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Final Cut Pro HD Quick Tip #31

Scrolling and crawling text in LiveType By Stephen Schleicher

In the many incarnations of Final Cut Pro, there have been ways of creating scrolling and crawling text.  The built in Scroll and Crawl type of the early Final Cut Pro system was less than stellar (and still is), Final Cut Pro 3 included much better options with Calligraphy, and now with Final Cut Pro HD (v.4.5) LiveType has the ability to create scrolling and crawling text as well.

There are over 40 new effects in LiveType 1.2.  Of that, thirteen are scrolling and crawling effects.  In this exercise, well create a scrolling credit list for a fictitious training DVD.

Step 1:  Launch LiveType, and in the Inspector window, create your closing credits.  For speedier and more accurate text creation, create your credits in a text application and then copy/paste the contents.

Step 2:  Spend a bit of time tweaking your text size, tracking, leading, etc.  As reported by Apple, you will have better results creating scrolling (and crawling) text elements if you use system fonts instead of LiveFonts.

Step 3:  In the Timeline, drag the right edge of the text track to your destination length.  For example, if you want your ending credits to be 10:00, then drag to that mark.  Set an outpoint by pressing the O key on the keyboard.

Step 4:  In the Media Browser, switch to the Effects tab and change the Category to Scrolls and Crawls.

Step 5:  In the Canvas window click and drag the Track down to the bottom of the screen so that they first line of text is just below the edge of the screen.  You may need to zoom out.  If you are on a small monitor, you may have to zoom out as small as 25%, while those on a Cinema Display can probably zoom to 75%.

Hint: Hold down the Shift key while dragging the Track down to keep it locked.

Step 6:  Make sure your Timeline Indicator is at the beginning of the Timeline.  From the Effects Tab apply the Scroll Up effect.

The problem with this effect is that it is only 3:29 in length - a little too fast for our ten second closing credit scroll.  The other problem has to do with the preset keyframes.  Lets deal with each of these in turn.

Step 7:  Drag the right edge of the Effect Track (the purple one) to the Out Point of your composition.

Step 8:  With the Timeline Indicator at the beginning of the Timeline, switch to the Effects tab in the Inspector window.  

In the Active Parameters you will see Canvas Offset.  This is what controls the scrolling of the elements in your project.  If you are at the beginning of the Timeline, the Canvas Offset should read 0, 100.  This represents how LiveType is shifting your text based on the Track marker and the size of your composition.

Step 9:  Double click the Canvas Offset and change the Y% to 0.  This sets the beginning point for the credits at the Track marker.

Step 10:  Move to the last keyframe in the Effect track.  The keyframe has an offset of -100 in this case.  This is not enough to move all of your elements out of frame.   I found changing the Y% offset to -200 is more than enough to get all of the text off the screen in whatever you set your duration to be.

Step 11:  Save your LiveType project and using the workflow I outlined in Final Cut Pro Quick Tip #30, move the credits to your Final Cut Pro HD Timeline.

With your abundant amount of free time, play around with the other scrolling and crawling effects in the new LiveType 1.2.

For a complete list of my Final Cut Pro Quick Tips, check out my website.

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Stephen Schleicher is a well known writer, visual effects artist and media guru! You can see more of Stephen at
www.majorspoilers.com and www.stephenschleicher.com
Related Keywords:Final Cut Pro HD, FCPHD, Final Cut Pro 4.5, scrolling, crawling, livetype, livefonts, schleicher, tutorial, credits

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