Rotomation is a technique of animating a 3D element on top of the tracked motion picture footage, frame by frame to match an actor or an object in a live-action plate. It goes hand in hand with matchmove. For example, if you need to replace your actors with a CG double or a creature, we will matchmove your real actor on your plates. It is also a blend of other visual effect techniques ranging, on some level, from animation to rotoscoping—hence the hybrid name.
How does Rotomation work?
Rotomation can be a complicated procedure, and just like other VFX techniques, its successful completion can take a significant amount of time and human involvement. A rotomation procedure can vary greatly, depending on the needs of the scene. But generally, a procedure done well is based upon the assumption that the camera has been correctly matchmoved and fit into the set. One of the first tasks to do in this procedure is to establish the distance to the element you are rotomating and the camera. Other tasks following this chain procedure, which include among others, setting the initial pose, using non-linear animation techniques, analyzing the movement, and model editing.