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Video Tutorials: December 2013 Archives

Learn how to convert a logo into a 3D extruded object by using a combination of Avid FX and Avid Media Composer.


If you are an owner of Avid Media Composer, this is an excellent tutorial, because it will demonstrate how to create a 3D logo out of any graphic that contains an alpha channel.


To start, edit a graphic that contains an alpha channel into an Avid Sequence.

Then navigate to the project window and click on the purple effects tab.

Look for the title-matte effect located within the Avid FX category.


Drag the title matte effect onto the clip you’ve placed on V2.

Then make sure the track indicator is turned on, and press the effect mode button.

The effect editor window will appear.

Launch Avid FX.png

Navigate to the window and choose show vector trace palette.

This will bring forward the options window.

Click on the Vector Trace tab and set the trace channel to alpha.

Then go ahead and close the options tab.


Now, click on the Preview Track button for the Video 1 logo track.

Avid FX Preview Track.png

If you do not see the Avid FX toolbar, press Command 6 to bring it forward.

Then, select the Vector Trace button from the toolbar.

 Hold down the option + shift keys and draw a lasso around your logo.

When you let go of the mouse button, a spline track will be created and the logo should now to be traced within a red line around it.

Now close the tab for the Preview Window.

Set Vector Area.png

Navigate back to the timeline window, and change the spline track from 3D line art to 3D extrusion.

This will create a 3D object from your logo.


Navigate to the controls tab window and adjust the Y spin parameter so the logo is partially on its edge.


Then, click on the extrusion tab to adjust the amount of extrusion.

 Next, click on the textures tab.

 Click the check box to activate the front texture.

 The front texture should fill itself from the original graphic that is on  V1.


For an added effect, navigate to the filters menu and choose Lights – Rays Puffy.

Change the apply mode for the rays from in-front to behind.

Then go ahead and increase the ray Length.


And finally, you won’t need the original graphic that’s on V1 anymore, you can go ahead and delete it.

Delete Track.png

When you’re done, press the Apply button in the lower right corner of the Timeline window.

This will take you back to Avid Media Composer. 

Click on the render button to render the effect.

Render Effect.png

Okay, that’s it, check it out!

For other great tips like this or to enroll in a certified Avid Media Composer training course, visit GeniusDV.com

Learn how to create the illusion of moving through walls or through a ceiling by creating a full screen moving filmstrip within Adobe Premiere.

premiere_training.pngTo start, navigate to a bin window and select some clip segments you would like to use for the filmstrip.

Hold down the shift key to select multiple segments, and then drag the clips to an empty sequence.

drag to timeline.png

Next, use the keyboard shortcut command A to select all the clips in the sequence.

Then right click on the selected clips and choose Speed / Duration

A Clip Speed / Duration box will appear.

Click on this link icon to disable speed changes.

Type in a duration of 3:00 for your clip segments.

Check the option for ripple edit, shifting trailing clips is selected.

clip duration.png

Then press the okay button.

So now, you will have a sequence with all the clips matching the same clip duration.

Deselect the clips in the timeline, and then double click on the first clip within your sequence.

Make sure the playhead indicator is at the first frame of the clip segment.

Navigate to the effect controls tab window, and twirl down the disclosure triangle for the motion parameter.

Click the stopwatch to activate animation for the position parameter.  

Set Motion Parameters.png

This will add a keyframe.

Adjust the X position until your picture is off to the right side of the visible picture area.

Then move the playhead indicator to the last frame of the clip segment.

Now adjust the X position until the picture if off to the left side of the screen.

You should now have a clip segment that moves across the screen from right to left.

Navigate back to the timeline window, and press Command C to copy the motion parameters of the first clip segment.

Then select all the other clip segments in the sequence.

Right click on them and choose Paste Attributes from the contextual menu.

A dialogue box will appear.

Make sure the Motion attribute option is checked, and then press okay.

So now, as you can see, all the clip segments move from right to left.

However, we need to close the gaps between them.

To do this, move the playhead indicator in the sequence forward exactly 1 second and 15 frames.

Move the next clip segment up a track to and snap it to the playhead indicator.

Then move all the other clip segments into place by offsetting them by 1 second and 15 frames.

offest clip segments.png

Okay, now you should have a full screen moving filmstrip.

