'An American Girl: Saige Paints the Sky" VFX

Galleries - Motion Graphics

American Girl VFX

Visual Effects: Feature Film
Universal Studios/ NBC/ Mattel


We are back! Hot on the heels of the success of 'McKenna Shoots for the Stars', there is a new American Girl in town and she's painting the sky.


There were so many VFX shots worked on in this picture that I have not even bothered including, or really mentioning them all here. It consisted of the standard trappings of sky replacements, image enhancements, seamless split screens, lots of image stabilizations, reflections, and object and wire removal.


But then of course there were multiple scenes shot entirely on green screen, and a late in the game corrective decision to actually replace a stunt woman's face with that of the actor.


The green screens were simple enough with only real issue to fabricate the skies realistically enough, and to essentially build an ongoing environment for the shots to move through, with the continuity of the sky moving in the correct directions according to the proper camera angles and focal lengths.


Object removal is always a chore, and in this case removing safety wires around the actor on the horse was virtually impossible given the time frame. So when you can't remove an object, try to add an object! Since the scene is on a parade route, and the cinematographer had already established a voyeuristic style using long lenses shot through foreground objects, a few computer generated balloons precisely placed did the trick to cover up our unwanted wires.


On the other hand, some of these foreground objects became a bit of a hurdle when we went into face replacement. After tracking and rotoscoping the actor's face onto the moving (in slow motion to make it more difficult of course) stunt woman, that face then had to be matted behind the various etherial glitter and soft focus balloons that the action is taking place behind. Quite a challenge, but in the end, probably helped sell a very risky VFX attempt!