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Final Cut Pro Transitions and Effects

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Final Cut Pro has numerous transitions and effects. Diana Weynand explores their creation in this article.
This chapter is from the book

This chapter is from the book

Like Avid, Final Cut Pro has numerous transitions and effects. In Avid, you select these from the Effect Palette; in FCP, you select them from the Effects menu, where they are organized into Transitions and Filters subcategories. FCP refers to any effect other than a transition (a key or blur, for example) as a filter. Unlike Avid, FCP includes audio transitions and filters here, along with those for video.

FCP provides some interesting effects. In addition to the basic transitions, wipes, and keys it shares with Avid, FCP offers filters such as travel mattes to create James Bond-like comps, loads of 3D effects, two different garbage mattes, and a package of image controls and composite modes that follow the approach of Photoshop and After Effects.

In addition to the filters just mentioned, FCP has two color-corrector filters, one of which gives you real-time color correction for finishing and completing your project right in FCP. We will address these options in more depth in Chapter 14, "Multiple Graphic Interfaces for Effects."

This chapter covers the following topics:

  • Exploring FCP Effects
  • Adding dissolve transitions
  • Editing with Transitions
  • Using the Transition Editor
  • Changing and copying transitions
  • Applying clip effects
  • Editing effects
  • Creating effect templates
  • Copying and pasting attributes
  • Rendering effects
  • Applying Superimpose effects
  • Keyframing effects in the Viewer
  • Rendering on the fly

Exploring FCP Effects

In Avid, the Effect Palette holds all of the system's transition and effect options. FCP holds its effects on the Effects tab in the Browser (project) window and also on the Effects menu. There are five categories of FCP effects: video transitions, video filters, audio transitions, audio filters, and video generators (video generators are discussed in Chapter 9, "Title Tool and Generators").

Figure 1 Avid Effect Palette.

Effects Tab and Menu

An Effects tab is always present in FCP's Browser window. Whether you are working with one project open or several, all projects draw from the same palette or bin of effects, just as Avid draws from the same Effect Palette.

Figure 02 FCP Effects tab in the Browser.

FCP has a separate folder (bin) for each effect category. All but the video generators can be accessed from the Effects menu as a submenu.

Effect Categories

You can access effect categories from the Effects menu's submenus, or in the Effects tab's folders (bins). Each category has its own set of folders (bins) or submenus to choose from. Spilling the contents of the Video Transitions folder and then the Dissolve folder, for example, gives you the same listing as if you had selected Video Transitions > Dissolves from the Effects menu.

Figure 03 FCP Effects > Video Transitions > Dissolve menu.

Figure 04 FCP Effects tab: spill Video Transitions folder, spill Dissolve folder.

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