In my first experiment creating a motivational video presentation, I decided to start with the basics. I stood in front of a white wall and shot a video of myself. In my first attempt, I stood next to a flat screen TV with a Powerpoint (Keynote) presentation on it. As I spoke, I advanced the slides on the monitor. While this worked well in theory, the video camera had real trouble picking up the video presentation. The slides were all washed out and hard to read. Back to the drawing board.
I did some searching on Google for techniques to include a PowerPoint style presentation into a video using iMovie. After a few minutes, I ran across a youtube video showing a technique to include a second video on the screen using the built-in picture in a picture function. I’ve used iMovie for a while and I didn’t know it had this function. It turns out that iMovie has a lot of cool features that are turned off by default.
The secret was to go into preferences in iMovie and turn on the Advanced Features radio button. After a quick refresh… viola… a whole new set of commands. To make this work, I took my Apple Keynote presentation and converted it to a Quicktime movie. Once I had the clip done, I took the clip and dragged it over my talking head video clip. With a quick right click, I was able to insert it into my video presentation, resize it, add a frame, and make it stand out in the upper corner of my presentation. Take a look at this short video clip to see how cool this effect is. (This is just a test video so the lighting and speech quality are not very good)
If you have iMovie and want to try this feature for yourself, follow these quick instructions…
These instructions are for iMovie 11 from Apple.
Make sure Advanced Tools are turned on.
Open the project you want to add the picture-in-picture clip to so that it’s showing in the Project browser.
In the Event browser, select a video clip or a frame range that you want to use as a picture in picture, and then drag it over a clip in your project.
When you see the green Add (+) symbol, release the mouse button.
In the contextual menu that appears, choose “Picture in Picture.”
In the Project browser, the picture-in-picture clip appears with a blue border around it above the video clip in your project, and the portion of the clip it appears in is shaded in gray.
Depending on the length of the picture-in-picture clip you added, it may extend beyond the clip you added it to (only if there’s another clip after the clip you added the picture-in-picture clip to). To reposition where the picture-in-picture clip appears in the project, drag it to a different spot within the same clip or to a different clip. You can also drag the ends to lengthen or shorten it. To drag an end, move the pointer over it until the pointer changes to a resize pointer, and then drag.
Play back the effect by placing the playhead (the red vertical line) anywhere before the picture-in-picture clip in the Project browser and then pressing the Space bar.
Press the Space bar again to stop playback.
In our next post, we’ll take a look at some ways to improve our basic video clip.