How to Make Video Clips Black and White In Final Cut Pro by Using Color Effects and Filters

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Black and White

Post-production, or video editing, is often when some of the major creative choices get made for your digital video project. You can make images blurry or cropped, and even speed up or slow down the sequences.

One of the most common alterations that people use when editing in Final Cut Pro is to give the images a clean look by making them black and white. This is a simple task in Final Cut Pro and can be utilized to give each video clip a different feel.

Full Desaturation

After the clip is captured or imported into Final Cut, take it from the Browser and drag it into the Timeline, which will make it easier to work with. Place it where you want it to be in the sequence and then double click it, bringing it into the Viewer.

Go back to the Browser and click on the Effects tab, which should be right behind your project’s tab unless you have multiple projects open. Either way it will always be the tab that is the farthest back.

Once there click on the Video Filters folder, which then opens into a series of sub-options. These sub-options range from Blur to Stylize and are all series of video effects that you can apply to your video.

Click on the option labeled Image Control, and again you will be given a list of sub-options below it.

Go to the one titled Desaturate and drag this option onto the image in the Viewer. Suddenly your image will appear in black and white!

Partial Desaturation

If you are looking to only give it a partially desaturated look, such as making it just have a slight hint of color in the black and white appearance then you can do this by clicking on the Filters tab in the Viewer. You will see that there is only one effect, Desaturate, which is indicated here. There are two bars here, the Desaturate bar and the Mix bar. Select the Desaturate bar and adjust it by dragging it from the right to the left until the display image you are seeing in the Canvas is exactly the right color consistency for you.

Easy Process

Making the image black and white is as simple as finding the effects selection, picking Desaturate, and then dragging and dropping it over the image. This can be used for only part of a project or for the entire project to give it a classic feel.

Want to learn more? Check out other helpful articles about video editing in Final Cut.

This post is part of the series: Final Cut Pro

Learn different tools in Final Cut Pro with this tutorial series.

  1. The History of Final Cut Pro
  2. Final Cut Pro Certification
  3. How to Use “Photo Motion” in Final Cut Pro - Part 1
  4. How to Use “Photo Motion” in Final Cut Pro - Part 2
  5. How to Do Color Correction in Final Cut Pro
  6. How To Change Video Clip Speeds in Final Cut Pro
  7. How to Make Video Clips Black and White in Final Cut Pro
  8. How to Do Video Transitions in Final Cut Pro
  9. How to “Nest” Items in Final Cut Pro
  10. How to Import and Capture Video in Final Cut Pro
  11. Keeping Your Final Cut Pro Project Organized
  12. Video Editing - How to Crop Images in Final Cut Pro
  13. Using Keyboard Shortcuts in Final Cut Pro
  14. Using Keyboard Shortcuts in Final Cut Pro - Part 2 of 3
  15. Using Keyboard Shortcuts in Final Cut Pro - Part 3 of 3
  16. Using Markers in Final Cut Pro
  17. Labeling Clips in Final Cut Pro
  18. Adding Zoom to Video in Final Cut Pro
  19. Creating Map Motion in Final Cut Pro
  20. Printing to Video in Final Cut Pro
  21. How to Make Scrolling Credits in Final Cut Pro
  22. Keyboard Remapping in Final Cut Pro
  23. Quick Organizational Tips for Final Cut Pro
  24. Learning How to Use Final Cut Pro