Behind the Scenes: Faking A Tracking Shot in 3D

Monday, July 23rd, 2012, filed under Film.

One of the scenes in the upcoming short Catharsis was originally planned to open with a tracking shot from behind a wall as one of the characters entered through a door. However, as the shot was about to be filmed, the Glidecam was not behaving as hoped, and time was running out.

We were forced to film the shot on a tripod with no camera movement. However, as you can check out in the video below, we decided to re-create the walls in 3D and create the camera move in Luxology modo. The walls, door hinges, shelf, and mirror were all re-created as simple shapes, and the overhead light and left door knob were cut out as 2D planes. The textures were mapped onto the objects via front projection from the camera, and a subtle depth of field was added to smooth out the edges.

Lastly, small camera shakes were added in Adobe After Effects to sell the move, and a gradient transition was created to blend from the animation to the original footage just as the actor walks through the door.