Creating video from still images can be very effective, quick and easy. The various techniques available go well beyond simple slide shows and produce results suitable for retail product promotion, real estate agents and museums exhibit type digital signage. The following is a quick introduction to some straightforward methods:
- Many video editing software packages include a ‘pan and scan’ function or as Apple call it the ‘Ken Burns Effect’ (it is available in iMovie). This creates a video showing a portion of the still image, moving around it and zooming in or out. It is easy to implement and used quite extensively, the results can be excellent.
- Another very simple approach is to add scrolling text over a still image background. Most video editing packages enable this as a very straightforward function, often referred to as Titles.
- Some software packages and online services are focused on turning still images into creative videos. An example that seeks to address the professional market is Animoto, a web based SaaS service that also enables the inclusion of a soundtrack. Dedicated software packages include PhotoPresenter (Mac) and FotoMagico (Mac) from Boinx and Pulp Motion (for Mac) from Aquafadas that create animated slide shows that can be exported to video. Update: Of course there is also Apple’s iPhoto and Aperture.
- Finally, presentation software such as Keynote for Mac can be used to import still images, add text and effects then export to video.
Then of course there are a considerable number of professional tools such as Adobe CS5, Apple Final Cut Pro and various plug-ins generally requiring a specialist level of expertise and budget.
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