Core Tools of 2D Cleanup

I just watched the 'Beauty Techniques in Flame" Logik Academy video, and I thought @andymilkis did a great job of breaking down the core tools of 2D cleanup.
These get me through the vast majority of my work:

Painting a clean frame
Front Source offset
Blur (Infill / Median / Object Obliterator)
UV Warping

Are there any major cleanup techniques I missed?

What’s your go-to if the standbys don’t work?



Are we talking beauty cleanup or just cleanup in general? I do very little beauty, but endless streams of everything else. My immediate go-to is stabilize-paint-unstabilize. Substitute any of the other processes for paint at any given time depending on what works best. I have my own custom batch tools for the stabilize and unstabilize, but sometimes I do motion vectors, either alone or in conjunction with my other tools.


Frequency separation! Being able to work separately on color (low pass) and detail (high pass) and then recombine is a wonderful thing


Cleanup in general.
I mentally file stab+unstab & motion vectors under tracking techniques as opposed to cleanup tools, but they’re great to keep in mind. All hail the Repo-Master!
What other processes would you substitute for Paint?

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Good one! Maybe Frequency Separation is usually a subsection of Paint, but could also be used with an offset?

Frequency separation, object obliteration, fluid morph and all the other tools mentioned, but in general I never do anything without stabilizing it first unless it’s a lock off shot and the subject area is not moving either, so I suppose I think of that as a cleanup tool.

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Maybe the same thing as front source offset – but one thing that has become indispensable for me, is using an Action 3D shape with a projection offset. Works great for removing tracking marks off of a screen.

I recently used a combo of UV warping the underside of a laptop, then using 3D Action shapes to remove stickers.


Well, I mean, you can use frequency separation any way you want. Any trick you can use on RGB footage can be used on your high and low passes. I do procedural stuff with it all the time, not just paint by any means. The main difference being that you’re able to separate color and detail. I also give full credit to @suzannemdyer and @Mburdick for opening my eyes to the wide and wonderful world of frequency separation. They slay, and changed my life for the better.


Thanks for bringing up 3D shapes!
What’s the advantage of using a 3D shape over other methods?
In the tutorial you linked, it seems it could have been just as easy to track in a plain surface.

Yes, I recently used frequency separation (blur, subtract) to be able to stabilise a very shaky background plate. which I had to composite as background of a car greenscreen shot. I was not able to find any good tracking points, but with frequency separation and some CC I got some details in the sky, which I could use to stabilise. Magic!


Actually, maybe this was the tutorial I was looking for:

It’s similar to offsetting a front source. Drag a 3d shape into Action, draw the gmask to select the object for removal, do a planar track, add a projection on the 3d shape, then shift the projection axis to offset the selection. Works great on removing any screen markers, and helps maintain reflections built into the screen. I use it a lot when I need to keep some of the built-in light shifts on a removal.

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