How To Cheat In The Olympics (After Effects Tutorial)

Learn how to fake being an Olympic athlete in this Adobe After Effects tutorial video.

Summer Olympics 2021

We all have been waiting for this moment. Watching the whole world compete against each other to prove which country is the best. And even though these are the best of the best, I bet sometimes the thought of “Hey! I could do that.” crosses your mind.

Well we actually CAN beat Olympic gold medal winners in their discipline… With the help of some VFX of course.

keep on trying

To achieve this effect we tried multiple methods before ending up with the last one we show you guys in this video. The real struggle for this effect was to paste in another clip of the talent mid jump to be able to make the jump longer. The body needs to match perfectly, the physics needed to be right and most of all the perspective needed to change a lot because of the covered distance.

The Barstool Method

The idea for this method here was to put the talent on a barstool. We shot this with our camera locked on a tripod and made our talent act like he was in the air on his way to land. While doing this he also rotated around on the stool so that his perspective changed. However this didn’t work out as good as we hoped…

Talent acting on stool
Jordy acting flying through air and landing

You could still see that the talent was sitting, and that the left leg wasn’t really moving. This already broke the illusion it needed to give so we started looking for another way to achieve this.

The 2 Piece Technique

Our next attempt was to hang the talent in the air. First we wanted to create a small seat between the legs that didn’t obstruct the view of the swinging legs. But this was going to be too difficult to construct and not everybody that watches our videos has access to those tools. So the best option for us was the 2 Piece Technique.

This is something we already used in previous videos like our Real Life Beatsaber. Basically what you do here is shoot the upper body and lower body in 2 separate pieces. One shot hanging from a bar to swing the legs and another shot of the upper body flaying around. With some tracking and a simple mask you wont even notice its done like this.

Talent performing both VFX shots
Jordy acting using the 2 piece technique

We let our talent act while doing this trick. The only difference here is that while doing this he also had to rotate around slightly to change the perspective.

But as you can see in our video it worked out perfectly. If your first idea doesn’t work don’t be discouraged and just try other methods. Eventually you’ll finds something that works.

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