Mr Fantastic (or Plastic Man) long arms

DafterThings Website User Posts: 939 Enthusiast
edited November 2018 in Post-production techniques


I need to have Mr Fantastic stretch his arms out in my stop motion.
They *could* be wiggly but it won't hurt if they stretch out straight.

I am using Hitfilm 4 Pro.

My ideas :
1) Draw them on frame-by-frame. This isn't impossible but I have found drawing something to match video is difficult.
2) Cut off the arms and keep adding them onto the end of the existing arm... frame-by-frame. This works but doesn't look great
3) Create the long arms as an image and then unmask that image while moving an image of the hands to the end each frame (actually that won't be needed as I can move the image with hands on it). I could add waves if I wanted the wiggly.

So, doable, but is there a super slick method?


  • CleverTagline
    CleverTagline Moderator Las Vegas, NVModerator, Website User, Ambassador, HitFilm Beta Tester Posts: 3,238 Ambassador

    Option 3 is what I would suggest in your case using HF4 Pro. If you can afford the upgrade to the latest version of Pro, though, you could try the Puppet tool.

  • DafterThings
    DafterThings Website User Posts: 939 Enthusiast

    @jsbarrett Thanks for the input. Option3 *was* the best of those.

    Just FYI  I added option 4 which was to keyframe a quadwarp on the image which looks OK as well. 
    That might be what I go for... without the wiggle doesn't look like bendy arms :-)

  • Andersen01498
    Andersen01498 Website User, HitFilm Beta Tester Posts: 1,003 Enthusiast

    or maybe for those scenes you could cgi it with a 3d model....if you know how to do that.  Rig the model in such a way that the model with stretch 

  • DafterThings
    DafterThings Website User Posts: 939 Enthusiast

    @Andersen01498 Thanks for the suggestion.

    Would probably work but, frankly I'd have to learn from scratch.
    Also this is stop motion with particular set of action figures so it would need to fit into the style
    (Interestingly the video will use about 4 different generations of the action figures over the last 10 years).
    Mr Fantastic has a MASSIVE head compared to the others :-)

  • Palacono
    Palacono Website User, HitFilm Beta Tester Posts: 3,448 Enthusiast

    If you've got Quad Warp working, put that in it's own comp and apply some Waves distortion on top?
    As the Waves would effect the whole quad warped layer you might need to keyframe the Quad's ends to go against the wave motion to keep them in one place.

    A more complicated way would be to use a mask on a shape with feathered ends that had waves applied to it, where the feather faded to nothing at the two ends and you then have displacement use that for the wiggle offsets. It would then not move at the ends.

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