Tracking Anamorphic rack focus

Any workflow tips on tracking surfaces where the camera has a rack focus from near to far? Using anamorphic lenses makes the blur doubly blurry in the vertical direction. Hard to tell where my tracking features are. And Auto AdjustTrack has trouble finding them too.

I would have to see the shot in question to answer specific to the shot (you can send to (martinb [at] imagineersystems.com if you’d like me to take a look), but with large focus changes it’s good to stick with large shapes and high Min % Pixels values to try to capture the changes. It’s also useful to track from the most detail to the least detail.

Thank you! I’d love to send you a shot, but the project is NDA :confused:

No worries, that’s a common scenario for us. The best I can suggest is what i’ve mentioned then:

  1. Large shapes and high Min % Pixels values to try to capture the changes.
  2. Track from the most detail to the least detail. In your case the most in focus to the least in focus!
  3. Try using Autochannel rather than luminance. Autochannel will attempt to find the best detail in one of the RGB channels and sometimes gets better results where luminance becomes similar across the image.

These are great tips, thank you!

One issue I’ve encountered with anamorphic footage is that the lenses tend to “breathe” a lot more than spherical ones. A rack focus causes the background to look like it’s moved, when in fact it’s just changed focus. Any tips for dealing with lens breathing while tracking?