The iMovie interface and layout is in reality a fairly simple set up, but there are some key terms and interface elements that you should familiarize yourself with before you actually start using iMovie to edit video. In this video, you’ll create a new project in order to view and learn the interface elements and features that are covered throughout the rest of the course.
- Now that we know how to get footage into iMovie, i'd like to take some time to examine the iMovie window and interface. It's actually a pretty simple setup, but there are some key terms and interface elements that you should familiarize yourself with before you actually start using iMovie to edit video. Now, in order to show you all the interface elements I need to, we'll have to create a new project. We haven't done this yet, and I'll cover this more thoroughly in a little bit, but for now, I'm gonna click the plus button up here. This is also called the create button, and I'll choose movie.
That opens up the theme picker, which we'll talk more about later as well, but for now, I'm gonna choose no theme by double clicking it. I'm just gonna call this Demo Project. Notice there's no option here to choose a location to save your project. All iMovie projects are saved in the same place within iMovie, which we'll see in a moment. So, I'll just click okay. All right, so now we have a new iMovie project to work with, and I can show you more about the interface. Notice my project title, Demo Project, is displayed up here at the top of the window, so I can always easily see which project I'm working in.
So, for the most part, iMovie is a one-window application. A lot like its siblings, iTunes, GarageBand, and Photos. You'll open other panels occasionally, for instance, to import video as we saw earlier, but all the action is pretty much contained in this one window. Right now, we're in the Project View, where we can assemble, edit, and otherwise work on the current project. If I click the Projects button here in the upper left-hand corner, this where you'll find all the projects you've created in iMovie. Currently, I only have the one project that I just created, but each time I create a new project, it'll be accessible from here.
Notice Projects is selected at the top of the screen here. If I select media, this is where you'll find the video clips that you've imported, and this is also where you can access photos and videos stored in the Photos app, or in Aperture, if you have that application installed on your Mac, and the Theater View is for viewing your completed projects. We'll be looking at Theater View towards the end of this course. For now, let's go back to the Projects View, and I'll double click my demo project to go back into it. This is where you're gonna be spending the majority of your time, because all editing happens within the Project View of the particular project you're working on.
So, as you can see, the window is divided into several areas or panes. We'll go into more detail with each area in the following movies, but briefly, here on the left is the Library pane. You can show or hide it with this button up here. Now, when I hide it, everything seems to disappear, because I haven't actually added any content to the project myself yet. I'll open that back up. So, what we're seeing here are the video clips that I imported, which I can add to my project. More on that in a bit. So, the Library pane is also where you access the various events you've created. As we touched on earlier, an event is a collection of footage, usually based on the date and time the footage was shot.
This is also where you can access content in other areas, such as your Photos Library, or your Aperture Library, so you don't necessarily have to go back out to the Media View to access that content. However, you're most likely going to be working from your iMovie library, which is where your events and clips are stored. We'll talk about that in its own upcoming movie. This area to the right of the Library pane is the browser. This is where you see the contents of the events or libraries when you select them. So, for example, there are the contents of my Photos Library, and if I select AT Running, these are the clips we previously imported.
Above the browser area, you'll find some buttons or tabs for adding other types of content to your project. These are collectively referred to as the Content Library. My Media is selected by default, and that's how you see all of the footage you've imported, and have access to. So, for example, you would select Audio to add sounds and music to your project from iTunes, iMovies built in sound effects, or GarageBand. This is also where you'll be able to access things like text titles, backgrounds that go behind text, and transition effects. So, whenever you select one of the content libraries, the contents of that library type will appear here in the browser pane.
So, for example, when I click on Titles, that shows me the available text titles I can add to my project, and we'll get to working with all of these libraries. For now, I'm gonna go back to My Media. So again, when you click on an event, that let's you review the footage contained within that event. The browser's also where you make your selections of the footage that you wanna add to your project, and then drag them down here to this bottom pane, called the Project Timeline pane. The Project Timeline is where you assemble all of the video clips, audio clips, transitions, titles, and all the other items that form your completed project.
Above that, and on the right, is the Viewer pane where your video plays. What you see here depends on what you're working on. If you're browsing your event footage up here, when you roll or skim your mouse over clips, you'll see the clips appear in the viewer. If you're playing your movie in the timeline, you'll see the movie appear in your viewer, but the viewer isn't just for watching content, you'll also find certain controls appear here, for example, when you add titles or text to your movie, this is where you'll adjust the look of the text. Above the viewer is a row of buttons for performing all sorts of adjustments to both video and audio clips, and we'll definitely be looking more closely at each of these tools later in the course.
And, in the upper right-hand corner, we have a Share button, where you'll find several options for exporting your project when you're ready to share it with others. More on that at the end of this course. One last thing I want to point out is that, unlike many other applications, there's no save command under the File menu in iMovie. iMovie automatically saves any changes you make to your project, so you never have to worry about losing any edits, should your Mac crash, or should the power go out, so you don't have to worry about manually saving your project as you're working, but that's pretty much it for a general overview of the iMovie interface. There really is not that much to it.
In the next couple of movies, I'll go into a little more detail about each of these areas, and what they're for.
- What's new in iMovie 10.1.2?
- Importing video
- Browsing events
- Adding clips to a new iMovie project
- Organizing and rating clips
- Trimming video
- Splitting, inserting, and connecting clips
- Creating still clips
- Adding photos, transitions, and titles
- Adjusting video speed
- Applying special effects
- Adding music and sound effects
- Sharing movies
Skill Level Beginner
Q: This course was updated on 05/23/2016 and 06/15/2016. What changed?
A: We revised one video, "Delete unwanted clips," to address updates found in iMovie 10.1.2.