Adding text to your video can up its professional value immensely. Lower thirds, titles, and end credits all bring helpful context to your storyline. Plus, they’re pretty easy to incorporate in post-production; you can do it all directly in Final Cut Pro X (FCPX). In this tutorial, we’ll walk you through the process.

Let’s begin.

How to place your text

Step 1: Drag your playhead to where you want to place your text.

Step 2: Go to the Titles and Generators sidebar. If it’s not already displayed, choose Window > Go To > Titles or Generators. This will open up the panel.

Next, you’ll see pre-made titles, lower thirds, credits, etc. You can use one of these presets or make your own. 

Step 3: For the pre-made titles, preview the graphics by scanning over the thumbnail. Double-click to insert it into your timeline. Then, adjust the length by pulling on the clip itself. 

How to customize your text

Step 4: In your storyline, double-click on the text clip to open the Text Inspector panel. This is where you can change the text’s appearance, including color and simple effects like glows and drop shadows.

Pro-tip: None of the presented options will change the way the text animates, so you’ll want to keep that in mind when you make your initial text selection.

If you need your title to be completely customizable, effects and all, go for the Custom title. You’ll find that hidden in the pre-made titles.

How to put it all together

Step 5: Now, add the title to your sequence. Double-click the Custom title option. And to customize, double-click the title in your sequence.

Step 6: Finally, add effects and transitions, if you want ‘em. For example, to add a crossfade, click the edge of a clip in the storyline. Choose Edit > Add Cross Dissolve (or press Command-T).

If your title design needs go beyond FCPX capabilities, you can make them in other programs (like Adobe Illustrator) and import them to your piece. But for simple text and titles, the steps we’ve outlined above should have you covered.

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