Movie editing on the iPad 2

Karen Haslam
9 May, 2011
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1. Capture your footage

First things first, you’ll need some raw footage to play with. As stated above, only .mov files are currently supported, so it’s best to sync clips captured with an iPhone 4 or use the less powerful iPad 2 camera. Open the camera app, choose either the rear- or front-facing lens and shoot.

2. Getting started

On booting up the iMovie app, the first screen lets you view or share an existing film (more on that later) or start a new project. Hit the + tab on the task bar to get started. This is also where you’ll find the help menu. If you get stuck, just return to My Projects at any point and hit the question mark bottom left.

3. Inserting film

To get started with your film, select a chunk of footage from the media library panel on the left of the screen. Tap on a clip once, then adjust the sliders to choose which frames you want to use. Then tap the button blue arrow to drop the film into your project timeline at the bottom of the screen.

4. Start stitching

Repeat the process to start constructing your film. iMovie will automatically add a fade feature between cuts. You can tweak its duration by tapping on the cross-dissolve transition icon between clips and then pinching horizontally. Once you’re done, tap on the icon again to revert to the standard timeline.

5. Editing cuts

Double-tapping on a chunk of footage brings up a toolbar that lets you alter the volume of that piece of film, add a geotag or superimpose text over the clip. To move a clip around the timeline just tap, hold, and drag as desired. You can also alter the length of the cut by tapping once and then pinching the sliders.

6. Adding pictures

iMovie also lets you cut still images into your film, should you want to add them. Tap on the Camera icon on the left of the toolbar to bring up your Camera Roll and Photo Booth library. Select an image and it will automatically drop into the timeline behind the playback counter.

7. Picture editing

As with video, tap once on the image to bring up a slider. You can then change the length of time the image is displayed by pinching horizontally. Double-tapping on it lets you add a geotag or superimposed text, while tapping once and holding lets you move the image around the timeline.

8. Create a title screen

To give your movie an opening title screen, double-tap the first frame in the timeline, hit Title Style, then select Opening. Tapping on the text box that appears in the playback window will let you enter text on a virtual keyboard. For your end credits, repeat with your final frame/s, but select Ending.

9. Customise your theme

iMovie offers different text templates and styles to use in your clip. To make your selection, hit the cog-shaped icon in the top-right corner of the screen to bring up the Project Settings menu. There are eight different themes: Modern, Bright, Playful, Neon, Travel, Simple, News and CNN iReport.

10. Add a soundtrack

Bring up your Audio library by hitting the Audio button on the left-hand side of the playback toolbar. You can choose between pre-loaded tunes and sound effects, as well as tracks from your iTunes library. Make your selection and the sound file will drop into the timeline.

11. Layering sound

If you want to add more than one track to your movie, make sure Loop Background Music is turned off in the Project Settings menu. You can then tap once on the sound file, pinch to edit its length and then drop in as many tracks or effects as you like.

12. Turn it up

To tweak the volume of your soundtrack, double-tap the bottom green strip on the timeline. To delete the track and start again, tap, hold and drag the green panel out of the timeline. To see a visual representation of the audio track’s volume, tap the soundwave tab on the playback toolbar to toggle the waveform display.

13. Film on the fly

If you need to patch in film or sound on the fly without exiting the app, just hit the Camera or Record button on the right of the playback toolbar. The Camera button offers a shortcut to the iPad’s Camera app, while the mic brings up a quick and easy audio recorder.

14. Premiere showing

Once you’re done, hit the My Projects tab to return to the main iMovie hub screen. To name your film, tap and hold on the vintage movie hoarding-style panel to bring up the keyboard. Next, grab yourself some popcorn and press the play button bottom centre to view your creation across the full screen.

15. Share your movie

Every filmmaker needs an audience, right? iMovie offers a range of options for sharing your final edit with friends and family. Hit the tab next to the play button to add the film to your camera roll, send it to iTunes or share it on YouTube, Facebook, Vimeo or CNN iReport.

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