Let’s Make a Book Trailer — Part 14

Hello Everyone!

This is part 14 of my series on let’s make a book trailer.

Previous parts are here:  Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6, Part 7, Part 8, Part 9, Part 10, Part 11, Part 12 and Part 13.

Hmmm.. this list is getting a bit long.  I may have to reorganize it.

As with the previous posts, the following are merely my thoughts on the trailer construction process.  Feel free to use or snort with derision.

Last time we looked at transitions and how they might be applied to our book trailer.  Our video application is Microsoft Movie Maker,  available with Windows Essentials 2012. You can download a copy here.

In today’s post we’ll examine how to edit timings before moving on to the pan and zoom effect.

Recall that our constraints for creating our trailer are:

  • We’re creating a “Teaser” trailer
  • Using PowerPoint to create most of the content
  • No video, music, animation or voice overs
  • Working with stock images or some commissioned images

Editing timings

One thing I forgot to mention last time is how to determine whether your timings have synced up properly.

Recall that by now we are handling the timings of several different elements in our book trailer:

  • Slide appearance/duration
  • Title appearance/duration
  • Transition duration

Movie Maker does not provide a separate timeline for each element, preferring instead to have a single “visual” timeline in the work area. This can make it difficult to see if you have properly timed each element.

You can get a quick idea of whether you have by “scrubbing through” the entire video.

In the preview pane, click and hold the play head indicator and drag it back and forth while watching the preview window.  This allows you to see whether or not your element timings are working properly.

Let's Make a Book Trailer Part 14 -- Scrubbing through the video















I found the it particularly useful for eliminating the following types of mistakes:

  • Titles for one slide have too long a duration, making them appear on the following slide before disappearing
  • Transition times are too long, with titles appearing on a slide before the transition is finished

When you have identified an error you can make the appropriate timing edits on the relevant slide.

Before we move on to pan & zoom, let’s take a look at what we’ve done so far.

Creating the Book Trailer

Movie Maker gives you two options to “create” or “publish” your book trailer. Both are found both under the File menu and on the right hand side of the Home ribbon. These are:

  • Save Movie — creates and saves your book trailer as a file on your local computer system:

Let's Make a Book Trailer Part 14 -- Save Movie options

You choose the setting you want, supply a name and a save location, and Movie Maker will create your book trailers as an MP4 file.

  • Publish Movie — creates a movie file and uploads it to the sharing site of your choice:  Facebook, Vimeo, YouTube, etc.  You choose the resolution, sign in with your Microsoft Account (yes, if you choose to publish directly to a sharing site you will need a Microsoft account), sign into the sharing site (e.g. YouTube) and carry on.

Let's Make a Book Trailer Part 14 -- Publish menu

Note: There has been a lot of concern about Movie Maker not being able to publish directly to YouTube even when you supply the proper YouTube credentials. The solution is to generate an “app password” that you must use if you want to publish directly to YouTube from Movie Maker. More information can be found here.

If you don’t want to go through the hassle of generating an app password, I suggest saving your book trailer as a movie to your computer and then uploading it from there to YouTube.


Rough Cut

I saved the book trailer to my computer and uploaded it to YouTube. It’s a rough cut so to speak. You can see that some of the timings are still a little off, but we’re moving in the right direction.

Pan and Zoom

Panning and zooming can add the illusion of movement to still images when they are included in videos. Sometimes known as the Ken Burns effect, the technique is used when film or video is not available, which fits the description of our book trailer perfectly.

In Movie Maker all pan and zoom effects are found under Animations on the main menu. You have the following options:

  • None (use this to remove a previously applied pan & zoom effect)
  • Automatic (Movie Maker applies a default pan and zoom to the selected slide)
  • Pan only
  • Zoom in (includes a pan effect)
  • Zoom out (includes a pan effect)

Unlike transitions, you have no control over the duration of the pan/zoom effect. In addition, there’s no option for you to create your own pan and zoom effect in Movie Maker — you are limited to selecting one of the available pre-sets for each slide.

Even with those constraints, however, it is still possible to make effective use of pan and zoom.

Adding Pan and Zoom to a Slide

To add pan and zoom to a slide:

  1. Click the desired slide in the work area thumbnail ribbon
  2. Click Animations on the main menu
  3. Click the pan and zoom drop list
  4. Roll over each pan and zoom option for a preview of what the effect will look like on the selected slide
  5. Click the desired pan and zoom effect to apply it to the slide

Let's Make a Book Trailer Part 14 Pan & Zoom options

Using Pan and Zoom

The same principles apply to pan & zoom as to transitions and titles.  Don’t use them just for the sake of using them.  Think carefully about what you are trying to accomplish with the addition of a pan & zoom effect.  Sometimes  a slide within the trailer is best left as is, with no effect applied to it.

Well, that’s it for this post.  Next time we’ll examine the trailer with pan and zoom effects added as a prelude to advanced trailer options — music and voice over. While not part of the original constraints, music and voice over add so much that that they should be addressed.

Thanks for reading, and I will see you next time.




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