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In the previous movie we learned how to create a title, and we took advantage of some of the presets. In this one, we are going to create a lower third from scratch. So once again, I'm going to pick a representative frame--and these are all pretty standard--to create a lower third for Brian Dash, our installer. With my playhead parked over a representative frame, once again, I am going to go back to Title, New Title, and choose Default Still. Click OK. And as you see, we have a picture of Brian, and we're ready to start creating our lower third.
Now I do want to point out something that's pretty important to take note of when creating any kind of a title or actually to realize whenever you're creating any video that could be broadcast onto a television set in someone's home, and that is these two little boxes. The outer one is called Action Safe, and the inner one is called Title Safe. On many TV sets, the viewer doesn't see anything beyond this outer ring and this is by design when people create television sets to make sure they have a nice clean image.
Now every TV is built a little bit different, so if you really want to be safe, when putting in, say, a title or logo it is recommended that you actually put it inside the inner box, which is called Title Safe. So keep that in mind when creating any kind of graphic or text. Now if you're exporting to the web, your viewer may see all the way to the edge. So be careful there that you don't have some garbage or trash or junk you don't want them to see outside of the title safe area either.
With that said, let's go ahead and create a new line of text. So the first thing I want to do is type his name, and his name is Brian Dash, and by default, the tool will choose the last typeface that you used, or the default if this is the first time you have launched the tool. But I can go over here to this dropdown menu, and I can choose any title I want. You may notice that you can choose the font family here. And as you see, it's the exact same typefaces. Just use whichever is closest to where your mouse is parked.
I'm a big fan of keeping things simple, so Arial and Helvetica are my two favorite typefaces to use. We are going to go ahead. We tried Arial Narrow. I think that's a little too thin, so I want to just go with a nice solid Arial Black, a nice solid title. And I want to position this so I am going to go back here to my Selection tool and I'll put it down here where I want it to be. And I am going to leave a little bit of space for not only his name, but for his title. As you see, this is still pretty boring, and I don't go down to the Title Styles, I want to build it from scratch so you can get a sense of the flexibility of the Title Properties part of the panel.
The first thing I usually do is I select a color, and we are going keep it simple. We are going to keep it with a solid, and I am going to pick a color that stands out, and generally White and Yellow are the two most popular colors for lower thirds. White if it's a darker background. Yellow just to make it pop. It's all personal preference, but make sure that your title actually stands out from your background. Now a trick that we'll learn later on this movie is creating a bar and put it behind the title but for now let's make sure it pops.
Because this title is vector based, you can really control exactly how it looks on the screen. We won't go super deep into topography, but I just want to point out you can control things such as Kerning, which is the space between letters, and tracking. Now you might say tracking and kerning, they seem the exactly the same. Well, tracking is the physical space between letters and kerning is for letters such as when the letter A is next to the letter V, and you have that kind of slanted line, how closely those go to together.
I want you to be aware that you can really control a lot of elements here. And if you make a mistake, simply turn it off or press Undo. But I do find that one of the most valuable things to do to any piece of text is to add a little bit of a stroke or an outline. Under Outer Strokes I am going to on a click Add, and generally the default is pretty good, but depending on how big or how small your text is you may want to modify that. I think a little more of an edge is really going to punch.
So now this really stands out no matter what color my background is. The other thing you may want to add is a shadow. Once you've added the shadow, you can control the angle and the distance, and the further back you get it--and also there is an option for spread, and really that's a softness because in real life when you have shadow, it's not always a hard edge. So the defaults are actually pretty good, but if you want to change it, it's easy as just selecting it and modifying it. Well, that looks pretty good to start, and now I want to create the second line.
Instead of reinventing everything from scratch, I am going to simply Option-drag Brian Dash to create an exact copy of what I have already created. I can go ahead and move this one up a little bit, and now I'm going to go ahead and place the lower one which is a perfect match of the typeface, the size, the color, the outline, and the drop shadow. And I could just go in and change and write what his title is, which is Lead Installer. But usually the second line is a little smaller, so I can very easily, once this is selected, go up to text and scale that down and maybe change the color a little bit just to give me a little bit of difference in my lower third so it stands out.
Now don't panic that you can't actually see this really well against the white background. We're going to create a bar that we are going to put underneath that. Once I have actually created the copy, I'll go back and select the Text tool or hit keyboard shortcut of T, and I am going to type in Lead Installer. By pressing the Escape key, I'm back to my positioning tool, and I'm good to go. Now I could treat this and make it larger or smaller as necessary, but one last thing I want to make sure I do is that I want these to line up. And I can eyeball that, but sometimes it's easier just to select them. I am going to lasso both of them, go over to the Alignment tool.
And with the click of a button, I can make sure that they are both justified left in the same place. The last thing I want to do is I want to put a little bar behind here, and these are Drawing tools, and you can kind of see exactly what the tool is by looking at the picture, and I am going to start with a rounded rectangle tool. I select it, and you'll notice that the color is the last color that I picked. But that's okay, don't panic. And I am simply going to draw a rectangle from my background and position it a little bit off screen, and you're thinking to yourself, wow, that's really ugly, and I just blocked my letters.
Well, this is the starting point. The first thing I am going to do is go ahead and change that outer stroke to either invisible or really small. I'm going to change it to Invisible. I don't want an outer stroke in my background. Drop Shadow is okay, and that's getting there. Don't want it to be Yellow. I can simply go ahead and change the color to something I like, but I don't want this to be boring, so instead of being a Solid color, I am going to choose a Gradient. And there is a variety of gradients, and I can choose--let's keep it simple--a nice linear gradient from green to green is pretty ugly to start, so let's go ahead and double-click on that square. I'm a big fan of blue.
We'll select a nice dark blue, click OK for the top part of the gradient, go over here, slide that over, and change our angle. Now one of the things that I can do once have created this angle here--now we'll give it a little bit of a slant-- I like that--is I can also modify the Color Stop Opacity. And what does that mean? It means I can actually make part of this translucent. So now I can see his name and everything is good except for the fact that his name should be on top.
A simple right-click on that element, choose Arrange, Sent to Back, and I am almost good to go. Let me go ahead and grab that and move that up a little bit. And I think that's pretty good. I think it's a good place to start. I could have obviously played with a lot of other elements to make it pop, adding a little bit of sheen and focusing his name in the middle of that sheen. But for right now, we're good to go. Let's go ahead close this out. And as you see, I now have my Title here in my Project.
I am going to go ahead and rename that lower third so I can always find it when I need it and grab it, drop it onto my timeline. There we go, a great lower third. If that punches too hard, I could play a little bit with the opacity, but I think it's perfect, and I want to be able to use that over and over again, because I like the style. To do that, I simply right-click on the original one, duplicate, and now I can actually start naming these instead of just generically lower third, I can name it, say, lower third in the person's name.
So let's say I wanted to add the name of another person in the show and their name is Michael. I'll drag it over Brian, I don't think he will mind. As you see, it still says Brian, but now I simply double-click, it opens up in the Title tool, select the first part, and I am going to type in Michael--he is going to be a Junior Installer-- press Escape, and close. And if you notice it's now been updated Michael Smith, Jr. Installer, but our original one's still Brian Dash.
So creating a lower third is actually pretty easy to do, and once you've built one that you like, you can simply duplicate it, rename it, and modify it as necessary.
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