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DVD Studio Pro Transitions, Part 2

Using motion graphics effects in alpha transitions By Dave Nagel
In our last look at transitions in DVD Studio Pro 3, we explored what is probably the most difficult approach to custom transition creation: making an object that flies across the screen to reveal the next track. Now that you've mastered that, this new tutorial should be no problem for you. We'll essentially be cutting the process in half, eliminating the foreground object and using mattes alone to transition from one menu or track to another.

If you haven't done so already, you would probably benefit from reading the first article in this series on transitions. It covers all of the basics of creating alpha transitions and may answer some questions that this latest article raises. You'll find Part 1 here.

For this tutorial, I'll be creating an effect that will be used as a transition. In this case, the transition will be made up of a shattering glass effect, though really the possibilities are quite extensive. Here's an example of what we'll be creating.

Creating the effect
As I mentioned, the possibilities for this sort of transition are virtually limitless. You need only take one consideration into account: The effect you create must be an animation that goes from a solid white foreground to a solid black foreground. Beyond this restriction, anything in between is feasible: from dissolves to wipes to more complex effects.

To begin, you'll need to create your effect in a video editing, compositing or motion graphics package. Once again, for this exercise, I'll be using Adobe After Effects. Any program that can export to the QuickTime format will work fine. If you'd like to follow along in After Effects, you can  download my basic project file here (4 KB .zip format).

I'm going to start with two solid layers--white on top of black. My comp length will be four seconds--remembering that anything much beyond this is going to annoy the viewer--and the dimensions of the comp will be 720 x 540. (If you're working in NTSC, the vertical dimension of your QuickTime files must be 480, 486, 534 or 540. Everything else will be interpreted as PAL.)

To the white solid layer I'll then apply the Shatter filter (Effect > Simulation > Shatter), setting the shape as Glass and and tweaking around with the parameters until I get an effect I like.

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Related Keywords:apple dvd studio pro, dvdsp, alpha transitions, transitions

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