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- Introducing Premiere Pro: the compositing program
- Understanding transparency and alpha channels
- Adjusting opacity
- Working with garbage mattes
- Luma keys and chroma keys
- The Ultra Keyer
- Nesting sequences
- Understanding and using blend modes
- Creating track mattes
Skill Level Intermediate
Let's take a look at using the Ultra Keyer to blend these two images together. In my foreground, I have this shot of balloons. And I am pretty happy with the shot, but I'd like to have the balloons and some of the clouds, but none of the blue in front of my background, sky sunset shot. And I want the two to blend together reasonably well. To do this, I'm going to use the Ultra Key here to get rid of the blue, and I'm also going to use a Garbage matte to just kill this cloud in the foreground.
And I think it's a bit too dominant in the image, so I'm going to select my Balloons layer, and I'm going to check on the Ultra Key effect. I've just searched for it using the Quick Search Box at the top of the Effects panel, and I'll just resize it so I can see it a little bit more clearly. I'm going to pick my Eyedropper and choose the blue. On first inspection, this seems to do a pretty good job. If I toggle the visibility of the foreground off and on. Yeah, it looks okay, but if I switch over to viewing the Alpha channel, it looks to me like I'm getting actually quite a lot of the blue still in my foreground.
So, I'll expand down my Matte generation and clean up controls. And just have a play around with these to bring out the highlights, and adjust the shadows of this image. There we go. Now, I don't mind losing some of these clouds up at the top if we switch back to the Composite view. They're actually very, very blue. And I think it would be a tough call to get the Key here to pull them out at the same time as pulling out some of the more extreme highlights, like the clouds and the balloons. Then again, I think it's okay if I just bring the pedestal up a little bit. The main thing for me is that I want the balloons and I want some of this cloud detail in the foreground.
It's going to be a pretty subtle combination. And if I now maybe, I'll look at the Contrast here. Maybe soften just a tiny a bit. They are clouds after all. And I think that's pretty good. I think that's going to work for me. I maybe bring some of the highlights in a little bit more. And now, if I'm happy with that, if I switch back to my Composite view, I think that's looking pretty good. Now, of course, I'm working with still images here. If you're working with video, it's quite possible that, particularly with sky shots, this looks like dutch tilt to me.
You can see the horizon line is over there for the background, or at least, in my eyes, it looks like it is. It may be that the lighting changes and you need two key frames, some of the adjustments you've made to keep the key clean. But all I'm going to do now is go over to my Effects panel, and I'm going to pick up a a Matte. I'm just typing in Matt to bring out with the Mattes, and I think an 8 points will do it. So I'm going to take the 8 point Garbage matte and throw it on top. And I'm just going to select the Heading in my Effect controls panel, and this will give me my control points to make the adjustment directly in the image of this Garbage matte float off the edge. It doesn't really matter at this stage.
It's absolutely fine. And if I now deselect the Garbage matte, you can see, I've got this nice composition with the balloons as the foreground element instead of if I turn it back off again. The cloud really taking over the composition. The other problem, of course, is that the other clouds aren't as vividly white. I'd end up having to layer them. I could if I wanted to create a duplicate of this layer, and then reverse the Garbage matte and use that to just target this foreground cloud, and bring it down a little bit, make it softer, make it darker.
Perhaps even color it a little bit, but for now, it's absolutely fine to just get rid of it all together. And then, I'm ready to move on with the next part of my composition. Now, in this instance, working with the Ultra Key, I'll just turn both of these effects off for a second. Was relatively easy, because I was not being especially demanding. If I really wanted to pull out this detail in the clouds, which I can show you just how much I've got by turning off the Background layer and turning the key back on, you can see how much is missing. If I really wanted to bring that out, then I would have needed to spend a lot more time working on my Ultra key controls.
Particularly working on things like the Softening and the Choke, but just try to bring out the soft, wispy details. You can see if I bring the image back in again, there is actually quite a lot of detail there that we've lost through keying. Effectively, it's because the blue of these clouds is so close to the blue, not particularly around those clouds, but over towards the right here where we really need it to key. You can see they're so similar. It's very, very difficult for the key to support both.
But nonetheless, if I put all this back on again, turn on the Background layer, I think it's a pretty nice composition.
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