Free Video Overlays

70+ Free Video Overlays For Filmmakers

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If you are looking to add depth and effects to your video projects quickly, then you should be using Video Overlays.

Firstly, they can save a considerable amount of time creating compositions, allowing you to create a film that looks beyond the capabilities of your application.

Secondly, there are a lot of free video overlays out there, so why not give them a go and push your skills even further.

First of all, let’s refresh ourselves with video overlays.

What Is A Video Overlay?

.MOV File video overlay

Video or film overlays are motion graphics that can be laid over your clips to add a variety of looks, such as light leaks, film noise, and smoke.

Video Overlays often come as .mov files with a transparent background (also known as an Alpha Channel), making them surprisingly easy to add to your sequence.

Alpha channel

Since each overlay is a video clip itself, additional effects, grading, and transitions can be added to them. Furthermore, they can be layered up to create new looks for your videos.

Premiere pro timeline video layers

In this article, we’re going to look at several different types of video overlays, as well as show you where you can download them for free.

So let’s get stuck in.

Light Leaks

Light Leaks are probably the most common form of video overlay, and you can get similar still effects for photos.

They give your footage additional layers of light from various angles, providing even more depth to your projects.

Furthermore, with a little Opacity keyframing, Light Leaks overlays can be used as transitions between clips, creating stunning lens flare based movement from shot to shot.

Light leaks are also perfect for adding emphasis to the overall beauty in a shot or creating a vintage, nostalgic, or dream-like quality. Similarly, light effects can be used in music videos and showreels to develop a unique style for the composition.

13 Free 4K Light Leaks

LightFree is a free Light Leak pack which contains a variety of vintage style light effects. The pack includes both colder blue/white effects and warmer orange/gold glows. As a result, you are sure to locate an effect to suit your project.

Film Grain/Noise

Film Grain and Noise is almost always associated with older film formats, for instance, 16mm and 8mm reel-to-reel.

In short, film grain is caused by a lack of light reaching the sensor of a camera and is still a problem today. For example, you may notice film grain, even more, when shooting at night or in low light settings.

In spite of being an unintentional product of the camera technology, it has created a look that is actively recreated by editors for a variety of projects.

For example, grain and noise are often used in ‘found footage’ films to give the impression the footage was shot on a camera of lesser quality.

10 Free Film Grains

The 10 Free Film Grains pack covers a range of formats including 8mm, 16mm, and 35mm film, allowing you to give digitally recorded footage a film look.

Another key point is these overlays can give your movie a cinematic quality, and help cover any natural film grain in your footage.

Dust

In the same vein as Film Grain/Noise, dust overlays relate to an effect created when the dust would settle on to reel-to-reel film and create an additional hazy layer.

With digital technology, we no longer have to worry about dust, but the effect has remained popular as a way of creating a vintage feel.

To create an authentic vintage-style, you will want to mix dust, grain, and light leak effects together with some cool colour grading.

However, the effect can still be subtly used in regular video projects to create warmth for your clips.

So, next time you want to soften the edges of a clip, try using some dust overlays and test different blend modes. You’d be surprised to see what you can create.

16 Free Light and Dust Overlays

The 16 Free Overlays pack includes a mix of dust and light leak effects and includes a Super 8 video style overlay. Use this pack to create emotive style pieces, for example, wedding videos and highlights reels.

Smoke

Smoke Overlays are underused in video projects, as most people would look at them as a visual effect.

You can use these smoke overlays to create in-shot visual effects, but they can also be used to create beautiful and elegant motion designs.

Smoke Overlays can be used over the top of your clip, to create a spooky feel to your video.

However, they can also be used with Alpha Channels and Blend Modes allowing you to lay the footage on top, so your image is only seen through the smoke.

Smoke effects are fantastic for use in title sequences, and you have probably seen them used in a similar fashion in TV and films alike.

10 Free Smoke Stock Videos

The Free Smoke Stock footage pack contains ten video overlays, including big billowing explosions, screen-filling fog, and even more subtle cigar smoke style clips. In other words, this is an excellent overall starter pack for smoke effects.

Camera Overlays

Camera overlays make it super simple to turn your footage into camera roll. That is to say, a camera overlay will display the on-screen graphics you would see through the lens/monitor of a camera.

You have probably seen Camera Overlays used to make the footage seem like it’s from a security camera, with date, location, and timestamp layered over the image.

Similarly, these effects are used in found footage films (e.g Paranormal Activity 2007), to reinforce the home video camera style shot.

5 Free Camera Overlays

This pack of 5 free Camera Overlays contains Video Camera, Drone, CCTV, DSLR, and Video Chat graphics. It may seem like each graphic will have limited use, as there are only so many CCTV or DSLR shots you can include.

However, despite the limitations of how often you can use them, these high-quality camera overlays are a great pack to keep on hand.

Fog

In similar fashion to Smoke, Fog Overlays offer you opportunities for both motion designs and visual effects.

Since each layer is an .mov file, you can add additional effects to the layers to better match them to your composition. For instance, try using colour grading tools and tints to change the tone of the fog.

Fog Overlays can also be ideal for using in logo stings and text animations.

Try using masking tools and keyframing to create titles that appear and disappear into the fog. You can also add film grain to the fog layers for an old horror movie feel.

21 Free 4K Fog Overlays

Since this set of 21 different fog based overlays gives you so many choices and combinations, you might not need to look elsewhere.

Add the overlays to your footage and use the opacity and blend modes to create a seamless visual effect.

On the other hand, you could add the effects to your title sequence for an extra moody feel.

Wrapping Up – Video Overlays

In conclusion, video overlays can be a great way of expanding your editing capabilities, and allow you to think creatively about the overall look of your video.

We’ve given you a heap of free downloads for you to try, so get stuck in and learn the basics. After that, see what wonders you can create!

We also have another article with some more free video assets 😉

Free Stuff, Motion Graphics, Post-Production, Video Editing

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