Wednesday, December 31, 2014

PE13: Video Cinematic Look

INTRODUCTION

Recently the question was asked "In Premiere Elements 13, how do I create a 1920 x 1080p30 file that will present in the YouTube 16:9 player with a widescreen cinematic look (black border at top and bottom of the frame) with the minimal loss of image?"

SOLUTION

Two ways to achieve the widescreen cinematic look are presented for consideration. Both involve importing as 1920 x 1080p video into 1920 x 1080p project, creating black borders in the image in Edit area of program, and exporting as 1920 x 1080p. The "Black borders in image" in Edit area of program is done in either of the following ways
  • Crop effect applied to top and bottom of Image
  • Interpret Footage Pixel Aspect Ratio changed to HD Anamorphic 16:9 (1.333), followed by scale adjust in project where "Default Scale To Frame Size" is disabled before import of the source into the project.
 HOW TO

Crop Effect Applied to Top and Bottom of Image

STEP 1
Premiere Elements 13 project preset set by user (manual)* or program (automatically) to
NTSC
DSLR
1080p
DSLR 1080p30@ 29.97 or DSLR 1080p30

STEP 2
Edit Menu/Preferences/General with "Default Scale to Frame Size" enabled.
Import the source 1920 x 1080p30 file.

STEP 3
Drag the Crop effect into the Timeline 1920 x 1080 video clip. See fx Effects/Transform/Crop.
And, edit the applied Crop effect under Applied Effects Tab/Applied Effects Palette/Crop Panel expanded. In this example the Crop effect settings are Top 12%, Left 0%, Right 0%, and Bottom 12%.


Figure 1. Black Border At Top And Bottom Of Frame Created With Crop Effect.

STEP 4
Export to either of the following
  • Publish+Share/Social Websites/You Tube with preset of High Definition Video for YouTube - 1920 x 1080.
  • Publish+Share/Computer/AVCHD with Presets = MP4 H.264 1920 x 1080p30 for viewing with computer player or for upload to YouTube at the YouTube website. Note that the preset MP4 H.264 1920 x 1080p30 is using the Pixel Aspect Ratio = Square Pixels (1.0).
The sample video uploaded to YouTube from within the Premiere Elements 13 YouTube feature appeared at YouTube as seen in Figure 2.

Figure 2. YouTube Video's "Widescreen Cinematic Look" When Black Borders Created With Cropping In Edit.


Interpret Footage Pixel Aspect Ratio changed to HD Anamorphic 16:9 (1.333), followed by scale adjust in project where "Default Scale To Frame Size" was disabled before import of the source into the project.


STEP 1
Premiere Elements 13 project preset set by user (manual)* or program (automatically) to
NTSC
DSLR
1080p
DSLR 1080p30@ 29.97 or DSLR 1080p30

STEP 2
Edit Menu/Preferences/General with "Default Scale to Frame Size"DISABLED".
Import the source 1920 x 1080p30 file, using Expert workspace's Add Media/Files and Folders/Project Assets.

STEP 3
In Project Assets, right click the thumbnail for the file. Select Interpret Footage. In the Interpret Footage dialog, go to the Pixel Aspect Ratio section, dot the Conform To:, and set the Conform To: to HD Anamorphic 16:9 (1.333).

STEP 4
Drag the video from Project Assets to the Expert workspace Timeline. Click on that Edit area monitor. Note the bounding box that appears around the image in the monitor. It extends beyond the area of the frame. With the mouse cursor, use the bounding box handle (as soon in Figure 3a) to zoom out so that the whole image fits in the Edit area monitor space for 1920 x 1080.

Figure 3a. Creating The Top Bottom Black Borders The Interpret Footage Pixel Aspect Ratio Way - Preparing To Zoom Out.
When this is done, the result should be the video displaying in the monitor with black border at top and at bottom of frame as shown in Figure 3b.

Figure 3b. Creating The Top Bottom Black Borders The Interpret Footage Pixel Aspect Ratio Way - Zoom Out Completed.

STEP 5
Export to either of the following
  • Publish+Share/Social Websites/You Tube with High Definition Video for YouTube - 1920 x 1080.
  • Publish+Share/Computer/AVCHD with Presets = MP4 H.264 1920 x 1080p30 for viewing with computer player or for upload to YouTube at the YouTube website. Note that the preset MP4 H.264 1920 x 1080p30 is using the Pixel Aspect Ratio = Square Pixels (1.0).

The sample video uploaded to YouTube from within the Premiere Elements 13 YouTube feature appeared at YouTube as seen in Figure 4.

