LiveToon from DVShade: A Review from Luke Price
: Noise Industries
: Luke Price
: LiveToon from DVShade: A Review from Luke Price
Everybody likes someone who makes them look good and DVShade has been doing that for years. The innovative and award winning Easy Looks gives every project the chance of looking beautifully graded with minimal effort making even dull and uninteresting subjects intriguing.
Now for a bit of fun.
DVShades latest offering does the same in a whole different way. LiveToon takes a dive into the comic book with the capability to turn your live action footage into convincing cartoons by adding a comprehensive toolbox of parameters to the traditional posterization effect, with stunning results. LiveToon, with the same ease that 'Looks' provided instant cinematic colour grading, transforms footage into our favorite drawn art form, with surprisingly effective results.
Below: Split shot showing LiveToon in action. Left is the clean image and Right is LiveToon's 'Deep Blacks'
All source footage used with the kind permission of Ginger Productions. ©Ginger Production 2010
By dropping the LiveToon filter on to your clip in Final Cut Pro, Final Cut Express, Motion or After Effects you are presented with great looking presets to inspire you and use out-of-the-box. But there is also a comprehensive list of customizable parameters to tune and tinker with the image to better suit your material or create bespoke styles. You can be 'tooning' you films in no time. (Sorry couldn't resist the cheap pun)
Below: One of the effective presets 'Comic Book' is a great one to get you started, note the print dot like texture
Below: Another preset and a favorite of mine 'Graphic Novel', for a more gritty look.
The pleasing number of presets to get you started, cover the bases pretty well. 'Comic Book' gives a convincing well saturated impression of a quality illustrated story magazine, showing printing dots, soft broken edges, deep blacks and rich tones. 'Graphic Novel' presents the footage in the low rent colour pallet you would expect to see in hefty pulp fiction drawn classics, using cheap ink and paper, flat colour fills, heavy handed black block shading and a reduced hue range. The parameters you can manipulate to get what you want from the filter include the essentials for adding and removing colour and detail, 'Saturation' and 'Color Detail' handle these. 'Posterization' is the engine that makes the footage look 'cartoon', while 'Edge Lines' and 'Black Restore' fine-tune the look. But it's the inclusion of the 'Screen' parameter that gives you the choice of halftone 'Dot', 'Line', 'Hatched' or 'Circular' to add the characteristic printed look.
Below: LiveToon's parameters in Final Cut Pro
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