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Zoom into image while keeping the same pillarbox ratio

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Jamie Carsten
Zoom into image while keeping the same pillarbox ratio
on Aug 27, 2018 at 5:22:35 am

Hi there,

I’m new to Premiere Pro and I’m having a little difficulty with my first edit, which was supposed to be a simple slideshow!

Firstly, my photos are different aspect ratios (mostly a mix between iPhone portrait, square and landscape). I selected Scale to Frame Size, which has given me varying degrees of pillarboxing, which I’m comfortable with.

The problem is when I try to key frame zoom ins and outs, which I do using the Scale animation in Effect Controls. See middle clip in video here.





What I’d expect is the pillarboxing to stay the same. I.e. when I zoom in on the image. I don’t want the image to gradually eat into the pillarboxes. Wouldn’t standard behavior be if you zoom into or out of an image the aspect ratio and position of the image relative to the overall screen stays the same, i.e. the pillarboxing doesn’t get any more or less? Otherwise I’m going to have a video with black bars constantly increasing and decreasing.

Does anyone know how to overcome this?

Thanks a lot ☺
Jamie


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Tero Ahlfors
Re: Zoom into image while keeping the same pillarbox ratio
on Aug 27, 2018 at 6:30:27 am

Generate some black video, crop it/mask it from the middle and add it on the topmost track.


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Jamie Carsten
Re: Zoom into image while keeping the same pillarbox ratio
on Aug 27, 2018 at 8:23:11 pm

So there's no simple way to do this? ☹ I wanted to do a blurry background behind each image individually rather than the black. Would this be the same process? I'm not sure how to do any of what you've said. Would there be any tutorials that could help me?

This would surely be a common problem for people needing to zoom into photos/videos where there is letterboxing or pillarboxing? I hoped there might be a zoom effect rather than a scale effect that would allow me to zoom into the image without causing the image to grow or shrink on the screen, however I can't see anything. :(


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Todd Perchert
Re: Zoom into image while keeping the same pillarbox ratio
on Aug 27, 2018 at 8:45:19 pm

Try this... put a Basic 3D effect onto your picture, then use the Distance to Image to move in. I think it should do what you want, but yes, typically you would create a matte to cut out where you want your background to show outside of your image.
TC


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Jamie Carsten
Re: Zoom into image while keeping the same pillarbox ratio
on Aug 28, 2018 at 1:51:01 am

Thanks Todd. I tried that but unfortunately it also causes the image to increase/decrease in size, rather than zoom into the image without the image position changing. See here:





Is there a simple step-by-step to follow to perform the traditional mask approach referred to? I'm a total newbie to Premiere Pro so any simple instructions are massively appreciated! ☺ What I'm guessing is I create a new video track above the image track. Then say for each image I make a copy of the image and place it into the track above, and add a gaussian blur. From there I'm then lost as to how I crop and mask!


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Todd Perchert
Re: Zoom into image while keeping the same pillarbox ratio
on Aug 28, 2018 at 2:10:18 pm

Ha! Worked on a dslr pict I had. Scaled to desired size and used the 3d to zoom in.
Anyhow, using a matte will give you consistent results and be the best way to accomplish this. It's really quite simple. Check out some Track Matte tutorials online. There are a bazillion of them, but you'll probably just need one or two.
TC


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Dave LaRonde
Re: Zoom into image while keeping the same pillarbox ratio
on Aug 28, 2018 at 1:53:33 am

Sorry, but there isn't a no- brainer solution.

Typically when people do this sort of stuff, they select a screen aspect ratio that works with all the stills, no letterbox or pillarbox necessary, or they just get over it and play the hand they've been dealt in terms of aspect ratio.

Dave LaRonde
Promotion Producer
KGAN (CBS) & KFXA (Fox) Cedar Rapids, IA


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Jamie Carsten
Re: Zoom into image while keeping the same pillarbox ratio
on Aug 28, 2018 at 2:21:09 am

Thanks Dave.

