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If you posted 10 unreencoded seconds or so from your (DVD?) source, we might have more to go on than just the description.
If you don't know how to cut it, open a VOB (if it's from a DVD) in DGIndex, use the [ and ] buttons to isolate a small section, go File->Save Project and Demux Video. Upload the resulting M2V either here or at some file sharing site such as MediaFire.
"The greatest trick the Devil ever pulled was convincing the world he didn't exist."
Hey buddy, you need to condense that down. Most editors have OCD. Try throwing out smaller chunks at a time.
Last edited by budwzr; 15th Mar 2017 at 15:14.
I haven't seen the deleted scenes you speak of, but judging from your description, they sound like they were shot in a typical flat format. Therefore, you would need to know which camera along with the color format to apply the correct LUT to get back to a gamma correct image BEFORE you could even think about grading. And I guarantee they are not using the 8-bit, low res images you ripped. Nearly everything done in a pro studio would break an 8-bit, low res video file. So this is bit of a pipe dream that you are undertaking.
Trust me when I say this, you will NEVER even come close to that professional look using Adobe Premiere Pro. PP is an NLE, not a compositing/finishing program. It just doesn't have the tools you need to grade/finish video. So stop wasting your time with that. If you have access to Adobe's other video production tools, you might try SpeedGrade, but I have never heard any good things about it and would consider that a waste of time as well. Another option is the Color Finesse effect in After Effects, but the interface for that stinks unless you have a second monitor, which brings me to the hardware. If you have a modern, powerful system, preferably with a grading monitor or plasma TV, you might try DaVinci Resolve along with some custom LUT that attempts to mimic the Doctor Who look. DR is not for the feint of heart, but this is really your only hope IMHO. And even then, you will likely not be satisfied. Recall, you are dealing with 8-bit, low res images, and you just can't push those very hard before they break. And given the supernatural premise of that show (not a fan), I am certain they are pushing the images hard to achieve that "look".
Lastly, while grading is an important part of any modern TV show or film, there is a lot more that goes on in a studio. The tools, hw, sw, workflows, and effects used along with the years of creative experience would blow your mind.
Of course , this can mean about a million different things, it really depends on the specific release
I have some DVD's that are only graded. You can 99% reproduce the final look with simple grading alone even with simple tools. Does this mean your specific DVD can be done in the same manner? Not necessarily. Others titles have various other post manipulations applied.
If you want a reply more detailed than "post production", you should probably post a sample, because you're not doing a very good job of describing the other differences
after effects . 3D renders looking "too clean" or "too synthetic" also usually have grain emulation or grain plates applied - also to achieve the "film" look that people are used to in classic cinema. All those technically "dumb"' down the original render in a sense, but subjectively might achieve a better look. It depends on the type of look you are going for
This particular project is something of an extension of a project I did back in 2011 when I took that 3D animation class....something of a "fan art" piece. Over-all I'm pretty happy with most of it (I do have a few cuts I need to re-render), but as this project is FINALLY nearing completion, I'm starting to move my thought process over to the final product (so to speak). I know that I'm NOT going to get absolutely "professional" results and I doubt I will get it "perfect", but I'm fairly certain I can bring this along a bit more than I already have....hence the reason for the post.
With that said, even with the still, it has that "crisp" look I was referring to. To me it almost seems TOO sharp...it's so "vivid" that it tends to look a bit fake to me, which is what I'm trying to get away from. The image (and the video) are essentially composites...in this case, the ship, the planet and the stars in the background were all rendered separately and for this still, it was "assembled" in Photoshop...my background in Photoshop is the primary reason I tend to lean towards Premiere...it's a lot like "Photoshop for video" with similar tools, layout, etc...a very familiar feel for me.
2) Same thing here - you have to be a bit more descriptive about what you're trying to do exactly. But the DoF and motion blur +/- grain mentioned earlier are a large part for achieving the "look" in 3d renders
In sci fi productions, usually there is denoising/ degrain stage before the regraining for compositing, and that degrain stage softens the footage - but this is a very generic explanation
It might be as simple as a post soft focus filter. There are 100's of different things you can guess, but it's impossible to be more specific without looking at it
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Last edited by lomitus; 20th Mar 2017 at 09:41.
