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Adding Zoom to Video in Final Cut Pro

written by: Shane Burley•edited by: Rhonda Callow•updated: 7/1/2011

Ever wish you had zoomed in on your subject at just the right time? Final Cut Pro will allow you to do that very simply while editing.

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    Taping Life

    Often times when working on video projects, especially documentaries, it is hard to know exactly when a dramatic moment is going to occur in front of the camera. You may want to use a more dramatic video device for these moments, such as a slow zoom. The great thing about editing programs like Final Cut Pro is that you can actually put in this zoom during post-production.

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    Image Motion

    To do this you take the same principles that you would in photo motion. Put the video clip into your Timeline and then select it so it goes into the Viewer. From here you can then go into the motion tab to change the way the image appears. In the Timeline, available in the motion tab, set a marker at the beginning of the clip or wherever you would like the zoom to begin. You then set a marking point at the end of the clip or where you would like the zoom to end. Here you are going to change the size of the image on the second marker only. You will do this in the left hand size numerically, which is the most precise way to do it. Go to the second marker and place a higher numerical value for this place, comparatively based on what the starting size was. Remember, the larger change in image size the faster the zoom will look. It is always best to make the zoom as slow as possible, that way it retains its dramatic appeal but does not become distracting or overly manipulative.

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    Using the Canvas

    You can opt not to do this numerically and instead alter the image in the Canvas instead. Again, you would set your marking points and then on the second marker you would resize the image using the wire frame to make it larger. This will also create the zoom effect, just as it did in photo motion.

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    Be Subtle

    Keep in mind that when an image gets bigger the central object of that image often changes. You may want to also slightly reposition it so the person or object your are focusing on during the dramatic event stays central. The subtler the changes you make overall the better it will end up looking.