Lower thirds are a great way to add a little personality and pizazz to your videos. But if you don't have any design experience, it may seem like a daunting task.
Luckily, with a little bit of creativity and some free online resources, anyone can create a Lower Thirds template that can be reused over and over again. For those new to lower thirds, they are simply graphic overlays that appear over the bottom third of your video. They typically include a person's name, title, and other relevant information, such as a website or contact info.
There are endless ways to design lower thirds, but in this article, we're going to focus on creating a simple yet versatile template that can be used in various videos.
Things You'll Need:
Let's start with the basics. You'll need a few things before you get started:
- A computer with an internet connection
- Adobe After Effects (or you can use another video editing software)
- A video editing program like iMovie, Premiere Pro, or Final Cut Pro
- A willingness to have some fun!
Now that you have everything you need, let's get started.
Creating Your Template
The first step is to launch Adobe After Effects and create a new composition. You can do this by selecting the File menu and selecting New > Composition.
Once your composition is created, you'll want to add a text layer. This can be done by going to the Layer menu and selecting New > Text.
Now it's time to start designing your lower thirds template! Begin by typing out the text you want to appear in your lower thirds. This can be anything from a person's name and title to a website or contact info.
Add Graphic Elements
Next, you'll want to add some graphic elements to your Lower Thirds template. This could be anything from a simple line or shape to a more complex logo or icon. You can find free graphic elements online or create your own using a program like Adobe Illustrator.
Once you have your text and graphic elements in place, it's time to start animating. Lower Thirds templates typically include some basic animation, such as fading in and out or moving from left to right. You can use keyframes in After Effects to create these animations.
If you're unfamiliar with keyframes, they essentially allow you to create a path for your animation. So, for example, if you wanted your text to fade in, you would create a keyframe at the beginning of your composition and another at the end. Then, you would adjust the opacity of your text layer so that it's completely transparent at the first keyframe and opaque at the second.
You can use keyframes to create all sorts of different animations, so feel free to experiment.
Designing for Different Aspects Ratios
One of the great things about Lower Thirds templates is that they can be used in various videos. However, you may need to adjust your template depending on the size and aspect ratio of the video you're working with.
For example, if you're creating a Lower Thirds template for a 16:9 video, you'll want to ensure that your template is the same size. Conversely, if you're creating a Lower Thirds template for a 4:3 video, you'll want to ensure that your template is also 4:3.
The easiest way to do this is to change the size of your composition in After Effects. You can do this by going to the Composition menu and selecting Composition Settings.
This will bring up a dialog box where you can enter the width and height of your composition. Simply change the values to match the video size you're working with and click OK.
Now, you may need to make some additional adjustments to your template, such as repositioning your text or graphic elements. But once you have your template set up for the correct size and aspect ratio, you're ready to use it in any video.
Choose Your Colours
One of the great things about Lower Thirds templates is that they can be easily customised to match your brand or video style. A quick way to do this is to simply change the colours of your text and graphic elements.
To change the colour of your text, simply select the layer and then click on the "Character" panel. From here, you can select a new colour for your text.
To change the colour of your graphic elements, select the layer and click on the "Swatches" panel. From here, you can select a new colour for your graphic element.
You can also change the colour of your Lower Thirds template by adding a tint or gradient effect. To do this, select the layer and go to the "Effects" panel. From here, you can select an effect such as "Tint" or "Gradient Overlay."
This can be tricky, but choosing two complementary colours is a good rule of thumb. Complementary colors are colors that are opposite each other on the color wheel. For example, blue and orange are complementary colors.
Apply Your Template
Once you're happy with your Lower Thirds template, it's time to apply it to your video. This can be done in many different ways, but the easiest is to simply export your template as a video file.
To do this, go to the Composition menu and select Add to Render Queue. You can choose your export settings from here and then click on the "Render" button.
You can simply import your Lower Thirds template as a video file if you're using a video editing program like iMovie, Premiere Pro, or Final Cut Pro. Once it's imported, you can add it to your timeline and position it over your video.
And that's it! You now know how to create a Lower Thirds template that you can reuse anywhere. So get out there and start creating!
If you want to get really creative, you can use keyframes to animate your Lower Thirds template. For example, you could create a template that fades in from left to right. Or you could create a template that slides up from the bottom of the screen.
Keyframes can be added by going to the "Animation" tab and clicking on the "Add Keyframe" button.
Change The Duration
You can also change the duration of your Lower Thirds template by going to the Composition menu and selecting Composition Settings. From here, you can change the " Duration" value. If you want your Lower Thirds template to be 5 seconds long, simply change the value to "5 sec."
Consider Adding Effects For A More Professional Look
Don't forget that you can always add effects to your lower thirds template. For example, you could add a drop shadow or a bevel and emboss effect. To do this, go to the "Effects" panel and select an effect from the list.
If you want to create a more complex Lower Thirds template, consider adding an opacity mask or using a track matte. These techniques can be used to create some really cool effects. You can also add a drop shadow or stroke to your text layers to make them stand out more.
Consider Locking Your Layers
If you plan on making many changes to your Lower Thirds template or just want to ensure that your Lower Thirds template is always in the correct position, you may want to consider locking your layers. This will prevent you from accidentally moving or deleting your layers. To lock a layer, simply click on the "Lock" icon in the upper left corner of the layer.
This will prevent you from accidentally moving or resizing your template.
With these tips, you should be well on your way to creating amazing lower thirds templates that you can use in any video. So get out there and start creating. The options are endless.
With the right skills and some creativity, you can make a template that looks amazing and is easy to use. However, if you don't have the time or skills to create a template from scratch, plenty of lower thirds templates are available online. Simply search for the "Lower Thirds template," and you'll find a wide variety of options.