FXHome, the creators of HitFilm 2, have recently released aplugins pack that contains over 130 of those plugins to be used in software packages like Adobe After Effects, Premiere Pro, Sony Vegas and Final Cut Pro. For me, that was exciting news because I mainly use After Effects and Premiere Pro for my daily video work and having a large set of new plugins to play with gives me a lot of opportunities to create some cool VFX!
I did receive a free copy of the plugins pack to test them out, but if you were to purchase the pack, it would cost you $499 USD. While that isn't necessarily 'cheap', it contains a lot of effects that are similar to some standalone plugins that might set you back a couple of hundred dollars each. So is it worth it? In this post I will take you through what is included in the HitFilm 2 plugins pack so you can decide for yourself!
Once you've installed the HitFilm 2 plugins pack, you will see a large number of plugins appear in your video editing or visual effects compositing software. Here is a screenshot from the Effects & Presets panel in Adobe After Effects!
All of the plugins are organised into categories and there are plenty of them. I won't provide a complete list here (for that you can hop over to theofficial HitFilm 2 plugins page), but I do want to go through a few of my favourite effects and demonstrate why I enjoy using them.
One of the effects I was very excited to find in the HitFilm 2 plugins pack is the 'Anomorphic Lens Flare' effect. You can find the plugin under the 'Lights & Flares' tab.
I won't go into detail here on what exactly anomorphic footage is, but you will recognise the very distinct types of lens flares. Lens flare effects in anomorphic footage usually appear as horizontal or vertical streaks across the highlights in your video. Here is a scene from myZombie Hunter VFX Short Film with the default Anomorphic Lens Flare effect from the HitFilm 2 plugins pack applied.
Just like any other effect, the plugins from the HitFilm 2 pack come with their own set of effect controls that you can tweak to your liking. The anomorphic lens flare effect has controls for the intensity levels, colour and the number of streaks generated.
Tweaking the settings a little bit, we can customise the look and feel of the lens flares to create some interesting looking effects.
If anomorphic lens flares aren't your thing, the HitFilm 2 plugins pack also contains a plugin to generate standard lens flares. You can find the 'Light Flares' effect in the 'Lights & Flares' tab of the plugins.
The Light Flares effect will generate a standard lens flare on top of the layer. You can reposition the lens flare anywhere in your scene simply by dragging its centre location around.
Of course you can also freely tweak the look and feel of the lens flare effect. While the Lens Flare effect from the HitFilm 2 plugins pack does not quite give you the full level of control as theamazing Optical Flares plugin from Video Copilot, it comes with a pretty large set of neat preset looks that you can choose from and customise.
I did like the 'Anomorphic Halo' preset. Once you've selected a preset you can change the parameters to control the intensity, scale and hotspot position of the lens flare effect.
Here is the customised Anomorphic Halo lens flare effect applied to the Zombie Hunter clip.
Let's move on to generating some cool procedural fire!