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Old November 19th, 2009, 06:37 PM   #1
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Gorgeous, Simple Titles made easy

Any editor regardless of platform is always jones-ing for one common thing: Good looking titles.

The built-in titler tool in FCP does the job just fine for simple tasks and the Boris 3D Titler is a very powerful supplied plug-in however, the output they create both suffer from the same problem: They look really bad when motion is applied.

The reason titles created by these tools look bad when motion is applied is because they are "generated" text, when you apply motion the software has to re-generate it's size and position which creates very jagged edges and jerky motion - especially with zooms. This is why many use Photoshop to create text and output those files as PNG images with alpha, which can be moved and/or scaled without the harsh motion artifacts.

Problem is, if you're not PS savvy or not familiar with creating alpha layers - or don't own a copy of PS and don't want to pony up for it then you're limited to the built-in tools to FCP, PP, M100 etc. Wouldn't you really like to have a simple app that can generate text with alphas and not fuss over the process? Gotcha covered:

Art Text — Text art and graphic software for Mac — Overview

While not a "pro" titling app specifically for video purposes I've found this little app is extremely powerful in creating text-titles, buttons and shapes with ease and can very quickly output them as PNG's with alpha far faster than PS or any other photo-editing app.

Art Text does all the stuff you need a text titler to do: Drop shadow, glows, shades, distortions, curves... you name it, it does it.

And because you can manually create the canvas size (I don't know what the limit is) you can even create a page of text large enough for scrolling credits! You just try getting smooth-scrolling text titles in FCP or PP - or whatever - with the built-in tools especially fast-scrolls for end-credits in broadcast, I double-dog dare you. It's horrible looking and that's because it has to be "generated".

If you're a graphic designer and you've already got a workflow built around Photoshop, Illustrator or another graphically-purposed app then Art Text isn't for you. But if you're like me and the hundreds of other indie editors who didn't come from a graphics background then this IS the perfect titling tool.

Now y'all quit screwin' around and git back ta work. We've got an economy to rebuild. Or didn't you get that memo? ;-P
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Last edited by Robert Lane; November 19th, 2009 at 07:35 PM.
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Old November 20th, 2009, 06:35 AM   #2
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Nice find, Robert. This 'crappy looking title' complaint comes up often within my local FCP user group.

Of course, if delivering for 60i broadcast, care must still be taken with fonts and scroll speed (even multiples of the frame rate work best). Putting a slight vertical blur on the text helps make sure that horizontal font elements don't disappear during the display of the opposite field.

-gb-
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Old November 20th, 2009, 07:44 AM   #3
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Thanks Robert will save lots to time for a so/so PS user.
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Old November 20th, 2009, 12:34 PM   #4
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What About Live Type ?

"The reason titles created by these tools look bad when motion is applied is because they are "generated" text, when you apply motion the software has to re-generate it's size and position which creates very jagged edges and jerky motion - especially with zooms. This is why many use Photoshop to create text and output those files as PNG images with alpha, which can be moved and/or scaled without the harsh motion artifacts."

What about Live Type ? I have not used it yet, so I am wondering if it fairs any better, in particular in the 60i world.
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Old November 20th, 2009, 03:41 PM   #5
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Live Type is a completely different animal altogether; think if it as a marriage between Boris 3D Titling and Motion. This is also a "generator" of sorts but it's primary purpose is to create effects *into* the text from animations, movements, warps, transitions, filters etc.

Live Type does it's own rendering so once it's put into a timeline you're finished - unless you decide to cut it up and then it has to re-render all over again.

Live Type is also very processor intensive and slow to do it's work, and if all you need is good-looking text titles that don't require some sort of "after effects" style manipulations then Art Text is the tool you need.
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Old November 23rd, 2009, 03:23 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Cadwalader View Post
What about Live Type ? I have not used it yet, so I am wondering if it fairs any better, in particular in the 60i world.
Live Type has been dropped from FCS3 so it would be a bit of an evolutionary dead-end to start using it now.
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Old November 23rd, 2009, 07:53 AM   #7
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Live Type dropped from FCS3. Why would they do that? Have they replaced it with something else? It sounds like Apple is down grading FCS removing features.
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Old November 23rd, 2009, 09:12 AM   #8
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Livetype has been fully integrated into Motion for a long time. The LiveFonts are still there if you choose to install them. Livetype always felt like a stripped-down version of Motion anyway so it makes sense to build that stuff in Motion where you have complete 3D control.

BTW my favourite titling tool is Motype for $99. It works in FCP Motion and AE.
Yanobox Motype
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Old November 23rd, 2009, 09:22 AM   #9
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Thanks Tim,

Motype looks like a nice tool.
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Old November 23rd, 2009, 12:05 PM   #10
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Just so others don't get confused:

MoType is another title *animation* tool/plug-in and is also now available as part of the Fx Factory Pro suite of effects from Noise Industries. Completely different in scope and purpose from Art Text and the two don't compete in features or user-base.
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Old November 24th, 2009, 07:29 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tim Dashwood View Post
Livetype has been fully integrated into Motion for a long time. The LiveFonts are still there if you choose to install them. Livetype always felt like a stripped-down version of Motion anyway so it makes sense to build that stuff in Motion where you have complete 3D control.
The functionality of LiveType has been in Motion for some time but many find LiveType simpler & easier to use than Motion to achieve the same end. Motion can of course do far, far more than Livetype.
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