Applying Techniques Covered So Far

Here are a couple real-world applications that incorporate some of the topics covered in the past few hours.

Task: Fixing a Slanted Scene

Even the best-planned productions can go awry. One common mistake is a tripod that wasn't quite level or the perspective in a scene looks cockeyed. Fortunately, a simple fix is available. You can use motion settings to set things right. Figure 13.15 shows how my fix looks with all the new settings applied.

Figure 13.15. Fix cockeyed clips using the Motion Settings dialog box.


Here are the steps to follow for this task:

  1. Open the Motion Settings dialog box either from within the Effect Controls palette for the clip in question or by right/Option-clicking the clip.

  2. Select Video Options, Motion.

  3. Select the start- and endpoints, in turn, and place both in the center of your frame by clicking Center for each.

  4. Pause the preview mode.

  5. Alt/Option-select a corner of the clip in the Distortion window to turn on the Rotate icon. Then turn your clip on its center.

  6. Once the clip looks like it's oriented correctly, adjust its zoom to fill the frame. Make sure you set the same zoom level for both the start- and end-points. You're done.

Task: Flying Beveled Clips over a Sepia Still Frame

A nice way to display old family photos in a video is over a soft-focus sepia group photo. Here is a relatively simple way to do it. The one caveat is that this simplified method to create a frame around your flying images also covers their edges.

Figure 13.16 shows how your Motion Settings dialog box should look by step 8. Here are the steps to follow for this task:

  1. Either create a still frame from a clip or use a scanned or videotaped photo and place it on Video 1.

  2. Apply the QuickTime video effect and select Color Tint, Sepia.

  3. Apply Fast Blur to the sepia-toned still. Use keyframes to create a "rack" focus a second into the clip. A Blurriness value of about 5 works well.


    You may notice that when you add more than one video effect to a clip, a little drop-down menu arrow appears in the upper-left corner of the expanded view of that clip in the timeline. Its sole use is to let you access the keyframe line for each effect. If you select an effect from the Effect Controls palette list, that little drop-down menu automatically goes to the selected effect.

  4. Place other clips/still frames in the video tracks above the sepia-toned clip.

  5. Here's where you'll use an effect for something other than its stated purpose. Apply Clip to each clip in the upper video tracks and set each Edge value to the same number for all clips. A value of 10 works well. This will cover the edges of your clip to create a framed look. There are other ways to do this, but this method takes minimal effort.

  6. Leaving the fill color black is easiest. If you choose another color, remember its value so you can re-create it for the rest of the clips.

  7. Apply Bevel Edges to all the clips on the upper video tracks. Make the Edge Thickness setting equal to the value you used in Clip. A light angle of about 60 and an intensity of about 40 work well for this project. Once you select these values for the first clip, they'll show up by default when you apply Bevel Edges to each subsequent clip?a real timesaver.

  8. Open the Motion Settings dialog box for each clip, starting with the lowest track and working up. Set Zoom to about 30% or so, depending on the number of clips, and make a simple path to fly on each clip. You can have them fly on from each corner to avoid clutter. Build in a small delay so they don't start flying on until after the sepia clip has blurred. Also, put a large delay on the endpoint to hold them in position for most of the clip time. As you move up the tracks, you'll see the other clips animate in the preview window so you can set paths that don't step all over the other paths.

Figure 13.16. Flying bevel-framed clips over a sepia-toned print.


That should do it. What you end up with is a series of flying-bevel framed clips moving over an out-of-focus sepia-toned print.

    Part II: Enhancing Your Video