Workshop

Review the questions and answers in this section to try to sharpen your Premiere video effects skills. Also, take a few moments to tackle my short quiz and the exercises.

Q&A

Q1:

I use Echo but the clip becomes so bright it washes everything out. What's up?

A1:

You've probably selected the Add or Screen option, which means that the brightness level of each echo adds itself to the original clip and its other echoes. If the Starting Intensity setting is high?near or at 1?then it takes only about two or three clips to obliterate your image. Set Starting Intensity to 1 divided by the number of echoes. If you use five echoes, then set Starting Intensity to 0.2 (1 / 5 = 0.2).

Q2:

I get that same kind of washed-out look when using Basic 3D to add a specular highlight to my clip. How do I avoid that?

A2:

Use the wireframe preview and the 3D move to keep the highlight (the green crosshair) near the edge of your clip. If it moves toward the center, the effect is like a mirror directly reflecting the sun.

Quiz

1:

How do you create an "Electric Horseman"? If you missed this enjoyable Robert Redford/Jane Fonda flick, Redford rides out on a Las Vegas stage decked out with electric lights to promote breakfast cereal.

A1:

Use Find Edges on a clip (it doesn't have to be a horse and rider?that's just been my theme this hour) to create distinct outlines. Use Color Replace to swap a bright color for the black outline. Check the Solid Colors box to make the entire outline take on the new hue.

2:

You can use the Mosaic effect to create a "transition." How do you do that?

A2:

Use the Mosaic effect to give the illusion of a transition. This is not a true transition. It's simply a straight cut edit between two adjacent clips that appears to be a transition. Apply the Mosaic effect to both clips and use keyframes to have the effect start just a second or so before the end of the first clip and operate for a second or so at the beginning of the next clip. For the first clip, set the starting number of horizontal and vertical blocks to 200 and the end to something like 10; then reverse that process for the second clip.

3:

How do you place a drop shadow on a moving and spinning graphic so that the shadow does not rotate with the graphic but rather continues to fall in a constant direction?

A3:

I prefer using Camera View combined with Drop Shadow, but you can use Transform or Basic 3D as well. First, use Camera View to give your graphic rotation and size. The maximum rotation is 360 degrees in either direction. Then use the Motion Settings dialog box to set its path. Keep the zoom at 100%. Then apply the drop shadow.

Exercises

1:

Use the Strobe Light effect with keyframes on a clip on Video 2 (above another clip) to flash white frames, black frames, inverse frames, and so on, through to the clip below. You'll need to set the Video 2 clip's transparency to Alpha Channel. To make white flashes, set Strobe to Operates on Color Only and set Strobe Operator to Add or Copy (Black equals Subtract, and Inverse equals Difference). To see through to the lower video track, set Strobe to Makes Layer Transparent.

2:

Use Camera View and motion settings to have one clip move back to one side like an opening door to reveal a second clip behind it. Then move that second clip back to the other side to reveal another clip behind it. You'll need to place the first and second clips on video tracks 3 and 2, respectively, and set their transparency to Alpha Channel. Put the bottom clip on video track 1. Use Camera View to make the spins?start at 0 longitude and move to 90 degrees for the first clip; then start at 360 and move to 270 for the second. Use motion settings to time the moves and to keep the outside edges of the clip flush with the side of the screen. Good luck. This is a bit of a project. And, yes, you could use a Swing In transition, but it doesn't look as realistic, plus you can use transitions only on clips residing on the Video 1 track.

3:

Experiment with the Lightning effect. You'll want to have the lightning emanate from and terminate at single locations. To do that, you'll need to set the start- and endpoints and use keyframes to compensate for any camera movement (or for any motion of the source or endpoint). Change the attributes of the lightning over the duration of the clip. Increase the intensity by changing values for segments, branching, and amplitude. Also, change the color of the lightning during the clip.



    Part II: Enhancing Your Video
     
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