A new effect that allows you to key out flesh tones in order to enhance the natural skin colour and disguise blemishes for the typical cosmetics "beauty" look.
UPDATE (16 Feb 2012) features improved initial key and some enhancements to the controls to give you a better result. See attached manual for details.
A proprietary keyer (developed for another template and still something of a work in progress, so apologies if you need to tweak it a bit more than you'd like) enables you to isolate the skin tones and there is a mask with onscreen controls with which you can further refine the selected area.
The key/masked area can be viewed a B&W/grayscale image in order to be able to fine tune the selection.
The key can be blurred for a smoother transition into the effect, and the 4-point mask can be corner rounded and feathered to get a precise result, especially with faces. The mask can also be keyframed to match movement in the source.
Various controls enable you to apply a gaussian blur, adjust contrast, brightness and saturation, and boost the natural skin tone. The default settings apply a very slight enhance look that you can adjust to taste. (I could have dressed these up and pretended that there was some elaborate secret sauce at work but I didn't ...)
If you think this might be useful to you, please let me know any feedback you have that could improve it for you.
I very strongly urge you to download this excellent app and use it for installing Motion Templates.
In this case, you will find that the zipped attachment has the usual folder as well as the installer for this effect which will run on double click. If you prefer you can drag the folder to the usual place, but please do think of supporting Andreas and his outstanding work. Thank you.
Yes, I grabbed MBL2 for the intro price and find it powerful, if quirky, as well as great fun to use. However, the skin selection in Cosmo seems somewhat limited, since it appears to be looking only at hue. So a red sweater will get the glamor treatment, whether you want it or not. Don't know yet if your effect does this (otherwise, maybe an idea for development), but one ought to be able to refine selection using luma plus saturation as well. Personally, I usually like to see every pore, so I don't really use Cosmo, but a music video creator I spoke with needs it. I think his frustration may also have had something to do with trying to isolate non-Caucasian skin tones among a lot of other warm colors.
I've just had a look at the trial version of Cosmo and their skin finding algorithm (used throughout MB) is as impressive as always and that's worth the price of the plug-in.
My keyer has had to be built from scratch in Motion and I'm still trying to find ways of getting it to where I want it to be, which means fighting the limitations of what Motion can deliver. However there is a lot of user control within my template in terms of adjusting the key if that's what is needed. The Cosmo skin finder works amazingly well in most cases but as you say you don't get much extra control over fine-tuning it and the matte edges can get really rough and blotchy.
Also I have been able to get much more extreme levels of correction (dealing successfully with very bad cases of acne for example) than anything you can achieve in Cosmo with the controls I have made, although you do need to understand what you're trying to achieve as I haven't made it as user-friendly as Cosmo obviously is. (Incidentally if anybody has a sample image that they would be willing to share I will make a tutorial video for this.)
I find that Cosmo creates a very implausbile look at extreme settings which even then don't actually remove the worst blemishes.
Cosmo is definitely a great product and unlike a lot of plug-ins that are suddenly flooding the market well worth the price they are charging ($99 as a standalone, although you have to get the full MB Looks 2 if you want to use it in FCPX).