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I am using the Add Images as Planes add-on and I would like to achieve the effect here i.e remove the black bars at render and replace it with the image blurred in the background.

Does anyone have any ideas how to achieve that in Blender or know any good tutorials?

Thanks.

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Use the compositor.

Resize your source image to fit the frame as you need, blur the background and composite the sharp image over using an alpha over node:

enter image description here

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  • $\begingroup$ worth reading: cameras.reviewed.com/features/… $\endgroup$ – cegaton Jun 2 '16 at 16:51
  • $\begingroup$ Thank you Cetagon. It has worked even if i had to add a node to resize background. Here is what i did : ![Compositing vertical](i.stack.imgur.com/fbr6o.png) Now my challenge is to create a python script that would create such render with images and movies of any size, fit foreground to frame and create blurred background if necessary. (my head already hurts) $\endgroup$ – johnconnor Jun 3 '16 at 2:07
  • $\begingroup$ Indeed Cegaton, vertical brings narrow experience. Nevertheless i think after Snapchat last funding of 1.8 billion dollars with valuation at 23 billion dollars that vertical video has a bright future. But i guess it is another subject. $\endgroup$ – johnconnor Jun 3 '16 at 2:13
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The VSE is well designed to do a simple task like this, and you can do an OpenGL render if you are impatient! ;-)

You can make a blender project with predetermined dimensions, eg 1280 by 720, making a vertical narrow image.

All media dragged into the VSE will "Auto-resize" to fit these dimensions.

  1. Drag in an image, select it and press Ctrl-G to make a metastrip. We will re-use this metastrip in a stack. To change the image simply open the metastrip and replace the image strip.

    FAST Blur box effect

  2. Select the metastrip (right click) then press Shift-A (Add) > Effect Strip > Gaussian Blur. Set Blur value to x: 50 y: 50 for example

  3. Duplicate the metastrip Ctrl-D and move it above the effect strip. You can constrain the horizontal movement by pressing the y key.

  4. Select the 2nd metastrip (right click) then press Shift-A (Add) > Effect Strip > Transform. Change the scale of the y: 0.5 (this depends on the original image aspect ratio).

    Scale the top image

  5. With the top effect strip selected make sure that it's 'blend' type is set to Alpha Over or Over Drop.

    Change blend type

With all this done, you only need to swap the contents of the metastrip to change the effect output. To open the metastrip just press TAB. And TAB to return to VSE master timeline.

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