Learn how to work with still images in the context of project and sequence properties. Specifically, you learn about how working with image resolution in a sequence that contains video resolution. You discover how to scale up and set to frame size. You also learn how to create an opaque black background to surround an image with a transparent alpha channel.
- [Instructor] Still images are a wonderful addition to many video projects, whether they be photographs, graphics, or titles. In this movie, we're going to take a look at how to bring still images into your project and how to work with them in the context of a video environment. But before actually bringing them in, I just want to discuss a couple of still image related preferences. I'm going to come up to Premiere Pro, Preferences, and Timeline. Again, on a PC this is under the Edit menu. And I want to look at Still Image Default Duration.
By default, it's set at 150 Frames, which in a 30 frame-per-second project is five seconds, and in a 24 frame-per-second project is about six and one quarter seconds. So you can certainly change this if you want, make it shorter or longer to your liking, but I wouldn't actually worry about it too much because when you're working with stills, you can always make them longer or shorter in the timeline by just trimming them in or out. So I'm okay with that and I'm going to say OK. And then I'm just going to select my Images Bin in my 8.1 Bin, and then I'm going to click on my Media Browser.
Alright so I want to go into my Images folder within my Exercise Files. So Exercise Files, and then Media, and then Images. And I'm going to press tilde to maximize this. And right now I'm in List view, but I'm going to go over to Thumbnail view. And you can see all of the images, you can bring in certain ones if you want by command or control clicking on whatever ones you'd like to bring in. You can also view these in a filter. So if you come over to this filter here. Right now I'm looking at All Supported Files, but if I just wanted to look at my JPEGs for example, I could select those and now I'm just seeing my JPEGs.
But let's go ahead and bring them all in. So I'll select them and then right-click and choose Import. And in they come, and here they all are within my Images Bin in my 8.1 Bin, just like I wanted. Alright so I want to make sure that my Video Info column is all the way over to the left, so that I can check out my image resolutions. If you don't see Video Info, you can right-click and choose Metadata Display and then twirl down Premiere Pro Project Metadata, and Video Info is right here.
So make sure that that's checked, and then you can go find it downstream and then drag them over like so. Alright so I have Video Info, and you can see that these images range quite a bit from quite small to very large, and that's the special thing about still images. For video, even though there are many different video formats, it's still fairly standard. You have standard definition video that comes with its characteristics. You have several flavors of HD video, that come with various characteristics.
And then you have Ultra HD and beyond. But an image can be absolutely any resolution in the world. Okay, and so we need to know how to deal with that in a video environment. Now as learned, Premiere Pro gives you the option to set up your sequences by the first video clip that you drop into the timeline. So you've got to be careful if the very first clip that you edit into the timeline is an image. Can you imagine if your sequence settings were 4,828 pixels by 3,219? That's not what you want.
You want to make sure that your video is at a video resolution. So my little tip or hack is to grab any video and edit that in first, and then have that determine your sequence settings. So I'm going to press tilde to minimize and let's do exactly that. And I've actually provided us with just this interview of Jack. And I'm going to just drag and drop it right into the timeline. And so now, even if I delete this clip, I've set up my sequence settings.
If I go up to Sequence and then Sequence Settings, you can see that I'm at 23.976 and 1280 by 720, which matches my video settings. Alright, so I've set that up so I don't have to worry about any of these images defining my sequence settings. I'm going to go to my Assembly workspace to give myself a little bit more real estate in my Project panel. And we'll come down here. And I think I want to edit a few of these images in so that I can talk about them in terms of resolution.
Now we know that this sequence is at 1280 by 720 and I have several images that are at 1280 by 720. So I'm just going to bring this one in, alright. And so this is at the video resolution. Now let's bring in something very large. Okay, I'll bring in this item right here, 4828 pixels by 3219 pixels. And we'll edit that in next. And then I'll go ahead and edit something in that's actually smaller than video resolution.
