Force Lightning in Express

georgefilmltd
georgefilmltd Website User Posts: 481 Enthusiast

Hi,

Fxhome has released some force lightning tutorials in the past, and yes, they do look good, but I LOVED Palpatine's one from Lego Star Wars The Skywalker Saga trailer,

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2yTr5oS99_c&t=45s

Any Ideas on how to make this in Express?

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  • FilmSensei
    FilmSensei Website User Posts: 3,114 Ambassador
    edited August 2020

    @georgefilmltd Have you explored the new Force Lightning Preset now available inside the Lightning Effect in HitFilm Express 15? It's pretty good! Drop the Lightning Effect into a new plane and twirl open the properties. Look for the Presets Dropdown Menu and select "Force Lightning." Tweak from there!

  • georgefilmltd
    georgefilmltd Website User Posts: 481 Enthusiast
    edited August 2020

    Yes that would be good but sadly I'm still running V.13 of Hitfilm Express, and I'm on mac, they say that the glitches aren't that bad on mac, that might be true, but I haven't upgraded my macOS since I got Hitfilm Express 13, I will update it someday when I find a new hard drive though

  • FilmSensei
    FilmSensei Website User Posts: 3,114 Ambassador

    @georgefilmltd Do you mind if I ask why haven't you updated?

    Check this out...

    The lighting on the left is from the shot, but the lightning on the right is HitFilm Express. I whipped this together in just a couple of minutes. I started with the Force Lightning Preset and tweaked it from there. I have two Lightning Effects, a Blur and a Glow.

  • georgefilmltd
    georgefilmltd Website User Posts: 481 Enthusiast

    WOW Thats amazing, when I find a good cheap hard drive to back up my memory before updating my computer, I'll DEFINITELY get 15!

  • georgefilmltd
    georgefilmltd Website User Posts: 481 Enthusiast
    edited August 2020

    @FilmSensei Or @Anyone I'm running MacOS Serra Version 10.12.6, will 15 work on my computer?

  • FilmSensei
    FilmSensei Website User Posts: 3,114 Ambassador

    @georgefilmltd Here is the spec sheet from the FXhome website...

    System Specs

    HitFilm Express is multi-core and GPU accelerated. It has seen some vast improvements under the hood providing superior performance and speed like you’ve never seen before.

    • Apple: macOS 10.15 Catalina, macOS 10.14 Mojave, or 10.13 High Sierra
    • Windows: Microsoft Windows 10 (64-bit), Microsoft Windows 8 (64-bit)
    • Internet connection: Required for online activation
    • Processor: 4th Generation Intel® Core™ Processors or AMD equivalent.
    • RAM: 4GB (8 GB Recommended)
    • Graphics card:
      • NVIDIA GeForce 600 (Kepler) series (2012)
      • AMD Radeon R5 240 (2013)
      • Intel HD Graphics 5000 (GT3) (2013)
      • Video memory 1 GB minimum (2GB or more required for 4K UHD)


  • georgefilmltd
    georgefilmltd Website User Posts: 481 Enthusiast
    edited August 2020

    Aw man! Do you think there is a way to modify the original lightning effect to create that preset?

  • triforcefx
    triforcefx United StatesModerator, Website User Posts: 1,271 Moderator

    I believe they made some enhancements in HitFilm 15 that allow even better lightning, so you might need to upgrade for the best results

  • georgefilmltd
    georgefilmltd Website User Posts: 481 Enthusiast

    I'll keep looking for a hard drive then I'll definitely upgrade!

  • georgefilmltd
    georgefilmltd Website User Posts: 481 Enthusiast

    @FilmSensei this would be a good tutorial 😉

  • FilmSensei
    FilmSensei Website User Posts: 3,114 Ambassador

    @georgefilmltd What you will want to do is screen capture a frame of the video containing the force lightning that you want to replicate. Bring it into HitFilm, and add the Lightning Effect to it. Then start playing around with the properties of the effect. You may need to add other effects like Glow or Blur, and even a second Lightning Effect. Keep comparing it to the original that you want to replicate, and keep tweaking it until you have it where you want it. Then save that as a Preset and you will be good to go!

