The Feathered Crop plugin will cut off (make transparent) either the outside or the inside part of selected crop boundaries, and apply feather transparency to the part that remains. It respects alpha channel of the source footage. Alternatively, it can fill the cropped area with color or apply border of a given color to the outside of the crop.
The plugin can be found in the effects group “Creative Impatience”, and is called “CI Feathered Crop”. To apply it, drag it over the layer, to the effects panel, or in CS6 double click.
|Crop section (Crop left, Crop right, Crop top, and Crop bottom) allow you to specify how much of any edge is cropped in percentage of the clip or layer size. The percentage amount was chosen due to compatibility with standard Crop effect in Premiere Pro, and to account for various sizes of the source footage.
|Feather section (Feather left, Feather right, Feather top and Feather bottom) allows you to specify how much feather will be applied to the inside. Feather is set in pixels, and can only be positive, meaning it will be applied from the crop boundary inwards.
|Crop inside switch toggles between cropping the outside, or cutting out the inside of the box selected in the crop section. It does not change the direction of the feather – it still goes to the inside.
|Fill with control allows you to fill cropped section with transparency or with a desired color.
|Border color allows you to select the color that will fill the cropped area. This control is active only when Fill border with is set to color.
|Limit border – when active – will limit the extent of the color fill to the size of the border controls below.
|Fixed width will make the border size equal to Border left on all sides.
|Individual border width allows you to specify widths of the border of each side separately. You need to uncheck Fixed width to activate the controls.
Cautionary note: Nothing apart from your common sense prevents you from inputting values that will invert the crop or feather boundaries – left becomes right, etc.
After clicking on the effect name, both in Premiere Pro, and in After Effects, custom controls will appear in the comp/layer window or program monitor.
|Crop handles are set in the corners of the rectangle which signifies the crop boundary. You can control the amount of cropping of the two adjacent sides. To scale proportionally, drag holding the SHIFT key. To scale symmetrically from the center, hold ALT/OPTION.
|Individual feather handles are present in the middle of the side that they control. They can only move to the inside of the given boundary – ie. left feather can only go to the right of the left crop boundary, but is not limited by the right.
|Joint feather handle is set in the upper left corner of the feather box, slightly to the lower right of the corner itself for easy access. It controls simultaneously all feather controls. The horizontal position sets left and right feather, while vertical sets top and bottom.
|Move handle is a box in the center of the crop rectangle, and dragging it will move all the boundaries, retaining rectangle size up to the moment of reaching the frame.
|Cautionary note: moving the rectangle towards the border will decrease its size.
Take a look at how other people used this plugin:
- After Effects Tutorials – CorridorDigital Photoreal Tutorial
- Feathered crop was briefly mentioned in ProMAX webinar with Dennis Radeke from Adobe.
Did you find a creative application for this plugin? Share the idea with the rest of us!