Olivia Eliseo is an LA-based editor with over 10 years of experience working on both scripted and unscripted content. Her most recent projects include All Rise for OWN, Wolves for Sundance Labs writer/director Jesus Celaya, and David Makes Man for HBO MAX. She primarily uses the Boris FX Sapphire plugins in Avid Media Composer.
What type of tasks do you look to a plugin like Sapphire to help with daily?
In editorial, we’re constantly temping VFX shots to show directors and producers, so having the Sapphire plugins are crucial. Besides making shots look polished, it’s a seamless way to still work within Avid without spending hours in other programs.
How did you first discover Sapphire?
I discovered Sapphire on one of the first TV shows I assisted on Mayans M.C. for FX with the superstar editor Susana Benaim! The MuzzleFlash effect was a godsend in our many action-heavy sequences.
Mayans M.C. (FX Network)
What Sapphire features do you use most — and why?
Definitely Blur & Distort! I use ZBlur and GrainRemove quite a bit when altering shots. In All Rise for OWN, we resized shots a lot for dramatic effect, so ZBlur was super helpful in softening the edges and making the resizes look more intentional.
All Rise (OWN)
If you could have only one Sapphire effect, which would it be?
I’m a huge fan of S_Layer because of how versatile it is with blend modes. In Wolves, we used this a lot when transitioning back and forth between flashbacks to give everything a more dream-like quality.
Wolves (Sundance Labs)
Sapphire includes Mocha’s award-winning tracking & masking/effects isolation tools. How has this integration helped streamline your overall workflow?
Mocha is a game-changer when I need to track a split-screen matte or isolate layers in clean-up. I love that you can create shapes within the layers to only track certain areas as well!
What are your top 3 reasons why an editor like yourself should use Sapphire?
- Versatility: Whether you’re cutting in Avid or Premiere, Sapphire can be used with any type of media, whether it’s commercial, reality, or scripted.
- User-friendly: We usually have tight deadlines in post, so having a straightforward UI makes our lives so much easier.
- Variety: In editorial, you’re always looking for creative ways to tell a story, so having a multitude of effects to pick from is beyond helpful.
What’s your best pro tip to artists new to Sapphire?
Don’t be afraid to experiment! There were tons of effects I didn’t understand until I dragged them onto shots and played with the settings.
Do you use Sapphire’s node-based Builder Effect? Lens Designer? If so, how?
The lens flare designer is excellent when you have a specific lighting need in mind. I’ve even incorporated the flares into custom transitions to give them more texture.
What feature requests do you have for the Boris FX product designers?
I would love to see more effect presets similar to MuzzleFlash; elements like fire or smoke would be great to have!
What’s your favorite project you’ve ever worked on — and why?
It has to be my most recent project, Lucha Noir with Wolves writer/director Jesus Celaya and my editing partner Agustin Rexach. It will be premiering on November 7th through McDonald’s Spotlight Dorado platform. If you’re a fan of devils, demons, & masked warriors, definitely give it a watch!
Lucha Noir (McDonald’s Spotlight Dorado)