Using an image over video – Photoshop – Part 1

Picture the scene, your editing a package about a serious subject, the Welsh Assembly or utility companies perhaps. You need to display text over the images to follow a statement made by the company. To relate the words with the company you also want to show the organisations logo along side the statement.

Or you might be explaining figures and want to show an up arrow where figures have increased or a down arrow for reductions. You might think that the arrow could be drawn in the Title Tool. However all my attempts at this have resulted in pathetic, thin and small arrows.

I shall explain how to create an arrow in Photoshop, add it to a sequence and then add text along side the arrow.

In Photoshop create a New Document of the size 720 x 576 (4:3) or 1050 x 576 (16:9). This will give an idea of scale that relates to the size of the Avid resolution. The background can be white or transparent.

Then from the Shapes tool choose Custom Shape Tool and select the arrow from the selection. Choose an appropriate colour, such as red for a bold statement, from the Foreground Colour palette. I am using blue for this demonstration as you might get confused in later stages.

Then draw the arrow by dragging across the canvas. Adjust the size and thickness as required. The arrow will always point to the right. The direction can be altered by choosing Transform – Rotate from the Edit menu.

The stage involves selecting the arrow and adding a mask. At this stage the Lasso tool could be used but it could be difficult or time consuming drawing round the arrow. Instead I use the Magic Wand tool but before you do the layer the arrow is on must be rasterized. To rasterize the arrow layer, select the layer in the layer palette, then go to the Layer menu and select Rasterize – Layer. You can now use the Magic Wand tool to select the arrow with one click.

Now click on the ‘Edit in Quick Mask mode’ (the right hand button below the Colour Options on the Tool palette). A pink wash or mask fills the canvas. Actually it has only masked over the background and not the arrow which remains the same colour. The selection we made earlier with the Magic Wand has made the arrow stay blue.

However the masked selection should be the arrow, not the the background. To change the masked area go to the Image menu and select Adjust – Invert. The pink mask is now over the arrow which in my example changes to a purple colour.

We are now ready to save the image. Save the image as a TIFF making sure the Alpha Channels are ON in the Save Options.

Now go to Part 2 to find out how to edit the image over a video track on a sequence.


About shazmagill

I work as a Senior Technical Demonstrator and Lecturer in digital storytelling at Cardiff School of Journalism, Cardiff University. I teach and support any tools necessary for our students to function as journalists or media practitioners. This means anything from audio recording techniques, video editing, photography and print and mobile publishing. I have recently completed MA in Arts Practice (Fine Art) at the University of South Wales exploring the subjective and objective view and community storytelling through art of the Rhondda valley.
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One Response to Using an image over video – Photoshop – Part 1

  1. Pingback: Using an image over video – Avid – Part 2 | How do I…? You can do.

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