This lesson is exclusive to members

After Effects - Learn Motion Graphic Design

Fixing shaky footage with warp stabilizer

Daniel Walter Scott || VIDEO: 25 of 53

Download Exercise Files



Coming Soon

You need to be a member to view comments.

Join today. Cancel any time.

Sign Up

Hi, welcome to the video and in this one were going to fix shaky footage. So it might be that it was not shot on tripod, there was no way to shoot on a tripod and you just want to smooth it out to make it look nice and were going to do 2 versions of this. So the first one is going to be the video we've worked up, up until now and it’s the office for BYOL Dublin where I'm walking along and we've fixed up the colours but it’s a bit shaky because I couldn’t not make it shake.

So lets bring in that one first. So I'm going to double click in project I'm going to go to my desktop go to after effects exercise files. There's one in there called, were on warp stabilizer 1. Lets grab that one. so make a comp from it, easy, and now we are going to use this thing called warp stabilizer. If you cant see it go to view, and go to tracker there it is there. And you should have it selected down here in your layers and just click warp stabiliser. Then you kick back, relax and watch it smooth it out hopefully. The thing to watch is it'll go through two stages, obviously step 1 of 2. But over here is where you check, can you see frames and it burns through them all. I've shot mine at 50 frames per second because I forgot to turn it off when I was using my camera so its going to be nice and lots of frames so its going to take a little while. So give it a wait up here, wait and it will eventually do it. Once its got through the list then its going to go through and try and stabilize it and that’s the optional bit so it needs to analyse it first regardless of these two steps were going to take.

I'm filling it now while it goes. Here we go, finished. Now it’s going to stabilize. Its going to use this thing called smooth motion and its going to work pretty well by default, soon. Other people would cut this out. Alright, so hit space bar off it goes, mines taking a little while to play back because I'm on full oops I thought I changed that go to third and there it is keeping up and look how smooth it is. Alright so we should have previewed it before, before and after, I'm going to go to my effects controls. And I'm going to turn off this, this is what it looks like its kind of walking around. I'm trying to, it’s a bit embarrassing. I was trying to be really smooth I thought you know, I might have to shake it up a little bit to get a really good effect to show you guys in the videos but turns out me being as smooth as I can is still a bit shaky. You can see it just jumps around as I'm sliding feet in front of each other. Turn it back on though, look how smooth that is.

One thing you would have noticed is watch this, when it’s off, and when its on it’s a different crop level so this is going to show the mystery of what’s happening so one of the things you can do, if it doesn’t work you can crank up the smoothness up to 100% or lower it down if its doing it too much. So that’s the first thing you change around with.

Next thing you're going to play around just to have a look to see what’s going on is this things been cropped 3% which a scale of 100%, 3% that’s fine. So this one here, were going to go to one that says stabilize only. I just want to show you this, this is quite cool to see what’s going to happen. You’ve got to look at the edges here can you see them wiggling around, especially this side see the black lines come in and out, see the top there appears. That’s what its doing, its moving my video in time to try and make it look steady and then what its doing is when I'm hitting this one here it says stabilize and crop auto scale, it just scaling it up so that those black edges don’t get in there. Now if you're working on something that’s been moved around quite a bit you're going to have a huge amount of crop so you might end up with only the center bit here because its cropped all these outside bits. So you might have to go through and have a play around with actually tuning the smoothing so its not cropped in so much or come down here and play around with scaling and you can decide on what the maximum scaling is and lower that down so its not too ruthless with the scaling. But its interesting to see isn’t it, with the stabilize only. Is there any bigger movements, ooh there it’s a good one.

Lets go back to this one and alright, so that’s how to move smooth out motion and that’s what we want in this case. If I hit save now, what were going to do is bring in another video so were in effects controls, you can click in this little arrow here and go project, arrow, project its up to you, I'm going to bring in another video so lets bring in warp stabilizer 2. This one is a bit different. So I'm going to make a comp from it, great. And this ones different, what I want to do is I don’t want to smooth the motion, I want to stop the motion altogether. So if I hit space bar on this, can you see this is me in my office and its me again trying to hold it still, now I swear to you I was standing there holding it up, my camera its not that heavy I can hold a camera but I turned all the settings that the cameras got in terms of trying to automatically smooth things out just so I get a good experiences here but that was as steady as I could hold it. That is a broken dinosaur that I need fixing for my son that’s my little wacom, some camera lenses a laptop and stuff and some embroidery from my nana.

