How to use Proportion Helper

Proportion Helper assists your scene composition and balance by providing practical guidelines to arrange elements.
 
Setup

Unlike the other Video Essentials, Proportion Helper is an intermediary tool which isn't meant to appear in your final results. Select a Shape, reposition it as desired, then click Disable to hide it when not needed.

  • The Shape dropdown allows you to choose from different guidelines. None of these are concrete rules, so use them to shape your creativity:
    • Rule of Thirds divides the image into nine equal parts consisting of two equally-spaced horizontal lines and two equally-spaced vertical lines. Framing subject matter of interest at the intersections is a good rule of thumb, and it's highly common.
    • Golden Section divides the image into the ratio called "phi", approximately 1.618, and long called the "golden ratio" by many artists. In addition to footage, layered elements such as text can be positioned along the lines to be aesthetically pleasing.
    • Golden Spiral shows a swirl, also based on phi, where elements can be spaced along the path. Some natural phenomena, like shells and pinecones, approximate this form.
    • Spiral Sections shows boxes aligned with each curve of the Golden Spiral. Try having an out-of-focus background along the larger curve while increasingly nested details are within the denser boxes — the results may surprise you.
    • Golden Triangles divides the image into an asymmetrical, diagonal arrangement. Again, the intersections can be used for subject matter of interest, the difference here being that diagonals can suggest dynamic motion, such as a person's head tilted forward in a key shot.
    • Diagonals draws a simple-yet-effective set of intersecting lines originating from the four corners of the image. This is also a quick way to see the center of the image and how elements are balanced in relation to it.
  • Center sets the proportion shape's position.
  • Flip Horizontal flips the shape horizontally. This has no visible effect if the shape is symmetrical.
  • Flip Vertical flips the shape vertically. This has no visible effect if the shape is symmetrical.
  • Disable hides the shape. Alternatively, you can disable Proportion Helper via your NLE's own controls.
  • Lowering Scale reduces the shape's maximum dimensions. This is useful if you want to focus on a specific area of the image, like a picture-in-picture, or in conjunction with the accompanying Split Screen effect.
  • Angle rotates the shape, which is useful if the horizon isn't level or another case where the image is inclined. It also allows you to explore diagonals more, which as suggested earlier, can add dynamics to your scene.
  • Increasing Thickness makes the shape thicker, which is easier to see on higher resolutions.
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