Happy to spend the time masking each image as it's a special video for me. I've done this copying the track below, scaling to full size and adding guassian blur. I assume what I need to do is add this to the top track then add a mask somehow. Would anyone know how to do this? Thanks so much!







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Tero Ahlfors
Re: Zoom into image while keeping the same pillarbox ratio
on Aug 28, 2018 at 6:32:34 am

Duplicate your footage above your footage. Let's say that is track 2. Then generate a solid or black video and put it on track 3. Use a mask in the opacity tools to make an aspect ratio you want. Add a track matte key to the footage in track 2 and choose the matte as track 3. Now you can scale and blur and do whatever the second track and the footage on the first track will show trough in the shape of the mask you made.


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Jamie Carsten
Re: Zoom into image while keeping the same pillarbox ratio
on Aug 28, 2018 at 6:33:40 pm

Wow so I need 3 tracks just to be able to do this? I'm also not following the instructions because I'm a beginner. All the track matte tutorials are things like this (https://www.google.ca/search?q=track+matte+premiere+pro&oq=track+m&aqs=chrome.0.69i59l2j69i60l2j69i57j69i60.1427j0j7&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-80) which I don't see how it applies to me.

Tero is there any chance of a quick video tutorial of that? I can't figure that out based on reading that.


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Jamie Carsten
Re: Zoom into image while keeping the same pillarbox ratio
on Aug 28, 2018 at 7:23:59 pm

Even 1 minute on 1 clip would be good showing the process. Am I adding the mask to the black video in track 3? I'm not sure how to set it exactly to the size of my image. For example my original image position (and what I want to keep my image to when zooming in and out) is 960 x 540, thus I assume my mask on track 3 needs to be this exactly as well? When doing the mask I can see the ellipse mask, polygon mask and pen mask. Not sure if any of these tools give me the ability to set an exact pixel mask? Thanks


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Jamie Carsten
Re: Zoom into image while keeping the same pillarbox ratio
on Aug 28, 2018 at 7:43:02 pm

Now you can scale and blur and do whatever the second track and the footage on the first track will show trough in the shape of the mask you made

Doesn't the blurry, full screen background have to be the first track? I.e. behind the image I want to zoom into and out of?


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Jamie Carsten
Re: Zoom into image while keeping the same pillarbox ratio
on Aug 28, 2018 at 10:09:34 pm

Thanks for the fantastically helpful post Greg.


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Jamie Carsten
Re: Zoom into image while keeping the same pillarbox ratio
on Aug 28, 2018 at 10:12:07 pm

I have created 3 layers below. I get lost when it comes to applying a mask to the black layer though in the same dimensions as the image below. ☹







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greg janza
Re: Zoom into image while keeping the same pillarbox ratio
on Aug 28, 2018 at 10:37:37 pm
Last Edited By greg janza on Aug 28, 2018 at 10:39:32 pm

reverse your thinking.

create a black video layer and put it on layer 2
add your stills to layer 1
add a mask to the black video layer and instead of dragging it out to increase the size use the pen tool and create a box with four points which match the size you'd like your stills to fill the frame, reduce that mask feather to zero and select invert on the mask.
now customize each stills size so that each still fills the pillarboxed frame and move the anchor point of each slide to the center of the frame.
nest all of your stills
set scale keyframe at beginning and end of your nest depending on how much you want the stills to move.

Windows 10 Pro | i7-5820k CPU | 64 gigs RAM | NvidiaGeForceGTX970 | Blackmagic Decklink 4k Mini Monitor |
Adobe CC 2018 |Renders/cache: Samsung SSD 950 Pro x2 in Raid 0 | Media: Samsung SSD 960 PRO PCIe NVMe M.2 2280 | Media: OWC Thunderbay 4 x 2 Raid 0 mirrored with FreeFileSync


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Jamie Carsten
Re: Zoom into image while keeping the same pillarbox ratio
on Aug 28, 2018 at 11:27:51 pm

Thanks a lot Greg.

It's time to have a laugh at my expense. See my attempt here. Where are all the places I went wrong? 😂

I assume when you said black on layer 2 that means behind the still? So black on track 1 and still on track 2?







