Fixing Focus in Post with Adobe Premiere

by EvanJPalmer

I’m not a very good film maker… yet.

I’m bad.

I went out to shoot with some friends – sixteen hours away by car – and when I reviewed the footage at home (yes, I waited until I got home to review) I found that one of my main shots was not in focus like I had expected.

I’m sure there are lots of other things wrong with the shot, but hey, it’s all learning!

Anyway Here’s the original shot (poke the image with your mouse to upsize):
Without Sharpen

You can see the actor’s melon, in particular his hair, is not in focus at all. Check out his poorly focused shoes too. I was bummed but luckily a friend of mine told me to try the “Sharpen Tool” in Premiere.

I was sure this wouldn’t work, because I mean, if the information isn’t there, it’s just not frikken there. We can’t fix it in post. I mean, that’s like in CSI when they zoom in on a blurry face on a security camera and all of a sudden we can see the mole on the murderer’s right cheek aaaaaaaaaaand he’s guilty! Welll…IT DOESN’T WORK LIKE THAT!!! Right!

… right?

Luckily I’m a big dummy, and it does work like that.

Here is the same frame with the sharpen applied (click for embiggification):

With Sharpen

Note the actors shoes and shoe laces, and his hair. Not perfect, but good enough for an amateur, like me.

Now I know why Adobe’s slogan is “Making Dreams Come True”…. at least that should be their slogan.

For more information on using the sharpen tool, give this a click!