If you watch a lot of videos on YouTube, chances are you've seen several little camera tricks that make you wonder how they're done, especially if you want to use them in your own work, like music videos and commercials. Luckily, filmmaker Peter McKinnon shows you how to pull off three very simple, popular effects, including the classic Superman clothes-change, the wormhole effect, and a really interesting dolly zoom that you can create in post.

You may not get a whole lot of mileage out of these effects in your films, but if you do a lot of commercials, music videos, or vlogs, you can use them to add a little prestige and, I don't know, coolness to your work. The great thing about each one of these effects, too, is that they don't require a whole lot of experience in post. Most of the work can be done with a single setting, good timing, or a little masking. 

Superman clothes-change effect

Most of you probably know, more or less, how to pull off this effect. Really, it's just a matter of lining up your subject accurately enough to hide the cut, and then, as McKinnon suggests, dragging the "snap" sound from the first clip over the second clip.

Portal effect

This effect requires a little bit more know-how, particularly when it comes to masking and keyframing. (But it's still really easy!) After stacking your clips on top of each other on your timeline, the clip on the top track will hide the clip on the bottom track. This is obviously no good. What you have to do is mask out the section of the top clip that hides the bit of the frame you want to see from the bottom clip. Then, add a bit of feathering to hide any seams. After that, you'll need to add some keyframes to move the mask out of the frame so you don't end up with a huge black square on one side.

Dolly zoom

If you've ever watched Vertigo, Jaws, or any number of horror films, you're probably well aware of dolly zooms. You can achieve this effect in-camera by dollying out while zooming in (or dollying in while zooming out), but you can also do it in post. All you have to do is replace the lens zoom with a digital zoom and boom, you've got a trippy looking effect.

Source: Peter McKinnon