Final Cut Pro: How do I add photo to timeline?

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by Christopher11, Feb 21, 2018.

  1. Christopher11 macrumors regular

    Christopher11

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2007
    #1
    Hi. I have a sample of one of my songs lined up in FCP, on the timeline. I need to include the picture of the album cover. I have the photo in the upper left, but it won't let me select 'Add to Timeline', nor will it let me drop it into the timeline. It's a PNG but I tried JPG also... FCP won't seem to let me add any photos to the timeline... which is what I need to do. Can you tell me please how to create a new track and drop the photo in to the timeline? Or just how to drop the photo in and auto create a track? This is FCP version 10.2.1

    Thank you for any help!
     
  2. casperes1996 macrumors 68040

    casperes1996

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    #2
    Fcpx is trackless s and this should just work. Drop a screenshot please. Something is wrong in your setup. Should be as simple as dragging it in from the library or anywhere else.
     
  3. Christopher11 thread starter macrumors regular

    Christopher11

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    #3
    Hey Casperes, thank you sincerely for offering to help. Here is a screenshot of the FCP project. The audio down below plays fine. The photo in the upper left, I simply want that to be the image for the whole of the 30 second audio sample. I can't seem to get it on the timeline. I also tried dragging it in. I agree something isn't right. Thank you for any help.
     

    Attached Files:

  4. joema2 macrumors 68000

    joema2

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    #4
    You just select the photo in the Event Browser at upper left and press "Q" to add as a connected clip at the current playhead location. The added photo sits above the storyline, aka timeline. Or you can drag/drop it from the Event Browser to sit on top of the main storyline. You can then select the connected photo above the storyline and drag the edge to adjust whatever length you want.

    Many photos are 3:2 aspect ratio so if your project is 16:9, you may need to zoom (ie transform) the photo to fill the screen. Select the connected photo above the storyline, then at the lower-left of the viewer press the "transform" button, then resize by dragging the box or you can move the scale slider in the Inspector. If the Inspector pane at upper right isn't shown, CMD+F4 toggles it on and off.
     
  5. Christopher11 thread starter macrumors regular

    Christopher11

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    #5
    Thanks so much for responding joema2. When I select the photo and press Q, it tells me 'You are combining audio and video clips outside the primary storyline' and won't let me add it. Please advise.

    Thank you again, sincerely for any help.
     

    Attached Files:

  6. casperes1996 macrumors 68040

    casperes1996

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    #6

    As I had understood it, the OP had already tried this but for some reason it didn't work

    I recommend temporarily deleting the audio from the timeline, adding in the photo and re-adding the audio. Alternatively create a new project file
    --- Post Merged, Feb 22, 2018 ---

    Ah. Well there you have it then. Your picture there says it all. You're not working within a normal project timeline. You're working in a compound clip. You don't need to make compound clips for your audio. Just make a project, drag in the audio and photo and you're done
     
  7. Christopher11 thread starter macrumors regular

    Christopher11

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    #7

    That worked! I started a new timeline, dropped in the photo, and then the audio. You guys rock. Thanks so much.

    Yeah the picture is perfectly square, as per iTunes and similar guidelines for album covers. I think it might be sensible then to work in 4:3, to get the least amount of distortion on the image? Can you tell me please how to set the ratio in an FCP project, so I can make it 4:3?

    Thanks again so much, you guys were exceedingly helpful.
     
  8. casperes1996 macrumors 68040

    casperes1996

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    #8

    When you set up the project (now that you've already set it up, you can click to project in the Browser and in the Inspector, select "Modify Properties"), you select "Custom" and then you just write in a resolution that is 4:3, or any other aspect ratio - The resolution of the picture would make sense as a choice.

    PS. For this simple kind of work, why even use FCP and not iMovie? Or even GarageBand/Logic/whatever? Most DAWs support creation of movie files with pictures or whatnot
     
  9. Christopher11 thread starter macrumors regular

    Christopher11

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    #9
    That's a good point. I use Logic Pro X. It would be simpler. I guess I had a sense it wasn't as appropriate for exporting videos, with options for various quality video compression, etc. I used FCP before, an earlier version. This one is new to me.

    well, anyway, is the browser the upper left hand corner of FCP? For Modify Properties as you mentioned?

    Thank you again.
     
