Watch this still photo brought to life. Read the PicDrift breakdown below to see how it was made.
PHOTO CREDIT: Ben Lowy
PicDrift artist breakdown:
This was a great photo and another fun project to work on!
The main challenge was to capture the feel of a real underwater scene and to make the viewer feel like he is in the cage watching the shark from proximity. I've tried to animate the water with the Turbulent displace tool in After Effects, but it just wasn't good enough. So, I used the 3rd party plug-in called Heat distortion, which is used to animate the fire and heat particles.
I've modified the settings a bit and applied it to an adjustment layer, and created a much more believable underwater scene. Plenty of fish around the main subject allowed me to spread them out on a Z-axes which greatly contributed to a nice parallax effect.
I've also animated the shark's mouth opening to create the feel of a real video. I cut out the sharks teeth and a part of a mouth on a separate layer and animate it using a puppet tool. I've used a 3D particle system to create water bubbles to accent the motion of the camera.
Overall the final result was something to be excited about!