View Full Version : School of Visual Arts Matte Painting Week 5

02-12-2009, 01:25 PM
Hi all--

Next weeks assignment is to take a photo that you take yourself, and have it go from day to night using the techniques I showed in class. I want you to post:

1. Your original photo.
2. Your nighttime version.
3. A movie cross dissolving between the 2 files. Even though I asked you to post a small version of the movie in class, please go ahead a post a 640 x 480 version so we can see the detail.

Posting a movie is slightly more tricky than posting an image, so carefully follow this, and don't wait for the last moment to post your homework. Also, preview it before you post--if it doesn't show up in the preview, I can guarantee it will not show up in the post.

Post your images as you did before, but to post a video, you need to first post it on YouTube. Then go to youTube, and to the right hand side of the video it will say "URL", and have the URL address of the video on YouTube. It will look something like this "http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IgCxA-9cHeQ". However, you don't want this entire thing--ytou just want what happens after "v=" or in this case "IgCxA-9cHeQ". So the final post of the video will look like this:

"IgCxA-9cHeQ[(add a forward slash here)youtube]"

Only the second [youtube] needs to have that forward slash ("/") before it--I can't write it that way or the text won't show up, only my video.

I know this is a little confusing, but I want to be able to post video for the following assignments, so put aside a little time to figure this out.

Remember to use the warm/cool contrast to make your images look really charming, and use non destructive masks to colorize your material.

Also, next week we look forward to Deborah Saez's report on Michael Curtiz’s “Casablanca”. Make sure it is the wonderful 1942 version starring Humphrey Bogart, Ingrid Bergman and Peter Lorre, not the awful 2004 remake starring Jason Priestley, Jessica Simpson and Charles Nelson Reilly.

Here is a video of my favorite cat Henry morphing into me to show off my awesome YouTube posting chops. Henry can actually do this--I'll have him show you some time!


This is a one week assignment, so don't dawdle. Everything is due by Midnight on Wednesday.

David Mattingly

02-12-2009, 11:39 PM
Brandon, thanks so much for finding that pen!

02-13-2009, 06:48 AM
That's probably the best video I've ever seen David. Your cat is the most excellent.

02-14-2009, 03:12 PM
Good evening, David.
Сan you say what program you have used to create this beautiful film? I really like it! Аnd what programm I should use to do my homework?


02-15-2009, 10:43 AM
I hope the morph form me to my cat didn't confuse you--that was just to show you could post a movie on mattepainting.org. The assignment for next week should be done in photoshop. If you want to cross dissolve between the daytime and nighttime version, you can do that in After Effects if you like.
The morph I did with my cat was done in an old program called "Elastic Reality" that I don't think is supported any more. You can do the same thing using "Reflex", an excellent plug in for After Effects. You can find it at:
But that really has nothing to do with this weeks assignment.
David Mattingly

02-15-2009, 02:17 PM
Ok, this is my "day to night" work.

and my refs:


and my morf video:


p.s. David, thanks you so much for this task. I have received a lot of new experience and tonns of positive emotions. And I have just recollected that it is time to me to start to study an After Effect. This movie is made by means of flash.

Sorry for my English :-)

02-17-2009, 02:35 PM
Hi everyone,

Below is my effort for last weeks "Day-to-Night" assignment. I had alot of fun doing it, and slowly built up the composition with subtle light and shadow changes. See everyone in class.





02-17-2009, 07:06 PM
Wow, only 2 so far? Where are all the rest? Cant be too much time left now if my time zone approximations are accurate...
Anyways, the two that have been posted so far show some real promise, ill give out some crits if i get some time soon, but look forward to seeing the rest.


02-18-2009, 05:36 AM



02-18-2009, 06:30 AM
The video Kate posted on mattepainting.org doesn't play--she must have marked it as a "private video". She should re-post it on YouTube, and make sure "Share your video with the world (Recommended)" is selected under "Privacy" to make it available to everyone to see. It is probably marked as "Private (Viewable by you and up to 25 people)", so people can't view it on mattepainting.org. I don't think you can go back and change the setting on the first one (if you can, someone please give me a heads up). I think you may need to load it again on YouTube to correct the setting.
David Mattingly

02-18-2009, 06:42 AM
Oops! You can change the settings on a posted video. Go to you account, go to "uploaded videos", click on "edit" under your video, and change the privacy setting to "Share your video".
David Mattingly

02-18-2009, 08:22 AM
hope this works.


02-18-2009, 06:27 PM



02-18-2009, 07:51 PM



Jim McKenzie
02-18-2009, 08:12 PM



<object width="425" height="344"><param name="movie" value="http://www.youtube.com/v/wjid6XTqVYg&hl=en&fs=1"></param><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true"></param><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always"></param><embed src="http://www.youtube.com/v/wjid6XTqVYg&hl=en&fs=1" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true" width="425" height="344"></embed></object>

Derick Ramirez
02-18-2009, 08:40 PM


i cannot get my youtube video to upload it just sits there saying uploading ive been doing it for the past 5 hours i will not go past that i have even sent you a email i do have it i will show you tomorrow in class.

02-18-2009, 08:43 PM
Please figure out how to do this for yourself by next week--I can't be posting everyone's homework...

02-18-2009, 08:43 PM



ahh, this looks so much nicer full size. anyways here it is.

02-18-2009, 08:48 PM
Same for you--next week, you have to have this figured out or I will just fail your assignment.



