Lens Flare

What is Lens Flare?

Lens flare is a phenomenon in photography and videography where light is scattered or flared within the lens system, often in response to a bright light. This results in unwanted artifacts within the image, typically in the form of a series of concentric circles or a haze. Despite being considered as a technical flaw, it’s often used creatively to establish a certain mood, or to enhance the overall visual appeal of a video.

Understanding Lens Flare in Video Editing

Lens flare can be a powerful tool when used appropriately in video editing. It’s often used in film-making to create a dreamy, surreal, or dramatic effect. It can help to evoke emotions, accentuate the lighting conditions, or even to add an artistic touch to your shots. However, it’s important to use it sparingly and in the right context, as excessive or inappropriate use of lens flare can be distracting and may detract from the overall quality of your video.

Types of Lens Flare

  • Simulated Lens Flare: This type of lens flare is added during the post-production process using video editing software. It provides control over the size, shape, color, and positioning of the flare.
  • Natural Lens Flare: This occurs naturally when shooting into the light. The characteristics of natural lens flare are determined by the lens and the lighting conditions.

Adding Lens Flare in post-production

Many video editing software like Adobe Premiere Pro, Final Cut Pro, and After Effects have built-in tools and plugins for adding lens flare. These tools allow you to control various aspects of the flare, such as its intensity, color, position and more. This way, you can add lens flare where needed, and tailor it to match your creative vision.

Steps to add Lens Flare in Adobe Premiere Pro:

  1. Open the Effects panel and search for ‘Lens Flare’.
  2. Drag and drop the ‘Lens Flare’ effect to your clip.
  3. Open the Effect Controls panel to adjust the parameters of the lens flare.
  4. Play around with the settings until you achieve the desired look.


While lens flare is technically a distortion caused by stray light in the lens, it can be used creatively to enhance the visual appeal of your videos. Whether you’re a filmmaker, a YouTuber, an influencer, or a video editor, understanding how to use lens flare can help you create visually striking and emotionally engaging videos.

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