How’s your iPhoto digital photo collection coming along? How many photos do you have in iPhoto? What are you doing with them? Printing? Email? How about making your own digital photo movie? How? It’s easy.
In fact, it’s so easy to create stunning “motion” in digital photos that you’ll amaze yourself with PhotoToMovie’s new version, now updated to put photo movies on your new iPod with video.
To give you an idea of what it does, open iMovie and drop in a couple of still photos from iPhoto. Among the iMovie tools is one called the Ken Burns Effect which allows you to put motion—zooms, pans, etc.—right into a formerly “still” photograph.
PhotoToMovie does exactly that. Except PhotoToMovie does it so well, it’s easy to call it a professional application. The only problem there is that the results are professional. The price and simplicity are not.
PhotoToMovie 3.2.x lets you drag and drop photos into a simple timeline. Then, you select a zoom or pan position in each photo. Zoom in deep (great if you have large digital photos). Pan across a panorama photo.
Change the time of the zoom or the pan. Add music by drag and drop. It’s remarkably simple to setup and create a whole montage of photos, still photos, and put motion and movement into each.
Now, here’s the fun part. Once you’ve added, say, two or three dozen photos to the timeline, you can drag and drop music from the Mac. That gets you background music.
“Tera, isn’t that just a fancy slideshow?” you ask? Not at all. This is broadcast quality video with much more control over the output than the Ken Burns Effect in iMovie. Full iTunes and iPhoto integration, too.
Oh, did I forget to mention that it’s V-I-D-E-O too? Yes. Your photos, complete with text generation, transitions, and still photo movement, can be exported to QuickTIme or a DV stream.
Think about it. You don’t have to be a video guru to make some excellent DVDs of your digital photos. Crop right inside PhotoToMovie, add some music, add titles, burn the whole show to a DVD. Sweet.
It aslo means you can import the exported PhotoToMovie DV clip directly into iMovie to mix and match with other iMovie clips from a video camera. This is one very sweet Mac application (now available for Windows). The free download lets you try out all the features before buying.
Try it out. Let me know what you think. It’s very impressive. The latest version also exports movies that match the format of Apple’s latest iPod with video.
Just as impressive is the quality of such applications for the Mac. Professional quality video from simple digital photos. Yet, the controls can be mastered in just minutes. That’s the Mac way.
There’s also something else I like about what’s happening to applications such as PhotoToMovie. Competition.
Boinx Software’s “FotoMagico” version 1.5 (beta) is somewhat similar, though controls over the text are enchanced. Have you noticed the moving text (called character generation by the broadcast folks) on TV commercials?
Text moves left or right, gets bigger, spreads out, and so on. FotoMagico does that and does it very well.
For now, king of the hill in creating digital movies from still photos is PhotoToMovie. Click Here for the download page and full details.
I have to wonder how many people really make slide shows out of their digital photos. Tera does. Do you?
Jack D. Miller
I have both those apps on my Mac, as they’re not quite the same. Output is remarkable. Literally, static digital images become motion movies and just look great.
Neither of them are inexpensive and iMovie comes with each Mac. The ‘Ken Burns’ effect in iMovie does make movies out of slides without the cost.