Figure 4. YouTube Video's "Widescreen Cinematic Look" When Black Borders Created With Interpret Footage Pixel Aspect Ratio And Scaling Changes In Edit.
COMMENTARY

The work described above was done with Premiere Elements 13 on Windows 7 Professional SP1 64 bit in a NTSC setup. However, what has been reported here should be applicable in principle to other versions of Premiere Elements on other computer operating systems and using counterpart PAL settings.

The merits of one approach versus the other are still being thought about.

______________________________________________________________________________
*
http://atr935.blogspot.com/2013/04/pe11-accuracy-of-automatic-project.html











Tuesday, December 23, 2014

PE 13: Serious Problem With .MOD Widescreen Files

INTRODUCTION

Classically a .mod widescreen 16:9 file has imported into the Premiere Elements (version earlier than 13) project as if it were .mod standard 4:3. It has been debatable whether Premiere Elements does not recognize the 16:9 flag for that type of file or whether the 16:9 flag is not there. Whatever the case and under the circumstances, the Premiere Elements user who wants to edit .mod widescreen 16:9 files in Premiere Elements has found a solution in changing the Pixel Aspect Ratio of the file in Interpret Footage. This is done by
  • Importing the file into the project set with the DV Widescreen project preset
  • Right clicking the file thumbnail in project media, selecting Interpret Footage from the pop up menu,  and going to the Pixel Aspect Ratio section of the Interpret Footage dialog and changing Conform To: to
    For NTSC set up - D1/DV Widescreen 16:9 (1.2121)
 For PAL set up - D1/DV Widescreen 16:9 (1.4587)

When this is done, the file now appears in the project to fill the Edit area monitor's DV Widescreen space established by the DV Widescreen project preset. All is well to continue.

ISSUE
In Premiere Elements 13 (current version), there appears to be serious issue with Premiere Elements 13, Interpret Footage, and .mod widescreen file. The Premiere Elements 13's Properties and Interpret Footage values for the file are not consistent with those from the same file in the earlier versions. At this point, there is no evidence to suggest that these Premiere Elements 13 readings are "right" for this type of file and every reason to believe there is a serious problem with Premiere Elements 13 Interpret Footage and Properties reads. Without further information, the integrity of Interpret Footage and Properties is to be questioned for .mod widescreen and possibly other formats.

SOLUTION

At this point, there is no solution.The intent of this blog is to point out the observations that sent up flares as to a major problem with Interpret Footage, Properties, .mod widescreen, and possibly other formats. 

Two examples of the problem are to follow using Premiere Elements 12/12.1 and Premiere Elements 13 on Windows 7 64 bit and the same two .mod widescreen files (one PAL based, one NTSC based).

RESULTS
Case 1. Same .MOD Widescreen PAL File* In Premiere Elements 12 and 13.

Premiere Elements 12
Properties
Premiere Elements 13
Properties
Premiere Elements 12
Interpret Footage
Premiere Elements 13
Interpret Footage
Case 2. Same .MOD Widescreen NTSC File In Premiere Elements 12 and 13.
Premiere Elements 12
Properties

Premiere Elements 13
Properties
Premiere Elements 12
Interpret Footage

Premiere Elements 13
Interpret Footage

COMMENTARY
A blanket statement to adjust the Interpret Footage Pixel Aspect Ratio in Premiere Elements to D1/DV Widescreen to correct for the .mod widescreen issue seems to be no longer valid in Premiere Elements 13.
Note that in the .mod widescreen PAL example, the Premiere Elements 13 Interpret Footage Pixel aspect ratio is D1/DV Widescreen prior to any adjusts and still displays incorrectly with regard to aspect ratio.

Also, the Case 1 and Case 2 results were the same whether or not the .mod widescreen file extension was renamed from .mod to .mpeg.

The differences in this regard between Premiere Elements 13 and the prior versions remains unexplainable. It is hoped that this mini study will attract the attention of Adobe who can explain this or correct in.
More information on this as it becomes available.
_______________________________________________________________________________

* MediaInfo Video Readout for .mod widescreen PAL



 **MediaInfo Video Readout for .mod widescreen NTSC 



UPDATE October 22, 2015...Possible for workaround to allow for use of .mod widescreen in Premiere Elements 13/13.1 and 14 which both have the same .mod widescreen

  • Set the project preset manually to NTSC DV Widescreen or PAL DV Widescreen
  • Go to Expert workspace Edit Menu/Preferences/General and remove the check mark next to the preference "Default Scale to Frame Size".
  • Import the .mod widescreen into the project with the project's Add Media/Files and Folders/Project Assets, and drag the .mod widescreen from Project Assets to the Timeline Video Track 1/Audio Track 1.
  • Click on the Edit area monitor to bring up the image's bounding box with handles. Click and drag on one of the image's bounding box handles to scale the image to the point where it just fits the space provided in the Edit area monitor by the project preset choice.


