Years ago, the basis of virtual studio sets meant filming in front of a blue or green screen and then adding elements later, but the modern world of virtual videography has grown to be far more complex. While more technologically advanced and complicated, the modern virtual studio setup can generate pieces that are far more realistic and believable. In fact, you would be hard pressed to find a big-budget movie these days that did not utilize virtual studio processes at some point in the film. Take a look at the typical components of a virtual studio set.
Camera tracking, in general terms, is manipulating a piece of video footage in a way that 3D elements can be added later on. In a frame-by-frame setup, the elements in each frame are manipulated, integrated, shadowed, etcetera to achieve a realistic effect. For example, a hole that is not all that deep may get three-dimensional imagery added to it in order to make it leek deeper even though the shot is not a fixed shot, it is moving past the hole. This process is a bit time-consuming, but the end result is a piece of footage that can have completely different elements than what was originally in the shot.
Real-Time Rendering Software
Real-time rendering software is a type of software that allows graphic imagery to be changed and translated fast enough that they coincide with the movement of an actual camera. Real-time rendering software comes in many different forms, and most of it is pretty high-tech. The goal is to make sure the imagery that is introduced that is not actually real ends up looking just as realistic as the rest of the footage in the shot. Using the filmed hole in the ground as an example, the appearance, shading, coloring of the digitally created hole should change fast enough that it looks realistic as the camera passes by.
One of the more pertinent parts of a virtual studio set is the video mixing process that is done by a talented professional once camera tracking and real-time rendering software have done their work. Video mixing involves combining the footage created by the camera during filming with the footage created by the realtime rendering software. The two pieces of footage have to meld together perfectly for the process to work, and this can take some time and experience with proper mixing techniques to pull off.
If you are interested in learning more about virtual studio sets, contact a team like Virtual Set Lab to learn more.
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