MacMost Now 341: Beyond the Ken Burns Effect

The Ken Burns Effect in iMovie 09 is the default setting for photos inserted into an iMovie project. But you can use it for more than just adding a little motion. You can pan and zoom to focus on objects or move along an image. You can even zoom in and then back out and other similar effects.

Comments: 20 Responses to “MacMost Now 341: Beyond the Ken Burns Effect”

    Richard
    10 years ago

    There is a third party app, Photo to Movie, that gives more control over the Ken Burns effect when one is just using still images in a movie. I’ve used it and it’s pretty nifty.

      Beverly
      9 years ago

      This sounds great. How can I get it?

    Todd A. Peperkorn
    10 years ago

    What a great screencast! Thank you. I had no idea about that level of control. Can you do any of those controls via iPhoto?

    Dav
    9 years ago

    Hi Gary, and thanks for these excellent tips. Is there a way to change the limits of the Ken Burns boxes? For example, I would like the starting one to be the full frame and the ending box to be almost a single point, thus making a scene vanish over another background image.

    Thanks again

      9 years ago

      You can adjust the start point (green box) and end point (red box) by dragging them and resizing them in the preview pane (upper right) of iMovie. But there are limits. You can’t go down to a single point. And you can’t make it “vanish” as the Ken Burns effect doesn’t work that way — it doesn’t shrink the resulting space, only the space used.
      If you want something more, you’ll have to switch to a pro solution like Final Cut with Motion, etc.

    johary78
    8 years ago

    Hi Gary!
    Thanks a lot for your video! My question is : is there anyway to repeat the Ken Burns effect settings on other pictures? Because it would take toooooo loooooong to make the settings manually if I have 100 pictures in a project.
    Thanks a lot

      8 years ago

      So you want exactly the same start and end points for 100 photos? No, I don’t think there is a way to replicate them. But I’ve never tried. So experiment. But I’d imagine that it would not be a good effect if it was the same start and end point for 100 photos in a row.

    Peggi
    8 years ago

    I am making a movie and using the ken burns effect. The starting green box is too small. I want it to begin at the edge of the photo. The program won’t let me adjust the green box to show an entire vertical photo. It has a landscape setting. Is there a way to change the start to a portrait setting? Thus, getting a vertical photo to begin as the whole photo? Additionally, when I have a landscape photo, the green box won’t let me change the ratio so I am missing the edges of the photo. Is there a way to customize the beginning green box?

      8 years ago

      You are limited by what will fit in the frame with no empty space. So your only option is get creative. For instance, you can bring the photo into a program like Photoshop and put it at the center of an even larger image.

    Susan Dixon
    7 years ago

    Is there any way to have a photo spinning in iMovie 11? Thanks

      7 years ago

      Spinning? Not sure what that would look like. I can’t recall an effect like that in iMovie.

      Alison
      7 years ago

      Susan – depending on the kind of spin you want, you could use the “spin in” or “spin out” transition.

        Alison
        7 years ago

        Just saw what you actually want … never mind :-)

    Susan
    7 years ago

    I have a picture of a crop circle, and I want it to spin within the photo in the video.

      7 years ago

      You’d need to use some animation software to create something like that.

    Carole
    7 years ago

    Very helpful. Thanks for the tips.

    Carlos
    7 years ago

    Hello.
    At 3:45 of your tutorial video, you make a zoom on your computer screen, which is exactly what I’m looking for… Kind of a Ken Burns effect, but on “moving” video… Not stills… Just like those “most shocking videos” shows, where they zoom on police chases and such…
    Can you make that effect with iMovie? And also, do you know an iPhone app that does this?
    Thanks for your time.

      7 years ago

      I’m doing that by switching between shots in Wirecast. But you can do that using the technique in this very tutorial. Of course you have the problem of resolution — if you zoom in to show a portion of a video, it will have to stretch the video to fit on the screen and it will be lower quality. Nothing you can do about that. But if you are OK with it. I don’t know of an iMovie app off-hand.

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