How to Mask Videos in VSDC Editing Software

Video masking is an advanced technique used for creating eye-catching effects. Technically, when you apply a mask, you outline an area in the picture you want to modify and work with it independently. If you’ve ever used a graphic editor, you’re surely familiar with the idea.

VSDC Video Editor includes a wide set of tools for creating precise clipping masks, inverted masks, and text masks. In the tutorial below, we’ll show you how to apply an inverted mask. For this scenario, we’ll be pixelating a face of a person as if we needed to hide it from the viewers.

How to mask videos in VSDC Video Editor

In the second part of this tutorial, we’ll also talk about how to make the mask follow the object’s movements.

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Please note that while VSDC is a free video editor, masking is included to the Pro package available for $19,99 per year. If you just need to quickly blur a face in a video, however, you can do it for free following this instruction.

How to mask a video (pixel masking example)

Once you’ve added a video to the scene, go to the Video Effects tab, select Filters and choose “Pixelize”. Your entire scene will get pixelated, so don’t get confused. Use the Properties window on the right to adjust the pixelation level and set up the intensiveness of the mask.

Now, let’s select the area that needs to be covered. To do that, double-click on the “Pixelize” layer and add an Ellipse object to the scene (go to the left-side menu to find the Ellipse icon). You’ll notice that the area inside the borders of the shape is not pixelated anymore, meanwhile, we need it to be the other way around.

Inverted mask example

To do that, apply an Inverted Mask:

  1. Open the Properties window – located on the right. If you don’t see the Properties window, use the right mouse button to click on the Ellipse object on the timeline and select Properties.
  2. Open the Composition mode menu as illustrated above.
  3. Switch the Inverted mask mode from No to Yes.
  4. The face will stay blurred, while the surrounding area will reverse to its original look.

This is it. You’ve just applied a video mask. The same way, you’ll be able to use other effects instead of pixels. The examples are numerous: you can change the color of a certain area in the video, you can cut out an object and replace it, you can create a see-through clipping mask – and much more. Here is a quick link to video masking tutorials on our YouTube channel. Don’t forget to subscribe!

How to make a video mask follow the covered object’s movements

By default, a video mask follows the camera focus. That means in our case, if the object you’re trying to hide moves, it may “lose” the mask in the process. To prevent it, you’ll need to make the pixelated mask follow the object’s movements.

Video mask following object movements

Here is how you do it:

  1. Make a double click on the Ellipse layer.
  2. Select the “Add Movement” option from the left-side program menu and go further in the video to the point when an object changes its position. Shift the pixelated mask so that it exactly covers the object in the new position.
  3. Repeat for the further movements of the object and adjust using the Preview button.

Tip: Set each new movement point as a starting one. In this case, you’ll be able to shift movement points on the timeline to increase/decrease moving speed as needed.

Each time the object you need to pixelate moves and loses the mask, add a new movement point and make it a path’s starting point.

Here is a detailed video on how to set up video mask movements:

Other video editing tutorials you may be interested in:

You can get more information about the program on Free Video Editor' description page.