So that "Doctor Who" reference is really a red herring ? You're more interested in 3D render, 3D compositing, post techniques ?
Yea....I know. I didn't want to over-complicate the discussion on that end of it as I don't think the camera work was/is really the problem here. Yes, Maya "cameras" effectively work in the virtual world the way real cameras do in the real world...I can adjust focal length, film backs, etc. (and I have a strong photography background so I do understand most of that stuff). That said, the render time with things like DOF is a SERIOUS killer...especially when rendering with Mental Ray. IF I had access (and the money) for a Render Farm, I might do more of it on the Maya side, but working here on my own with 2 computers, I have to balance "quality" with actually getting the job finished, LOL!!! This particular project isn't too bad...most of the renders are firing off around 4 - 5 minutes per frame, however for a 6000 frame animation, that still adds up...and I've had a couple of animation projects here where the renders can take an hour or longer PER FRAME. A lot of that has to do with which render engine you use (and HOW you use it), but again much of it is simply balancing quality with time.
But also your scene setup - you'll get more realism if you do it all in the 3d application instead of compositing 2d layers like photoshop or pp/ae - because of light properties and ray tracing (again depending on which renderer) . Objects will reflect and refract light to nearby adjacent objects with a given fall off . That is especially important if you have interior 3d scenes (e.g. starship bridge or hall etc...)
Obviously, there are major differences between post production of pure CG and live action, but some of the topics and concepts are still related .
Live action is "lit" , setup, and shot in a certain way for post production in mind - especially on sci-fi shows where there are going to be effects , compositing. Same with CG
In short, I render out reflections and shadows and such as they are specifically applicable to the cut/scene I'm rendering...that not only speeds up my renders (rather significantly), but it gives me A LOT more control in post. I have a VERY strong background with Photoshop and such, so I'm pretty used to thinking in terms of "layers".
I find exterior space renders difficult. Part of the reason is very few people have actual references. For indoor shots you can just look around in your home and get a reference of how light interacts. But for space, especially around earth, there is supposedly only 1 big light source . It's difficult to light entire hull or various space objects with direct lighting only (You're supposed to only have 1 direct source, and you've got around part of the problem with big hull lights) . Historically, you can see in sci-fi shows, they usually use dark shadows. Half the ship is brightly lit, half very dark. Sure you can have tiny hull lights, tiny distant stars, but they don't really light the scene. Star Wars (ahh.. blashphemy! ) have always typically done it this way . Look at google images for "star wars star destroyer" and you can see the style . But if you examine star trek renders over the years, the early ones looked very "plasticky" , non real and fake. They looked like toys. But also notice that they didn't use shadows convincingly. Fast forward to more modern era and they look way more realistic. The biggest difference is in 1) lights and therefore shadows 2) hull details (both textures and geometry) .
Part of the reason the render you posted doesn't look quite right, is the directional hull lights are too bright. The primary illumination is supposed to be the sun. Look at the cone of light of those hull lights - they have higher intensity than the sun. Ok, this is more on the "shadow" side, but it still doesn't look right. This render the sun is supposed to be positioned top right , slightly posterior judging by the sharp shadow line in the neck (ie. the saucer disc is casting the shadow). If that were the case , you wouldn't see the lighting on the saucer section towards the viewer on the edge. If you look at left engine , there are light patches that have no light source. There are specular highlights that suggest a foreground light, when there is no indication of such light (ok there might be some ships or other objects in the foreground not depicted, but you can't see that in this image). Even if viewer doesn't know anything about 3d, subconsciously it throws the viewer off. I'm not trying to be mean just trying to give constructive feedback - The lighting and shadows don't look quite right
For #2 , every surface has extra detailing and isn't perfectly "smooth" . I like the part about your textures not being uniform, but there are repeated elements in the saucer section edge. So it gives the impression the texture is just repeated, not real . Again, even if you don't know anything about 3d, UV's, texture repeats - to average layman, the subconscious will register that as "fake" .
But other types of exterior space scenes can take on a different "look" . Because we don't have very many authentic references, you can go the route of fantasy or different types of render styles.
Last edited by poisondeathray; 18th Mar 2017 at 10:06.
