Game Development Reference
Be sure that as you use this effect, the control points of your
effect never meet any object that has a different luminance
value than its initial spot. Remember that you can animate these
points, if you wish to avoid obstacles that might interfere with
their ability to consistently track and correct the luminance of the
layer. The results here are not perfect, but they are an impressive
improvement over the original.
The Colorama Effect
The Colorama effect is one of the most powerful and compli-
cated effects in all of After Effects. It is used to recolor layers, and is
probably the most powerful tool for this purpose that I have ever
seen. Even though this effect is so complex and powerful, it also
has some quick and easy presets to use if you don't feel like tack-
ling the steep learning curve here. Colorama was created by After
Effects genius and legend Brian Maffi tt, who also created such
novel effects as Shatter and Radio Waves, so you know it's good.
Because of the complexities involved with the Colorama effect
and the sheer number of properties here, I strongly recommend
following together with this section Colorama.aep project that
you'll fi nd in the Chapter 6 folder of the exercise fi les. We'll start
with the Colorama START comp. Apply the Colorama effect to the
Rad Rockets layer in this comp.
Many people are initially repelled by the Colorama effect
because the default settings create a garish rainbow effect. To
make matters worse, the parameters for the Colorama effect are
quite numerous and not always intuitive.
Before we make any changes to Colorama, we have to under-
stand what it does. First, Colorama converts the image to gray-
scale. Unless otherwise specifi ed, this only happens behind the
scenes. Colorama then takes those grayscale values and remaps
them to a different color scheme. In the case of Fig. 6.36 for
example, what you're seeing are not the grayscale values, but only
the result of the color remapping.
Using the controls in the Input Phase area, you can specify
which pixels are affected. In the Output Cycle controls, you
choose what the colors will be remapped to. The Output Cycle
area gives you very precise manual control using a color wheel,
or fast and easy control using a host of presets in the Use Preset
Palette drop down.
Using the controls in the Modify, Pixel Selection, and Masking
areas, you can further customize precisely which pixels are to be
altered by the Colorama effect.