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greg janza
Re: Zoom into image while keeping the same pillarbox ratio
on Aug 28, 2018 at 11:43:19 pm

reverse it.
Layer 2 = video 2
Layer 1= video 1

put your black layer on video 2
apply the mask to the black layer and not your stills.
nest your stills (video1)

Windows 10 Pro | i7-5820k CPU | 64 gigs RAM | NvidiaGeForceGTX970 | Blackmagic Decklink 4k Mini Monitor |
Adobe CC 2018 |Renders/cache: Samsung SSD 950 Pro x2 in Raid 0 | Media: Samsung SSD 960 PRO PCIe NVMe M.2 2280 | Media: OWC Thunderbay 4 x 2 Raid 0 mirrored with FreeFileSync


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Jamie Carsten
Re: Zoom into image while keeping the same pillarbox ratio
on Aug 29, 2018 at 12:17:19 am

OK great. One problem is when the black layer is on video track 2, it sits above the image. Thus, I'm not sure the exact area to mask because I can't see where the image borders are. Am I being dumb?


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greg janza
Re: Zoom into image while keeping the same pillarbox ratio
on Aug 29, 2018 at 12:33:33 am

The problem is that you're thinking about the black layer as a mask for each image when in fact it's just acting as a pillarbox on top. The black bars won't move or adjust at all. Only your stills will move. In essence, you're cutting a square hole with the mask and your stills will be inside that hole.

Windows 10 Pro | i7-5820k CPU | 64 gigs RAM | NvidiaGeForceGTX970 | Blackmagic Decklink 4k Mini Monitor |
Adobe CC 2018 |Renders/cache: Samsung SSD 950 Pro x2 in Raid 0 | Media: Samsung SSD 960 PRO PCIe NVMe M.2 2280 | Media: OWC Thunderbay 4 x 2 Raid 0 mirrored with FreeFileSync


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Jamie Carsten
Re: Zoom into image while keeping the same pillarbox ratio
on Aug 29, 2018 at 5:17:42 am

Ah yes that does make sense. So with the pen tool I draw the mask (any tips on drawing straight with the pen tool? 😂). Then stretch the corners to the edge of the image like the below video? This does for the first time allow me to scale the main image without it growing or shrinking within the overall frame size. A positive step! The only thing is the pen tool isn't totally precise and doing this with 100+ images might lead to slight differences in the amount of pillarboxing. I guess a neccessary evil if there's no other way. If I want the blurry background effect do I just replace the black with a blurred copy of the image?







now customize each stills size so that each still fills the pillarboxed frame and move the anchor point of each slide to the center of the frame.

nest all of your stills


I got a little confused with these two points. Is the first point about taking that original black masked clip and putting it over all the images with the same aspect ratio? I assume this wouldn't work though if I wanted each background to be a blurred copy of the main image, similar to the love heart clip in my earlier post?

For the second point, I understand what nesting is from some YouTube vids I just watched. Is the idea of doing this just to create a cleaner workspace? Am I nesting the stills with the black masked clips?


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greg janza
Re: Zoom into image while keeping the same pillarbox ratio
on Aug 29, 2018 at 3:09:57 pm

In order to save you a lot of time, I'd recommend that you purchase a template and populate it with your stills. There's a variety of websites that offer up Premiere templates. You're looking for a stills slideshow template.

Windows 10 Pro | i7-5820k CPU | 64 gigs RAM | NvidiaGeForceGTX970 | Blackmagic Decklink 4k Mini Monitor |
Adobe CC 2018 |Renders/cache: Samsung SSD 950 Pro x2 in Raid 0 | Media: Samsung SSD 960 PRO PCIe NVMe M.2 2280 | Media: OWC Thunderbay 4 x 2 Raid 0 mirrored with FreeFileSync


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Jamie Carsten
Re: Zoom into image while keeping the same pillarbox ratio
on Aug 29, 2018 at 4:21:53 pm

Great I'll take a look! Is there a reputable site you recommend?

Thanks for your help everyone. Much appreciated and I've learned lots. :)


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