Just to address some of the replies to my post:
Not at all true.....
Yes, completely true, as per the woman describing what they did...
Everything that happend behind the actor was added in the greenscreened zone behind the action. It's just more and more variations of overlays (and in some cases it was a seperate paint program). To quote to woman narrating "All you need to do is place a folding backdrop against the existing wall." (As a greenscreen is setup behind the desk)
What they did was key out the greenscreen and croped the area that was outside the green. Chromanator can do this. Yes.
Then, they used a still image of the empty background and doctored it up in a seperate paint program. Again, to quote the pretty lady..."Then, we can grab a video still of the existing wall, and improve it in any paint program." (Showing a the empty wall picture they used and drawing a yellow squiggly line on it.)
After basically making the background the way they liked, they composited it right back in where the greenscreen was.
That's it. Nothing magical. Just standard keying.
Since most everybody here has a video editor with a blur filter, they can do the same depth of field fake with Chromanator.
Shoot a blank wall, shoot the action in front of a green screen, layer a blurred version of the original wall into the greenscreened portion of the shot.
Tell that to many of the people who use AlamDV. 'Virtual sets' have been around for a long time and because of programs that allow easy screen use you too can make "The Matrix" or "Star Wars".
I was referring to the particular Vitural Sets that come with that product, not vitual sets in general. My own movie project is 100% virtual sets.
BTW: As you may have noticed from my lack of icons and posting history, I'm not a CSB customer. Just a bystander that happens to be a fan of amateur movie making. From what I think is an objective view, I would say that Chromanator can easily do the things shown in that UltraKey video, and at a much lower price to boot.
Actually, green works much better with minidv.
Here's an edited reprint of something I've posted before about this some time ago:
Green or blue...
There have been a number of very lengthy discussions about this going around the net lately.
The verdict is pretty much the same...
It depends entirely on what you're planning to put in front if it.
You're going after the most contrast as possible between forground subject an the screen. In this discussion in the "VFX Pros" forum at Creative Cow
, Joaquin (Kino) Gil (FX for Contact, Godzilla, Starship Troopers and more), states that:
"Blue was originally chosen for radial (vector) color distance from the skin tones. Green was chosen because it is a good compromise between skin, blue eyes and work clothes, notably jeans."
There is a myth that green is universally better for DV compositing. The myth seems to stem from two factors:
1) DV compresses color such that for every 4 pixels, color is stored only once, while luma is stored for every single pixel. Green, being the brightest of Red/Green/Blue, benefits the most in resolution.
2) Single CCD DV cameras (knowing color is to be compressed anyway) usually have more green pixels than Red or Blue ones.
While the facts above are true about the technology, they actually don't change the rule about selecting a screen color based on subject colors.
Your compositing key is going to be defined by CONTRAST between the foreground and background. Even if a green screen has a theoretically higher DV resolution, the edge of your key is equally dependent on the colors (that CAN'T be green) of the subject in front of the screen, too! Consider this example:
A reddish-yellowish face in front of a green screen.
A possible RGB for a face pixel might be 230:230:180.
Note that the Green channel value isn't very far from a perfect 255 green, and there will be even less contrast (or none at all) within the NTSC/PAL color space (the maximum "legal" value for an NTSC or PAL color channel is 235). As a result, any keying will be entirely dependent on the RED & BLUE color resolutions.
Also from that CreativeCOW thread, Steve Write adds:
- any subtle video signal advantage arising from green vs blue is totally overwhelmed in the real world by how well the backing screen is lit. Period.
- the main criteria for a well lit green/bluescreen is color separation (very saturated color), proper brightness level, and evenness of lighting.
BTW: Steve's visual effects credits include:
Time Machine, The (2002) (digital compositor: Cinesite)
Mothman Prophecies, The (2002) (digital compositor: Cinesite)
Traffic (2000) (digital compositor: Cinesite) (as Steven Wright)
Air Force One (1997) (digital compositor: Cinesite)
He is also the author of the Focal Press book "Digital Compositing for Film & Video".
So, what to select ???
Since DV does in fact store luma at four times the resolution as color, light colored subjects (blond hair, pale skin etc.) are best keyed using a darker BLUE screen. Dark objects (black hair, etc.) will be keyed better using a bright GREEN screen.
Bibliography (threads discussing this topic from around the net): "VFX Pros" forum at Creative CowFanFilms ForumDigitalVideoFuel
Hope this helps.