VFX & Film Making Edutainment

Adobe After Effects 3D Projection VFX

Setting Up The Second Room

Now let’s set up the second room!
Because our composition is pretty cluttered up already, let’s hide a few of the layers so we have a better working space!

You can do this by enabling the ‘shy’ flag on any layer you want to hide. Do this for all layers except the camera. Enable the ‘hide shy layers’ option to hide everything except for the camera.

Before hiding all the layers, ensure to disable the visibility of the guide layer as well as all other layers except for the camera.

Go to the time where your camera has reached its lowest point. Now we are pretty much going to repeat the same process we just went through to set up the second room for our cool camera-through-the-floor 3D projection effect.

So, like before, import the image for the second room. I am going to use this photo of a … um … Wine Cellar!

Create yourself a new guide layer from this new image and then create a second light with the same options as the first one we set up.

Enable the 3D flag on the image and move the image and the light to the same position as the camera.
Watch out!
Remember the camera is parented to the Camera Null object, which is keyframed so you have to be a bit careful when setting up the positions of the 3D layer and the light so they are properly positioned at the same position as the camera and are facing straight forward.

You can copy the X and Y position of the Camera Null to the light, the light’s point of interest and the wine cellar layer. Copy the Z position of the camera to the light and the wine cellar layer as well.

Using the side views, ensure the camera, light and image layer are set up exactly like they were for the first room :)

Go to the material settings for the footage layer and set Cast Shadows to ‘Only’ and set Light Transmission to 100%.

Now, as before, disable the light, create new solids for the walls, floor and ceiling and position them properly in 3D space.
Remember to set their ‘Accept Lights’ property in the material settings to ‘Off’ and ensure the second room is properly sealed off.

Because we want this room to match up with with the room we set up before, one story up, we want to make sure they line up.
Unhide all shy layers for a moment and enable the visibility of the geometry of the top room. Ensure the ceiling of the lower room lines up nicely with the floor of the top room.

Hide everything for room 1 again and play back your animation to watch the camera sink through the ceiling of the second room and arrive in the wine cellar :)

Sweet!
The second half of the 3D projection camera transition is completed. Now let’s connect the two rooms! Unhide all shy layers, enable their visibility and play back your complete animation.

Urks! Besides the gap between the two rooms which we expect to see, you are likely going to also see something ugly like this:

This is happening because we now have 2 lights and 2 projection layers in our composition and they are being projected onto ANY 3D layers in the scene. So the images for both rooms start to overlap where their projections overlap!

We will sort this out in a moment, for now let’s focus on closing the gap between the rooms.

I took a photo of the floor while we were on set and I will use this texture to create a connecting piece. You can really use any texture you want as long as it fits into the 3D projection scene you want to create.

Drop your texture in the composition and turn it into a 3D layer.

Position it to close the gap between the two rooms.

If necessary, apply a curves adjustment to the layer to blend it more naturally into your scene.

Playing back your animation, the two rooms should now be properly connected and it should appear as if the camera is sinking through the floor of the garage and entering the wine cellar scene from the top.

Well, except for the ugly double projection that is still happending. Let’s get that sorted out!

8 comments for Adobe After Effects 3D Projection VFX

  1. Hi,
    we want to hire you in our 3d Holographic projection.
    You will give us our boss 3d effect & that will live simultaneously 300 places by 3d holographic projection.
    Immediate.
    Kindly reply me.

  2. lov it

  3. Well done, here’s a tutorial on how to achieve this with extruded 3D shapes:
    https://vimeo.com/87376234

  4. I’ve tried this and its not working. I create all the setup and when I get the grid effect, the solids stay white and don’t recieve any shadows from the original image. I’ve tweaked every posible parameter and those layers either disappear or keep being white. When I make them accept shadows only the just dissapear.

    I even made it all again from scratch keeping up with every instruction in the tutorial and doesn’t work.

    Any tips?

    • Hm, I know a couple of people had the issue. They usually resolved it by ensuring that the light transmission properties were set up correctly, but it’s hard to tell what might be wrong given there are so many settings involved.

    • I just tried this yesterday and had the same problem. So I did it again from scratch and the same thing. However I was able to correct it by double checking the position of my “Scene” layer and was able to correct the floor and ceiling to work properly. Then I had a white feather stripe that took up a 3rd of my screen and was able to correct that by going into my “Light” layer and changing the Falloff to none and solved it. I know I’m a little late in replying but I’m just happy I figured it out.

  5. I’ve tried all the setup except for the Grid that refuse to expand beyond up and down… No dept was possible for me. What’s the reason for this?
    The the xy is not working in my case.

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