Photoshop Animation - New Video Project

Photoshop Animation - New Video Project
In this second Photoshop tutorial, we will start building our template for a Facebook video cover, that can be customized for your clients. Using templates can save designers a lot of time, as it is easy to replace the placeholder text and graphics for each of your client’s needs.

Our first step is to add the placeholder graphics and text design elements in to the Layers panel. Once we have all the assets ready to be animated, we will open Photoshop’s video timeline and add the animation magic. As you can see (see screenshot), we will have 11 layers when we are done. Photos will be on the bottom three layers with the text layers above.

Start a New Document

As with any Photoshop project, our first step is to create a new document. We will use a video preset for a Broadcast HD 1080 project with a Frame Rate of 29.97. Once we have our new document, we can change the default width and height (1920 x 1080 pixels) to our Facebook video cover dimensions. The suggested dimensions for the Facebook video cover are 820 x 462 pixels, as this will look good on both desktop and mobile.

Let’s start a new video project in Photoshop.

  1. Open Photoshop and click Create New (see screenshot).

  2. From the Film & Video presets, click the HDTV 1080p preset.

  3. Click Create.

    We need to reduce the preset pixels size of 1920 x 1080 to the Facebook video cover dimensions.

  4. Click Image - Image Size (see screenshot), set the following in the Image Size window and click OK.

    Width 820 pixels
    Height 462 pixels
    Resolution 72 ppi

    Now we can add the first placeholder graphic layer.

  5. Right-click on the default Background layer and choose Layer from Background from the pop-up menu.

  6. Rename this layer to [Background Image Here].

    This [Background Image Here] text will tell the template user to place a background graphic or photo on this layer and we can make it easier by converting this layer to a smart object. But first we need to fill the layer with a medium gray color, which will act as a placeholder. The user will replace this with their client's photo.

  7. Set the Foreground color to 666666 and use the Paint Bucket tool to fill the layer with this color.

Why did we use the gray color. With the medium gray background color, we will be able to see both light and dark colored text above.

At this point, we are ready to create our first smart object in our template. Save your work.

Note: The Facebook video cover will be displayed at 820 x 312 pixels on desktops (see screenshot) and 640 x 360 pixels on smartphones (see screenshot). So Facebook suggest placing your most important information in the center of the video cover.

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