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The Hobbit "Highlight Blooming"

the hobbit highlight blooming

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#1 Robbie Fatt

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Posted 28 August 2017 - 09:41 PM

I'm interested to know how Andrew Lesnie achieved the "highlight blooming" effect throughout the Hobbit trilogy. Did he use a filter (pro mist?), net his lens or was the effect done in post? Either way, the footage is very lovely and it was shot on an old Red Epic camera with Zeiss Ultra Primes.

 

I had the privilege of talking to Andrew before he passed away at an ACS meeting in Sydney a few years ago, but I never got to ask him how he achieved this effect.

 

 

 


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#2 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 28 August 2017 - 10:16 PM

While he used a variety of filters for the LOTR trilogy, plus did digital diffusion, since The Hobbit was shot in native 3D with a mirror rig, I believe everything was shot clean and any diffusion was done in post.
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#3 Robbie Fatt

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Posted 28 August 2017 - 10:27 PM

Thanks David! I'd love to know how to do that effect in post. It's very cool!!  


Edited by Robbie Fatt, 28 August 2017 - 10:27 PM.

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#4 Phil Connolly

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Posted 29 August 2017 - 12:35 PM

One way to do it in post is make two copies of the clip and put them on two different video layers

 

Apply a blur filter to the top layer and then make the whole layer semi transparent try 25% opacity. 

 

The transparent blurred layer will give you your bloom. You can experiment with different amounts and types of blur and level of transparency till you get the effect you like.  

 

If you want to get fancy you can colour correct the different layers differently for different effects or apply a luma key to the top layer so it just blooms the highlights rather then everything. 

 

I pretty much do this on lots of things if i don't have the option of camera filters. If your very subtle its perfect for taking the edge of digital footage without loosing too much sharpness


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#5 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 29 August 2017 - 04:07 PM

Quick test on a photo of my dog Mabel.  

 

Normal

mabel_sharp.jpg

 

Overlay of Gaussian Blur layer:

mabel_diffused.jpg

 

Trying to get more halation, I tried the "luminosity" blending instead of the "overlay" blend in Photoshop Elements, don't really know what those do but this was the result:

mabel_diffused3.jpg


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#6 Mark Kenfield

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Posted 29 August 2017 - 06:04 PM

In the current version of Davinci Resolve, they have a 'glow' filter, which does this remarkably well, and with a great deal of control.

I find it very useful for matching diffusion qualities on shots that have been shot clean for whatever reason.
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#7 Phil Connolly

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Posted 30 August 2017 - 05:27 AM

FCP 7 used to have a nice effect called radial blur that made some interesting effects.

 

I made this music video and went to town on post diffusion: 

 

I may have overdone the Xmas lights


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#8 Robbie Fatt

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Posted 30 August 2017 - 11:48 PM

Thanks so much everyone, I have tried a few different methods and its looking pretty good :) 

Does anyone know if the same thing was done in "The Theory of Everything" or was there filters in this case:
 


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#9 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 30 August 2017 - 11:59 PM

I think that filters were used on that movie.


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#10 Robbie Fatt

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Posted 31 August 2017 - 12:40 AM

Yea I thought so. Absolutely love the cinematography in this film! It'd be interesting to see exactly how he achieved the effect!


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