Simulate Firelight on a Person

I am looking for a way to simulate the effect of reflected firelight on a person.

I have a green screened video of a single person. They’re going to be set against a night time background, near a camp fire. Since the video wasn’t shot near a fire, the light on my subject never changes - and that looks wrong. Is there a way to simulate the fire’s glow on them.

NOTE: I am not looking for fireballs, muzzle flashes, or ways to set my subject on fire :slight_smile: I want a way to make it look like they’re standing near a camp fire.

Any ideas?

Paste the screenshot would be nice.

Maybe you could try to play with the Old Film: Projector filter. There are parameters to control the brightness in a variable way:


Then, apply color grading to make the scene more yellow.


That might be a possibility. Is there anywhere that explains what the various parameters are for? If so, a basic web search hasn’t found it. I did some futzing with the various numbers, but am none too sure what they’re actually doing.

There is a little bit of documentation in the underlying framework that implements the effect. Maybe some help:

Otherwise, “futzing” is probably the best approach.

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Blender would help, create a fire in blender, cast the light on the video by adding images as a plane and then make it image sequence so it casts light on the whole video instead of a single frame, then you might get some firelight on the character. Now disable the fire to show in blender and then make the image sequence plane cast shadows. It might be hard if you are new to blender. After Effects could help too, it is in fact the best software to do it.

(It’s post 7)

I would just change the brightness of the person/face a bit and add more red/yellow color by color adjustment filter and use keyframes to animate the change every few sec or so. You probably won’t get it 100% realistic that way but it could work for you.

There should actually be many ways you could do it in Shotcut and it would be fun.

The first way I would attempt is raising the highlights and midtones in the Color Grading filter. I would keyframe it to go up and down to simulate the flickering.

The second way I would attempt is by adding another track above the clip and adding a color like orange or yellow by going to Open Other > Color. Then choose the track and go to the properties tab and play around with the blend properties. To replicate the flickering, I would delete parts of the color clip.

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