Post Production

Smooth Glass Slideshows in Final Cut Pro X

This Week on MacBreak Studio

This week on MacBreak Studio, Steve Martin from Ripple Training showcases iDustrial Revolution’s Smooth Glass Slideshow plugin for Final Cut Pro X.

Although we here at Ripple Training create and sell our own plugins, we really like this particular product from iDustrial Revolution’s XEffects series.

It is sold and distributed through the FxFactory platform (which we use to distribute our own plugins as well). FxFactory is akin to an “app store” for plugins for NLEs; although many plugins work on multiple NLEs, XEffects are particular to Final Cut Pro X.

You can get impressive results with Smooth Glass Slideshow, but it does take a little bit of setup – thus the impetus for this review cum tutorial.

The basic idea is to add dynamic movement to still images, although the effect works on video as well. In Steve’s example, he starts with two photographs. Now, the first complication is that plugin contains title elements, transition elements, and effect elements, which means that you need to go to three different browsers in Final Cut Pro X, depending on which one you want to apply. The version in the Effects browser is for creating the movement on the clip; the transition for of course switching from one image or video clip to another, and the title for adding the glassy sliding elements and optional text on top.

Steve’s workflow is to start by scaling up the images to about 120 percent to avoid any edges appearing. He then puts each image into a compound clip. From there he applies the movement from the Effects Browser, and adjusts the speed in the Inspector.

With the movement dialed in, he moves to the Titles Browser and chooses a glassy “strip” look to apply over the duration of the first clip. The cool thing is you can continue to apply these title effects to add to the look. The default look is great but there are plenty of parameters for tweaking the appearance and animation.

After applying several title effects to each clip, Steve then creates another compound clip of everything in the timeline in order to be able to apply a transition effect between the two clips. From there you can even keep going by stacking more title effects!

Check it all out above – with a little effort you can create a very professional look in just a few minutes.


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Mark Spencer is a freelance producer, videographer, editor, trainer and writer based in the Bay Area. He produces Final Cut Pro X-related training and plugins for with his partners at Ripple Training. He is an…

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