This one right here. Okay, so we have several examples. Alright, this one here like I said, is 1280 by 720, so we're seeing this image pixel for pixel. If I double-click on the image, you can see that the wireframe directly surrounds the video frame. I can certainly zoom in on this a little bit. You don't want to go much beyond 20 or 30 percent or it's going to start to look pixelated. If I go over to my Effect Controls panel, I can come up to Scale and bring this up a little bit, if I want to show a different part of the image.
But again, you don't want to go too much or your definitely going to get really soft and pixelated. I'm going to return that to default for now. Now let's come over to this image, which is very large. I'm going to change this from Fit to 10%, and then I'm going to double-click on the image. And it's so big that the wireframe still goes out of frame, so let's just press tilde to maximize. So you can see that this is actually how large the image is, if this is 1280 by 720, which means that I can show any part of this image.
I can zoom out to show more of the image. I can zoom in to show different parts of the image. Alright, I have so much flexibility because of this amazing resolution. If I go back to Fit, you can see that things are still incredibly clear. I'm going to press tilde again and instead of doing a manual adjustment, I'm going to return this to default, and I'm going to choose Set to Frame Size.
Not Scale to Frame Size, which would reduce your resolution possibilities, but Set to Frame Size. And that's simply going to resize this within my video frame, but it's going to allow me all of those amazing pixels so that I can come in and zoom in and still have all of that flexibility in terms of being able to use that resolution. Okay, and I messed it up again, so we'll go ahead and return that, and make sure that we are on Set to Frame Size.
Now I'm going to come over to this image. Again, it is, let's see here, 500 by 476 pixels, so it is smaller than video resolution. If I wanted to, I could double-click and increase it, zoom in. Again, we don't want to go too much. If I go back over to my Effect Controls, you can see that I'm already at 156% and if we go too much further, we're definitely going to get too soft. Okay, so if we come in here and then press tilde to maximize.
While an image like this probably could take this type of upscale, you really do have to be careful about zooming in too much. Alright, I do want to show you that you can also Set to Frame Size on smaller images. So again, this was smaller than my video frame and by default, the way Premiere Pro handles that is it floods all of the extra area in black. But if I right-click and choose Set to Frame Size here, then it's going to scale it up and you can see that it's brought it up to 151%, and we've pillarboxed the sides in order to keep the aspect ratio.
This pillarboxing is what happens pretty much with any image in Premiere Pro. If I grab any of these other ones, I'll grab a larger one this time. And we'll edit this one in next. Okay, and here I'm going to again Set to Frame Size. And you can see that it keeps the shape, but it adds these black bars. I do want to mention though that they aren't actually black, they're transparent. Let me show you this. I'm going to bring my interview of Jack down, okay.
And let's bring this over as B-roll. Now you can see that indeed we have transparent pillarboxes. So normally, I could just come in and scale this up. I have plenty of room to do so. But if for whatever reason, I did want to show the entire image, then what I'm going to need to do is actually deal with that transparency. So I'm going to return that to default and we'll Set to Frame Size. And then I'm going to come over to my Project panel, and then come over to New Item and Color Matte.
And I'll say OK. And let's grab black. And we'll just call this Black Background. Okay, and then I'm going to bring this up and this over underneath it like so. Alright, and now we have a black background underneath this image. So again, most of the time you'd be able to scale that up, no problem. But in the case of wanting to show the entire image, that Color Matte is going to allow you to show a black background so that you don't see the video underneath.
Alright, so that's scratching the surface of using stills in a video environment. Again, it's a lot like editing with video when you come down to it, but there are certainly some things you have to keep in mind when you're combining stills and video together.
This is the first part of a two-part series. The second installment explores more intermediate techniques.
- Touring the Premiere Pro interface
- Asset organization and project management
- Basic editing
- Trimming and refining
- Basic audio editing
- Working with stills and graphics
- Basic effects
- Manipulating clip speed
- Using automatic and basic color correction tools
- Working with titles
- Sharing and exporting