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How to adjust the opacity of a mask without affecting the image underneath?

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Gareth Randall
How to adjust the opacity of a mask without affecting the image underneath?
on Jul 23, 2008 at 6:58:48 am

Whenever I try to adjust the opacity of an image mask, the opacity of the image underneath the mask is affected as well. I'm definitely selecting just the image mask layer, not the group opacity.

There's a kinda-sorta workaround in that if you go into the Inspector you can adjust the feathering of the image mask beyond the 100% you get with the slider, which helps soften it more, but it's not really an ideal solution. Makes it more difficult than it should be to create nice vignetted backgrounds.



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Stephen Smith
Re: How to adjust the opacity of a mask without affecting the image underneath?
on Jul 23, 2008 at 1:51:37 pm

I'm not sure I'm a 100% sure what your asking, but have you tried the Vignette filter? Hope this helps.

Stephen Smith
Lone Peak Producitons

Check out my DVD Money Making Graphics & Effects for Final Cut Studio 2


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Gareth Randall
Re: How to adjust the opacity of a mask without affecting the image underneath?
on Jul 24, 2008 at 7:08:02 am

Thanks Stephen. I tried it, and it's certainly nearer to what I want, but the soft edge you can get with the Vignette filter isn't as nice (or as simple) as feathering an image mask.

As to what I'm actually asking - I've got a background texture, and I want to vignette it to give it a bit more interest and depth. So I draw an oval mask, apply it to the texture and feather it. Of course, the mask is 100% black apart from the feathered edge, but that's too much for the look I'm after.

I want to drop the opacity of *just the mask* to about 75%, so I can see the texture coming through the masked area, but here's the problem: if I adjust the opacity slider of the mask, Motion adjusts the opacity of the texture as well. If I knock the mask opacity down to 75%, the texture opacity goes down to 75% too. This happens even though you specifically select the mask layer.

I guess I'm just surprised that you can't adjust the opacity of a mask separately from the image you've applied that mask to. Motion makes so many complicated things so simple, it's weird that it makes something so simple so complicated.






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Andrew Penick
Re: How to adjust the opacity of a mask without affecting the image underneath?
on Jul 25, 2008 at 4:20:31 pm

in hindsight it's obvious.

You have to remember that a mask is a full image, not just the shape you've created. When you set an image to a Mask, Motion will look at the values and determine opacity. White is opaque, black is transparent, and gray is a value of opacity somewhere in between.

When you lower the value of opacity of the blurry circle, you moving it from white to a shade of gray--making the whatever you have applied the mask to become more and more transparent.

Instead of applying a mask to your image, what you should consider doing is creating group above your background that contains the following:
1. a black solid that is larger than your canvas
2. a white circle or other shape for your vignetted area
3. a gaussian blur layer to blur everything in this group

Then set this whole group to Multiply. Presto! your custom vignette.

I change the world.


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Gareth Randall
Re: How to adjust the opacity of a mask without affecting the image underneath?
on Jul 27, 2008 at 7:34:12 pm

Andrew, you're a star. You have, indeed, changed my world :)

I only wish I really understood how the different transfer modes work. I just tend to cycle through them until I see either the result I want or a result I like.



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