Okay, so now to hide the seam between the clip segments, we'll place a graphic on top of it.

To do that, it's important that your graphic contains something called an alpha channel.  

If you open your graphic into Photoshop, you should see a checkerboard pattern to indicate that it has a transparent background.

Otherwise, you will need to cut out the background to create an alpha channel.

In Photoshop, you can sometimes get lucky and use a simple click with the magic eraser tool to remove the background.

Create Alpha Channel.png

Okay, once that's done, go ahead and edit your graphic onto the V3 track in the timeline.

Make sure the graphic matches the same 3 second duration of all your other clip segments.

Right click on it, and choose Paste Attributes.

Make sure the Motion attribute option is checked, and then press okay.

Next, click on the clip segment containing the graphic and adjust it to the left or right so it lines up on the seam of moving filmstrip.

You can slide the graphic to the left or right by holding down the command key and using the left or right arrows to slide the clip 1 frame at a time.

Place Graphic.png

Then you would repeat this same process for cover up the other seams.

Check it out.

For other great tips like this or to enroll in an Adobe Premiere training class, visit GeniusDV.com

This is one of the most powerful editing functions within Avid Media Composer.  If you haven't used this function before, I promise you, it will improve your editing efficiency.

Before I begin, if you find this tutorial useful, please comment or share it with others. 

replace function.png

   This replace edit function is hidden, so I recommend that you map it to a keyboard shortcut, which is explained in the video below.

play_avid_tutorial.pngNavigate to the project window and click on the settings tab.  Double click on the keyboard settings.


This will bring forward the keyboard layout window.  Because of commercially available specialized keyboards, you may want to leave main default keyboard layout in its original configuration. However, there are some blank keys that are empty.  By default, the first set of function keys will be empty. 

You can also set your own keyboard settings that are unique to a user profile. To do this, click on the user profile menu at the top of the project window, and select the appropriate user.


This is also where you can export your user profile if you need to take your keyboard settings with you to put onto another system.

Okay so now, navigate to the tools menu and choose command palette.

The command palette contains a list of Media Composer functions that can be mapped to the keyboard.

You can also hold down the shift key which will give you another keyboard area with additional empty spaces.


  • Click on the edit tab within the command palette window.
  • Look for the blue replace arrow and map it to the F2 key.
  • Then look for the add-edit function, and map it to the F3 key.

map_blue_replace_ function.png

Now click on the other tab.  Another function that I recommend you map to your keyboard is the match frame function.  

Also, if you decide you want to erase a mapped function from the keyboard, drag the blank icon and drop it onto a key.


When you're done mapping your keyboard, close the keyboard and command palette windows.

Now a quick side note, especially for Mac OS X users who have an aluminum style keyboard. 

  • Navigate to the Apple menu in the upper left and select system preferences. 
  • Click on the keyboard settings.
  • Make sure the function keys are set to standard function keys, Otherwise the function keys will not work for the keyboard shortcuts.


Now, back within Avid Media Composer,  navigate to the timeline window and turn off the sequence track indicators for A1 and A2,  and turn on V1 track.

Play through the sequence and press the F3 key to the audio beat.  The add edit marks will appear after the position indicator stops.


Once that's done, you can use the replace function to replace the empty segment areas with different clips.  The replace edit function can also be found by tearing off this tool bar from within the composer window.


But remember we mapped the replace edit function to the F2 Key.  Now, the replace edit function has a special property.   It does not require in and out points.  It will automatically fill a clip segment area within a sequence for you. It uses the position indicators within the source and timeline windows as a sync position.

So by parking in the middle of any of these segment areas, and by parking in the middle of the source window, you only need to press the F2 key to make the replace edit.


The main trick to this editing method is to make sure you have enough media to the left and right of the position indicator within the source window to fill the segment area.

So now, by repeating this process, you can quickly create a montage of clips that go with the beat of the music.

Okay, fantastic!  Now you have the basics of mapping the keyboard to improve your editing efficiency.

And don’t forget, GeniusDV also offers classroom and flat rate onsite Avid Media Composer training.

