Create Music Videos with Annotations using iMovie

A simple video I created for sinhbalotravel.com using iMovie. The video is about our boat trip in Tra Su Forest Bird Sanctuary, Vietnam (best viewed in HD)

Aside from Photography, I am also fascinated with videography. I’ve always wanted to learn the process of editing and creating a full-length music video but I never had the time, skill, and resources (software, good camera, etc.) then. But recently, I was forced to create my very first video for the company I work for. It’s not actually a WOW video that you see on TV or those videos going viral online, but a simple, continuous video with background music effect and text annotations. Something like a “National-Geographic-informative-did-you-know” kind of video. Haha.

Anyway, for those who want to venture into this new hobby, here’s a step by step process on how to create a simple music video with annotations using iMovie.

Things I used

iPhone – to record a HD video
Macbook Pro + i Movie – to edit and finalize the video

Importing the video

First you need to import the video you recorded. I used my iPhone 4S to film the movie. You can use Image Capture to transfer the video to your Macbook Pro.
How to Create Music Video using iMovie and iPhone 4S 3

Creating an iMovie project

Launch iMovie and create a new project. Import the video you just transferred. File > Import > Movies. Select the video clip and drag it to the timeline. You may trim and edit the properties of your video here by double-clicking on the clip.

How to Create Music Video using iMovie and iPhone 4S.png

Adding text annotations

On the right part of iMovie, you will see media icons. Click the Text icon, and a selection of text templates will appear at the bottom. Choose your desired style and drag it to the timeline.
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To edit the properties of the text, double click it on the timeline. A property box will appear. Click done when finished.How to Create Music Video using iMovie and iPhone 4S 4

Adding a watermark photo

Add a signature or watermark image to prevent losers from copying and claiming your video.

But first, you need to tweak your iMovie preference to be able to do this. Go to iMovie > Preferences. Make sure “Show advanced tools” is checked.
To add the watermark image, look again on the media icons at the right part of your workspace and click the Image (camera) icon. You may choose photos from your media library or iPhoto. Again, drag the image to the timeline. You may again customize the properties of your watermark image by double-clicking on the photo on the timeline.
How to Create Music Video using iMovie and iPhone 4S (3).png.png

Saving/exporting the movie

Great! You’re almost done. All you need to do right now is to export the movie you just created so you can upload or share it to your social networks.

To export the video, Click Share > Export movie.

How to Create Music Video using iMovie and iPhone 4S 2

View Photos Faster on Mac with Quick Look

Viewing images (and PDF files) on a Mac using Preview app is disappointingly slow. Opening (double-clicking) a high-resolution photo will take you about 5 – 10 seconds to appear. Well, I have good news for you. There’s an alternative and faster way to view images (and preview all other items) on your Mac: Quick Look, that little eye icon on the toolbar. By default, the Quick Look icon is hidden. You need to first access the toolbar setting to make it one of your default icons on your toolbar.

You see that eye icon? That’s the Quick Look button.

Quick Look Feature on Mac OS X

Clicking on the Quick Look button launches an unbelievably fast preview of any file that you selected. And selecting multiple photos launches an instant slide show.

Quick Look Feature on Mac OS X

Right-click on the tool bar area and select “Customize Toolbar…“. This will reveal a lot of hidden features which you can add on the toolbar for instant access.

Quick Look Feature on Mac OS X

Simply drag and drop any of the icon you wish to appear on your toolbar, and voila!

Quick Look Feature on Mac OS X

Shortcut: Space Bar

Or you can use a shortcut: Just hit the spacebar with your highlighted file and it will launch a quick look. Hit space bar again and it will close. 🙂