AUGUST 04, 2003
AE6 Overview Part 1: Tracking and Stabilizing Motion
Simply placing a Motion Tracker Point does not guarantee success when trying to stabilize or do motion tracking inside Adobe After Effects 6.0. To make sure the tracking process goes as smoothly as possible, there are several settings that need to be adjusted, all of which can be found in the Tracker Controls Palette.[an error occurred while processing this directive]
First you need to decide if you are Tracking Motion or Stabilizing Motion. When you click on one of these buttons, a new Tracker will be placed in your Layer Window.
This specifies the layer you are going to track. This drop down lists all of the motion tracks in the Composition. If you have an effect control selected, it will appear in the drop down.
Displays the track for the source layer that contains the tracking data. You can have multiple tracking points per layer, which allow you to track more than one feature or to track the layer using different Option settings, which Iíll discuss in a moment.
This specifies the layer or effect you want to animate. You can change the target by clicking on the Edit Target button and selecting the new target layer from the Layer drop down in the Motion Target window.
Edit Target: Apply Motion To
Layer: This Target option is used during Tracking to apply the tracked data to another layer in the timeline. When you are stabilizing footage, you are only able to apply the motion to the layer being stabilized.
Effect Point Control: Similar to applying a motion to a layer, this options allows you to specify an effect to attach to a track point. This only works if the effect you are applying to another layer has position properties. For example, if you are using a Lens Flare effect, you can apply the tracking data to the effect position point used.
The other main button on the Tracker Controls Palette is the Options control. This is where you can make adjustments to refine and improve the accuracy of your track.
Track Name: There will be times when you will need to place and track a large number of tracking points. To help you identify those, you can rename the track point here.
Tracker Plug-In: This drop down sets the tracking plug-in used to calculate the tracking data for this track. The default is Built-in (from After Effects), but if you had a 3rd party tracking plug-in, you could select it from the list.
Enable Feature Adaptiveness: This causes the Feature region box to adapt from frame to frame to better assist tracking the data from frame to frame.
NOTE: Because of the speed improvements to the tracker in After Effects, turning this feature on will not significantly slow down the tracking process (based on my tests).
Track Fields: When using interlaced footage, After Effects may have some troubles tracking a particular pixel from one frame to another. Track fields doubles the frame rate and ensures that the data from both fields is tracked correctly.
Related sites: Animation Artist Animation Supplement AV Video Content Mastering Corporate Media News Creative Mac Digital Animators Digital Media Designer Digital Post Production Digital Producer Digital Video Editing The WWUG
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