Final Cut Pro X has a multicam feature that makes it easy to assemble a show that uses multiple cameras.  This  video lesson focuses on the fundamentals of using the multicamera feature within Final Cut Pro X.  Learn how to sync your cameras automatically based on audio analysis!

fcpx_training.pngFirst, navigate to the Final Cut Pro menu and choose preferences.  Then click on the playback preferences button.

Playback Preferences.png

For smooth playback during multicam editing, you may want to reference proxy media. Optimized media requires less processing power, and may provide for a better editing experience when using the angle viewer.

Please note, The Use Proxy Media option will only work if you've already created proxy media files.  Otherwise, your media will appear offline.

If you choose to reference proxy media, make sure you switch back to the original media when you're done with your multicam edit.  If you're not familiar with the process of creating proxy media, I have a great tutorial that will work you through the steps of transcoding media within Final Cut Pro X.

The first step is to synchronize the camera angles.  To keep things simple, here are four clips, and each clip represents one camera angle. Highlight all the camera angles within the Event Browser.  Then, right click on one of them and choose new multicam clip from the contextual menu.

new multicam clip.png

Okay, you’ll see all sorts of options for organizing and labeling your camera angles.  The first step is to give your multi-clip a name.   Now for must of us, leave these first two menu options set to automatic.  

Name Multicam Clip.png

But if you’re curious, the angle assembly refers to how each angle is going to be labeled or named.  The angle clip ordering menu refers to how clips appear within the angle editor.

Again, these options aren’t that big a deal if you are learning the multicam editing interface for the first time.

The most important menu is the angle synchronization.  It tells Final Cut X how to synchronize your camera angles.

Angle Syncronization Menu.png

  • The first choice is to synchronize by timecode.  This requires that all the cameras are genlocked together with the same exact timecode. For most of us, unless you have a high end budget, this may not be a realistic option.
  • This next choice is, Content Created.  This uses the built in clock on your video camera, meaning the time of day.  Now, keep in mind this method is only accurate within one second, since there’s no way to set a fraction of a second when configuring your camera’s clock.
  • You can also synchronize everything to the start of the first clip, meaning Final Cut Pro will use the first frame in each camera angle as the sync point.
  • Or, you can add a marker at a specific point for each clip.  Final Cut Pro will use the markers to synchronize the selected clips.

Okay, a quick note about markers.  So for example, I’ll use this frame when the girl jumps high into the air.

add marker.png

A marker can be added to a clip by pressing the M key on the keyboard.  Using markers to synchronize camera angles can be bit of a guessing game if you don’t have a specific frame of reference to match up each camera.  

And, as you can see, I may get lucky here and it looks like I can find an exact reference point for all four camera angles.

four markers.png

As long as you have a good frame of reference, using markers is an excellent way to sync up all your cameras. So, these cameras should be in sync if I choose to synchronize using markers that I’ve set for each clip.  If you are certain you were able to find an exact reference point for all your camera angles, go ahead and uncheck use audio for synchronization.  Then, press they okay button to create a multicam Clip.

A multicam clip will then appear within the Event Browser. 

multicam clip.png

Double click on it to open up the Angle Editor window within the timeline. The Angle Editor gives you a visual view of how your clips are synchronized.

Marker Syncronization.png

Final Cut Pro will shift the clips so they are all in sync based on the position of the markers that you’ve set.  And as you can see, if I park the skimmer over each marker, these camera angles appear to be in sync.

And what’s cool, if you need to, you can move the individual camera angles if you discover a particular camera is out of sync.

Within the angle editor, you can also re-arrange the angle order.

The top layer refers to angle 1, and the next layer refers to angle 2, and so on.

This is important if you plan on using your keyboard to switch angles.

You can specify which angle to view while playing through the angle editor by clicking on the video monitor icon for a specific angle.

You can also choose which audio tracks to monitor by clicking on the audio monitor icon.

video-audio monitoring.png

Okay, let me back up a bit, and demonstrate another way to syncronize your camera angles.

For most of us, I recommend using the automatic settings and using the audio from each camera to synchronize your clips.  Of course, this requires that each camera has recorded audio along with the video.


When you press okay, Final Cut Pro will begin its analysis of the audio from each camera.  After it’s done, double click on the multicam clip to review the results.

