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Thread: How to Blanking faces or car number plates ?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2005

    Default How to Blanking faces or car number plates ?

    Hi all ,
    very new to the game , really is my 12 yr old sons interest , I just try to help out as best i can and support him if possible such as if some of the descriptions are not to his understanding but im sure you know what 12 yr olds are like today , no everything really !!!

    and of course i am the cashpoint machine for tapes and discs etc

    He and I have just become very new to this forum and editing in general so appologies if this is in the wrong section.

    Anyway he has come to a snag and we came across your site from google
    whilst trying to find the answer to the dilema below .

    Site is pretty cool all round and one of the better ones for keeping things simple .

    So Im sure this is going to require some serious kit , but my son wants to make a fim and use some footage of an aircraft .

    But he would like to blend out / blur the company name from the aircraft and its registration number .

    the thing he wants is the same way they hide peoples faces in TV watchdog or car number plates on crime shows .

    So any ideas what is required , is it within the ability of the home film maker ?

    If its possible via software to do this can some one recommend which one please.

    Many thanks on behalf of myself and my son Nat


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Warsop, Nottinghamshire.
    Blog Entries


    Hi Gaz (and Nat), and welcome to the forums.

    I think the best place to start here, is for us to know what software (if any?) you are using to compile your movies at the moment.
    Once we know that, people with knowledge of your particular platform will probably be able to help.

    Good Luck!

  3. #3


    This is a generic, quick and dirty way to create the effect:

    1) First you need editing software with at least two video tracks (layers)

    2) Export as still of your video to act as a guide

    3) Draw around the area you want censored in black, leaving just the persons face, number plate etc showing

    4) Import this back into your editing application. Place above the video in the layer above the track in your timeline.

    5) Apply a luma matte to this still.

    6) Expand the still to cover the length of video you want to censor.

    7) Apply a blur or noise filter to the still.

    Key frame movement and size as necesary.
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  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2005

    Default Thanks for the reply

    The software is Pinnacle Studio 9+ ,

    We do have access to Adobe Premier , but looks way over the top for him for now so he is more happy with the ease of the studio .

    Marc, I believe that what you suggest can be done in studio 9 + so we are going through that for now

    But We may have sorted it out , ive found a piece of software at, that doesnt seem to be expensive , and seems to do the job .
    But if anyone has any other hints , all monies saved are well recieved towards something else .


  5. #5


    Here are some tutorials that may or may not work with you current editor. It may give you some inspiration and try the demo of the editor while you are at it, it's a big step up from Pinnacle Studio and easier and cheaper compared to Premiere.

    The last on isn't what you specifically asked for but it's a cool effect. Good luck,


  6. #6


    first of all i would like to say that ur website is very informative for all of us that are interested on videoediting.
    I would to ask how can i make the same effect (car numbers) with adobe premiere elements or adobe premiere pro.

  7. #7


    Have you considered Rotoscoping? Any graphical effect you could ever dream of can be achieved with Rotoscoping.

    It's midnight and I'm too tired to look for a guide on rotoscoping for you. Basically, it goes like this:

    1. Export your video as a set of still frames in BMP format.

    2. Open up each frame in Photoshop or whatever program you want; they will be numbered sequentially.

    3. Draw in the effects that you want using your photo editing program.

    4. Import all of the frames back into your video editor and set them all to be 1 frame long.

    5. Take the audio from the original, non-edited clip and place it where it should be for the rotoscoped clip (as the rotoscoped clip will have no sound; it's only a bunch of pictures!)

    6. The end!
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  8. #8


    thanx anyway! i ve found a tutorial for making this in adobe premiere!

  9. #9


    The rotoscoping advice is basically the same technique I used on my short film "Bullettime Twins", there's a simple tutorial about that on my website if you're interested. And on the topic of rotoscoping I suggest you try Wax a freeware program for all sorts of video effects including a rotoscoping tool. Works as a plug-in for some major video editing apps and as a stand-alone.

    Good luck,


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