Short Cuts #16: DIY User Effects

By David Winter
Jun 5, 2023
2 minute read


DIY User Effects


We've all been there. You've spent an hour crafting the perfect black white, soft focus, hard contrast flashback filter. The settings are just right, the look is perfect, and for one small, fleeting moment you know happiness.


Then you remember that there are 47 other clips that need the exact same effects and settings, and regret starts to set in. You're going to have to manually recreate the effect on those 47 clips, and it's going to take ages.

If only there was a better way.


Well, good news for you friend. There is! and that better way is DIY User Effects!


Getting set up


So, the first thing you need to do is make some effects! Do whatever ones you want, go wild with it. The important thing is to have all the effects built up that you'd like to become new DIY user effects, and all of their settings set to how you want them to be.

Once that's done, make sure you're still in the VFX tab, and then in the settings box, click the 3 dots in the top right corner. From there, choose 'create a template from segment effects', and a pop up will appear.


In this pop-up, you can name your effect, choose what VFX category to add it to, what subcategory to you want it listed under, and choose whether you want it added to your favourite effects or not. You can also give it a description, just in case you end up making loads and need a reminder of what it does.


Once that's all done, just hit save to create your effect.


Your effect will now exist inside the section you've added it to. If you selected User, then you will notice a new User tab has been added.


How to use your DIY User Effect


Functionally, the DIY User Effect works the same as every other effect. You can either drag and drop it onto the clip you want it on, or you can click on the clip first, and then double click the DIY user effect you want to apply.

You can also add a new video track, and then drag the effect down onto it. This will create an effect track where the DIY user effect appears as though it's a clip that you can extend or shrink. Any footage on a video track underneath this effects clip will be affected by the effect as though it had been applied directly to that clip.

This allows you to apply the effect to multiple clips at once quickly and easily.

DIY user effect on an effects track in Lightworks


More Short Cuts


If you've found this guide useful and are looking for some other cool things you can do inside Lightworks, you can find all of our previous Short Cuts episodes here:

Short Cuts #15: Video Inside Text Inside Lightworks

Short Cuts #14: Time Travel Through Your Edit with Milestones

Short Cuts #13: Restore Deleted Footage or Sequences

Short Cuts #12: Get Creative with the Rolling Title Effect in Lightworks

Short Cuts #11: Editing Video for Social Media in the Correct Aspect Ratio

Short Cuts #10: Speed Up Editing with Proxies

Short Cuts #8 & 9: Save Time Rendering Video

Short Cuts #7: The Lost Episode — Speed Up Your Edit with Ranged Markers

Short Cuts #6: The Key to Keyframes in Lightworks

Short Cuts #5: How to Backup and Restore Video Edits in Lightworks

Short Cuts #4: How to use LUTs (and five free horror movie LUTs to download)

Short Cuts #3: How to do Picture in Picture in Lightworks

Short Cuts #2: Cloud Editing: Get Footage from Your Phone to Lightworks. Fast

Short Cuts #1.: Making a Freeze Frame in Lightworks