Respond to customer requests and integrate more transition effects into Red Giant Universe.
Senior management asked me to design a thematic set of products for an update to Universe, their subscription-based set of plugins for editors and motion designers.
Following suggestions from customers, I started focusing on transitions. The feedback was that some basic transitions were missing from their NLEs, such as linear wipe, shape wipe and clock wipe. I suggested that we move forward with a release that included these basic transitions as well as more complex transition effects.
Working around this theme of transitions, I started on ideas for other creative transition tools. I worked up 3 new designs: Channel Surf, Flicker Cut and Color Mosaic. In addition, we focused on scalability of existing products, making transition counterparts, eg. VHS & VHS Transition.
Carousel Transition mimics advancing to the next slide in an old slide projector. It transitions in and out of the same cross process color treatment used the effect version of the plugin. Additional slide projector assets were scanned and edited to fit seamlessly into an A/B transition.
Channel Blur Transition blurs each of the color channel channel separately for a unique chromatic effect. This was an idea described to me by a co-worker that I brought to life with code and equations.
Channel Surf was inspired by my tradition of watching horror movies during October. It seems to be a frequently used motif: a more analog feel of cutting in and out of news/TV/found footage. I add things like analog style distortion, skewing, analog TV noise, scrolling vertical hold and more. Not limited to scary movies, it’s a useful “quick cut” effect to get between clips.
Flicker Cut was an idea brought to me by the Product Manger of Universe at the time. Inspired from movie trailers and music videos, he imagined a tool that would be able to cut from a mix of A to B to black/white. Various patterns were designed, e.g. A/B/Black/A. I added various options to repeat the patterns and control how the transition landed to the final frame. I added different effects such as noise and color inversion to enhance the effect.
VHS Transition is the counterpoint to the uncomfortably popular VHS effect. Taking the same top-secret VHS formula, we captured new assets from VHS by physically damaging the hardware and VHS tapes while recording playback, getting some pronounced analog playback artifacts.
Color Mosaic Transition overlays a variety of colors in a mosaic pattern as it transitions between 2 clips. I wrote 90% of this in a plane ride between Portland and LAX after seeing similar album cover artwork, and I thought I would attempt to put something like this into motion.
Camera Shake Transition mimics a frenetic, wobbly camera shake while it transitions between clips. To save on processing speed, instead of using motion blur, the motion vector is calculated from the movement, and a light-weight directional blur is used.