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Thread: Desks - virtual or real?

  1. #1
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    Desks - virtual or real?

    As we're building a new studio, it's time to start looking at what LiveSet we're going to use. And most importantly, should we go with the virtual desk or a real desk? If we go virtual, I'd still like to have something there for them to put their scripts and stuff on. Does it have to be painted green, or will the Tricaster just pop the desk over it? And how do we allow their hands to show on the desk? Some samples I've seen had their hands get cut off. I assume that unless the desk IS painted green, the shot would have to be set so none of the desk shows up, thus cutting off their hands.

    What are the issued we could run into with using a real desk?
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  2. #2
    LiveSet Making Machine joseburgos's Avatar
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    The biggest issue is shadows of talent as they touch the desk top. Take a Rubbermaid table and drop green screen cloth over it to run test.
    An alternative is get a desktop that is not reflective and make the rest of the desk virtual
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  3. #3
    'the write stuff' SBowie's Avatar
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    OF course, a real desk - one that is not intended to be keyed out - will work fine in many ways, but will not normally be reflected or add shadows to the virtual set it is composed into ... though you might plan for this when designing a set, of course.
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  4. #4
    Registered User Paris MkVI's Avatar
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    And non-reflective surfaces will definitely make a difference. I have some chairs we use on one of the LiveSets. The armrests are wood, and had a semi-gloss surface that was manageable in key, but still created some greenscreen spill issues. I sandpapered those puppies.
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  5. #5
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    Be careful with a green desktop. If your talent picks up a white paper, it could reflect the green and disappear. It can also reflect on white shirt cuffs ans cause some issues.
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  6. #6
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    Ok, we have a nice desktop that's non-reflective, but we're still not sure what to do with it all. If I leave the virtual desk in the set, then it's going to be over whatever we do in the "real world." So I'm assuming that if we frame our shots to include the desktop, it would have to be positioned so it shows up above where the virtual desk is. I don't see where making the desktop green would work as the virtual desk would take over being it's a foreground layer. But I'm still quite new to all of this.

    If we go with a real desk, then they way I see it to get the full benefits of such we'd have to frame our shots wide to include the desk, then use the Tricaster to zoom in to our tight shots, which will most likely end up with slightly fuzzy talent.

    This whole thing is starting to put more gray hairs on my head!
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  7. #7
    LiveSet Making Machine joseburgos's Avatar
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    You could just frame the real desktop and augment it with a virtual desk front. You will need to design your own alignment set to frame cameras to work with the virtual set
    Jose Burgos
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