Final Cut Pro: How To Use Images and Graphics in Your Sequences

Adding still images and graphics to your sequences can step up any production's quality, if they're done right. Your images and graphics need to have a high resolution and they need to be above average in their complexity, otherwise your video will look cheap. It does not matter if you shot with the Red One, your project will be brought down by cheap and boring graphics. But, great graphics and images can make a video shot on a lower quality camera look better. Here's how to do images and graphics right.

Using Great Images and Graphics

As was said before, your images and graphics need to be at a high resolution so they don't appear pixelated and cheap. Nothing can ruin how an audience views an image worse than pixelation. When it comes to a choice between two images, always use the higher resolution one, even if it's not as interesting as it's low resolution counter part.

When working with still images, your generally stuck with what you got. But, graphics are different because you can create those. Try to make your graphics as interesting as possible. For example, text is considered a graphic. Rather than use have plain text appear, add a drop shadow to it so it appears 3D and pops out of the frame. It's easy to do and makes a huge difference.

Importing the Images and Graphics to Your Project

After you've selected which graphics and images you're going to use, you need to import them into Final Cut Pro so that you can work with them. Select 'File'-> 'Import' and navigate through your hard drive to find the clips.

Adding the Images and Graphics to Your Sequence

Once your images and graphics are in Final Cut, drag them into their respective positions on the timeline so that they are added to the sequence.

Adding Motion to Your Images and Graphics

Film and video is sometimes referred to as motion pictures. It's what sets our craft apart from still photographers and painters. Even though you're adding still images to your sequence, you can still add some motion to them; in fact, this is another reason why you need a high resolution image.

Moving a Still Image

Double click the image you wish to work with on the Timeline so that you can work with it in the viewer. Then, click on the Motion Tab. The first change you will make is changing the image's size. You need it to be larger than it is for motion to occur. Next, add a keyframe to the first and last frame of the clip. With the playhead at the first keyframe, move the image in the Canvas to the position you wish for it to start at. Then, go to the last keyframe and move the image to the frame you wish to end at. When played back, the image will move.

Moving a Graphic

It would be nice to have a little motion on the graphics too. You can edit them the same way you moved your still images. It's also nice to add a quick transition at the beginning and end of the graphics to up their visual appeal.

Popular Cameras for High Quality Photos: