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Tutorial: Minimizing Jump Cuts with Adobe Premiere Pro CC 2015’s Morph Cuts Transition

In some scenes, particularly those with the static background, Adobe Premiere Pro CC's new Morph Cut transition will seamlessly eliminate jump cuts from your edit, but you may have to experiment to get there. This tutorial demonstrates how. Every editor who works with interviews will find this a great new tool that will make their footage look better and possibly eliminate the need to re-shoot.

In this tutorial I'll demonstrate the Morph Cut transition, a key new feature in the 2015 release of Adobe Premiere Pro CC. If you’ve shot and edited interviews, you’ve doubtless dealt with jump cuts. When you have to piece together different components of an interview, they don’t always match up. It’s also a problem when you edit content out of a particular clip, and that’s the process I’ll use to demonstrate the feature in the tutorial video at the bottom of this page.

Let’s say you have a cut in your timeline where you’ve removed a digression or unwanted word or phrase from your interview. You want to transition between the now-adjacent clips without a jarring jump cut where your speaker’s head obviously moves, and you don’t want to try to cover it up by applying an awkward transition or reframing the shot. The new Morph Cut transition will help you smooth your cut without requiring you to resort to any of these traditional workarounds.

To apply a morph cut, go to Effects and type “morph” into the search field, or navigate to it in the Video Transitions > Dissolves folder, and drag it onto your timeline where you want to apply it. As with any transition, you can center it or place it on either side of the cut. Then Premiere Pro analyzes the clips.

Analysis time depends upon the speed of your computer, and it takes anywhere from 30 to 60 seconds on my old 8-core old Mac Pro. Once the analysis is finished, you probably want to render the entire work area so it will play smoothly. You can see how natural the effect can make some cuts look around the 2:14 mark of the tutorial video at the bottom of this page.

One key limiting factor on the morph cut is how much space it has to work with on each side of the cut. That is, if the speaker talks until the very end of the first clip, and starts right up at the beginning of the second, it may be challenging to create a smooth transition. So leave yourself some wiggle room on both sides of the cut.

In any case, to get a perfect result, you’ll have to juggle at least two factors: where you cut your two clips, and the duration of the transition. This may take several iterations, and you’ll need to watch (and listen) carefully to make sure you don’t lose audio sync at all during the transition, or distort the video. The tutorial that accompanies this article demonstrates the challenges and workflow for tweaking and fine-tuning a Morph Cut transition to get better results when you have only a few frames to work with.

In some scenes, particularly those with the static background, the Morph Cut transition will seamlessly eliminate jump cuts, but you may have to experiment to get there. Every editor who works with interviews will find this a great new tool that will make their footage look better and possibly eliminate the need to re-shoot.

 

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