Water bending in Hitfilm Express

Bookboy03 Website User Posts: 6

(Note: I currently possess the particle simulator add-on pack. And I'd be willing to get more add-on packs if needed)

Alright, so I've been working with Hitfilm Express for a few months now and I'd like to create a Waterbending effect for one of my friends. I found a tutorial for doing the effect I'd like in After Effects, but I'm having a bit of trouble translating it to Hitfilm.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n1cfjXd2-Ts&t=214 (The video)

Is there anyone who could explain what I'd need to do to replicate the waterbending sphere effect that they created in this video? (Time stamp is 3:34)


  • Dimipapa
    Dimipapa Website User Posts: 361 Enthusiast

    Fractal noise under generate, and polar warp under warp will get you the sphere, I'm pretty sure HF can do the rest as well but I'm not good enough to know off the top of my head, playing around with it though.

  • Triem23
    Triem23 Moderator Moderator, Website User, Ambassador, Imerge Beta Tester, HitFilm Beta Tester Posts: 19,592 Ambassador

    The thing is Hitfilm doesn't have a vector blur, so there's a few things you need to do differently. 

    First  in the Fractal Noise, change the fractal type to "Fluid." That will just give you a watery look to begin with. (if you have the 360 FX pack with 360 Fractal Noise, use that.

    Second  Hitfilm's sphere filter doesn't invert for showing the inside. Either don't worry about it, or, let's do another method... 

    Instead of Sphere, draw a circular mask in the center and add Bulge. Play with the depth. Once you're happy with it  copy the layer, flip it, on the top copy invert the bulge (so if bulge was 50, top copy to - 50), then set blend mode.

    Use Chrominator or Caustics instead of CC glass. 

    Use Heat Distortion or Displacement instead of Turbulent Displacement. The Displacement filter uses a grayscale map to drive things... Heat Distortion is running a built-in Clouds fractal noise to generate distortion, but, by using Displacement and a separate fractal noise you can use any noise type. If you use the energy , smoke or fluid types of fractal noise you're recreating the energy, smoke and fluid distortions from the add-on packs. The only difference between the four heat/smoke/fluid/energy distortion effects is the fractal type the distortion uses. 

    Here's the thing - this effect is actually really simple at its core. A grayscale image is being created and used to drive a matte channel and a displacement map over the video image. There are a couple dozen ways to do this other than what Production Crate showed. The important section is the Compositing part of the tutorial. That's using the grayscale map as a set matte source to choke effects on a Grade layer and to drive a Displacement map. The first part of the tutorial is showing three ways to make grayscale maps. Focus on the compositing steps. The grayscale maps have a lot of leeway. 

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