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From the book

Taking a closer look at images

Adobe Premiere Pro can import just about any image and graphic file type. You’ve already seen how it handles Photoshop CS5 layered files—giving you the option to import the layers as separate graphics within a sequence, import them as single layers, or merge the entire file into one graphic clip.

What’s left to cover is how Adobe Premiere Pro handles Adobe Illustrator files and JPEG image files. You’ll start this exercise where you left off. If you need to start fresh, just open Lesson 02-02.prproj from the Lesson 02 folder.

  1. Right-click (Windows) or Control-click (Mac OS) Illustrator_file.ai in the Project panel, and choose Properties from the context menu.

    This file type is Adobe Illustrator Artwork. Here’s how Adobe Premiere Pro deals with Adobe Illustrator files:

    • Like the Photoshop CS5 file you imported in step 4 in the previous exercise, this is a layered graphic file. However, Adobe Premiere Pro doesn’t give you the option to import Adobe Illustrator files in separate layers. It merges them.
    • It also uses a process called rasterization to convert the vector (path-based) Illustrator art into the pixel-based (raster) image format used by Adobe Premiere Pro.
    • Adobe Premiere Pro automatically anti-aliases, or smoothes the edges of, the Illustrator art.
    • Adobe Premiere Pro converts all empty areas into a transparent alpha channel so that clips below those areas on the Timeline can show through.
  2. Close the Properties dialog.
  3. To see more information in the Project panel, drag its right edge to the right as far as possible to reveal more columns.
  4. Click one of the image assets again, and then press the Tab key to move from column to column. Note that you can enter text “spreadsheet style” into fields that are editable. This is also another way to see properties of the assets.
  5. Drag the Project panel to its original size. If you have problems formatting the workspace the way it was originally, choose Window > Workspace > Reset Current Workspace.
  6. Drag the video clip Medieval_Hero_02.mpeg to the Video 1 track in the Timeline. Click Play in the Program Monitor to view the video.
  7. Drag explosion_still.jpg and Illustrator_file.ai to the Video 2 track above the video clip, as shown here.
  8. Press the = key to zoom in on the Timeline or the - key to zoom out. Press the \ key to scale the Timeline to fit all clips on one screen. Zoom the Timeline so it appears close to what is shown here.
  9. Drag the current-time indicator across the two graphic clips. Notice that the JPEG clip is too large (not all of it is visible) and that the Illustrator clip has a transparent background. JPEG files cannot have a transparent background.
  10. Place the current-time indicator over the middle of the JPEG clip so it is visible in the Program Monitor. Right-click (Windows) or Control-click (Mac OS) explosion_still.jpg in the Timeline, and choose Scale to Frame Size to turn on that feature.

    You should now see the entire image.

  11. You can also manually scale the image from its full resolution using the Motion tool in the Effect Controls panel. The benefit of this method is that it allows you to pan or zoom up to the full image resolution. Right-click the JPEG again, and turn Scale to Frame Size off. Select explosion_still.jpg by clicking it once.
  12. Expand the Motion effect in the Effect Controls panel.
  13. Expand the Scale parameter, and adjust it larger or smaller. Watch the effect it has on the image. You can manually scale the image to any size you like. In a later lesson, we’ll look at keyframing this parameter to create animation.

Image tips

Here are a few tips for importing images:

  • You can import images up to 16 megapixels in size (4096×4096).
  • If you don’t plan to zoom or pan, try to create files with a frame size at least as large as the frame size of the project. Otherwise, you have to scale up the image, and it will lose some of its sharpness. Importing overly large files uses more memory and can slow down your project.
  • If you plan to zoom or pan, create images such that the zoomed or panned area has a frame size at least as large as the frame size of the project.
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