  10. casperes1996 macrumors 68040

    casperes1996

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    #10
    As far as I know, Apple uses the same video export function for both Logic and Final Cut. If you really want a tool for your final exports, you're going to want Compressor.

    A lot has changed between <=7 and X. As I mentioned in my original reply, FCP is now trackless and we're working with a magnetic timeline. I personally love this way of editing, but it's very different to the traditional method

    The Browser is the upper left. The inspector is all the way to the right. Select the project in the browser, then look to the inspector for modify properties. I think that's what it's called anyway. May be "Modify Settings" or something, but should be easy to spot. If not let me know and I'll check for sure.
     
  11. Christopher11 thread starter macrumors regular

    Christopher11

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    #11
    e? Or even GarageBand/Logic/whatever? Most DAWs support creation of movie files with pictures or whatnot[/QUOTE]

    You are extremely helpful, and I truly appreciate it my friend. Thank you. Um, I think i first need to actually save this as its own project. I read this online: '
    1. Control-click the Final Cut Pro project asset, then choose Export from the shortcut menu.
    2. In the Export Final Cut Pro window, choose a location to save the exported Final Cut Pro project file and its media to by clicking the Choose button and identifying a location in the file browser.
    '

    But when i click on Music, or 2-21-18, or Smart Collections in the browser, I don't have Export as a menu choice. please advise if you can. I attached a screenshot. Thank you again brother. You rock.
     

    Attached Files:

  12. casperes1996 macrumors 68040

    casperes1996

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    #12
    You are extremely helpful, and I truly appreciate it my friend. Thank you. Um, I think i first need to actually save this as its own project. I read this online: '
    1. Control-click the Final Cut Pro project asset, then choose Export from the shortcut menu.
    2. In the Export Final Cut Pro window, choose a location to save the exported Final Cut Pro project file and its media to by clicking the Choose button and identifying a location in the file browser.
    '

    But when i click on Music, or 2-21-18, or Smart Collections in the browser, I don't have Export as a menu choice. please advise if you can. I attached a screenshot. Thank you again brother. You rock.[/QUOTE]


    I'm not sure what you're trying to accomplish?
     
  13. Christopher11 thread starter macrumors regular

    Christopher11

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    #13
    I want to save this as a project file, unique to this song.
     
  14. casperes1996 macrumors 68040

    casperes1996

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    #14

    It already is a project file. You can't have a timeline without a project.

    OK, we need to start from scratch with how FCP does file handling.

    FCP X has three basic types of "files"

    1) Libraries. These are what you will find in the Finder, and they are collections of the following types as well as (optionally) all relevant source media.
    2) Events. These are for organising media and project files in subcategories.
    3) Projects. Placed inside Events (inside Libraries), projects hold your timelines.

    In the photo you posted above, you've searched for "Modify Properties" inside your event, and since you have no media or project with that name, nothing shows up. Delete the search query, pick your project in the browser, and in the inspector in the right hand side, pick Modify Properties. If you're still confused after reading this, I will post a video or photo tutorial depending on what you'd prefer :)
     
  15. Christopher11 thread starter macrumors regular

    Christopher11

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    #15
    Hey brother, your advice worked awesome. Thank you so much for sharing your expertise. What I did was, created a new project, and now everything you've suggested is clear. However, when I go to Modify Settings it shows me various video properties... I understand I can enter Custom anything... but not sure what the option is for 4:3? I may be mistaken, but it seemed to me 16:9 would stretch a square image a bit much, and 4:3 less so? You're the expert. Anyway, I included a screenshot. Thank you again.
     

    Attached Files:

  16. casperes1996 macrumors 68040

    casperes1996

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    #16

    Unlike some other NLEs (Non-linear editors - video editors), FCP X does not automatically stretch or fill your image. This means that if your project is 16:9 and your photo is 4:3, Final Cut will keep your photo 4:3 inside the project, but just add blackness around it. This only really becomes a problem to you if you composite multiple layers of photos/videos on top of each other. It also increases file size since the blackness around the image has to be part of the final output if your project file doesn't match the photo.

    To determine whether it's 16:9, 4:3 or any other aspect ratio, look at the resolution. Your image above currently has the resolution at 1920x1080. Now we do maths! 1920/1080=1.7777¯. 1.777¯*9=16. Therefore, 1920x1080=16:9. To get a 4:3 aspect ratio, you simply input a resolution that is 4:3.

