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Tutorial: BorisFX Continuum Complete 10

In this tutorial we'll look at BorisFX Continuum Complete 10 (BCC 10), the latest version of Boris's popular collection of professional plug-ins from BorisFX


In this tutorial we’ll look at BorisFX Continuum Collection 10 (BCC 10), the latest version of Boris’s popular collection of professional plug-ins from BorisFX. BCC 10 is available now for Premiere Pro and After Effects. Some of the plug-ins are exclusive to After Effects, but we're going to limit this tutorial to what you can do in Premiere Pro.

Customizing Effects

For my sample footage, I’m using some kayaking footage that I shot a couple of years ago; it works pretty well for a lot of the filters and transitions that I’ll demonstrate in this tutorial. We’ll explore several key effects in BCC 10 in the tutorial video, and how to tweak and customize them in Premiere Pro.

For example, with the Lens Flare 3D effect applied in Figure 1 (below), you’ll notice range of customization options available. You can tweak and tweak until it doesn't look anything like a lens flare if you really want to.

Figure 1. A kayaking clip with a Lens Flare 3D effect applied. Click the image to see it at full size.

Every BCC 10 plugin has its own interface with the buttons highlighted in Figure 1. LOAD and SAVE are for loading and saving your own presets, which you can share with others if you have a storage area network or other server and you have several different editors sharing visual effects. Your editors can access them through this interface so that if somebody makes a preset that you really like, they don't have to put it on your computer. You can just get to it over the network.

The HELP button launches a help resource that’s offline in your browser, but it won’t just go to Boris Continuum Help and leave you to navigate to the information you need. It actually goes to the help section on the plugin that you’re using. If I click HELP while I’m working in this effect, Boris launches the Lens Flare 3D Help, and easily enables me to get to the rest of Help file if I need it. LICENSE CONTROL and PURCHASE pertain to the license that you've purchased (or maybe you haven’t purchased) for the plugins. Clicking PREFERENCES enables you to turn on OpenCL.

FX BROWSER is something unique to BCC that I really like; I’ll get into it in detail later in this tutorial.

By clicking Current, you can access all of your presets, including pre-made presets that come with BCC 10 and any you’ve created yourself, via the drop-down menu shown in Figure 2 (below).

Figure 2. Presets currently available for this effect

The video tutorial explains in detail how I’ve customized this effect to get the look I want. It also shows how the lens flare changes--moving, flickering, glowing differently--over time. When the oar comes through the flare, there's a little bit of a flash; the glow expands in the center, almost as if the oar is cutting the sun, and the light is shining through the oar. You can see how the flare appears to interact with the oar in Figure 3 (below). That was very easy to do without having to custom-animate the Lens Flare 3D effect with a bunch of keyframes. I just turned on a few options and there it was.

Figure 3. I was able to get the precise lens flare effect I wanted in this shot without keyframing any animation.

Leveraging the Mocha Planar Tracker

The next effect I want to show you uses the Planar Tracker found in Mocha, which BorisFX acquired in late 2014. Most of the effects that you can use in the Continuum set will have this Mocha button down at the bottom of the effect controls where you can click Launch Mocha to launch the Mocha interface. You can see in Figure 4 (below) how many parameters and controls are available to set in Mocha. You can make in and out points to select only areas that you’re using in the clip; otherwise, by default, it loads the entire the clip. Check the video tutorial to see how I used the tracking capabilities in this example.

Figure 4. Mocha controls. Note the mask around the kayaker’s face created with the spline tools. Click the image to see it at full size.

After I’ve set your tracking parameters and keyframes to make sure the tracking works throughout the selected portion of my clip, BorisFX saves the tracking information so I can close this interface. You just click Save icon and close it out, and the tracking information you entered is applied to that particular effect. Now I can apply that information to just about any effect I want and just say, “Use this mask that I created in Mocha and follow it.” In this case, I wanted to use what they call the Witness Protection effect and I wanted to use the mosaic effect, not the blur. Blur would just be a standard blur and mosaic gives it a more of a pixelated appearance.

As far as the shape, I just choose PixelChooser because that’s what corresponds with Mocha (Figure 5, below). It's called PixelChooser/Mocha. Then under PixelChooser, you can also choose default shapes for the mask. In this case I’ve already chosen the Mocha Spline, but I could choose a default shape like an egg, which is designed to closely approximate the shape of someone’s face so it gets you started in the right direction (Figure 6, below Figure 5).

Figures 5 and 6. Choosing parameters for the shape and composition of the mask

I’ve already made a custom mask for this kayaker. You can see in Figure 7 (below) that I have this nice blurry, pixelated face going through the rapids now.

Figure 7. Face blurred.

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