Adobe After Effects - Film Look


In this tutorial, you will learn how to smoothen your video clips by using Adobe After Effects.

This is how the final view will look like. It has a pretty strong tint and low contrast; basically that’s what we want to change.

How to get that film look

To start, select your footage and drag it into new composition.

Then go to Effects, Colour Correction, then Levels.

There are plenty options available in Levels.

The graph describes the black and white colour combination of the footage. Far left area is Black and far right area is White.

Go to the far left corner and drag it in about half way between the first bar and the end.

Then you can have a dark kind of look in your footage. It depends on what you’re filming or what you filmed. It’s your choice.

Colour Correction

Next, go to Effects, Colour Correction, then Hue/Saturation.

You can manage colour combinations by using the Hue/Saturation option. Here, basically we are going to reduce the footage colours.

To maximize colours in your footage, increase the Master Saturation colour option, to minimize, decrease it all the way down.

Here you want to find it in between black, white and normal which will be around 47/30/40 depending on your mood or what you’re filming.

Special Effects

Next go to Layer, then New Solid. This option will add tint to your footage.

To change the tint, click on the colour and a colour pallet will appear.

Make sure to select far left corner colour in your colour pallet.

From the bottom left corner you can find three buttons. From these, you will find the Transfer Mode button. You can easily click F4 to activate this option. In this example, we’ll choose “Colour Burn” mode.

Click T to select Opacity option and drag it to something about 32% and then you will notice a film look. It just depends on your preference or what you’re shooting.

Now you can make your footage a little more professional.

Click on new layer, then new solid. Make it completely black and give a name for it. Here we can call it as SHADE.

Then go to Eclipse tool and go to the top left, drag all the way down to the bottom right. Make sure it’s kind of proportion around the edges.

Go to “mask 1” under the SHADE layer and you can either click “inverted” or “subtracted”, it’s your decision. As an example, inverted is chosen.

Now we’re going to click F for shade. Take it up to about 91 or 100, between about 90 and a 120 is good.

Now we’re going to click T for Opacity and bring down the Opacity to where you don’t really see that much of shade, 40/50 will be enough. Then you can see on the outside that there is some kind of shade of black.

If you don’t like the first tone colour that you picked, you can go to layer solid settings and just change the colour.

This is the quickest way to make your footage look like a film and this concludes the tutorial for Adobe After Effects.