1)Project characteristics

• Non-linear narrative, non-speaking, mainly visual performance, space shapes time and space, characters’ actions drive the plot, body dance reflects their emotions.

• Three worlds, 1. Physical-world (Taoist future temple), 2. Digital world (virtual space), 3. The spiritual world (pure white space).

• Taoist futurism, high-tech + Chinese Taoist elements.

2)This is work, not an assignment

• Everyone volunteered to join the project out of spontaneity, hoping to have good work.

• Everyone achieves a good result and honours each other.

• Everyone is positive and creates a pleasant and supportive creative environment.

• In the later stage, people not only received the task but also added their own ideas and creativity to make them work better through communication.

3)The working process

• The director is responsible for controlling concept, visual language, aesthetics and style. Create a visual vision and revise the feedback. At the beginning of each month, the content that needs to be completed in the month, as well as the shooting list and checklist of visual effects will be made.

• The visual effects supervisor is responsible for assigning the production content and shooting table proposed by the director to the post-production team, solving technical problems and ensuring the successful implementation of technical aspects.

• Any achievements and progress of work, or any new updates or questions, will be directly sent to the chat group, timely communication.

4)The team cooperation

• In terms of teamwork, each member will be assigned their own tasks and will do their best to finish them. Tasks will be assigned according to their abilities, skills and experience time.

• Each member is responsible for their own tasks based on their current professional abilities, but they are also welcome to try to challenge themselves to participate in some tasks in new fields to learn new skills and gain something.

• Take the initiative to help each other while completing their own tasks. This is teamwork, in which they help each other to complete other aspects of work and solve the problems together.

5)Technical pipeline Introduction

• Compositing: Processing of green screen materials, mainly including green button, tracking, cleaning, Roto, first-level toning and first-level effect. Use Nuke (for complex shots) or After Effects (for simple shots).

• CG: 3D scene modelling, material, lighting, rendering, camera animation. The main software used in Zbrush (sculpting model), Cinema 4D (Scene, material, lighting, animation) and Octane (renderer).

• Particles: Parameterized particle effects based on biological cell texture are simulated and created using Houdini scripts.

• Post-production: Make a general compositing of all processed materials to further enhance the control of various effects, colours and perspective space relations. After rendering the film directly to the editor cut into the film. The main software used is After Effects.

6)Key points of green screen shooting technology

• Bright enough and instituted: the green screen lighting should be bright and evenly enough to avoid partial darkness or uneven background.

• The ISO should be low: The camera’s ISO setting should be low to avoid high ISO noise.

• The colour of The subject should not be green: the colour system of the subject should be separated from the green screen.

• 0The texture of The subject should not be transparent: the material of the subject should not be transparent or translucent.

• The lighting of The subject should be bright and sufficient: the overall brightness of the subject should be bright and sufficient while maintaining a relative light-to-dark ratio.

• The edge of The subject should be clear and sharp: the edge of the subject should be clear and sharp, and avoid contact with other objects that need to be removed.

• Reduce and avoid excessive motion blur: reducing motion blur can greatly improve the efficiency of post-processing, and the blur effect can be reversed later.

• Reduce and avoid excessive ground shadows: avoid excessive or unnecessary ground shadow shots and composition, because the current technology and time do not have efficient and high-quality processing solutions.

• The ground should also be shared brightly lit: the necessary ground shots, and the ground of the green screen should also be brightened to facilitate the post-processing of the foot and the part of the edge details that touch the ground.

• The Angle and position are consistent: multi-angle and multi-lens are combined to process the composition, position and angle of the actors and the camera should be consistent for each shot.

• The sharpness of The material should be high: 6K 4K will definitely have more details and edge details, which is very conducive to the keying process.

• Make a cross mark with a handheld camera and a sports camera: As long as the camera is in motion, make a cross mark on the background of the green screen and the ground.

• The cross marks should be instituted: the colour of the cross mark tape should be in strong contrast with the green screen, And the centres of the crosses should be equally divided or equidistant. The reference value is 0.8-1.2 meters.

• Fixed lens cross mark removal: under the fixed lens, the part where the background cross mark touches the edge of the subject is temporarily removed.

• Out-of-focus background Note: When the out-of-focus background is blurred and the camera is moving, if there are parts in the background that need to be green, be sure to avoid the out-of-focus background.


7)Key points of post-compositing technology

• Mask first and then key: first mask, exclude unnecessary areas and isolate effective areas, and then perform keying processing, saving calculations.

• Keying first and then toning: finish keying first, then add colour toning and effects.

• Check first and then apply: first check the Alpha Matte channel results, determine the black and white details of the channel, and then apply it to the keying.

• Keep the parameters consistent: for the same effect and processing pipeline, keep the parameters consistent with the correct effect, reducing the workload of repeated adjustments.

• Engineering document standards: All project submissions use Apple ProRes (4444/422 HQ) or EXR/DPX image sequences to ensure lossless image quality.

• Preview file standard: preview only H.264, MOV/MP4 format encapsulation

• Overall environmental tone: we must rely on the correct aesthetic and perspective relationship, control the reasonable environmental lighting relationship, and the correct compositing process.

• Denial of motion blur in the later stage: use Motion Blur plug-in to reconstruct motion blur.

• Reconstruction of the shadow relationship in the later stage: Mask and Gaussian Blur are used to reconstruct the shadow relationship.

• Post-stage visual effects: Post-stage visual effects are mainly completed in AE. visual effects are communicated in advance, and red giant plug-ins and visual effects plug-ins are installed in advance.


1)Scene 1: Inside the temple

1. The scene was rearranged, the size was revised, the storey height was higher, and the space was more empty.

2. Add furnishings, as well as furnishings and props with the future style of Taoism, such as suspension lamps.

3. Updated material and model accuracy.

STRAW DOG 刍狗 – Conclusion & Reflection

2)Scene 2: The digital world

1. Conceptual reconstruction, reimagining the style of the digital world.

2. Can not use a single plane as the background, the effect is not good.

3. The light column also needs to be modified according to the new concept.

4. Whether it is fog or perspective of characters and scenes, or use 3D software to do it, the proportion of AE compositing is not correct.

STRAW DOG 刍狗 – Conclusion & Reflection

Scene 3: Abstract shot

1. Make new types according to the needs of the storyboard after finishing.

2. Find the types of materials or tutorials you can currently do and organize them.

3. The texture can be more three-dimensional, and the change of the skin can be more delicate, combined with the movement of the camera.

STRAW DOG 刍狗 – Conclusion & Reflection

MG Animation Design

1. The visual style needs to be modified to be more Oriental and Taoist.

2. The content needs to be modified, some of which can be changed to social media style to show the “surging” comments on the Internet.

3. Lack of Internet and technology elements, and not strong enough typical vision and texture.

STRAW DOG 刍狗 – Conclusion & Reflection

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