I haven't had any problems with this workflow. It makes sense.
thanks for the reply, Harm.
Get this...I just noticed that some of my recently imported images are stretched...horizontally (i.e. faces look fatter than they should).
I went back and ran an experiment:
1) in Photoshop, I created a new document (white) and created a perfect circle, filled with black.
2) I saved it as Circle.psd
3) I performed a Save As and saved it again, this time as a jpg...Circle2.jpg
4) I import both into PP3 and put them on the timeline.
5) the psd is still a perfect circle, the jpg is now a fat-faced ellipse.
Well, that was one remark I considered, use 1920 x 1080 with square pixels instead of the 1440 x 1080 with 1.33 PAR.
Thanks for the continued help, Harm.
The topic of square vs. non-square pixels - to my knowledge - is a video discussion only...I've never run into it in the still image editing world of PHotoshop.
When I searched help for PAR, the only hits I got were in Export Settings for PP, nothing in PS help.
Are you suggesting some unusually crop (or file resizing) procedure in Photoshop, when I prepare the images for use in a video production?
Also, I'm still puzzled by the different treatment on the timeline in PP of a psd file vs the jpg file (both show as perfect circles in PS).
Also, I tried importing with the Preferences, General choice of Scale to Fit - both checked and unchecked...no difference. Also, no difference when toggling it by rt clicking the image clip in the TL.
I do similar, with one exception - I stay with sized .PSD images and do NOT use JPEG compressed images. Maybe it's just me, but I only chose JPEG compression when I need to provide a client with Web-based images. Otherwise, I stick with .PSD's and have never had one issue.
When I searched help for PAR, the only hits I got were in Export Settings for PP, nothing in PS help.
What you are looking for is Pixel Aspect Ratio, in Image>Pixel Aspect Ratio. You will want this to match your Project's PAR, or you will get ovals, and not circles.
For automated still image resizing in PS, this ARTICLE might be useful. Note: it was written with SD (720x480) in mind, so you will need to do a bit of math for HD Projects, but that is not difficult.
There is also discussion on PAR in PS.
Hope that this helps,
Thanks for jumping in and for your advice.
I'll dig deepder on it tomorrow and report back.
Re: your preference for staying in psd files, not jpg. Aren't you worried about the added load on PP3? With my images from a Canon XSi dSLR, my downscaled psd images (i.e. sized for roughly 2500 x ??? to allow for zooming) are 4 - 10 MB, depending on how many adustment layers I added during the photo editing. Compared to jpg's a ~ 1Mb, aren't you worried about the added load? Just the import time to bring in those larger PSD images into the PP3 project panel is significantly greater than importing jpgs, in my experience. I feel I'm already pushing my luck with an HDV project of ~60 minutes. Project load/opening time is ~ 6 minutes.
- Mike -
I have had no issues, but please remember that I am working in SD Projects, and not HD.
What I do is determine how much I will need to pan on a zoomed out image, and then resize to those dimensions. In an average Project, I might have up to four different sizes, with the Project's exact Frame Size being the greatest number. Then, I'll have a few for slight pans, and a couple for more movement. I usually do not allow much "wiggle room," as I have scripted the animation tightly, and resize to what is needed. If someone changes their mind later, I just charge for additional resizing, Importing and animation.
So, on one hand, I keep things to a minimum, but just stick with the .PSD's.
I'd suggest that you do a test, and burn to a BD RE and see if you can see the difference. If you cannot, then all it takes is a rewrite of the Action to Save_As JPEG to your compression standards. I probably overdo it a bit, coming from an advertising still background. Because of that background, I may have developed a personal bias against JPEG's. Many claim that they cannot tell a JPEG from a PSD in Video. My answer is to work with what they find best, whether it's image quality, or size savings.
Good luck, and please let us know which route you go,
Thanks for your continued help and for taking the time to be so thorough in your postings.
I read your Article with great interest. Based on your attention to image quality and the importance of preserving the original files, I can tell that we're cut from the same cloth. I also come to the video world from still photography and am sensitive to those issues.
Re: your most recent post...I agree completely about testing the quality difference between PSD and JPG files. There have been times when I have animated layers in a PSD and have needed that capability...but that was in an SD project, not an HDV project. It was a family history movie which ran over an hour, including the extra features. It was a combination of jpg stills (~200) and SD video. I had no performance issues with my PP3 configuration.
But my HDV project seems fragile by comparison. My first 25-minute HDV project took ~6 minutes to load and caused frequent (Not Responding) semi-crashes. I also learned the hard way that using MP3 audio files caused render failures and crashes (not experienced in my SD project). Replacing all audio soundtrack files with WAV files has helped...but I am not too trusting of the systems' capabilities. I have initiated a fresh project to continue work on the same production. Since this is for personal consumption (not client work), I can live with having my Europe Trip production parsed, although I hope to combine them into one HDV project at the end with a run time of ~ 1 hour.
