To The Stars


Watch this still photo brought to life. Read the PicDrift breakdown below to see how it was made.

PHOTO CREDIT/Instagram: @manfredteh

PicDrift Artist Breakdown:

This was a pretty straight forward animation to work on. A beautiful photograph with clearly separated front, middle, and back elements made my work in Photoshop much easier.

First I had to decide on how many layers to cut out from the photo. There are five distinct elements:

1. The grass

2. The beach with rocks and water

3. The water in the back

4. The light trail

5. The sky

To create a 3D scene, I had to import the layers in After effects which has the option of turning them into 3D layers. That way I can push back the layers that are farther from the camera on the Z- axes, creating depth. But first, I had to decide on the camera focal length. Looking at the photo I could see it was taken with the wider focal length, so I decided on 22mm. Once I created the camera, I could see that the layers that are farther from the camera were smaller, so I had to scale them up to fill out the frame.

The next stage was animating the camera, which is my favourite part! I love playing with different camera moves and angles, trying to find the perfect one for a particular photo. In this case, I decided on a simple camera push-in, focusing on a light trail in the sky.

I also animated the position and scale of the light trail, making it look like it's some kind of a rocket going into space. To make the parallax effect more noticeable, I added some 3D air particles.

All together the goal was to enhance this beautiful shot with some PicDrift movement, and not take away from the original image.

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