Make it Snow with Continuum Complete in Apple Final Cut Pro

snow plugin

What good is a snow effect if snow does not stick to horizontal surfaces in the shot? The BCC Snow filter can do that and provide many other mesmerizing looks for your winterly scenes. BCC Snow is part of just about every Boris product. Whether you are using Continuum Complete or Graffiti or RED or FX, BCC Snow is available in the Generator section of the package. It works especially well with the text captions where snow accumulates on top of the letters creating a natural outdoor look.

In this tutorial I will attempt to create such an effect straight in the Final Cut timeline. The task may sound challenging since Final Cut is a video editing application. But BCC filters have special features that turn it into a powerful compositing system. My main steps will be:

1. create a new sequence with the text layer as the only object in it
2. composite the "text sequence" over my winter shot in the final sequence
3. apply the Snow filter on the text sequence clip in the final sequence
4. drag and drop the text sequence into the interaction layer well of the Snow filter


Download the media for this tutorial »


1. Create a new sequence and drop in a Title 3D generator from Video Generators/Boris category. Under Controls, click on the Title 3D banner to open the text entry window.

final cut pro tutorial

2. In the text Entry window type the lower third title of your choice. Since it going to be covered by snow not much styling is necessary, perhaps just a subtle drop shadow from the shadow tab.

final cut pro tutorial

Done with my text! Hit the apply button to land back in Final Cut timeline. With the Controls tab still open I need to adjust the position of the text to bring it to the usual lower third place on the screen. A bit of guesswork is required here since I do not yet see my background. But I can adjust that later.

snow filter

New sequence. This time it's the final sequence where my background footage will reside. Drop the Text Sequence from the previous step on top of the background clip.

snow plugin

Now, to achieve my effect I need to apply the BCC Snow filter on the Text Sequence clip. The filter is found in Video Filters/BCC 5 Generators. Note that it is under Filters instead of Generators. Drop it on top of the Text Sequence.

Tip: Option double-click on the Text Sequence to load it in the Viewer window. Regular clicking will switch to Text Sequence in the Timeline.

Now you should see the BCC Snow Filter in the Filters Tab. Expand the Interaction group to reveal the Stick to Layer well.

FCP effect

The snow is starting to appear in the Canvas window. Adjust the snow amount to your liking.

video snow effect

Now the final step of making the snow accumulate on the text. Drag and drop the Text Sequence from the Browser window onto the Stick to Layer well and observe the desired effect.

snow plugin

Tip: to further adjust the position of the text, go back to the Text Sequence, change the position of the Text 3D generator and then return to the Final Sequence. I found that I needed to drop the Text Sequence on the Stick to Layer well one more time to tell Final Cut that the well content changed.

Enjoy the snow!

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