Make your own free website on


Below is the first of planned tutorials. Though I used Lightwave for this, you can apply it to any good 3D or comp software.

COMING OCTOBER 2000 - How I composited a shot of my woman warrior in Enemy Grace, fight the computer animated mythological man with four arms, using After Effects & Lightwave 5.6.

CGI object walking from behind a live plate object.

Animating a figure walk from behind a real object involves the use of a matte. I used Lightwave to composite this scene, setting for the shadows and reflections. To create the illusion of the figure walking from behind the cup, I made a matte in Photoshop.

Using selection tools in Photoshop, I create a matte from a still of the video. The black areas are transparent, white is not, and gray is semi-transparent which can be useful for getting soft edges.

The video sequence of the cup is put in the background layer, followed by the 3D space with the figure and now the matte as the layer on top. The matte is like a cookie cutter and now everything behind the white non-transparent section is blocked out. To complete the effect you apply a copy of the background image as the layer in front of the matte and specify the matte to act on it. This gives the following result.

In the last few frames of the animation , I raise the figures arm to show it now pass in front of the cup handle. This was done by having a separate scene file with the matte layers disabled. By using this method you can have CGI creatures walk around real objects.