This opens the angle editor. To demonstrate, I’m going to change the clip appearance view to display the audio waveforms of each clip.

audio waveforms.png

And as you can see, the waveforms for each camera look very similar, and Final Cut Pro has used that information to move the camera angles into sync.  The audio synchronization feature is by far the easiest method of synchronizing camera angles.

A quick side note, when performing multi-cam shoot, some cameras may be further away from the main sound source than others. This may result in certain cameras being out of sync by a frame or two.  That’s because of the minute difference in time for the sound to travel to each camera.

Okay, now that you’ve synchronized the camera angles, it’s time to perform a multi-cam edit.

If the angle editor is still visible navigate to the upper left corner of the timeline window and click on the left arrow to go back to your empty project.


Edit the multicam clip from the Event Browser to the primary storyline.  Next, navigate to the window menu and choose show angle viewer.

Now, depending on your screen resolution, you may want to drag on the left side of the angle viewer to increase its size. The default layout of the angle vieweris set to show four camera angles.

resize angle viewer.png

In the upper left corner of the angle viewer, you’ll see three icons.


The first icon tells Final Cut Pro to change video and audio together when changing cameras.  When you click on a camera angle using both video and audio, a yellow frame will appear around the camera angle that you click on.

Switch Audio and Video Together.png

Also, notice how the clip in the timeline shows the name of the camera angle that you’ve selected.

The next icon tells Final Cut Pro to change just the video content.  When you are changing only the video content, a blue frame will appear around the angle that that you click on.

switch video only.png

Note: For most of us switching video only is probably the most common option.  This means you will be switching the video synced to the camera that contains the master audio. Or, perhaps you have another clip that contains the master house audio.

Clicking on the last icon will change just the audio content.  If you choose to change the audio content, you’ll see a green frame around the camera angle.

Okay, for most projects, it makes sense to use one master camera for your main audio source, and then cut between different video sources.

Therefore, I’ll enable video-only switching for this demonstration.

So now, all you need to do is play through your timeline and click on the camera angle that you want to cut to.

It’s that easy!

Now, don’t worry, if you decide you want to switch to a different camera angle after you’ve performed your multicam edit, all you need to do is park over the clip you want to change, and hold down the option key.

Then click on the angle that you’d like to switch to.  

Final Cut Pro will automatically replace the content for you.  Okay, now you’ve got the basics of performing a multicam edit.

And don’t forget, GeniusDV also offers classroom or onsite Final Cut Pro X training.

Check out this short tutorial for creating a 3D drop shadow in Adobe Premiere.  In case you missed our earlier tutorial, you can now integrate After Effects within Adobe Premiere to create 3D text. 

3D_drop_shadow_premiere.pngHowever, true 3D drop shadows will increase render times.  You can use a simple trick to simulate a 3D drop shadow directly within Adobe Premiere without having to render!

*This same technique can be used if you are a user of Avid Media Composer, or Final Cut Pro .

You can watch the video tutorial, or look at the screenshots below.  *Click on the screenshots for an enlarged image.

premiere_training.pngTo start, click on the layer that contains your 3D title object and hold down the alt key.

With the alt key held down, drag the layer directly above itself to create a copy.

copy layer.png

Then double click on the bottom text layer.
Then navigate over to the source window area, and click on the Effect Controls tab.

effect controls tab.png

Now navigate over to the project window area, and click on effects tab.

Look for these three effects (Guassian Blur, Color Balance, and Basic 3D) and double click on each of them.

effects tab.png

Navigate back up to the Effect Controls window.

Adjust the Y axis within the Motion parameters to offset the 3D text so it's below itself.

motion position.png

Then within the Color Balance effect, set a value of zero for Red, Green, and Blue.

color balance.png

Next with the Gaussian blur effect, adjust the level of blur to create the illusion of a drop shadow.

guassian blur.png

And finally, adjust the tilt parameter to add the illusion of a real drop shadow.

basic 3D.png

For other great tips like this, or to enroll in an Adobe Premiere training class, visit GeniusDV.com

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This page is a archive of entries in the Video Tutorials category from December 2013.

Video Tutorials: November 2013 is the previous archive.

Video Tutorials: January 2014 is the next archive.

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