"The Invasion has begun"

Pretty nice.

the fog color doesn’t match the sky or the atmosphere, it should be blue-tinted

remember to add a second light for atmospheric lighting, shadows are never pitch black as long as there’s light in the sky

are they vampires? they should cast shadows on the ground (i know this is a recurring problem in your pics but it still keeps grinding my gears)

the ground is all wasted space anyway, there’s nothing to look at down there and that’s not what she said

there’s nothing to indicate an “invasion” is taking place. i see a small road patrol. there’s one body and a crashed plane. was there a battle here? did the plane come down and was it then found by the patrol that also shot the survivor(s)? are the plane and body related at all? does the SS shit in the woods? why am i even asking these questions? because there’s so little in the picture that it feels like the body and plane wreck - clearly displayed in a piece that otherwise severely lacks any kind of detail - have some greater importance in the grand scheme of things. if it weren’t for the title i wouldn’t know anything about any invasion because there’s no sign of any invasion in the picture.

i see what you were going for however. the germans attacked country X at what looks like early dawn. whoever that plane belongs to - americans? - tried to put up a fight and got krumped in the initial clash. dead body on the road, he got killed by the germans one way or the other. ok, the basic concept is there, so we just need to add the invasion:

i would’ve picked a different angle, with the camera either behind or infront of the germans

with the camera in front and the right kind of stuff happening around the characters you can make a scene where the main attack force has landed successfully and crushed the initial resistance and is now moving inland. this however requires that you add some clear indicators that an army is actually assaulting whereever they currently are. if you don’t want to make a huge organized column of soldiers and tanks moving towards their objective you should add some more squads - of varying number of soldiers - on the same road moving in the same direction. some of them might be conversing with officers who are on site checking up on the situation, some might be looting some gear from wrecked vehicles and stuff. some might be wounded and getting field aid from a corpsman. in the distance you could put a few tanks rolling along the road - maybe the spearhead of the main force moving in - and some other things like halftracks and towed artillery pieces. in the wheatfield you should put a totalled airplane with enemy markings that clearly got its shit downed, with the plane itself being a blackened and burnt wreck and with its cargo/passengers scattered around, some of it maybe laying on the road. this would be a good sign that whoever is on the opposing side of the deal isn’t doing so well. in the background there would be planes flying in and dropping paratroopers and supplies now that the enemy air defence has been neutralized. could be some rising smoke too if the attack force wrecked shit extra hard or had extra hard shit to wreck

with the camera behind the germans facing whereever they’re going you’d have to take the opposite approach: there’s a battle ahead and these guys are going there. what’s behind the camera, where they’re coming from and why and what they did before this event, is almost completely irrelevant; the invasion feel can be added with the events presently going down. you can do this version in a few different ways. if you don’t want to show that there’s a battle raging in front of the attack force right now, you should make it clear that this is a hostile or foreign area they’re moving into. if they were, say, attacking 'MURRICA, you should have something american in the pic. an english road sign and fitting geographical elements (depending on the state) would be enough. if there was a battle in the area recently, which would be probable since it’s an advancing invasion force, you could add a smashed Jeep or Sherman on the road (or better, in the ditch between the road and the field)

it could be that the region hasn’t been properly pacified yet and the invasion force is moving towards the next big fight. in that case it’s great to give the viewer clues that there’s some heavy booming going on a few miles ahead of the main characters of the piece. or maybe even closer, who knows. anyway, the best ways to do this would be smoke plumes and anti-aircraft fire. the invaders - assuming they have air superiority - are trying to drop paratroopers in the area and the defenders are filling the sky with lead to make sure nothing gets to the ground in one piece. in an early morning pic like this tracer fire and skytracker beams would look brilliant against the dark clouds. some dogfights would be a good addition too, if the invaders are yet to achieve dominance in the local airspace. meanwhile on the ground artillery and tanks and everyone with enough explosives to do any noteworthy damage are chugging mean death at eachother at a fast pace. something goes boom and black smoke starts rising. maybe something sets a town on fire. this all can be seen from far away, and like there’s no smoke without fire, in war there’s no fire without fighting. if the fighting is REALLY heavy and the battle is close, there would be orange glow on the horizon from all the burning orphanages and hospitals (maybe not a realistic effect, but extremely dramatic). add to this all the localization tricks mentioned in the previous paragraph and the scene will feel strikingly alive

i mean i could be completely wrong about a lot of this but this is how i’d do this thing

[editline]16th June 2014[/editline]

holy shit that’s a lot of text

Holy fuck, you gave me lots of ideas.
I always wanted to do something in which you could see something burning in the horizon, as you suggested at the end of the text but I don’t know how I could achieve this effect. I’ve tried once but it wasn’t as good as expected :

also, many thanks for the ideas.

After reading Joazzz’s memoirs of editing for pros, I agree. It’s a cool peice in itself, maybe a few AA tracer fire off in the background would have been a cool touch or a fire near the glider to add another light source.

yeah you need to have the glowing stuff further away and a clear view of the treeline or whatever is on the horizon so that the glow sort of brings out the silhouettes of whatever’s in the way


here’s an example i just made, also shows what you can do with spotlights, flak and tracers

If only I knew how to make good tracers…

Anyway, I could give a try to the other effects.

just draw pale yellow streaks with a brush tool in Photoshop/GIMP with the layer blending mode set to Screen. depending on if the picture has bloom, add some glow (duplicate layer and blur). if the tracers are far away, don’t add bloom even if there’s some in the pic elsewhere. generally, the closer the tracer the more it should glow and vice versa

in some cases they also have a visible heat ripple effect to them like this (old pic)


try to find some references from games or movies (or go to YT and find real life footage) and try to imitate, that’s always a good way to do things when trying to do a certain type of effect for the first time

when making tracers, think about what kind of gun is in question and how fast it spews its payload. this affects where the tracers are in the image, for example in that little photoshop i did the AA guns fire in irregular bursts and also turn while firing so the distance between the rounds varies greatly and the further away from the weapon they are the more they scatter across the sky

This is absolutely awesome

[editline]16th June 2014[/editline]

The invasion is begin