Lyric Gradient Matte
The Lyric Gradient Matte produces a linear or radial matte whose range and orientation on the screen can be interactively adjusted. The gradient can be linear or gaussian and can also be dithered to reduce banding.
It can be used as a compositing mask to produce broad, gentle blending or as a filter mask to add graduated tones, such as a warming tint over the sky on an horizon shot, or to add a graduated depth-of-field blur to a long shot. Since the start and end points of the gradient can be keyframed, it's possible to animate the gradient to follow a moving shot.
The Lyric Gradient Matte filter includes a set of matte and output controls that are common across all Lyric matte filters. For a detailed description of these controls, please see the Matte Common Controls documentation.
For background information on mattes and their uses in Final Cut, please refer to the Lyric Matte Primer.
The Gradient Type dropdown menu chooses between a linear or radial blend.
The Start and End point controls let you define where the gradient starts and ends on the screen. For radial blends, the Start defines the center of opacity and the end defines the outer edge of opacity. For linear blends, the Start defines the opaque edge and the End defines the transparent edge. The best way to work interactively with these controls is to apply the filter to a clip in the timeline, place the playhead inside the clip so it is visible in the Canvas, the open the clip's Filter tab in the Viewer. With this setup, you can click the Start or End control and see a red cross on the Canvas at it's current position, the click and drag in the Canvas to move the point as needed. Often, temporarily checking the Show Matte checkbox or sending the Matte Output to RGB can help when positioning the gradient.
Checking the Dither checkbox applies a noise dither to the gradient, reducing banding. Checking Gaussian causes the gradient to follow a Gaussian curve, which basically makes the starting and ending transitions more gradual. The difference is shown in the waveform displays below for the radial matte depicted in the example above.
The Matte Control and Output sections are common controls that are documented on the Matte Common Controls page.