Join Garrick Chow for an in-depth discussion in this video Adding photos, part of iMovie for iOS Essential Training.
In addition to working with video clips, you can also add still images to your iMovie projects. This can be a nice visual addition to a movie you're putting together of, say, a vacation. Or for example, you could intersperse live action shots with photos you shot with your iPad or digital camera. You can take photos directly from within iMovie by tapping the camera button, as we saw earlier. Or you can access the photos in your iPad's library by tapping the photos button here in the media browser. Here you can browse your photos by camera roll or any other albums you've created. To see a larger preview of any of the photos, hold your finger down on top of it, and the larger version appears in the viewer.
Just be careful not to tap the photo or else it will instantly be added to your project. When you find the photo you want to add, first submit the play head to the area where you want the photo to appear. The play head should be at the end of your project, or between clips, because you can't add a photo in the middle of a video clip, unless you split the clip first. But if your play head is over a clip, your photo will be added either before or after the clip, and then you can simply move it to where you want. I'll just move my play head to the end of my project. And now I'll tap the photo I want to add, and now it's part of my project. If I select it, you can see at the top of the viewer, that it's been given a default duration of five seconds.
The life of the photo's time on screen is going to vary between three to six seconds, depending on the length of the transitions that appear before or after it. But you can change the duration simply by dragging the n handles left or right to shorten or lengthen the clip. Let's hit play and see how it looks. Notice the nice zooming and panning effects. This is referred to as the Ken Burns effect, named after the famous documentarian, whose films are often filled with slow pans and zooms across old still photos. The effect is always added automatically to the photos you insert into your project, and the really cool thing is that if your photos include people, iMovie uses face detection to make sure people's faces stay in frame while the photo is moving.
But if you want you can also adjust or completely remove the Ken Burns effect, make sure the photo's selected by tapping it and notice that places three buttons in the lower right hand corner of the viewer. The top one is labeled pinch to position start and the middle one is labeled pinch to position the end. The bottom button is just for closing these controls which I don't really think needs to be there since you can deselect your photo by tapping anywhere else in the timeline. But in any case, the start and end buttons are what you use to adjust the effect. So with start selected, you now tell iMovie how you want this photo to look when it first appears on screen, which is what it means by pinch to position to start.
So maybe in this photo I, I want to start zoomed in a bit. And then I can drag to reposition. Now tap the end button to determine how I want the picture to look at the end of it's duration on screen. And for this I'll zoom out as much as possible. But notice that because my photo isn't widescreen like my video is I can't fit the entire photo on the screen. So the best I can do is position where it looks best to me. You can then either tap the close button when you're done. Or just tap anywhere else in your timeline. I'll roll back a bit, and tap the play button to see what the effect looks like. So, there's my custom Ken Burns effect.
Now, of course, there may be times when you don't want the Ken Burns effect at all. In those cases, set the start and end point to identical position. The easiest way to do this is to select the photo, tap start. Zoom all the way out. And then tap end. And zoom all the way out as well. Now, again, in this case, since I can't zoom all the way out with a photo that doesn't match the dimensions of my video. I'm going to drag the start and end points all the way down. So now it looks like this. You may have to experiment with your own photos to get them to match in order to stop the Ken Burns effects. Although in most cases I prefer to use the Ken Burns effect since it adds some nice motion to a still photo.
And that's how you work with still photos in iMovie. Other than being still, they behave like any other video clip in your project. You can adjust the transitions before and after the photos, and you can adjust their duration with the trim handles, or even with the precision editor.
- Shooting with the built-in cameras
- Importing footage from other sources
- Adding clips to a project
- Trimming, splitting, and rotating clips
- Adjusting transitions between clips
- Adding still photos and titles
- Adding sound effects or background music
- Fading audio clips
- Adjusting playback speed
- Backing up a movie with iTunes