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Old August 31st, 2009, 02:55 PM   #1
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Need assistance on License Plate blur effect

I'm an Avid Liquid user who just jumped into the Premiere Pro CS4 world. I'm going through the awkward conversion/learning process that comes with every jump to a new application.

Can someone give me a quick clue as to what the best effect (and/or process) is to blur a moving license plate on a car? I found an effect to blur the whole shot but was unable to identify the appropriate way to blur just a portion of the video. I've been successful in doing this in Liquid in the past.

Thanks in advance for any assistance you may provide.
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Old August 31st, 2009, 04:06 PM   #2
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You will probably want to use the "Traveling Matte" effect. Basically you can copy the track in question to a second appearance on the next higher video track, blur it as much as you need, then create on the next higher track a travelling matte in the shape of the plate. Select the matte as the source in the track matte filter box for the second track.
The matte will define what shows on the blur track and what shows through from the bottom track; the background will appear through a black area on the matte, the higher track thru a white area. You can keyframe the position of the matte as needed.

You can use the shape tools in the title creator for making the matte, or create one in Photoshop.

Many effects like this are better done in After Effects, btw. Adobe appears to me to expect that basic editing will be done in Premiere and anything "special" be handed off to AE, which has an enormous amount of effect generation and image tracking ability.

/ Battle Vaughan
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Old August 31st, 2009, 04:29 PM   #3
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Thanks....

Battle, thanks for the insight.

Liquid was a one-stop shop. I'm just beginning to dive into the multi-app suite of Adobe. The traveling mat makes sense, as does trying to do this in After Effects. I'll experiment with both and figure out which one follows my logic path the best.

I'm kind of frustrated with Adobe logic right now. It's probably a new user thing, but it seemed to be easier with Liquid. However, I like the batch processing mode of Adobe, so I'm going to force myself into the CS4 suite. Kicking and screaming, but moving forward, none the less.

At least we have choices!
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Old August 31st, 2009, 10:56 PM   #4
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Interesting how one's experiences differ, which makes this such a challenging area to study. I bought Liquid early in my transfer from stills to video and absolutely HATED it, the workflow, tiny icons and constant reliability problems led me to ****can it and take a $500 loss...not to criticize your experience, I am only observing that it is interesting that much of the debate here comes down to what works for each of us in our own experience!

I am a recently retired Final Cut professional, and I have debated its merits in these forii a number of times, Premiere being a personal choice only because I am a PC and not a Mac person...Premiere has a decent workflow, it is pretty logical to use, and in conjunction with its other Adobe partners, pretty comprehensive. I hope you will like your transition to the program, you can get a lot of help in this forum and by searching previous threads as well. Best wishes! / Battle Vaughan
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Old September 1st, 2009, 10:31 AM   #5
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Liquid to Premiere...Not a natural progression...

I evolved from Studio to Liquid...which was a complete shock to the system. I had no experience with any other NLE, so I simply forced myself into the product. I bought books and eventually learned what I needed to learn to accomplish the tasks in front of me.

I've been in Windows since 3.0 and am an old Lotus 123 guru. Relearning the program to do the same tasks has been a part of my career. This is just another one of those stepping stones that keeps us young. Rather than trying to learn to speak, I take this as just learning a new language.

Adobe has a lot to offer. I'm a little troubled with the robustness of On Location in the field (I take long shots) and am frustrated, as stated before, with the constant back and forth process of the various programs. However, that being said, I like the look and feel of all the products and am constantly encouraged by the quality of the finished product.

I'm getting to the point where I know the stupid questions I need to ask. It's time to go to Adobe school and become good at CS4.
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Old September 1st, 2009, 11:25 AM   #6
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There aren't any stupid questions; I think being able to define the question means you're most of the way to learning the program.../bv

PS: Look at lynda.com, there is a wealth of tutorials for a very reasonable monthly fee. Adobe also has, and has links to other, tutorials on their site. The Lynda tutorials are, imho, very worthwhile, bite-sized chunks but each is specific to a task one might want to learn.../bv
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Old September 1st, 2009, 12:40 PM   #7
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Thanks for the info. I got access to Lynda.com when I purchased CS4. I ended up with a free 30/60/90 day subscription and 3 "Classrooms in a Book" on Photoshop, Premiere, and After Affects. Thought I was going to leave the After Affects to another day...not any more.

Peace...
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