Saturday, December 20, 2014

PE: Face Blur Track Matte Keying

INTRODUCTION

A frequent Premiere Elements question is "How do I blur a face in my video?" One classical way to do this is using a Track Matte Keying* approach. The following is the result when this was done using Premiere Elements 12/12.1 on Windows 7 Professional SP1 64 bit, NTSC DV Standard project, and an animated 720 x 480 @ 29.97 progressive frames per second Windows Media Video 9.wmv file with a "Robot Video Intruder".


video

Demo 1. Blurring Face of the Robot Video Intruder.

HOW TO

The details to follow are specific for producing the file shown in Demo 1, but are in principle applicable to other Premiere Elements versions to achieve the Face Blur goal.

STEP 1.**

Video Track 4.  "Matte" is created as a colored circle (white or red will work) to cover the area of the Robot's face. This "Matte" can be created in Premiere Elements Titler and was in this example. In subsequent steps, this circle's position is keyframed to move with the Robot's face which is to be hidden by a blur.

Video Track 3. Original video file with "Robot Video Intruder" traveling in the frame from off screen top right to on screen top left to on screen bottom  left to on screen bottom right.

STEP 2.

Probably the most detailed part of this workflow is keyframing the Position property of the circle (the area that is going to define the transparency in the Robot's face which is going to be replaced by the blur). Next phase below is the keyframing of the circle's Position property.

At this point....
  • Video Track 4. Matte (Titler file with circle shape sized to cover the Robot's face)
  • Video Track 3. Original video.

In the original video, the Robot enters the frame from off screen, top right corner of the frame. So at the beginning of the Timeline, position the Video Track 4 circle off screen just outside the top right corner of the frame.
Tip: To make sure that the correct file is selected for these movements, right click the monitor, select Select, and then click on the file name for the Track Matte before moving the Matte.

Then

  • Select/highlight the Matte on Video Track 4.
  • Go to Applied Effects Tab/Applied Effects Palette/Motion Panel expanded, and click on the Toggle Animation button. See Figure 1.
  • Go back to the Edit area monitor. Remember, with the Matte on Video Track 4 selected. Timeline Indicator is at the beginning of the Timeline content.
  •  Move the Timeline Indicator to the right in order to start the Robot's appearance in stages. Then with the mouse cursor move the circle from off screen to on screen on top of the Robot's face. See Figure 2.
  • Move the Timeline Indicator so that the Robot goes to its next position, and then move the circle so that it covers the Robot's face in the Robot's new position.
  • Continue that circle tracking of the Robot's face until the Robot reaches its final destination at the bottom right corner of the frame.

Figure 1. Initiation Of Position Keyframing With Toggle Animation.


Figure 2. Start Of Staged Matte Tracking Of Robot's Face.

STEP 3.**

Video Track 3. Original video file to which a Track Matte effect is applied via fx Effects/Keying/Track Matte, followed by edit of the Track Matte via Applied Effects/Applied Effects Palette/Track Matte Panel expanded so that the settings are:
Matte = Video 4
Composite Using: Matte Alpha
Reverse WITH CHECK MARK NEXT TO IT.

See Figure 3.

Figure 3. Track Matte Keying To Create Area Of Transparency In Robot's Face Which Will Be Subsequently Filled With Fast Blur.
STEP 4.**

Video Track 2. Original video file to which a Fast Blur has been applied by dragging the Fast Blur effect into this clip from fx Effects/Blur & Sharpen/Fast Blur. This is just a blurred version of the original video - no Track Matte Keying applied.

See Figure 4.

Figure 4. Area Of Transparency Created By Track Matte Now Replaced By Fast Blur.



________________________________________________________________________________
* A description of the Track Matte Key can be found in the Adobe document titled Adobe Premiere Elements Help/Effects reference
http://helpx.adobe.com/premiere-elements/using/effects-reference.html

** Video tracks used in this example were 2, 3, and 4. Video tracks 1, 2, and 3 could have been used.
 
***An alternative setup of the tracks (more frequently seen) for the Face Blur is
  • Video Track 3. Track Matte with shape's position keyframed to track the face
  • Video Track 2. Original Video, with Blur effect as well as Track Matte effect applied to the video. Typically Reverse is unchecked in the Track Matte Panel expanded setup in the Applied Effects Tab/Applied Effects Palette/Track Matte Panel expanded.
  • Video Track 1. Original Video as is.
But in this specific blog's how to example, there is an unwanted blurring in that setup when the Robot Video Intruder's path is behind the Christmas wreath. If that type of situation is not involved in your work, then try the more frequently seen route mentioned in this footnote.


Work in progress on this one. But, seems OK after several proof readings.

ATR