How To Use Motion Array's Long Shadow Plugin Effect for Premiere Pro


Hi guys! Jordan with Motion Array and today we’re going to be taking a look at how to use our Long Shadow plugin for Premiere Pro.  So let’s jump into it!

How To Use Motion Array's Long Shadow Plugin In Adobe Premiere Pro

This text has been transcribed from the video for optimal reading

Okay so we’re here inside Premiere Pro, and if you’re not quite sure how to download and install our plugins, check out our video walking you through that process.

So let’s start by going down to our effects panel and looking in the Motion Array folder for our effect.  Just drag and drop it onto your footage to begin using it.  I’m actually going to be placing it on some text to show you how it works more easily.  Once you place it, you might notice that it has a red X over top of it. If that’s the case for you, don’t worry, all you have to do is highlight the piece of footage with the plugin and go up to this box here in your effects controls panel.  When you click it you can sign into your Motion Array account, and as long as you have an active paid Motion Array subscription, this plugin will be active.

So now that you’ve got this effect started, let’s go over how to get the most out of it.  You can see that it’s pretty simply out of the gate. When you first place it down onto your clip you can see that it gives you a pretty nice shadow effect.   Its primary goal isn’t to create a realistic looking black shadow on top of your footage. There’s already a premiere pro effect for that purpose. You can use it in that similar way if you want but it’s really more for stylistic effect. The primary difference with this effect is that it doesn't detach from the rest of your object that you’ve placed it on, and you can additionally control how long this shadow distance is.   

To start to play around and edit your effect, highlight your layer with the effect and then go up to effect controls.  Here you should see at the bottom all the different parameters that you can use to create this effect.





Let’s start with amount.  This refers directly to how long or short the actual shadow will appear.  By default it’s set to 200, but you can take it all the way down to zero, and all the way up to the point where it’s not even visible on the screen any more.  

Next up is angle, which just like you’d imagine, changes the angle at which your shadow is cast at.  By default it’s set to 130 degrees, but you can input any angle, or multiple of values. But we’ll get back to that a little bit later.

Opacity is pretty simple, it will just influence how transparent or opaque your shadow is.  

And finally we have color, which you can click on and select the specific color of your choice.  If you need an incredibly specific color, you can input a hexadecimal color value, or click the eye dropper and select the particular color that you’ve already got an image of.  

But even though that’s all the parameters you have access to, that’s far from the only thing that you can do with this effect.  One of the biggest elements of control you can utilize is keyframing these values. By clicking on these stopwatches so that they turn blue, you can activate them to keyframe any changes you make over time.   

You can do this for length, angle, and opacity, but you might not realize that you can actually do this for color values as well!  By activating keyframing for color, choosing one color value, and then selecting a different value at a later point in time, you’ll actually see the color change over time to represent the new color!  Amazing right?

You can also stack these longshadow effects in tandem so that they play off of each other.  And by changing the color you can tell them apart pretty easily. Changing the value of one will actually influence the others down the line!

But right now we’ve only been showing you examples with text.  That’s because when you place it on a normal piece of footage, it doesn’t do anything.  There’s no room for the shadow to be cast and shown. But that doesn’t mean you can’t use it on your normal footage.  

Start by duplicating your footage by clicking and dragging it while holding alt or option.  Then place it directly above of itself.

Next up what you need to do is decide what you want to cast a shadow from.  For me it’s pretty obvious, it’s this monument right in the center. Then on the top layer, create a mask that traces around the object and set the feather of the mask to zero.  Finally, once the mask is created, you can test to see if it’s the way you want by hiding the bottom layer to just see your mask. Once it looks good, reactivate the bottom layer and from there you’re going to nest your top clip.  Once nested you can place down the long shadow effect and see it interact with your footage! Play around with animating and stacking these Long Shadow plugins to create some awesome effects!

Well, that concludes this tutorial. I hope you found it helpful, if you did, please give us a thumbs up and if you’d like to see more tutorials please go ahead and subscribe because we’re making new ones all the time.  I hope you guys found it helpful.  If you did, we’ve got lots of other Premiere Pro tutorialsAfter Effects tutorials and filmmaking tutorials!

Thanks for watching and see you in the next video.

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