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Creating Content on iMovie: iMovie

Plan, create, and edit a movie using the storyboard technique and iMovie.

Welcome to the Creating Content on iMovie Guide. 

This guide was created to help navigate iMovie's features and functions, and to assist users in creating high quality videos and movies through Apple's iMovie.  Explore tutorial videos, learn how to plan out your movies, and more. 

If you have questions or need assistance, contact librarian Alexis Becker at alexis.becker@dwu.edu.

What is iMovie?

iMovie is a video editing software application developed by Apple.  Features include options to modify and enhance video color settings, crop and rotate video clips, stabilize shaky videos, add video transitions, and change the speed of clips.  iMovie can also manipulate and enhance the audio of a project by reducing background noise and boosting audio levels of quiet clips.


Apple has created help guides for using iMovie.  Follow the links below for more help with iMovie for iPad, iPhone, and Mac.

iMovie Help (for Mac)

iMovie Help for iPad

iMovie Help for iPhone

Tips on Making Your Video Look Professional

Tips and ticks abound on the internet on how to best edit your videos on iMovie by adding in background music, transitions, text, and more.  Below are some tips on how to use iMovie's editing abilities to make your videos look professional and polished.


Special effects aren't always the answer.  Special effects, such as excessive transitions, can be distracting.  If you are creating a video, you most likely want viewers to pay attention to what you are saying, not focusing on add-ons.  Keep the special effects to a minimum to keep your movie looking polished. 


Avoid the distracting titles.  Much like special effects, title text can also be distracting.  If you add in text such as subtitles, additional information, or information about who is speaking, keep the text to the lower third of the screen.  Titles and lower third text are there to supplement what you are saying.  Design and lay it out like a professionally edited television newscast program. 


Turn the background music down - way down.  When adding in background music, go a little quieter that you think it should be.  Err on the side of too little rather than too much.


Deal with the background noise.  No matter how careful you are when recording a video, background noise will always find a way to disrupt part of the audio.  Use the 'reduce background noise' function to make the audio quality much better.  You can choose how strong you want the reduction to be based on a percentage, allowing you to edit like a pro. 


Stay away from the elaborate transitions.  Transition effects are fun to play with, but a lot of the time they make your final product look less than professional and polished.  Keep it simple and keep moving forward. 


Zoom in by using the cropping tool.  Ken Burns perfected the pan-and-zoom technique, and while tempting to add into a video, this technique works best with still photographs.  To create a video zoom in, click on the clip where you want to zoom in and then click the crop button.  From there you can select 'crop to fill' and click and drag the crop square.  Keep in mind that the higher your video's resolution the better the zoom with look.


Reduce your video's shakiness by using the 'analyze video' feature.  Select 'stabilization and people' to make it seem like you used stabilizing equipment to shoot your video. 


Sources: 
Beef Up Your Video Making Skills with These 8 iMovie Editing Tips by Stacy G
How to Make a Video Look Professional with iMovie by Meredith Marsh 


Learn more about editing in iMovie from Apple Support.

iMovie Tutorial Videos

Watch the videos below to learn more about iMovie and how to best utilize its features. 

Note: tutorial videos have been selected to highlight how to use iMovie on iPads.  To find tutorial videos on using iMovie on a Mac, search YouTube.


 

iMovie Tips: Getting Started with iMovie (iPad tutorial 2020)
Created by Mathew Pullen; Video Length (6:09)
Direct Video Link


 

How to Edit Video on Your iPhone or iPad with iMovie - Full Tutorial
Created by Touch Technology Review; Video Length (19:13)
Direct Video Link


 

8 Advanced iMovie Editing Tips for iPhone and iPad
Created by Collin Michael; Video Length (8:55)
Direct Video Link


 

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