VidLog: The Future Of Cheating

Welcome to my first VidLog! To be honest I just kinda made up the word VidLog . . . probably someone else out there already using it, but nonetheless. I’ve decided it’s in both mine and this site’s interest that I actually write about the videos I produce, it’s more interesting to you, more interesting to me so everybody’s happy.

This is one of the videos that I filmed last holiday when I went to Tasmazia. Although the video didn’t exactly turn out as I’d imagined it, it’s still pretty neat and gave me some practice for effects I’ll probably do later on. I won’t give you a run down of the story line, basically because at 1 minute it’s really not a long twisty-curvy blockbuster.

Watch “The Future of Cheating” here:

Okay now onto the basic stuff about it!

The Process

I first had the idea of a maze-y video when my family informed my of a holiday trip we’d be going on in the school holidays, Tasmazia, a large activity maze in Tasmania’s northern half. I had the idea of the maze retracting to the sides, the maze ripping apart to form a passageway . . .

As it happens, the film making process results in many of your ideas going down the toilet. What you imagine and what you end up filming and editing are two entirely different things. This video didn’t turn out as good, nor as visual as I’d hoped. For example, instead of having the maze rip apart to form a doorway I went for the cheap easy option of just blinding the viewer with so much white light that it covers up the fact there’s no real decent vfx.

Nonetheless. Unless you work with Adobe After Effects the rest may seem a bit bizarre, I would explain it further, but meh.

The first thing I did was import all of the footage I’d filmed while I was on holiday and cut it all up in my video editor to set the basic idea of what I wanted, I could always adjust it later if I wanted to remove bits. The next step was to colour correct the footage to add more depth and really set the feel of the film, as you can see in the image below, it really changes the look of things from that home-filmed cam video into that defined movie-look.

Here’s another example of how much the colour correction can make a bland dull video into a sharp characterized image, just the amount of colour in the leaves and floor gives the video more life. After the colour correction I moved onto the effects, the bright light was just a shape with a feathered mask, and a blend mode of add. Then I added a few distortion effects in an adjustment layer so that the whole video reacted more to the supposed cheat.

I also added various elements to enrich the video further, these include smoke elements, dust and debris to make maze look like it’s misty, also to add more life to the massive gateway being formed within the maze.

Next I set to work on the futuristic holographic display. Above is an image of the first version, a real simple interface, which I actually prefer to the one I ended up adding to the video. On my iPod Touch I quickly opened up a drawing program and on a black canvas, drew 3 white dots that I could use for tracking. I really only needed two in the end, but I’ll now know that for future reference. The reason I drew the tracking points on my screen is so that I could track both the rotation and the scale of the iPod as I held it in my shake hand.

After applying the tracking data to a null layer, I created several 3D objects, and using the null layer I’d just created, made these objects stick to the iPod effortlessly. Then I just needed to animate them by turning on motion blur and also by setting the opacity to “Wiggle.”

I just had a major deja vu moment while writing this. . . . whoaoaoaoah!

So after all that I just fixed minor problems and started adding the sound.

I recorded the computer’s voice myself, using a freeware program called Audacity. Using a combination of equalization and high-pass filters you can make a radio-electronic sound. But apart from that I made sure that anything I said twice sounded exactly the same as last time.

Finally using a mix of free sounds from, along with those from my royalty free collection, I added swishes, beeps and ambience to the video.

So there we have it! Hope you enjoyed both the video and this VidLog, do subscribe to me on my YouTube channel or create an account on this website if you enjoy this content!

See you next time,


One comment

    Ben ist so ein Computer wizz und eine tolle Filmemacher. Er muss gratuliert werden.

    This is not spam. It is German for:
    “Ben is such a computer wizz and an awesome film maker. He must be congratulated.” 🙂

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