Thursday, February 19, 2015

PE: Some Instant Movie Effects Explained


The Premiere Elements' Instant Movie is a feature designed for the quick creation of a professional looking Timeline content for export of choice. It comes with different themes and built in effects, music, transitions, and more. Its Adobe fuller description can be found HERE.


When the user plays back the completed Instant Movie in the Edit area monitor, the user typically wonders "How did the Instant Movie create this or that effect seen in the Instant Movie?". The answer is not always obvious since the Instant Movie presents on the Timeline in a whole video format. But this whole video version of the Instant Movie can be broken down to view its component parts by right clicking it on the Timeline and selecting Break Apart Instant Movie.


The Break Apart Instant Movie option was taken advantage of to do just that to reveal the details of the build of the Instant Movie. And, in this way, many of the "How did they do that?" for these effects could be demystified.


Effect: Checker Board

Clip 1 goes from full frame display into a space in a Checker Board matrix as Clip 2 in the matrix space below that of Clip 1 goes from its matrix space to full frame display.

Instant Movie Theme
Slideshow/Pan and Zoom


That is just a matter of the placing of the video transition Checker Board between the two clips

Transition Tab
NewBlue 3D Transitions Elements
Checker Board

In Transition Adjustments pop up: Duration = 2 seconds and Alignment = Between Clips

Figure 1. Instant Movie Theme Pan And Zoom Broken Apart To Reveal Basis For Checker Board Effect.

Effect: Reflection

Clip appears including a partial reflection of itself.

Instant Movie
Slideshow/Pan and Zoom


At first it was thought that this effect was achieved by dragging the fx Effect/Distort/Mirror effect into the clip. But closer inspection revealed that the key to the Adobe way is the Basic 3D effect's Tilt applied to a duplicate of the original clip which the program scales to 75%.. The scaled original (with Basic 3D effect with tilt = 0) is on a Movie Overlay track and the scaled duplicate (with Basic 3D tilt = 180) is on the Movie Overlay track directly below that of the original. The Basic 3D tilt setting in the duplicate turns the duplicate up side down, and the feature drags the up side down duplicate downward so that its current top interfaces with the bottom of the original to create the refection. For accents, the original has applied to it a drop shadow and the duplicate a Gaussian Blur.

Embellishments for original and duplicate can be seen by selecting and inspecting the Applied Effects Tab/Applied Effects Palette's expanded panels for each. Of note is a background layer below the duplicate which takes its origin from black video to which has been applied fx Effects/Generate/Lens Flare.

Figure 2. Instant Movie Theme Pan And Zoom Broken Apart To Reveal Basis For Reflection Effect.

*This particular study was done using Premiere Elements 13 on Windows 7 64 bit, with project preset either NTSC AVCHD Full HD1080i30 or NTSC DSLR 1080p DSLR 1080p30@29.97.

Work In Progress