3D-Style Effects

The following three effects add motion or a 3D look. Each has its strengths. As you work with them, you'll find times when you might choose to use motion settings or the Camera View effect instead. But it's good to experiment with all these effects.

Adding a Glint Using Basic 3D

Found in the Perspective folder, this Effect is not all that different from the Camera View effect. In fact, Camera View has more options, the most important being Zoom-in and Roll. What makes Basic 3D worth your time is its Specular Highlight option. As noted in Figure 13.12, a simulated light source can create a little moving glint on the surface of your clip as it moves around the screen.

Figure 13.12. Basic 3D's Specular Highlight gives it an extra level of realism.


The move takes place on only two axes:

Swivel? Controls horizontal rotation

Tilt? Controls vertical rotation

Go beyond 90 degrees in either direction and you see the back (mirror view) of your image.

Here's a list of the other options:

Distance to Image? Shrinks the image, giving the impression of moving off into the distance.

Specular Highlight? Comes from an imaginary spotlight behind, to the left and above the viewer. It appears only if the surface angle of the moving clip "allows" it. If you push the left side of your clip back (a positive Swivel value) and tilt the top back (a negative Tilt value), the highlight should appear.

Preview? The easiest way to preview the highlight's location is to check the Draw Preview Wireframe option. A green plus (+) sign indicates the highlight will be visible. A red plus sign shows its location but indicates it won't be visible.


First, Specular Highlight is a surprisingly processor-intensive effect. So much so that Real-time Preview will not show it. The only way to see the specular highlight is to render the clip. Second, there is no way to control the intensity of the highlight, and it can be very bright if the reflection is straight at you?that is, if the highlight is at the center of the screen. To avoid that, try to make your moves so the highlight travels around the edges of the screen. Alternatively, use keyframes to turn on the highlight only when it reaches an edge.

Giving Graphics Depth with the Drop Shadow Effect

Found in the Perspective folder, this effect works only with clips that have alpha channels (typically graphics). Premiere will give the graphic portion of the clip a drop shadow. As Figure 13.13 demonstrates, what makes this different from some drop shadow?style effects is you can extend the shadow off the edge of the clip appearing below it.

Figure 13.13. Using Drop Shadow along with a motion effect such as Camera View creates a realistic moving shadow.


The controls work much like adding a drop shadow to text. You specify the shadow's opacity, its direction (zero degrees makes the shadow fall up; 90 degrees has it falling to the right), the distance from the edges of the graphic, and how "soft" it is.


If you want to spin your graphic and apply a drop shadow, using only motion settings won't work. The shadow will follow the rotation instead of falling realistically in a constant direction. For a realistic shadow, use the Transform effect (discussed next), Basic 3D, or Camera View to create the spinning motion and then apply Drop Shadow. If you use Camera View, make sure the Fill Alpha Channel check box is unchecked.


Drop Shadow works best when it is the last (bottom) filter on the Effect Controls palette. Therefore, apply all other effects first and then use Drop Shadow.

Distorting, Twisting, and Turning Clips with Transform

This effect, from the Distort folder, lets you change a clip's size, rotate it, and skew it along any axis using any point on the screen as an anchor point. Its flexibility is amazing.

Use the Anchor Point crosshair, as illustrated in Figure 13.14, to mark the point around which the image will be scaled or skewed. The other crosshair, Position, notes the center of the image. Here's a list of options:

Scale Height? Changes the clip's relative height using a percentage scale.

Scale Width? Expands/contracts the width. If you check the Uniform Scale check box, changing one scale number?Height or Width?changes the scale for both (in my pre-beta version of Premiere the other scale slider did not move to show that uniformity, but the image did maintain its proportions).

Skew? Stretches the clip in the direction of the skew axis.

Rotation? Spins the clip.

Opacity? This is a really nice feature. If you place this clip in a video track higher than Video 1 you can apply transparency, set the Alpha Channel key type, and super impose this clip over anything below it in the timeline.

Figure 13.14. Transform applies a 2D "geometric" transformation to a clip?moving it, spinning it, and stretching or skewing it.



The Use Composition's Shutter Angle check box and the Shutter Angle slider are both nonfunctional. I don't know why Adobe chose to display these items in the Effect Controls list.

    Part II: Enhancing Your Video