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Last edited by lomitus; 20th Mar 2017 at 09:41.
But ask any 3d artist or colorist working in a studio - that critique hits it right on the nose 100% accurately. If you have a photography background you will know the lighting is off. That is what jumps out right away
I've had others make similar comments about the lights and such and that is NOT the problem I'm trying to address.
This particular scene of mine has been lit a thousand different ways from Sunday...everything from a single light source to 3 point to just about anything else you can imagine...I spent several weeks bouncing different lights around, trying different lights, intensity, combinations, etc...the look I have now (in regards to the lighting) is what I'm actually happy with.
Likewise, I've had this same problem with the first rendition of this project...that did NOT use those textures seen in this newest incarnation. In the first and second versions of this project (this is Mk III), the Enterprise was all white (except decals of course), just like the original ship was. The addition of the textures on this newest incarnation was simply a matter of "artistic license"...I LIKE the way the aztec pattern looks. It's not quite as pristine as I would have liked (especially the primary hull), however there were some scale issues I also had to deal with there (otherwise my texture files would have been MASSIVE), so I had to make a few compromises. Either way, I'm actually pretty happy with those textures. And for what it's worth, I posted that same shot to a Trekkie forum and the number of people who bitched about the TOS Enterprise having the Aztec pattern was actually a little scary! LOL! Quality or not, the Aztec pattern really threw off that sense of realism for a few folks because they were not used to seeing that style on the TOS Enterprise....man people went off about that. Either way, the lighting and textures are NOT the problem I'm trying to address here....that much I know.
To be honest, I'm actually trying to get this at least a little bit closer to that original series look...the look you called ""plasticky" , non real and fake". Perhaps it's simply a matter of perspective, however having grown up with TOS, I actually think that "look" stands up a bit better than even the remastered effects version does...some of the effects (in the remastered version) are very nice indeed, however the ship herself looks more fake to me now than she did in the original broadcasts. In fact I recently saw some vid of the newly restored 11 foot model at the Smithsonian and even in a "public space", with the room lights, other displays, bright windows, etc., that model looks better now, even shot on a camcorder, than the remastered effects do (to me at least). Those 60's effects actually sold the show pretty well for what they were back in the day...even in the episode "Doomsday Machine" where they had to use one of those AMT model kits for the USS Constellation...yea...sure, you could see the nacelle pylon wobble as they were shooting, but for what it was, it actually worked pretty well back then. In fact, in terms of Trek and Doctor Who, I think those 60's Trek effects were FAR more believable than what Doctor Who had even into the 70's and 80's (probably due to the BBC treating Who as a "kid's show" I'm sure).
Now I will say this...to save myself some time, I tried looking up those same Doctor Who DVD extras on Youtube, thinking I could just save and paste a few seconds in here, but on my computer (with a 24" LCD monitor), those raw shots don't look too bad at all...not nearly as bad as they do on my tv. From the DVD however on my good ol' 36" crt television, the difference between the raw and the final are rather dramatic. Since Youtube basically re-compresses everything, that seems to suggest that's another area I maybe need to take a closer look at. Image quality is typically reduced/compromised to some degree with compression...and that would certainly affect the "too sharp/crisp" issue I mentioned earlier.
Anyways, I am sure now that most of the problem(s) I'm trying to address are indeed post production issues...stuff like that color grading, compression and such. I'll see if I can get some video of the Doctor Who stuff I'm referring to in the next day or three, because even without the effects (and the scenes/cuts from those DVD extras are interior shots and not really effects shots anyways)...THAT is the specific difference I'm trying to figure out.
