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Question about backdrops.

Posted: Sat, 8th Oct 2005, 5:06pm

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Force: 425 | Joined: 8th Oct 2005 | Posts: 174

CompositeLab Lite User EffectsLab Lite User

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Ok, I am new to all of this. How do I use the backdrops found at Help is most appreciatted. Thanks.
Posted: Sun, 9th Oct 2005, 1:28am

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Force: 0 | Joined: 3rd Oct 2005 | Posts: 4


Well if you have a 3d package say, 3d studio max or blender or lightwave, you could use the backdrops for the background for your 3d model. Or if you are filming someone infront of a blue or greenscreen, you can use After effects or chromanator to key out the green or blue and superimpose the person over the backdrop image.
Posted: Sun, 9th Oct 2005, 1:50am

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Force: 5941 | Joined: 18th Jul 2003 | Posts: 555

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First off, welcome to the site Zeroo. I hope your time here is enjoyed, well spent, and not short lived. It would help me to answer your question if you were a bit more specific to start out with, because I am not exactly sure where to begin, I don't want to waste your time, or set you in the wrong direction.

I am assuming that because you are in the "Chromanator Help" section of the forums, that you are looking to know how those back drops would be used in Chromanator, and not just how they would be used in general. I am also un-aware if you have tried the demo of Chromanator, and how much you already know about compositing with its interface, but never the less, I will start from the beginning, and tell you how they would be used in Chromanator.

To begin, you would open your program (that goes with out saying). Once it is fully loaded, you will get a "Welcome to Chromanator" dialog. This has a list of links to various areas of FXhome, and the manual that comes with the program, to the right. To the left it supplies a list of current projects saved. Below these links, you can select an option to begin a new project, or to open an existing one. For this purpose, select "New".

You are now presented with a window that is called the "Project Settings (easy)".

Project Settings (easy):

Assuming that the preset dimensions, and settings are not what you are looking for, you will need to customize all of this. This is rather easy, and only takes a few moments. At the bottom of the dialog window, select "Custom". The windows head line will now read "Project Settings (Custom)".

Among other settings, this is where you will select the specific dimensions you will be working with. Normally, you want to set this so that it is the same as the dimension of your back ground plate (your back drop). In the illustration below, you can see where this is done. You can make use of the pre-set in list of dimensions, or you can enter your own in the "Size" dialog.

Project Settings (custom):

Once that is all figured out, select "New Project", and you are now ready to import your back drop. There are two options to choose from when importing media. There is the "Import Media" option, and there is the "Import Image Stream". Import image stream allows you to import multiple pictures from a selected folder at one time, and groups them for you so that they play as if they were a movie file.

Import media is meant for importing video footage, or single images. You want to use "Import Media", and select the file you wish to use as your back ground. To do this, locate "Media list" found under "Tool Box" to the right of the program, and click the drop-down menu icon.

Import Media:

Import media is not only meant for your back ground plate, but is also how you would import any other media you will need. What decides the back ground plate, is its position in your time line. When you bring it to the timeline, the object will change to represent its actual length in frames. Each column of little squares on the timeline represents a frame.
Move the object to the far left of the first track and release it. It's now positioned correctly on the timeline.

If your back ground plate is a single image (as many of the back drops from that site appear to be), you will need to increase its length. Do this by selecting "Set Duration", by right clicking on the object in the timeline (right clicking applies if you are operating on Windows. I believe the equivalent to right clicking for a Macintosh is holding "Ctrl" and clicking, but I am not sure).

Set Duration:

The length of your back ground plate should at least equal the length of the footage you are composting. That is about it for beginning a composite. For more on how to achieve a composite refer to the manuals that accompany your Chromanator download, they supply everything you need to familiarize yourself with the program.

I apologize if I am repeating information you are already aware of, or if this is not what you intended to ask. If you are simply asking how a back drop is used, then wildstorm explained that sufficiently, and you have your answer.

Note: Please inform me if there is a problem with any of the pictures supplied at any time, by means of private message, or email, so that I may attempt to correct the error.

Welcome to the site.
Posted: Sun, 9th Oct 2005, 3:48pm

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Force: 5426 | Joined: 26th Dec 2003 | Posts: 6515

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Donwload Blender from Then import the model. Learn how to naigate the prgram and render it out. If it looks good, save the render using various Blender tutorials. Once you have the needed image, follow what Wizard just said. If you want a video, follow this tutorial series for Motion tracking in Icarus and Blender. You can find Blender here:

-Mac Version (ZIP)
-PC Version (EXE)
Posted: Sun, 9th Oct 2005, 4:08pm

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Force: 425 | Joined: 8th Oct 2005 | Posts: 174

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Thanks so much!