Capcut (app) doesn't remove my backgrounds properly
May 5, 2022 1:59 PM   Subscribe

I am trying to use Capcut to put an "overlay" video on top of my video and then remove the background of the overlay (to have a "green screen" effect without a green screen).

But I'm having so much trouble getting the app to remove the background completely or, in some cases, at all. How does the app define a background? Most of the time it removes the entire image. This happens with videos with many shades of different colors, and even with a drawing I did which is all black with one white shape, just to test. It read the entire picture as a "background" and removed it. Any tips?
posted by DMelanogaster to Media & Arts (3 answers total)
I've used a service called to remove backgrounds from still images. It's worked pretty well for me. I've found that if it's removing too much, it can be helpful to crop down the image a bit before I process it.

That service does not work with video. But their site features a link to this similar-looking site, Unscreen, which says it works with video. I can't vouch for this one, never having used it.

Generally, these kinds of services are using some kind of AI image processing algorithm that attempts to distinguish subject from background. How exactly they do that is anybody's guess.
posted by Artifice_Eternity at 5:04 PM on May 5, 2022

Response by poster: I got it to work after several times. Trial and error, seeing what shapes and colors it perceives as "background." It's a nifty app, I'd like to keep using it rather than go to a "service."
posted by DMelanogaster at 8:00 PM on May 5, 2022

Best answer: Try increasing the contrast and brightness. That's a big criteria in the algorithm determining what's the background. Manually, try throwing as much light as possible on the subject such as with a selfie or ring light. Perversely if you light up the area behind of you may also work because the algos are working to establish the shadows and boundaries (eta: and lighting up the back will wash out the details which will help in auto-selection). On the subject of subjects (heh), did you see a difference between the function when the subject is inanimate or a living being? They tend to be trained to put primacy on people and animals. The other thing is also plain racism - if you're darker-skinned the absolute first thing to test is if it works better once your skin is well-lit.
posted by cendawanita at 5:25 AM on May 6, 2022 [2 favorites]

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