OK , so now the 3D issues are the "red herring" ; post the Doctor Who samples and what specific issues YOU think need to be explored so you can apply to your production. Because honestly you haven't described it very well, and there are a many different things that could be done in post production for a live action sci fi series. I mentioned before, in some cases to get from "A" to "B" , it can be just grading. Sometimes many other manipulations are done
For example, in sci fi live action when you plan for lots of post work, typically you shoot with a fast shutter. So for a 25p production like Doctor Who, instead of 1/50, something like 1/500. Things are planned way, way in advance. You shoot and light a specific way, for post production in mind. Post effects , motion tracking, rotoscoping , all require accuracy and things like shutter blur hinder almost everything that is done in post. So the acquisition footage on those shots often looks "strobey" and super sharp because you've basically eliminated the natural shutter blur. That blur is re-added near the end in post after all the other effects, compositing . Blur, of course, "dumbs down" the footage, but it's more aesthetically pleasing. Other shots that don't require all those other effects are shot normally with a 1/50 shutter . This is similar to CG. When you don't use the host application motion blur, you need to add it in post if you want it to look like "cinema" or what we're used to "seeing" in movies. (You can argue that it's not realistic, and it isn't. When we (humans) see a car go by fast, we don't see blur. But this is the cinematic aspect of production, a slightly different but big topic) . You can go for a different "look" too - you don't have to try to emulate what is done with this aspect either. But your first post mentioned "dumbed down", wanting a less crisp look. And in CG, lack of motion blur and not using camera physical properties is the most common culprit
The other common thing in sci fi live action is the film rate (fps) . Planned shots are often shot at high speed (for slo mo, other various effects) . Sometimes extras on DVD show a different rate (50 fields per second interlaced for a BBC production) , because it's taken from either a B, or C cam or from the high speed shot and not retimed to the production speed. It looks like a smooth "soap opera" live look.
More modern productions have grading LUT's applied to the extras, because most (higher end) digital acquisition is typically in LOG . Basically you can't view it as is without a viewing LUT. So the extras and deleted scenes on DVD/BD taken from the "A" cam typically "look" like the final cut
Last edited by poisondeathray; 19th Mar 2017 at 10:31.
Ok...I just tried to create a before and after with the DVD on my computer and as with Youtube, I'm not seeing nearly as much of a difference as I do on my tv. I'm seeing a bit more on the CRT monitor than I am on the LCD and that suggests that along with color grading, part of the problem is probably gamma (I know the CRT is off...I keep it that way deliberately because I have it set up for adjusting color for printing on Epson printers).
Either way, thank you for your time, however since I can't post an adequate example, since my explanation is likewise inadequate apparently and since people seem intent on addressing issues that are NOT the problem, at this point just forget my post...I've already removed as many of my comments as I can (can't seem to delete the picture I posted). I'll simply figure this out myself.
Sorry I wasted everyone's time here.
To remove attached pictures , push the edit post button , then "go advanced button", upload files/manage attachments button
It's not a waste of time, and you should have left your posts, because other people with similar questions in similar situations can get help and information
So I went to my neighbor's house , a Doctor Who fan, to see what's up with the DVD "deleted scenes" .
The attached clips are directly from the NTSC Series 4, disc 1 and meant to be an educational / fair use analysis :
The "deleted scenes" have undergone a standards conversion from 25i to 59.94i true interlaced content - i.e. it was shot on "video" 50 fields/sec interlaced (series 1-4 were digibeta). Since this is the NTSC DVD, the actual episodes used standard field blending for 25p => 29.97i NTSC (which can be partially "reversed" by avisynth, back to the native 25p), but this is pretty common and standard practice when converted native 25p content such as BBC productions for NTSC releases .
(I told him a TRUE FAN would have the PAL discs , but anyways)
Anyways , 2 main differences:
1) Simple grade. 99% of the spatial "look" (like many dvd's) can be obtained from a simple grade alone
A few frames were overlapping between the episode and the deleted scenes segment so you can get an almost perfect comparison
These screenshots are 1:1 non-PAR corrected, the episode used qtgmc+srestore, and the deleted scene used qtgmc for the screenshot
Deleted Scene - graded to look like episode
2) Cadence. Video vs. "emulated" film cadence. On the "PAL" disc it would be 50 samples /sec for the deleted scenes vs. 25 samples / sec for the episode. The NTSC shows 59.94 vs. 25 (if you srestore and reverse the field blends) . This is the "live video", "soap opera look" vs. the filmic, theatrical look mentioned earlier .
The reason why you see the cadence difference more on a TV setup is your DVD player deinterlaces double rate - so you get the 59.94p unique pictures /sec on a flat panel . Youtube will only display half of them at 29.97 . You can get 59.94p playback on YT, but only with HD resolutions