Can I save it?

D1a1v1e11 Website User Posts: 75 Just Starting Out*
edited August 2018 in Post-production techniques


   I am working on a VERY short film and I just shot this, to do it we rented a professional fog machine and today was the last day I will had access to it. After a few hours of shooting we ended up with this as the best shot. What can I do to make it look better, I am willing to spend about $20 if it necessary and I will use whatever I buy in other projects. I currently have Hitfilm Express, Blender and access to photoshop what would you do? Please ignore the audio, it will be taken out in the final cut and please excuse my bad acting.

Thank you for your time,



  • D1a1v1e11
    D1a1v1e11 Website User Posts: 75 Just Starting Out*

    Here is a fixed link, sorry about the other one not working

  • Cervier
    Cervier Website User Posts: 156 Just Starting Out

    I don't know what you mean by "make it look better"? It depends on your project, the tone of your film, etc. So I gave it a shot, trying to imagine a scene this would fit in, what's going on.

    The quick and dirty test I did in half an hour (ok, probably more ;-) ) was an opportunity for me to practice and learn. So, bearing in mind I am far from being an expert (faaaaaar) here's what I did.

    I reframed the clip to leave the windows and the machine out, and to close in on the character, to leave more mystery to his surroundings. I was hoping that ging down from 1080 to 720 would tighten the frame enough -it didn't, so I kept zooming in even though I know I was sacrificing resolution in the process

    I borrowed some smoke (duplicate layer, masks,...) to add some more on both sides and also in front of the character.

    I finished with some curves and a vignette.

    You probably already have everything you need to make this "look better" and easily do a better job than what I quickly put together.

    And your acting will probably not win you an Oscar, but it didn't strike me as bad

  • DataDesign
    DataDesign Website User Posts: 550 Enthusiast

    I am a beginner myself. I think @Cervier has done what I would have done for the visual. Your next step is the sound. You said you were going to start with removing the sound that exists. Right thinking!

     Add some creepy background music from the beginning. Just add the sound of something grabbing the case (noise of the case being bumped or grabbed), the sound of the man grunting as it is pulled away, some foot steps for the man as he stumbles back, then a few steps as he is about to be dragged into the fog. Don't add any sound for the mystery that takes the case away. I also think there should be a surprised sound from the man like "Uhhhhh!" as he vanishes and maybe a little "whoosh" sound. Nothing but net! Maybe some crickets chirping at the end while you keep the fog on the screen a few frames. Hey! maybe I am a Director, not a videographer!


  • ScottReid
    ScottReid Website User Posts: 137 Just Starting Out*

    I agree with pretty much everything @DataDesign suggested.  Changing the audio entirely will dramatically change how people view and react to the scene. :)

  • D1a1v1e11
    D1a1v1e11 Website User Posts: 75 Just Starting Out*

    Wow! Thanks Cervier, what I originally meant was getting a sharper image and getting rid of the visual noise. I have worked with the shot a lot and now have this: (It’s still a work in progress, I see the masking errors) for some reasion I didn’t even think of zooming it in, so I will definitely do that and I do plan to add music, that was actually the first thing I started working on, I just haven’t added it yet.

  • Cervier
    Cervier Website User Posts: 156 Just Starting Out

    Ha ha, it looks nice. It made me want to see the whole story. 

    If your goal is to sharpen the image, there are "sharpen" and "unsharpen" effects in HF Express. To remove noise (which I didn't spot much of on your video...) , unless you can make do with a soft blur, you'll have to get the "Repair Pack" (~20€).

    One last thing, about the black stripes you put... I use to do the same, until I watched this:

  • D1a1v1e11
    D1a1v1e11 Website User Posts: 75 Just Starting Out*

    Wow, I never knew that, thank you, I will fix that in all my projects from now on.

  • BobDiMarzio
    BobDiMarzio Website User Posts: 630 Just Starting Out


    Forgive my ignorance, but why would you want to sharpen a foggy scene?  when I think foggy, I think a softer image with a night like blue overcast with a lot of light diffusion.     I'm not suggesting it's wrong. I'm just curious.