Sunday, March 22, 2015

PE13/13.1 Tracking Player In Sports Video Ideas


Frequently there are questions about how best to track a son or daughter or other in a sports video.
There are various approaches to doing this. Some more involved than others.


What are some quick ideas for tracking a son or daughter or other in a sports video?


Freeze Frame - Arrow Technique

With the video on Video Track 1, place the Timeline Indicator at the spot where you want to have an arrow point to the player. Go to Tools Menu/Freeze Frame, and in the Freeze Frame dialog that opens
  • Set Freeze Frame Duration = 1 second**
  • Click on Insert in Movie
The Freeze Frame will insert in the Timeline Video Track 1 at the location of the Timeline Indicator.
Using Add Media/Files and Folder/Project Assets, import a png or psd file with the arrow image.
Drag the arrow image to the Timeline Video Track 2 to span just the duration of the Freeze Frame on Video Track 1 directly below. Size and position the arrow accordingly.

Repeat the above for as many places on the video that the player is to be pointed to by an arrow.

In the example to be given, the finished Expert workspace appeared as seen in Figure 1.

Figure 1. Freeze Frame/Arrow Workflow in Expert Workspace For Pointing To Player In Sports Video.

And, a wmv export of that Timeline is represented in the following demo video.

Freeze Frame/Arrow Pointing to Player In Sports Video

And if a circle file was used on Video 2 instead of an arrow file, the result would look like what is shown in the following demo vide.

Freeze Frame/Circle Focusing On Player in Sports Video

The arrow can be created in Photoshop Elements, and the circle can be created in the Premiere Elements Titler as described in the following earlier blog post.
"PE11: Titler Shapes For Highlighting"

Motion Tracking - Arrow Technique

Start by clicking on the Timeline Video Track 1 video in order to select it.
Go to Tools Menu/Motion Tracking. The Motion Tracking workspace opens, and sequence that follows includes
"Select Object" to be tracked
"Track Object", results in a yellow frame around the selected object
Into the yellow frame dragging the object to do the tracking - yellow frame turns blue
Resize, position, click Done.

Figure 2. At The Stage Where The Arrow From Project Assets Is About To Be Dragged Into The Yellow Frame At The Small Robot's Head.

Figure 3. At The Stage Where The Arrow From Project Assets Has Been Dragged Into The Yellow Frame At The Small Robot's Head And Frame Has Turned Blue.
Probably the most important thing to remember here is that the user is not confined to use the project's Graphics Tab choices for the tracking object. The Elements Organizer and Project Assets media can be used instead. This is fully explained in the October 2013 blog post
"PE12: Motion Tracking/What To Use To Track Objects"

With this Motion Tracking approach, the tracking was lost when the small robot reached the large robots. To point to the smaller robot after it had gone between the two large robots, some "maneuvers" were needed which included 
  •  doing a second motion tracking for the end
  • adding a freeze frame to maintain the end view
The finished Expert workspace workflow is as represented in Figure 4.

Figure 4. Motion Tracking/Arrow Finished Expert Workspace Timeline View At Finish Of Creation.
 The wmv video from the export of the completed project's Timeline can be seen in the following demo video.


The Freeze Frame/Arrow or Circle way would be my preference. Motion Tracking can be made to create interesting effects, but, in this example, had its problems. I first became aware of the Freeze Frame approach several years ago when reading the works of Disneyzell/Drew. Thanks Drew.

 *Study was done with Premiere Elements 13/13.1 Windows 7 64 bit project set with project preset
 NTSC AVCHDFull HD1080i30.

**In Freeze Frame/Arrow example, before export, all duration for the freeze frame and the arrow file were changed to from 1 to 0.5 second (00;00;00;15) using Time Stretch. Seemed to give better results. A duration of 1 second is the lowest Freeze Frame duration that can be set by the Freeze Frame dialog.

Work In Progress