Using masks in Imerge Pro | Part 2

by birtanpublished on September 10, 2020

Hi, I’m Axel from FXhome, and this is the second part of our series on Masking in Imerge Pro. So if you haven’t watched the first video yet, I encourage you to check it out too. There we discussed Gradient Masks, Luminance Masks and Area Masks, and some general masking concepts. This video will look at Color Selection Masks, Vector Masks, and Image Alpha Masks. But first, let’s take a look at the Insert Menu. This is a very convenient way to skip the mask menus and create new masks. Press CTRL+I, for Insert, or CMD+I if you're on a Mac, and the insert menu opens. Its contents will vary based on the current selection,

But if you have a layer or an effect selected, then layer masks and effects masks can be accessed directly via the menu that pops up. If you are looking for ways to speed up your workflow, the Insert Menu is a great one. Alright, now getting into the images. This image I captured on the Dungeness River, looking back toward the Olympic Mountains. An early snowfall came while the autumn colors were still on the trees, and I want to enhance those colors a bit to highlight their contrast with the white snow. So I can use a Color

Selection mask to isolate the adjustment to those colors. I’ll add an Exposure effect, and adjust the colors a bit to start with. Some of you might be thinking, why not just use Color Adjustment and select those colors for adjustment? And that is definitely one way to do it. Imerge Pro is all about giving you options, and there is no right or wrong way to make a selection. Use whichever method works best for you. In this case, the trees contain oranges, yellows, reds, and greens, and all of those colors look pretty good with

This adjustment, its really just the blue in the sky and mountains that I don’t want to boost. So, I opted to approach this color adjustment backwards. Rather than boosting specific colors, I boosted everything, and now will remove the adjustment from one specific color; blue. With the effect selected, hit CTRL+I and under Effects Masks, add an Image Color Selection mask to the effect. Then, select the range of blue colors. The range of colors selected can be adjusted by dragging the edges of the selection directly on the

Spectrum display. Invert the mask, so it removes the effect from blues, and leaves it applied to all other colors. Vector masks allow you to draw any shape you need, to create manual selections. One instance where this is useful is for creating garbage mattes, in greenscreen work. This image, for example, has a fair bit of extraneous data beyond the edges of the greenscreen. But if we apply a vector mask to the layer, we can quickly draw a shape that removes all those areas from the image. Click at each location

Where you want to add a control point, and a vector line connects the points to create the perimeter of the mask. Click and drag to create a curved point. You can also use the buttons in the controls of a selected mask to convert any point from a corner to a curve, or to break a completed path at the selected point. Once the mask is completed, apply your key to remove the greenscreen. Vector masks can also be used to make more detailed, specific selections, which we will look at further in a minute. The final kind

Of mask, which only applies to Layers, is an Image Alpha mask. This is a mask you probably won’t use very often, but when you do need it, it's very important. Image alpha masks are critical for cases where parts of your subject have been removed by the key, and need to be restored and then have spill suppression applied. In cases where you need to restore a part of your subject that is meant to be green, like in this image with a green tie, then you can just apply an effect mask to the key effect and you will be fine. But in

This image, the reflective surface of our product is picking up too much green reflection at the edges, and being removed. So we need to restore those areas, and then suppress the green to make them silver again. And that is where an Image Alpha mask comes in. So first, we apply an image alpha mask to the layer. Then, open the Mode menu and set the masks to Replace. This allows us to add more masks, and the subsequent masks will replace areas based on the alpha channel of the original image file. We need to add a

Few vector masks now, carefully following the edge of the product, so in order to see the edges, let’s first disable the Chroma Key effect. Now, the edges are visible, so we can draw the masks accurately. Keep them precise along the edge, but inside we can just create a quick shape well inside of the problem area. In the controls for the vector mask, reduce the Softness all the way, to give it a hard edge. Now when we turn the Chroma Key back on, that area is restored from the original image, and then the green

Is suppressed to give it the correct color. So, regardless of what you need to mask, there are masking tools in Imerge Pro to make the task easy. Whether you need to remove parts of a layer, or limit an effect to specific areas of a layer, masks are a tool you will be using a lot, so its good to be familiar with the mask options. So hopefully this tutorial has been helpful, and thanks for watching. And if you haven’t seen the first part, make sure you check that out as well, to learn about the other kinds of masks that are available

In Imerge Pro.

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