02-18-2009, 09:00 PM
Here is what i came up with for this week.




02-18-2009, 09:01 PM
Beryl Chen_Digital Matte Painting Homework_School of Visual Arts_Week 5




02-18-2009, 10:17 PM
Hi all--
This week an "A" will be if I am fooled into thinking you took one daytime picture, then waited around and took a second picture from the same angle after the sun set. So the closer you came to an attractive reality in your homework, the better. Also, I am looking for the interplay of warms and cools that you often see in night shots. You certainly can have a night shot that is entirely cool, but it won't be a very interesting one.

So here are this weeks grades:

Akim Phimin--Considering you weren't actually in the class to hear my lecture, this is a spectacular job! Your relfections are closely observed, and your lights nicely done. My one quibble is that this has to be the brightest moon in history--if you had toned this down a bit, it would be clearer that this is moonlight, rather than a weird cool sun. Also, watch the density of your blacks. The illuminated doorway on the right is much darker than the darks elsewhere in the composition. But a very nice job.
Grade: A

Dan Bradham--This is acceptable, but you didn't really capture how light rises up from the street, and illuminated the bottom of buildings for the most part. Also, leaving that long cast shadow on the front of the pharmacy sign is just sloppy--the first things to wipe out in a day to night conversion are hard shadows like that. This is overall much darker than is desirable, and i wish your darks had gone cooler rather than inky black.
Grade: B-

Kate Conrad--You did a nice job observing how light climbs up the sides of building from the street and got a very pleasing interplay of cools and warms. I wish you had lit more windows, and randomized the illumination more, and you also were sloppy about repeating the same window over and over. I few moments of painting in to those windows would have made it less obvious you were using the same piece. But overall a very nice job. I give a extra credit for adding sound to your video--a very impressive job for someone new to video!
Grade: A

Beryl Chen-- I'm feeling it! Great job! Lots of nice detail. I like how you got that red sky glow--nicely observed.
Grade: A

Jacek Jurga--What is this, the great New York blackout? What aren't any windows lit? All the restaurants and ground floors are black. The only things lit in your nighttime version are things that are lit in your daytime version. This is a nice start, but you need to do some more work to make this a reasonable nighttime city.
Grade: C-

Jiyeon Kim--No homework. Grade: F

Brandon Lori--Now that's the kind I work I expect from you, Brandon! Nicely observed. Just a few comments. The reflections in the tops of the cars are still not right. You have them as kind of warm orange, but what they are reflecting is the sky, which is blue. You e-mailed me earlier asking for comments, and this is much improved, but what I was asking for in reflections was of the lights in the top of the cars, which would be bright hits on all of the roofs that are in line with them. Just remember, a reflection can never be brighter than the thing it is reflecting.
Grade: A

Andrea Lowery--No homework. Grade: F

Jim McKenzie--You did it! That's an A! Very pleasing color solution. If I showed the night time version to an average viewer, I doubt they would know it was an altered photo.
Grade: A

Danica Perry--You got a nice cool sky here, even teetering into Steven Spielberg territory. But my question is this--what is the yellow green glow in the middle of town? Is it on fire? If so, the color is weird. It is almost like an alien explosion in the town. I would have given this a "B" except for the weirdness of the glow.
Grade: C

Derick Ramirez--I know you weren't in class last week, but even if you aren't there for the lecture you need to talk to another student to get the details of what is required. I talked in class about how doing what you have done here is very difficult, and I recommended that you choose something with buildings so that you could illuminated something in you picture. This looks like you basically multiplied a blue layer over your photo, added a few stars in the sky, and called it a day. I would have passed you if you had at least given us a little warm light coming from the buildings, but as it stands this doesn't meet the requirements of the assignment.
Grade: F

Dan Pochtrager--This has a nice warm/cool interplay to it, and I like how you put in the light haze coming off of the road lights. Also, I like the side lights on the steeple, even if the steeple did go form an 8 sided object to what looks like the nose cone of a missile.
Grade: C+

Deborah Saez--Dropped out.

Amanda Schwartz--You started with a scene that is rather dusk like, with the interior lights already partially on, so the contrast between your daytime and night scene is less dramatic that might be desirable. Also, I wish your sky had gone cool rather than black--warm/cool is always more attractive than warm/black.
Grade: C

Max Thomas--Got special permission to turn in his homework before 9:00 AM tomorrow.

02-19-2009, 08:48 PM



02-20-2009, 06:00 AM
Your sky is nice in this with the reddish glow, and I like how you got the drop off of light in the middle building, but several things are holding this back from being as good as it could. First, all the windows show the same color light. Look closely some evening--there is always a lot of variation of colors within illuminated rooms in a building. You would have done better to use the windows as a mask, and then randomly insert some color variation.
Second, the light off of the light posts are casting these weird alien triangle of light rather than the softening cone you actually see from lights on the street. You will almost never see lines of light like this from a street light unless they are smack dab against a building. At the very least the cone of light on the street should have been much softer. Remember from my demo yesterday--if you can't actually figure out where the shadows are going, at least make them soft. Soft can make up for a lot of errors.
Third, I would have liked to have seen more evidence of the buildings being better lit at the bottom, and darker at the top. You have a smidgen of that going on here, but nothing like what you would see in real life. Outside of learning to use photoshop, this class has a lot about learning to really see, and reproduce that in your pictures. That is a lifelong task.
Grade: C-

04-23-2009, 02:10 PM
Bringing SVA matte painting threads together for reference