Alright and the worlds smallest vice, check it out. So were going to go through and fix this up so what you want to do with something like this is we don’t want to smooth the motion we want to stop it altogether. So use the same button, click warp stabilizer, kick back relax, its going to do the same first part but then were going to go and change this thing here from smooth motion to no motion. We’ll see the difference. Crank through this actually what I might do is get it to speed it up this time so ready powers of video, go.

Alright, so its nearly finished, and its going to stabilize and what its doing at the moment, here’s my little auto save, a little bit annoying is that its going to use the smooth motion option and well see what it looks like when it does the smooth motion. There we go its cropped it in again and this one here’s cropped it up a little bit more so 117 because I was jiggling a bit more. Lets hit space bar, I've got it down at a really low quality just so it plays nice right. So watch this, it’s still moving but smoothly which was perfect in the last one because I was moving and I wanted to smooth it out. At the moment though I want it to keep it rock steady so it’s using the smooth motion when I don’t want it to be. It looks like I'm bad but I'm swaying, a little more drunk than I was before.

so I'm going to go to no motion, it doesn’t have to do the whole analyzing thing again just the last part of stabilizing so it shouldn’t take too long, we wont have to speed it up. Come on, here we go. Done. So the same crop actually no more of a crop because its not moving around so lets hit space bar now. You can see, rock steady like I'm on a tripod, kind of its close enough. There is still a tiny bit of jitter in there, just a tiny little bit but you can see how nice it is now to keep the motion not moving so no motion and when were doing the last example. Warp stabilizer 1, there he is there this one here was better when its smooth motion, smoothing it all out and this one here was no motion.

Alright, the last thing were going to talk about before we move on it warp stabilizer, it took forever alright, it takes a long time to go and create it. So its quite stressful on the machine and because its this lovely, its not an effect that’s done forever, you can turn it on and off so its kind of like this active effect and what that can do is slow your work flow down quite a bit. So if I now go through and start doing some animations to this and sliding it around or doing more colour correction, what it ends up doing is having to do the colour correction and then go back and warp analyse it again and that will kill you having to do that every single time, you saw how long it took in the last one.

So, what you need to do is now you’ve got to this stabilized video, now you're going to go out and export it. You export it as an mp4 and then even if you're still going to do animations for it, you're not quite finished, export it so you’ve got an mp4 and then bring that back into the project and start working on that thing because then its fused into it and its hard wired and it’s not stressing out after effects. So you can skip to the end of the video now if you want to but I'm going to show you how to export a video, you’ve done it before. Just to make sure everyone knows what were doing .

so what id like you to do is we've got two compositions in here. we've got warp stabilizer 1 and warp stabilizer 2. Well export this one here because well use this in the next project. So with it selected were going to go to file, export, adobe media encoder. I keep going to the different one or under export every time I do this. Should be consistent Dan, come on. So were going to to this its going to open up media encoder in the background, if you don’t have media encoder, you probably do, if you install after effects it just appears there without asking. Its one of those programs you keep meaning to use but here we go, okay so I've got this one here, its going to be h264, perfect. I'm going to match source so its exactly the way it came it it goes out and in terms of where its going to stick it, that’s going to be perfectly fine. So its going to go into that underscore ame file.

So I'm going to hit play, its going to render out that little video with the warp stabilizer baked into it and what we’ll do now is we’ll use our little power of video again to speed it up. Alright, ill see you when its finished.

Alright so I've exported the video now that’s what I've called my video 25, fixing shaky footage just to make it useful for you guys because I want you to be able to download these files if you're not making it work. Remember the production videos earlier on. So its made a folder here with an underscore ame, adobe media encoder. In here is my mp4, now this is the one I'm going to re import into after effects and start doing work with so I'm going to close this project or at least not use these compositions anymore I'm going to create a new one to work with. So let me just show you how to do that.

So I've got these ones here with these effects applied to it, I've been going file import and double clicking, there's another way here you can drag it, its up to you. So I've got warp stabilizer 1 oh I've already got one called warp stabilizer one. That’s not good, I'm going to rename this one to make it a little clearer. I'm going to call this one, were going to use it in a second. I'm going to call it tracking camera.

Cool, well make a comp from this one and now you can see here he's nice and smooth, and now we can go through and add our type, add our effects and just ignore these last ones here, we used them, you can bin them now if you needed to or make a new project and start working on it. But were now just going to work on this video file instead of having the effects applied to it its going to be nice and smooth.

Alright, that is it for fixing your shaky footage using after effects.