Sunday, 2 April 2017

Adobe Premier Pro, V.s. Apple's Final Cut Pro. A Workshop with Dr Juliette MacDonald, Friday 31st March 2017

Following a very useful workshop in which Dr Juliet MacDonald compared the feature rich and fully integrated Adobe software suite "Creative Cloud" and its application Adobe Premiere Pro, against the Apple version known as Final Cut (version 7). It was suggested that we should try and avoid Final Cut Pro X (v10), because it seems that the Apple software is taken around the backward step.

Whilst Adobe After Effects is a good software application for animation, transitions and vector graphic imports, there are lots of layers and keyframes to it together with excellent control of title sequences, especially where there are lots of graphics that need to be intermeshed. The product is ideal for short time length videos.

Whereas Adobe Premiere Pro is much better for longer scale movies, simply because longer length clips are handled in a much more user-friendly way.

As a short exercise to get to grips with Adobe Premiere Pro, on opening the application
select "create new project".
Select the [editing] button on top.

Content and footage can now be imported, and it will appear at the bottom left-hand side of the screen. This shows a series of JPEG files
or sequences such as movie files et cetera (.MOV) or audio visual files (.AVI).

Once sequences selected, it can be dragged onto the right-hand pane, which is the "Timeline".
Use the timeline pointer at the top of the timeline area to scrub across the timeline frame.

The top left-hand panel shows the whole clip sequence, and it can be used in order to set your "In" and "Out" frames for your selected clip. (Also as a shortcut it is possible to use [I] to set the in position, and [O] to set the out position).

By using masks to create merged effects within a sequence, this can be a very useful tool. A combination of still photographs animated and overlaid with a moving image is particularly effective.

On the right-hand side of the bottom left panel [which can be navigated to through the shortcut of [~]] provides you with a view of the "Media Browser".

An important principle of Adobe Premiere Pro is that all the source files remain completely intact. That means that all the operations are nonintrusive, and hence our nondestructive. This is vitally important when you are using footage and editing on-the-fly.

To import files into your project, use either the "import" command or alternatively the Media Browser. These are two separate and different ways to perform an operation, something that regularly occurs in many of Adobe CC applications.

Once your raw files are imported, in the file menu, it is possible to create a new sequence. Try various video capture formats and choose the right input and output format depending on the following:
A) the constraints of the video capture
B) the speed and power capabilities of your PC or workstation
C) the intended output/audience/usage of your final film video.

In essence, the Adobe Premiere Pro screen is divided into two areas. On the left-hand side is the workspace or input area, and on the right-hand side is the output area effectively. If one thinks in these terms then the use of this application can become quite second nature and intuitive.
If using the timeline on the lower right-hand portion of the screen, it is also possible to double-click section sequence, which will automatically open the clip onto the left-hand top quadrant workspace area. It is then possible to use various effects of, for example, size, scale, motion position et cetera and a multitude of other effects through the "effects" tab.

Another useful pointer and suggestion when one is using projection mapping, especially with multiple projectors there is an open student free version of the application "Isadora" that many students have found particularly valuable.

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