    You don't need to get our your calculator though. Just enter the resolution of your album artwork and it'll fit perfectly.

    PS. For the future you don't need to make a new project if you enter something wrong.
     
  17. Christopher11 thread starter macrumors regular

    Christopher11

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    #17
    Once again, you are incredibly helpful my friend. Thank you! You're right; it seems to retain the square aspect. I will experiment with size though, entering in the 1500 x1500 that is the pixel size of my image.

    Tell me please, how do I export to a place I can find it? I'm having an issue with the file path when I choose 'Share'. I created a new one ' Email' and could see it in an email draft... but I would like to just save to and find it on my Hard Drive. I tried searching several times, can't seem to locate it by name. I chose 'Apple Devices' just so I can see it, before I share to youtube. Thanks for any help with file path, and finding the damn thing.

    Thank you again.
     
  18. joema2 macrumors 68000

    joema2

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    #18
    While FCPX defaults to "Fit" you can easily change an entire batch of stills to "Fill" or whatever you want -- before putting them in the timeline. E.g, select the group of photos in the Event Browser, then in Inspector set them to "Fill". Any of those when added to the timeline will automatically fill the frame.

    There's an inherent compositional conflict whenever you need to mix 16:9 video and 3:2 photos. Unless you scale the photo up some, it will either be pillar boxed (if on a black background) or the edges of the underlying video will show (if photo is a connected clip).

    Since that's normally a case-by-case decision, it's typical to leave the photos set to "Fit" and whenever you add one to the timeline, scale it as needed. You can use the Ken Burns effect to add motion, and set the starting point so it fills the frame.

    However there are cases where you can't scale the photo up due to how it's composed, yet you need a more artistic presentation. There are various 3rd party effects which can assist, such as "Vertical Video Solutions" from FCPEffects: https://www.fcpeffects.com/collections/entire-catalogue/products/vertical-video-solutions

    I've never used that one, I just happened to see it.

    The only real solution is shoot the photos so they are composed 16:9. Some cameras can actually acquire at 16:9. Normally 3:2 photos aren't a big deal but if you know from the beginning the photos are intended for use in a video presentation, then composing them for 16:9 when they are originally shot can help. Even cameras which don't actually acquire at 16:9 can sometimes overlay lines on the viewfinder to help the photographer remember to compose it for 16:9 use.
     
  19. Christopher11 thread starter macrumors regular

    Christopher11

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    Feb 10, 2007
    #19
    Thanks so much Joema, great suggestion on the effect. Help me find my videos after I render them? Surely FCP puts them in a place where I can find them. I wish it would let me choose the file path.
     
  20. casperes1996 macrumors 68040

    casperes1996

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    #20

    It's really quite simple. When you share to Apple Devices like you did, you can change any number of export settings, and no matter what the export option is called, i.e. Apple Devices, it just outputs a normal video file. (depending on settings you choose).

    Personally, I've created my own export option via Preferences
    Wether Apple Devices or "Computer" is selected just determines if it'll be packaged as m4v or MP4.

    Then you click next and a file browser will allow you to pick where the final project is saved
     
  21. Christopher11 thread starter macrumors regular

    Christopher11

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    #21
    Thank you, and I love this idea... but FCP isn't doing that for me. It says 'Successfully share with Apple Device' but it gave me no choice for the file path... and I can't for the life of me find a file if it's creating one. I recall FCP 7 used to do this also, say it was rendering a movie but not. I'm not sure what the workaround or fix is for this one.
     
  22. casperes1996 macrumors 68040

    casperes1996

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    #22

    Just a second - I'll make a tutorial video for exporting
     
  23. Christopher11 thread starter macrumors regular

    Christopher11

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  24. casperes1996 macrumors 68040

    casperes1996

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    #24
  25. Christopher11 thread starter macrumors regular

    Christopher11

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    #25
    You are just amazing buddy! Thank you! It worked. I needed to make a master file... and it let me set the pathway. Thanks again brother. You rock.
    --- Post Merged, Feb 22, 2018 ---
    Also I think I'm going to go with the original aspect ratio FCP sets, and let it scale around the picture. It didn't look good when I set it to 1500 x 1500.
     

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29 February 21, 2018