I render the project(s) to MPEG2 files using the the Adobe Media Encoder and use a Western Digital WD TV HD Media Player to serve an HDMI signal to my 46" TV. I am very pleased (stunned, actually) with the fidelity of the images...what an improvement over seeing one's work rendered down to SD. I highly recommend it...the WD player is only $100 on Amazon...much cheaper than going Apple TV (max 720p) or with Blue Ray burning and playback. I'm happy to provide my AME settings if you're interested.
To the topic of proper scaling - maintaining circles than want to morph into ovals...
This is only a recent problem for me. In an effort to make my project as lean as possible, I took some advice offered on the Creative Cow PP forum to scale images to 1440x1080. That prompted me to use PS3 to do that scaling (using Rectangular Marquee+Crop, or simply the Crop Tool) with settings entered into the Tools' parameters. As I began to import these into my HDV project, I noticed that some images were being stretched on the horizontal axis.
That prompted me to experiment by creating a perfect circle of black on a white background in PS, trying difference Scaling and Save As options, and evaluating the results after import into PP. Frankly, that has been a mind twister. The same PSD file, when Saved as a JPG, exhibits the stretched behavior...go figure that one. That has led me to the wonderful world of PAR settings...again, experiments on that circle document have had unexpected results. At this point, I have some interest in figuring it all out, but am pressed with a Thanksgiving deadline on my Europe Trip production.
In brief, my original workflow is as follows:
* open the image (use raw converter for global adjustments and save as PSD)
* if images from the pt&shoot are used, skip the raw work but open in PS3, as below
* use PS3 to adjust for composition, lighting, etc. and save as a PSD
* make a copy to be used for the video project only
* open those copies...assess how much zooming I'm likely to want...use Image Size to downsize/resample the longest dimension accordingly
* use Save As to compress to a JPG file of ~ 1 Mb...max of 2 Mb. With possibly 200+ images in an already fragile project, I feel it's essential...and the JPG's display very well all the way through to the WD TV and the TV
In the spirit of getting this project finished, I am going to abandon the "proper scaling" efforts with 1440 parameters and go back to my original plan.
I'm tempted to write up the workflow in a bit more detail and call it "The Survival Guide for Handling Still Images in Premiere". Hunt, your Article was the first thorough discussion I could find on any forum...I'm wondering why I couldn't find it earlier...my loss. It's a shame that the Adobe User Manual and other books like the PP3 Bible don't spend much time at all on advising folks on how to handle still images. In books that are hundreds of pages long, you'd think a page or two could be devoted to it.
Thanks again for your help.
- Mike -
(I'll append my h/w and s/w config in a second post)
My configuration - comments encouraged...
HP m8187c-b Desktop Computer
E6750 Intel Core 2 Duo 2 Gb RAM
2 – 500 Gb internal SATA drives 7200 rpm
DVD reader/burner w. Lightscribe
NVIDIA GeForce 8500 GT
LP3065c 30 inch LCD monitor Dual-DVI (2560x16000)
Vista Home Premium SP2
Adobe Premiere Pro CS3 v.3.2.0
Project and Media files stored on second internal drive
During rendering, system is disconnect from the internet and non-critcial processes are shut down (e.g. Windows sidebar, Search Indexer)
- Mike -
This is a decent HDV system, but you would benefit from at least 4 GB memory, or even 8 if you are using Vista 64. Also an additional disk would be welcome.
Thanks for your experiences and observations, and for the kind words.
I have zero experience with HD, so appreciate your comments. Other than just the math involved, I cannot directly comment.
Sorry that your Project has proved fragile. That can be a real downer. I had similar with a 4-hour piece, and worried quite a bit, doing Save_As operations, like I was still working in Pinnacle. Still, all worked, but I lost sleep.
I would be very interested in what your trained eye told you about the JPEG's. I am old, but maybe not too old to learn.
One reason that the search might not have given you a link to that article is that it is posted to the PrElements Tip & Tricks sub-forum. One reason for this is that many users of PrE fight large still images a great deal - probably more than here. Also, that sub-forum is a great repository for cross-app. articles, so I do not have to navigate 30 pages down to find one of my articles that might apply to someone's problem today. Don't tell the PrE MOD, but there are probably 3 PrPro-specific articles there, 'cause I can grab the links quickly and post to threads in several fora. If one search this forum, they will not get it. Fortunately, Google, and similar, do find it, so all is not lost. I also post to another video production forum, Muvipix, as it allows for easy linking to examples, etc., from their gallery.
Thanks for the h/w advice.
I'm on Vista 32 and do plan to add memory to a max of 4 GB.
I'm very open to adding a third drive. If so, how best to config PP to use it...something like this?
* Internal disc 1 - Windows and Premiere application
* Internal disc 2 - Project assets, Project files
* new external disc (Firewire400) - ?? target for rendered files ??
The disk setup is good, but the interface for the external should ideally be eSATA.
I'm with Harm on the controller type for the external. I use FW-800 on multi-chip controllers, but am only doing SD Projects. If I were not so heavily invested in FW-800's, I'd have gone to eSATA by now, and will definitely add it (along with newer externals) to any new box. In my years of real-world testing, I found FW-400 just too slow for me personally. USB 2.0 was never a viablie option, except for archival storage. It was not until FW-800, that I could use the external as an editing drive.