4 cool tips to create endless light leak variations. April 03 2013

Here at LightLeakLove we want you to get the most bang for your buck with our products!

This is why we have compiled 4 tips below that will empower you to use your light leaks in refreshing ways, giving you more opportunities to impress with your next edit.

1. Flip and flop

There is a really great light leak effect you love - the only problem is that the light leak appears from the wrong side of the screen, obscuring the subject of the shot.

how to flop in final cut pro.

Instead of trying to find another light leak for the job you can simply flop the shot (horizontally rotate - e.g. right becomes left). The same goes for flipping (e.g. top becomes bottom).



2. Color Correction

Don't like the color of one of your light leaks? Wish it was a cooler blue to match your edit, or a warmer orange? Well don't accept defeat just because the light leak isn't the colour you want…change it! Using the color correction tool in your editing or image software you can make endless variations to the light leak colors.

how to grade light leaks and film burns in FCP

Simply sliding the hue to a different color can be very effective as well.

Color Correction tool in Final Cut Pro

3. Luminance

Another great way to manipulate your light leak overlays and transitions is to change the luminance (the light and dark levels).

Before we discuss that, let me tell you a little bit about the screen composite mode.

When you select the screen composite mode, which will likely be the majority of the time (though once again…experiment!), what you are doing is telling your software to disregard parts of the image layer based on its luminosity, more specifically - the amount of black in the image.

Using Luminosity with film burns.

When you apply this to a light leak it makes anything black completely transparent, and anything white completely opaque, with the varying degrees in between creating the beautiful composite you see in your video.


If you want to reduce how visible a light leak is, one way to do it is to increase the amount of black in the image (remembering black becomes completely transparent).

This can be done by using the color correction tool in your edit software.

Using FCP to improve light leak effects.

You can also go the other way and make the light leak more prevalent in your video by increasing the mids and high levels of white. This is a great solution for making a more washed out light leak, which for example, would work in creating a vintage look.

4. The need for…speed.

Last but not least, don't forget to play with the speed of your light leak overlays and transitions. All editing software (After Effects, Avid, Final Cut, Premiere etc.) should give you some control over the speed of your clips.

Speed can be great in creating a more manic, aggressive and energetic light leak effect (imagine a rock band's music video), whereas slowing a light leak down might help to create a more relaxed, chilled vibe.

There you have it, 4 tips to help you experiment with your light leak purchase.


We want you to get the most bang for your buck out of your light leaks, and experimenting definitely allows you to do just that.


Don't have any light leaks but want to give these tips a try?

We suggest you have a look at LightFree!


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Crystal Collection
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Cheers and light it up! Charlie @ lightleaklove.com


Check out our royalty free, video light leak collections here.