[RESOLVED] How do I limit the duration of Planes and Images in composite shots?

edited June 9 in Express Support

In my Options setup, I've set the Plane/Image Default Duration to 10 frames -- and when I drag an image or a screen capture from my media panel to the editor timeline the duration is in fact 10 frames.

But when I drag an image from the media panel into a composite shot I also want it to be only 10 frames.  But an image placed in this way "inherits" its duration from the length of the composite shot, which can be over a minute.  To work with it I am forced to zoom out of the timeline and manually drag the right and left edges of the bar, then zoom back in to set up my in/outs.    This is hugely frustrating and a bit hit on productivity,  as I'm working on an extended series of educational videos that have many stills and freeze frames.  Is there a way to limit the duration of an image placed in the composite timeline?

Comments

  • Triem23Triem23 Moderator

    Not that I'm aware of, although switching the the Slice tool, trimming off the excess area then deleting the split off layer is probably a lot faster than dragging the trim handles?

  • Hi Mike -- appreciate your videos very much.

    You're saying switch to the Cut/Slice tool then chop off and delete the ends?Okay -- that's faster.  Just tried it -- much faster.

    Can someone from FX Home tell us, from a functional perspective, why does the duration of a placed image default to the full length of the composite shot?  Is there a reason that it should run the length of the shot? 

  • edited June 8

    One way to do what you want would be to set the duration of a Composite shot to the 10 frames you want. If you right click on the value in File>Options you can toggle between frames and time.

    You then go through and create composites of all the images and they'll all be 10 frames long. Shut down the tabs that pop up in the Composite Editor for each one.

    You can then drag those mini composites where you want them inside other comps and they'll be 10 frames long. Note you cannot extend them (without editing their individual properties, which you can easily do if required), you can only make them shorter.

    To keep things a bit tidier, I'd create a folder and put images in one and image comps in another, so you only use the right type in the right place.

    Only slight downside is the image mini-composites don't have thumbnails by default, but you can fix that by proxying them.

    Once you're done, remember to reset the File>Options>Composite Shot Default Duration back, or all your future comps will only be 10 frames long. :)

  • Triem23Triem23 Moderator

    Yes, chopping and deleting the ends was what I meant. 

    We'll see if staff jumps in with a better explanation ( @Danny77uk your turn for a tag), but my guess as to the logic? 

    So, the Editor Timeline is generally for assembly of multiple media clips into a program. A Composite Shot is generally for creating a media clip for assembly in the Editor Timeline. 

    It is likely for the majority of users the majority of the time that the current behavior is desired. Speaking for myself, 90+% of the time I drag a still photo into a Composite Shot I DO want it to be the entire length of the comp, with trimming anything I want shorter being not a big deal. In fact, having media clips default to the set length for an Editor clip would be detrimental in my workflow as I'd be constantly lengthening things (or I'd be changing the default length often). 

    I'm not certain of the best way to implement changes to the workflow here. My worry here is, if the default behavior were changed, we'd end up with user complaints, "Why doesn't my picture fill the entire length of my Composite?" 

    Personally I'm hoping the devs can implement a system where multiple Editor Timeline clips can be selected and made into a Composite Shot in a single operation (placing each clip on its own layer, but Editor transitions stripped). This would make many tasks easier for a large number of users, including what you're doing since you'd be able to add all your clips to the Editor, then convert the entire batch to a Composite with each layer being the desired duration. From there you'd be able to continue with layering. 

    For today? Well, at least the slice tool is faster, and without needing to zoom, should be less painful. Hope that helps you complete what sounds like a difficult cut in a timely manner. 

  • edited June 8

    They could implement an ALT/SHIFT/CTRL-Drag of a plane/image etc. into a comp where it would default to acting like it was going into the Editor and stay at Default Plane/Image Duration.

    Wouldn't break a thing. ;)

  • Triem23Triem23 Moderator

    @Palacono can't be ALT, as that's already a seperator for audio/video, but one of the others, perhaps. 

  •  Yeah, I didn't check first, which is why I gave a choice for brighter minds than mine to determine what would work. :)

  • Terrific -- you guys rock.

    Great program -- great forum.

    Wait -- while I've got you on the line.  Has anyone thought of a feature where as you scrub a composite shot, the layers that have images/effects/transitions contributing to the frame would hilight or change their tint slightly?  It would be very useful to help locate and manage the assets.  It would serve as a map, of sorts, so you know where to look if something needs to be tweaked.

     

     

  • @Davlon @Triem23

    But when I drag an image from the media panel into a composite shot I also want it to be only 10 frames.  But an image placed in this way "inherits" its duration from the length of the composite shot, which can be over a minute.

    This may be a bug. The duration in the options dialog should probably apply in all cases. I will log this for investigation.

  • @Danny77uk I'm with @Triem23 on this and hope it's not a bug because I also 90% of the time want any images or planes dragged into a composite shot to be the length of the composite. They're usually backgrounds or textures of some sort, so having to lengthen them would be annoying.

  • I'll +1 the idea of @Triem23 and @Palacono that 99% of the time a still dropped into a comp I want it to be full length.

    The NLE timeline is an entire video whereas a comp is just a single scene. At times we can be forced to use the comp timeline as a NLE timeline but that is a different discussion IMO.

  • Ok thanks for the clarification.

  • DannyDevDannyDev Staff
    edited June 9

    @Palacono

    They could implement an ALT/SHIFT/CTRL-Drag of a plane/image etc. into a comp where it would default to acting like it was going into the Editor and stay at Default Plane/Image Duration.

    Wouldn't break a thing

    Actually it might, we've had quite a few problems with conflicting modifiers.

    Holding CTL during a drag duplicates media.

    Holding ALT during a drag relinks media and also alternatives between the audio only/video only drop actions on the timeline.

    Holding SHIFT (from the trimmer) alternatives between insert and overlay.

     These modifiers are already in use.

  • edited June 9

    @Danny77uk for the specific case the OP asked for: none of ALT/CTRL/SHIFT+Drag do anything when moving Planes/Images from the Media bin to a Composite shot. 

    Yes, you can then duplicate it with some of those combos while inside the comp, but it should be situationally aware enough to be able to handle the initial movement.

  • DannyDevDannyDev Staff
    edited June 9

    @Palacono

    Wouldn't break a thing

    Please let us developers decide what would and would not beak the software.

    for the specific case the OP asked for: none of ALT/CTRL/SHIFT+Drag do anything when moving Planes/Images from the Media bin to a Composite shot. 

    As for this specific case, using the same keyboard modifiers for alternative behavior on the composite shot might not be intuitive or discoverable.

    As this OP's problem has been fixed, I am marking this thread as resolved; if you would like to add a specific functionality request to the wishlist, then please do so.

This discussion has been closed.