  • georgefilmltd
    georgefilmltd Website User Posts: 481 Enthusiast
  • FilmSensei
    FilmSensei Website User Posts: 3,114 Ambassador

    @georgefilmltd I look forward to seeing what you create. Please feel free to share it here!

  • georgefilmltd
    georgefilmltd Website User Posts: 481 Enthusiast

    @FilmSensei Ok I will, but quick question before Lego Palpatine's lightning shot, he had sparks emitting from his hands, could you do that with a bonfire effect with only the sparks turned on and colored? I have been thinking about it for a while

  • NormanPCN
    NormanPCN Website User Posts: 4,067 Enthusiast
    edited August 2020

    Aw man! Do you think there is a way to modify the original lightning effect to create that preset?

    Worth a try. Here is the preset. Of course the start/end points and such need to be tweaked to a specific shot. Things like the width of start and end points based on perspective. Like FilmSensei's example is directly at the camera.


  • georgefilmltd
    georgefilmltd Website User Posts: 481 Enthusiast
  • NormanPCN
    NormanPCN Website User Posts: 4,067 Enthusiast

    @georgefilmltd Sorry about this but I edited my post and you should look at the screenshot again.

    Apparently presets in Hitfilm do not set everything. Only the things a specific preset thinks need changing. So setting a preset might leave a little bit of some other preset or whatever you have currently set mixed with the new/set preset values. That is what my previous screenshot had. A mix of different presets. In this one I reset the effect and then set the preset. So all defaults and then the preset values.

  • georgefilmltd
    georgefilmltd Website User Posts: 481 Enthusiast
  • FilmSensei
    FilmSensei Website User Posts: 3,114 Ambassador

    @NormanPCN

    Apparently presets in Hitfilm do not set everything. Only the things a specific preset thinks need changing. So setting a preset might leave a little bit of some other preset or whatever you have currently set mixed with the new/set preset values.

    Whoa! That's is really good to know. I have often times browsed through a set of Presets just to see what the base looks like, assuming that everything in the Preset is reset. Maybe I should revisit some of those to see how much of an influence any previous Presets may have had. Oh my!

  • FilmSensei
    FilmSensei Website User Posts: 3,114 Ambassador

    @georgefilmltd

    ...before Lego Palpatine's lightning shot, he had sparks emitting from his hands, could you do that with a bonfire effect with only the sparks turned on and colored?

    Yes, you could use either the Bonfire Effect or maybe the Sparks Effect, but the best bet would be to build your own with the Particle Sim. Another alternative would be to search for some stock footage that might work.

  • NormanPCN
    NormanPCN Website User Posts: 4,067 Enthusiast
    edited August 2020

    Dang it. I seriously suck. I looked at the photo again and it did not seem right. The "sticky" field of the "End" property should not be checked. I don't know if the browser cache is messing with me or what. Anyway, I think it look good now.

    Here is is again, incase the browser cache is messing with me, in the previous post. I looked at each line. Not sure how much that is worth at this point. 😅


    Whoa! That's is really good to know.

    Keyframed (animated) it seems for sure. Other fields, not so sure.

  • georgefilmltd
    georgefilmltd Website User Posts: 481 Enthusiast
    edited August 2020

    I've been thinking that this looks like the original lightning and electricity effect, I was about to ask Jay for a screenshot of how he made his 🤣

    This is what I got from the screenshot, It looks weird because I resisted Hitfilm to zoom in on the video #FullScreenMode

  • FilmSensei
    FilmSensei Website User Posts: 3,114 Ambassador

    @georgefilmltd The way that I created my screen cap is I first pulled up the Youtube video and captured the the frame that I wanted. I then opened MS Paint (I'm on a PC) and pasted it in. I cropped to just the shot of the screen and saved it. I imported the image into HitFilm and made the effect, using the screen cap as reference material. I then exported the frame as a png and uploaded it here.

    As far as your shot, you need more feathering of the lightning glow. You may also want to duplicate the lightning effect and add a second glow color as well. An actual glow effect and a very slight blur should finish it off.

    Again, it really helps to use the original footage as a reference to make your effect look exactly right.

  • georgefilmltd
    georgefilmltd Website User Posts: 481 Enthusiast