How to Add Video Effects

Last Updated on Mar. 8, 2024 – by David Morgan
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how to apply video effects

Want to transport yourself across the universe or create an inspiring double exposure video to share with your followers? If so, you are going to need to learn how to create video effects. Don't know how to add visual effects to videos, don’t worry—we’ll show you how!

All you need is a proper video editor like PowerDirector. It provides all of the tools to create videos with stunning special effects.

Want to learn more about the most popular video effects? Check out our list of the Top 10 coolest visual effects.

  1. How to Add Effects to Videos on Windows, Mac, Android and iOS
  2. Conclusion: Start Using Video Editing Effects with PowerDirector

How to Add Effects to Videos on Windows, Mac, Android and iOS

It's easy to add cool effects to your videos with PowerDirector. Let’s take a look at some of the most popular ways to do it:

How to Add Special Effects to a Video with Drag & Drop Effects

We are going to start off by looking at adding video effects with PowerDirector on your PC or Mac.

Add special effects on PowerDirector

Drag and drop functionality makes adding effects in PowerDirector a breeze. You simply drag the effect that you want from the “Effects Room”  and drop it onto a video clip on the timeline. Then, you can customize the effect exactly the way you want. PowerDirector’s drag and drop effects fall under several categories, including blending, color and style.

As the name implies, PowerDirector’s style effects give your video unique treatments. For instance, you can add a kaleidoscope effect or make your video look like a series of burst photos. Color Presets and Color LUT  resemble the filters you might see on apps like Instagram. Blending effects let you add lens flares and light leaks.

If you want to use more than one of these video effects at a time, you can combine them for a totally new look by adding more than one to a single clip.

Use more than one video effects

You can also add particle effects like weather events, such as rain, snow, and lightning. These effects are dragged and dropped directly from the “Particle Room” to the timeline.

Let’s take a look at drag and drop effects in action.

Add Visual Effects Like Double Exposure Effect to a Video

Let’s now take a look at how easy it is to create video effects on an Android or iOS device with the PowerDirector app.

One popular type of visual effect is double exposure, achieved in PowerDirector using blending modes. Double exposure entails just what it sounds like: displaying two clips at once, one on top of the other with different opacities, to create a new video clip. This process often results in a surreal viewing experience for your audience.

To add a double exposure effect to your video, follow these steps:

  1. Drag the photo or video clip that you want to be on top from the Media Room to the timeline.
  2. Drag a second clip to the track below.
  3. Click the pencil tool in the bottom left corner and select “Blending.”
  4. Choose your blending mode. Good examples for double exposure include “overlay,” “screen,” and “lighten.”

You can also do some extra things to further customize your double exposure effect:

  • Adjust the brightness, contrast, and saturation of the bottom clip to help it show through the top clip.
  • Alternatively, lower the opacity of the top layer.
  • Use shapes—for example, an ellipse—plus an inverse mask effect to remove the top layer in a particular area.
  • Use keyframes if you want each layer to have a different opacity at different times.

Add Special Effects Using Chroma Key

Whenever you see a special effect in a movie, there’s a good chance that a green screen is involved. You don’t actually have to own a green screen in order to create similar effects when working with PowerDirector—you just need a single colored background. That said, green typically works best because we don’t naturally see this color in human skin tones.

With the chroma key effect, you can recreate any background or scene as long as you film against a single color. You can transport the subject to a location you can’t access in real life, make it look like you filmed two characters simultaneously instead of separately, or make things become invisible. The possibilities are endless.

To use the chroma key tool in PowerDirector, follow these steps:

  1. Drag your desired background from the Media Room onto the timeline.
  2. Drop your video clip with the solid colored background onto the top track.
  3. Double click your top track to open PiP Designer, and check the box next to “Chroma Key.”
  4. Select the color from your clip that you want removed with the Chroma Key eyedropper..

If necessary:

  1. Adjust the chroma key color range.
  2. Denoise the video clip to remove variations of brightness.
  3. Reposition the remaining portion of your top layer on the background.

Add Effects to Your Videos to Make Exciting Transitions

You rarely ever shoot an entire video in one nonstop clip. Therefore, you need to connect the clips using transitions.

Transitions vary greatly, from basic cuts to elaborate dissolve patterns. Popular types of transitions include:

  • Dissolve - One shot gradually transforms into the next.
  • Distortion - A distortion can involve several different types of movements: swirling, zooming out, or flipping like pages of a book, for instance.
  • Fade in/fade out - The shot becomes visible or invisible gradually.
  • Geometric - The next clip appears over the previous one in a particular pattern of shapes—circles, arrows, blocks, you name it.
  • Wipe - The first shot moves from one side of the frame to the other, revealing the next shot.

To add transition effects to your video, follow these steps:

  1. Go to the Transitions Room by clicking on the icon of the screen with the lightning bolt on it in the left side bar.
  2. Click on any transition to preview it.
  3. When you find a transition you like, drag and drop it between any two video clips on the track.
  4. Adjust the transition’s duration by dragging its start and end points. You can also open the “transition settings” window by double-clicking on the transition.

Transitions help you do a number of things in your videos, including:

  • Move to the next scene without an abrupt cut
  • Switch between points of view
  • Indicate flashbacks or jumps forward in time
  • Alter the tone or mood of a shot
  • Change the pace of the video
  • Add more style to your video

Conclusion: Start Using Video Effects with PowerDirector

As you can see, adding professional-grade effects to your videos isn’t above your video editing skill set with PowerDirector. When you add video effects, you’ll engage your audience in a way that basic video clips simply won’t do. 

So, what have we learned about using video editing effects? Let’s take a moment to review some key points:

  • Using video effects makes your videos appear more professional and interesting to watch.
  • PowerDirector provides you with easy-to-use drag and drop effects, which allow you to add filters, weather, and other special effects by dropping the effect onto the timeline.
  • Blending modes for multiple layers help you create intriguing effects in your videos, such as a double exposure effect.
  • When you film using a green screen or any other plain background, you can use PowerDirector’s chroma key feature to insert any background you wish.
  • PowerDirector offers a wide range of transition effects, including a variety of fades, dissolves, distortions, wipes, and geometric patterns.

PowerDirector has so many video effects that we can’t possibly cover them in depth all in one article. If you want to learn more about video effects, check out this comprehensive guide, How to Edit with Effects to Create Cool Videos.

Are you ready to start adding snazzy effects to your videos? Download PowerDirector from CyberLink for your computer or the PowerDirector app for iPhone or Android today!

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