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Working in the Project Assets panel

The Project Assets panel contains all the content that you’ve input into your project, and is available only in Expert view. As with all panels, you click the Project Assets button (projectassets.jpg) to open it, and then click the button again to close it.

The Project Assets panel’s role is to help you organize and find files using different search methods. Let’s load some files into the project so you can work with them in the Project Assets panel.

Loading files in the Project Assets panel

Again, if you don’t see the Project Assets panel, click Expert at the top of the Monitor panel (expert.jpg) to enter that view.

  1. Click Add Media (addmedia.jpg) to open the Add Media panel.
  2. Click Files And Folders (files.jpg) to open the Add Media dialog box.
  3. Navigate to the Lesson04 folder. While pressing the Ctrl key (Windows) or Command key (Mac OS), select the movie clips Gator01.mp4 to Gator16.mp4, all digital pictures from Picture 1.jpg to Picture 8.jpg, and the single audio clip, narration.wav. Then click Open (Windows) or Import (Mac).

Controls in the Project Assets panel

You can use controls in the Project Assets panel to create titles, black videos, bars and tones, and color mattes. In this section, you’ll learn how to use the basic tools in the Project Assets panel to find the desired file.

You can do either of the following in the Project Assets panel to view your files:

  • Grab the handle on the extreme lower right of the panel to expand it vertically and horizontally.
  • Browse through the entire catalog by using the scroll bar at the right side of Project Assets panel.

Click to view larger image

A. Show/Hide Video

B. Show/Hide Still Image

C. Show/Hide Audio

D. Search

E. Go up one folder level

F. Clear

G. Pin view

H. Project Assets menu

Let’s work through some of the most common functions of the Project Assets panel.

  1. At the upper left of the Project Assets panel, experiment by clicking the Show/Hide Video (video.jpg), Show/Hide Still Image (image.jpg), and Show/Hide Audio (audio.jpg) buttons. For example, click the Hide Still Image and Hide Audio buttons so only video files appear in the Project Assets panel. This is a very simple technique for quickly finding the video content that you’re looking for.
  2. From the Project Assets panel menu, choose View > List View to display the content in this view. Once in List view, click and drag the bottom right corner to expand the window so all the columns are visible. You can sort your content by clicking the column head of any column. The arrow in the column you choose shows whether the data is sorted in ascending or descending order. For example, click the Name column head to see how it sorts the content, and then click the Media Duration column head. The column with the arrow showing is the column currently being used to sort the content.

  3. In the Project Assets panel menu, choose New Folder to create a folder to organize your videos. Adobe Premiere Elements creates a folder named Folder 01, with the text highlighted so it’s easy to change the name. Type in the word Video and press Enter or Return, replacing the default name Folder 01.

  4. Select all video files, and drag them into the new folder. Click the triangle next to the Video folder to close it. Now your Project Assets panel is a whole lot tidier. When you’re working with large projects with multiple video, still image, and audio files, creating folders is the best strategy for organizing your content and making it easy to find.

  5. From the Project Assets panel menu, choose New Item to view the new items that you can create from this menu. We’ll cover adjustment layers in Lesson 6 and titles in Lesson 8. Bars And Tone is a vestigial concept that is useful for analog projects but has little application for most digital video-based projects. Creating black video and color mattes is useful when you need colored or black backgrounds for titles or other movie elements. When you choose any of these items, Adobe Premiere Elements will open a format-specific dialog box for creating the content and inserting it into the Project Assets panel.

  6. Double-click Gator01.mp4 in the Videos folder of the Project Assets panel to open it in the preview window. (If necessary, click and drag the bottom-right corner of the Project Assets panel to make the preview window visible.) The preview window lets you play your content using VCR-like controls before you add it to your project. You can also trim frames from the start and end of a video before adding it to your project. Although you can also trim frames in the timeline, you may prefer to do this in the preview window.
  7. Trim a few frames from the clip: In the Preview window, drag the current-time indicator (CTI) to the right until the timecode beneath the video reads 00;00;00;22, which is 22 frames in from the start of the clip and the point at which the zoom-in starts. Note that you can also use the Left and Right Arrow keys on your keyboard for precise positioning of the current-time indicator.

  8. Click the Set In icon (setin.jpg) to set the In point, or press the letter I on your keyboard. In essence, you’ve told Adobe Premiere Elements to ignore the first 22 frames when you add the clip to the project, and to start at frame 23. Of course, the edit is nondestructive, so you haven’t actually deleted any frames from the video file on your disk. You can always undo this later and show the frames that you just trimmed.

    A. Current-time indicator

    B. In point handle

    C. Current time in movie

    D. Rewind

    E. Set In point (I)

    F. Step Back (Left Arrow key)

    G. Play/Pause toggle (spacebar)

    H. Step Forward (Right Arrow key)

    I. Set Out point (O)

    J. Fast-Forward

    K. Clip duration

    L. Out point handle

  9. In the Preview window, drag the current-time indicator to the right until the timecode beneath the video reads around 00;00;02;15, which is where the zoom-in ends. Click the Set Out icon (setout.jpg) to set the Out point, or press the letter O on your keyboard. You’ve just set the Out point, essentially trimming out all video frames to the right of that point of the video.
  10. Click and drag Gator01.mp4 in the preview window to the start of the Video 1 and Audio 1 tracks on the timeline as shown below, and release. You’ve just added the trimmed video to the timeline. Click No if Adobe Premiere Elements asks if you want to fix any quality issues in the clip or any other questions.

  11. Close the preview window, and click the Project Assets button (projectassets.jpg) to close the Project Assets panel. Make sure that the current-time indicator in the timeline is at the start of the clip, click anywhere in the timeline, and then press the spacebar to play the clip. Note that it starts and ends on the trimmed frames.
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