't know why it creeps all sneaky like. Maybe it know it's unwanted and is hiding. I didn't invite him to come over anyhow. But when I try my 4th stabilizer he decides not to remain hidden and he throws a dotted line to my 4th tracker location very openly (not creeping like the other time).

    Who is this guy and can someone 86 him?
     
  3. psycodriver macrumors newbie

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    Feb 19, 2010
    #3
    go to video copilot and watch the tutorial on stabilization. That will tell you how to do it, that's the easyest way to learn how.
     
  4. rawdawg thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #4
    thanks. I've seen that and watched it again.. As with every other stabilizing tutorial which seems to work flawlessly for the creator but doesn't get through 5 seconds of my footage before drifting.....

    It appears this stabilizer is intended for serious bad camera work, lots of shaking. My camera is on a tripod. The only time it shakes is when someone bumps the tripod. I would LOVE to only adjust for those instances.. Of course when someone (whom I've asked kindly to be careful not to bump my tripod) bumps my tripod throws it off until the next time that person bumps my tripod. So I not only need to stabilize the one bump, but keep the adjustments throughout until the next bump.

    I feel this must be a simple thing, but I can't get AE to help me. That and the tracker in AE is HORRIBLE --- worse than a drunk PA driving a cube truck in Manhattan..
     
  5. rhett7660 macrumors G4

    rhett7660

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    #5
    Since it isn't the entire 12 minute video, can you splice out the two areas of trouble, add the stabilizing effect from copilot and then re assemble. So you are not working with such a large file?
     
  6. rawdawg thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #6
    Forgive me, but I don't know what you're trying to say. splice out what two?

    The stabilizing effect needs to go from one frame to the next. If I were to correct a bump it would work if the bump in fact ends at the same place it began. But sometimes it moves the frame. So I would need to stabilize throughout but would prefer not to have AE tracking throughout since from bump to bump all is fine.

    The main problem with tracking is AE's trackers are terrible, unless you have a neon red pingpong ball in the frame for accurate reference. So what I would like to now try is to paint in a small red pingpong ball onto my sequence. Does anyone have an idea how I could do this? I could leave it where it is from bump to bump and correct it's location when it's bumped. Can I do this?
     
  7. Digital Skunk macrumors 604

    Digital Skunk

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    #7
    From what I read and that little image I think your video isn't giving the tracker much to work with.
     
  8. Mac Kiwi macrumors 6502a

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  9. rhett7660 macrumors G4

    rhett7660

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    #9
    From what I am gathering you said there are few spots within the 12 minute video that are giving you trouble. Splice those shots out with say 3-4 seconds before and after. Stabilize them and then splice them back into the video. Won't this cut down on your render times? Instead of working with the full 12 minute clip you are working with a few second clips. That is all I was trying to say.
     
  10. Digital Skunk macrumors 604

    Digital Skunk

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    #10
    I didn't get the OP's response to your statement, but what I think he was trying to say was that with most image stabilizers, the software will crop (zoom in) on the video frame to counteract the movement and rotation of the video.

    Once he's done stabilizing that one clip, it won't match up with the original.
     
  11. rawdawg thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #11
    My response probably didn't make sense because I didn't understand rhett7660's suggestions. Thanks for clarifying.

    The reason why I can't just stabilize the bumps is because after the tripod is bumped it doesn't return back to the original position perfectly. So there will be another "bump" once I splice it back in since the proceeding footage won't match the stabilized footage. I need to carry over the correction from the last frame of stabilized footage throughout the rest of the footage until the next "bump" that needs stabilization.

    It's so funny cause I completely understand why this is hard to explain yet it's such a simple thing the solution must be incredibly easy!
     
  12. rawdawg thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #12
    Guess I didn't realize those locations changes do carry over, no need to apply them...

    I think I just figured it out. I went ahead and stabilized the rough sections frame by frame.. But before I did that I needed to write out all bumps on a list using a rough QT export.

    Seems like it worked. Thanks guys. I apologize if it's sounds like I was lost, indeed I was
     
  13. AlloverTwist macrumors newbie

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    Mar 11, 2010
    #13
    There is another way.

    Why work with the stabilizers at all? Have you tried keyframing just the position and scale in the transform portion of the layer? If it's just a few seconds you could try keyframing it yourself.

    I had to do it to five minutes worth of footage shot at 30p and it took a whole month
     
  14. puckhead193 macrumors G3

    puckhead193

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    #14
    :eek:
    that stinks, hope you got paid over time for your work lol
     
  15. rhett7660 macrumors G4

    rhett7660

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    #15
    Ahh... so it wasn't just effecting the two bits. It was going across the entire film. If I am understanding this correctly. I was just suggesting fixing the small parts so that you don't have to worry about rendering out such long clips each time to see if it worked. That is all. Glad to see you got it working!
     
  16. Remixen123 macrumors newbie

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    #16
    Thanks for you information i newly join and so nice post I agree with you. Your complement is so informative ....
     
  17. chrono1081 macrumors 604

    chrono1081

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    #17
    Sounds like me when I was learning Maya (still am and always will be I'm sure) and ran into the dreaded "double transformations" which still mess me up.
     

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