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Learn how to build and refine your story with the redesigned editing toolset in Final Cut Pro X. In this course, author Ashley Kennedy focuses on getting you comfortable with each aspect of the editing process in Final Cut—from preparation and organization, to editing and refining, to audio and effects, to media management and exporting. Each stage of the postproduction workflow is explained thoroughly and concisely, and uses real-world examples from both narrative and documentary workflows.
NOTE: This course and its exercise files are not compatible with Final Cut Pro X v. 10.1 or later. If you are running v. 10.1 or later, please watch Final Cut Pro X 10.1.1 Essential Training instead.
Transition Effects are effects that you place in between clips, controlling how the image on the A side exits and how the image on the B side enters. Let's take a look at how to apply and adjust transitions. I'm going to go into 9.3, and I want to show you first how to add the most common type of transition, the Dissolve. All you need to do is click on the Edit point in between two clips and press Cmd+T. As you can see, a transition has been added to the space. If I click on the Transition and press Ctrl+D, you'll notice that it is one second long.
You can always change this by going up to Final Cut Pro > Preferences and then under Editing > Transitions you can either make that shorter or longer as you want. To change the duration within the sequence there are couple ways you can do that. I'm just going to zoom in, Cmd+Plus+Plus. If I want to change the duration of the transition I just grab on the edge here and drag out or drag in. Notice that when I drag out I get a red bar over here on the left-hand side, and that's simply means that I have run out of frames, and I'll drag back in.
If I want to keep a transition while I perform a ripple edit, I drag on these lines right here, and I'm performing a ripple edit as you can see on the A side clip or on the B side clip. If I want to keep a transition intact while I perform a roll edit, I just go in the middle here and then roll back and forth between the clips and the transition remains where it is. Notice that I have an orange line up here, that just means that it's rendering. It's going to do so in the background, and now it's gone. It's rendered, and I can play it in real-time.
Let's go ahead and just play our transition. (video playing) To delete a transition you just click on it and press Delete and to apply a transition to either side of a clip, you just click on the clip itself and then press Cmd+T and transitions are applied to either side. Notice that if I select the clips on either side of a transition and right-click and choose Expand Audio/Video, the transition was applied to the video and an audio cross-dissolve was applied to the audio.
So you could adjust this accordingly if you wanted to once you have expanded the components. I'm going to collapse this for now. So that's the Dissolve. Again, far and away the most common type of transition by far. Now let's head over to the Transition browser. I'm just going to click on this button right here and the Transition Browser opens up. And as you can see, the left side contains Categories and the right side contains the effects within those categories. If you want to take a look at what this is basically going to look like once you apply the transition you kind of have this image of the forest and the image of the mountains, and it sort of performs the transition as you hover your mouse from left to right.
There is definitely some interesting transitions out there so I would recommend that you not use them that often, be very judicious about it, it's a very common mistake of rookie editors to overuse them, so just be careful there. So let's go ahead and Shift+Z to fit everything in the window, and we'll apply a transition in between these two clips here. All you need to do is drag and drop, so if I wanted to bring a Lens Flare in between these two, I'll just drag and drop, and we are going to need a little bit of rendering time here but let's go ahead and play it out and see how this is looking.
(video playing) Okay. Now a lot of times you'll just leave it alone but sometimes you do have the ability to reach into the transition and change some things about it. I'll just go ahead and click on it and then open the Inspector, Cmd+4, and you can see that our Lens Flare transition for example has a few parameters that we can change. Let me go ahead and apply a Fade To Color because this is a little bit more obvious on this one. Right now this is fading to black. Let's just click on it, go in the Inspector, and we'll change something very obvious.
We'll change the color from black to white. And if I zoom in a little bit, I'll go ahead and shorten it, so now instead of fade to black we have kind of a flash to white going on. And let's go ahead and look at it. (video playing) Okay, again, you can basically either rely on the parameters that each one of these contains or in many cases you can come into the Inspector and change something about it. So one more thing, let me go ahead and press Shift+Z to fit everything in. I'm going to grab some more clips here Farm Scenery, and I'm just going to add some connected clips to this sequence, like so.
(video playing) Okay, so I'll just add these to connected clips, and I want to show you that just like many other types of editing in Final Cut Pro adding transitions does not really respond in the same way with connected clips as it does with clips in a storyline. So if I zoom in a little bit and try to apply a transition here, notice that I just physically cannot drag and drop this on.
I can convert this to a storyline, so I'll select them, right-click and Create Storyline, and just as with many other types of editing in Final Cut Pro I have now fixed my issue. I can go in and add it, and it's treated just like any clip in the primary storyline. All right, I'm going to delete some of this stuff here and clean things up. If I wanted to delete multiple transitions I just need to Command-click them and then press Delete and they all go away.
I want to address one last thing about transitions, and that is the function of shot handle. So just to remind us of what shot handle is I'm going to open up the Precision Editor by double-clicking on the transition, and we have handle or unused portion of the clip right here for the A side clip and right here for the B side clip. So when I apply a one second transition the transition is actually going to take 15 frames from this side and 15 frames from that side and meld them together, or in the case of 24 frame per second video 12 and 12.
So if you don't have the appropriate amount of shot handle to make this happen? Well let's go ahead and simulate this. I'll go ahead and perform a ripple edit so that I don't have any frames here, and I'll close my Precision Editor for now, and I'll add a transition Cmd+T, and it says, hey! There's not enough extra media beyond the clip edges to create the transition. Basically it's saying there's not enough shot handle. And then it says, do you want to overlap or ripple trim your media to perform the transition. So it does exactly what it's saying.
It's going to basically trim so that some of this media is going to disappear from the visible timeline and go into the shot handle in order to make the transition possible. So you can either cancel and deal with it on your own, or say yeah, Create Transition. And so now I have the transition and my whole sequence shortened because of this. So you just need to be aware of this if you choose the option for it to create the transition. So, as you can see, applying and adjusting transitions is an easy process, and as long as you use them judiciously, transitions can add the necessary melding of images that can help tell your story.
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