Applying effects to layer with the blending set to Screen

CorkovskyCorkovsky Website User Posts: 10
edited February 2019 in Post-production techniques

Hello, that's what I have now - a video file with encoded subtitles. They are white, the background is black, I can put them easily onto my actual video by simply changing the blending mode to Screen.

The problem is that when I try to add any effect, it's still affecting the WHOLE layer, as though changing blending to Screen didn't matter. I tried making a composition, but even if the layer has its blending selected in the composition, the actual composition still comes with a black background.

Is there a way to "extract" the visible part of a layer (in my case the white text) and make any operations on it? I was simply hoping to add some kind of glow, set it to black to make it stand out better from the background (occasionally there are some white parts so the text is hardly visible).

I still have the subtitles in a .srt file and I know there are other ways (adding the text manually as the actual text layers, trying to get the VLC to encode the text into the actual footage etc) but there are about 100 lines (so the first solution would be pretty tedious) and I wand to add some other effects to the text (so the second solution wouldn't work either - I want to avoid having to deal with many projects and exported files and swapping them around).

Finally, converting the said text video to an uncompressed video MIGHT be an option, but unfortunately I'm kinda running out of space - this file would be ~11GB. Also I'm not sure if the background would really be gone in the exported file.

Do you have any other ideas maybe?

Thank you!


  • tddavistddavis Moderator, Website User Posts: 4,180 Moderator

    @Corkovsky You might try rendering the text out as a PNG sequence with alpha.  Not sure if it would be a smaller file size or not but I prefer sequences for rendering with transparency cause I run into too many issues with video.

  • GrayMotionGrayMotion Website User Posts: 1,368 Enthusiast
    edited February 2019

    Sorry if I'm off base here and have completely missed the turn... but if you put the text in say Comp 1 without a background and bring that  into say Comp 2 containing your video, putting your text above the video, leaving the blend mode to normal....


    You mentioned - "add some kind of glow" ......... and then you can either add the glow effect to Comp 1 containing the text or apply the effect to Comp 1 in Comp 2 ( the second option might effect the video layer though - I didn't check but I'd assume so)

    Make sense?

    EDIT: maybe Demult to remove the black from your encoded video from VLC???

  • CorkovskyCorkovsky Website User Posts: 10
    edited February 2019

    Ok, I've now managed to resolve it: Firstly I used the Color Phase to change the black to some red (as a side effect the text gets a bit of a blue tint) and then used the Chroma Key. Then some correction to bring the text back to white and it's done.

    And then while in bed I realised that Demult is what I should've tried first. And yes, it works like a charm and obviously the result is even better. I can see now that Demult was suggested by @GrayMotion too.

    Thanks everyone!


Sign In or Register to comment.