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In Avid Media Composer 5 Essential Training, author Ashley Kennedy demonstrates basic and intermediate editing techniques in Media Composer, one of the most widely used nonlinear, video editing systems. This course covers how to build sequences, mix audio, color correct footage, apply effects, and troubleshoot common post-production issues in Media Composer. Exercise files accompany the course.
As you remember from audio rubber-banding, keyframes represent places within the sequence where an audio change takes place and Media Composer automatically interpolates the change between two keyframes. We also use keyframes in visual effects and this time they represent points of visual change. In this movie, we'll take a look at how to apply keyframes to animate changes over time and some of the most common effects. The horizontal wipe that we applied before, as well as the resize, is what I'm going to start for my base effect and we're going to change the way that these look.
So by default, I have a one second wipe and instead of a one second wipe, what I'd like to do, is have it last two seconds and have the middle part of it hold on screen just briefly. So I'm going to open the Effect Editor. I'm going to take a look at my keyframes here, looks like I have a uniform adjustment from beginning to end. The first thing I'm going to do is change the duration of this. Right now I have 1 second, as you can see right here within the Transition Effect Duration box.
I just click in here and type in 2 seconds, and now the transition is two seconds long. Go ahead and play it through. Okay, we have a basic two second edge wipe. What I'd like to do is have it proceed halfway, have it hold there for just a moment and then finish the transition. I want to probably have it already half way by this point in time.
So I'm going to apply a keyframe, Add Keyframe button here, and I'm going to want this to already be half way across the screen. Here the Level is at 28, so we want to make sure that that gets up to 50, like so. I want that to last about to right there. I'll apply another keyframe and again we want it to stay from 50, from here to here.
I can go back and actually adjust this back to 50, but a really useful tool is copying and pasting keyframe parameters. If I click on this keyframe, it turns pink, which tells me that it's highlighted and I press Ctrl+C for copy. I then come to this keyframe and I press Ctrl+V or Command+V if I'm on a Mac for Paste. So now, the parameter value here of a level of 50 is also applied here.
Now let's watch the effect. It does exactly what I wanted it to. It takes two seconds to proceed through the entire effect and it holds in the middle, right at 50%. Now let's try a Segment Effect. Let's apply a resize, again in the Image category, Resize, to my Ballerina duo here and what we want to do is zoom in on their faces and then zoom back out.
Pretty basic effect here. We just open the Effect Editor. take a look at our Effect Editor palette here. I'm going to apply a keyframe to the beginning and end. Some effects don't have keyframes at the beginning and end, and I want to keep it at about 100% scaling here. By about here I'd like to zoom in right on their faces by 150% or 180%, and maybe zoom in a tiny bit more here and then zoom back out by the end.
So, let's go to this keyframe here, I'm going to activate Fixed Aspect and zoom in, and again, I can reposition using these parameters here or just right here on the image. Keep in mind that if you're working with HD, you have a lot more leeway as far as zooming in. If you're working with SD footage, you're really not going to get away with anything above 125 or 130 without it becoming pixelated.
Because I have HD media here, I think I can get away with, well 167 sounds okay. Let's actually hold on that amount from our second to the third keyframe. So again, I'm going to do a Ctrl+C, I'm going to Ctrl+V to stay zoomed in and maybe move my position over slightly, so that we get all of her in the shot and then zoom back out like so. Okay, let's take a look.
All right, exactly what we wanted. Zoom in, stay zoomed in for just a little while and then zoom back out. You can add as many keyframes as you want and adjust as many parameters as you want. That's basically how to do it. You can go from there and experiment on different effects, different parameter values, and so on. Applying keyframes to animate changes over time allows you to become even more in tune with your sequence. In a sense, it allows you to add another eye to the editing process because of the added things you can do.
Need to zoom in to a scene to emphasize a key issue? No problem. Need to temporarily desaturate the color of something? All you need are keyframes. It's a great way to begin interacting with footage in new and interesting ways.
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