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Rendering out a still image with Alpha Channel

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Mike Weber
Rendering out a still image with Alpha Channel
on Feb 4, 2008 at 5:29:48 am

I am working on an Intel Mac, using Graffiti Keyframer 5.1., and am having trouble with exported pict files.

I create a title (just text), and then going File >> Export... >> Current Frame. In older versions, this would create a pict file with an alpha channel keying out everything but my text. In this version, it makes a pict file with an alpha channel, but no text! To clarify, if I import the pict file into Final Cut Pro or Photoshop, all I get is a solid black frame. If I throw away the alpha channel in Photoshop, I have nothing. Is this a bug, or might I unwittingly have some setting turned on (or off)?

thanks
Mike


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Dave DiPinto
Re: Rendering out a still image with Alpha Channel
on Feb 4, 2008 at 2:52:23 pm

Hi Mike,

This was a bug that has been fixed in our Graffiti 5.2 update. It's a free update so please go to our website and download the updater.

I hope this helps.

Thanks,
Dave



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Mike Weber
Re: Rendering out a still image with Alpha Channel
on Feb 7, 2008 at 10:55:56 pm

Hello Dave

Thanks for your help. I downloaded and installed Graffiti 5.2, and indeed it made the black frame/alpha channel problem go away. But now I'm sorry to say I have a new problem.

My Graffiti file is two layers. One layer is text, and the layer below it is a still image file, which I am cropping to place behind my text. I'm cropping the top and bottom, but not the sides.

When I export the file as a still image, the still image layer loses it's cropping parameters! It reverts back to it's uncropped state. Not only does the pict file I exported wind up that way, but also the Composite window in Graffiti displays it that way. If I click the eyeball icon on the layer to hide it, and then click again to reveal the layer, it goes back to it's proper cropped look. Help! This is driving me nuts.

thanks
mike


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Dave DiPinto
Re: Rendering out a still image with Alpha Channel
on Feb 8, 2008 at 3:29:32 pm

Hi Mike,

I'm glad the update fixed your first problem.

The second issue is definitely a bug and thanks for reporting it. For now I suggest using our masking tools to crop the image.

There's a tutorial on masking in our help documentation if you're unfamiliar with how it works in Graffiti and I'm more than happy to help as well.

Cheers,
Dave



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Mike Weber
Re: Rendering out a still image with Alpha Channel
on Feb 8, 2008 at 5:31:19 pm

Hello Dave, thanks for your help. In the Crop tab I set the value back to none/0, and then went to the Mask tab and entered the parameters for top/bottom. Looked just like it did when I was cropping. However, when I exported the .pct, the exact same thing happened - masking went away. Is there a different way I should be doing the masking?

I did discover a work-around: nest my two layers in a Pre-composition before exporting. My background image retains its cropping that way. However, this wasn't 100% fool-proof. After I export the file and then import it into Final Cut and dropped it on my timeline, it looked noticeably brighter than it did when I was in Graffiti. Conversely, if I just dro the Video Generator file on the timeline, it looks more like it should.

Mike


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Dave DiPinto
Re: Rendering out a still image with Alpha Channel
on Feb 8, 2008 at 7:37:06 pm

Hi Mike,

Masking in Boris products is typically done by creating a spline shape (separate track) in the shape you want to keep and dropping that entire track into the Mask track of the track you want to crop/cutout.

There is a slight shift in brightness when using imported media in Final Cut Pro and what you get when you import through Boris while a plug-in in Final Cut Pro and we are aware of it.

Cheers,
Dave



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