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How To Create a Stop Motion Video in iMovie

Posted by Arch on May 6, 2019
How to Create Stop Motion in iMovie

Stop motion is a very creative and fun technique for creating all kinds of animations. Some of the world’s most popular animated movies, such as “The Nightmare Before Christmas”, were made this way, and the possibilities are endless.

Luckily, you don’t need all kinds of high-end equipment or software to create stop motion animations. Apple’s iMovie app is all that you need, so let’s take a look at how it works.

Creating Stop Motion in iMovie

If you’re a Mac user, you already know that most of Apple’s built-in software is quite easy to use. The interface is designed to be user-friendly and intuitive in such a way that anybody can figure out how it works.

iMovie is no different. It’s quite straightforward to create stop motion animations in iMovie. It’s as easy as the following:

  1. Import your image sequence while making sure that the images are in the right order. This might take some time depending on the number of images you have and their sizes.
  2. Click iMovie at the upper-left corner of the screen, then go to Preferences. The Photo Placement will be set to Ken Burns by default, so change it to Fit in Frame. This will make sure that it won’t zoom in and out of the images during the stop motion effect.

iMovie Preferences Fit in Frame

  1. Drag all the photos to the timeline in the correct order.
  2. By default, iMovie sets each image to appear for 4 seconds. If this is too long, which it probably is, you can go to the “i” (information) button and change the speed to 0.1s, which is equivalent to 10 fps. If you want some images to show for a longer time, you can set the time for each individual image.
  3. Save and export your animation.

As you can see, this is a straightforward process that shouldn’t take too long. If you make sure that the images are in the correct order, you should have no issues creating the animation.
If your device doesn’t support iMovie or if you just want to experiment with different options, there are many good editing programs that you can use. Here’s one of the best available.

Movavi Video Editor

Movavi Video Editor is a very capable platform that allows you to create professional-grade videos in an easy way. There isn’t a learning curve as the software comes with the Slideshow Wizard, which serves as your assistant and guides you through the process of making videos.

It’s available for both Mac and PC. Here’s how to create stop motion with Movavi Video Editor:

  1. After you open Movavi, select Slideshow Wizard to make sure you have the necessary help.
  2. Go to either +Files or +Folders to upload your images. In general, it’s always a good idea to have your files organized by folders for simplicity.
    Movavi Add Files
  3. Each photo is considered a separate slide, so the next thing that you’ll want to do is adjust the duration of each of them by typing in your preferred time in the Slide Duration field. Movavi offers a broader spectrum than iMovie. You can set the duration to .042s, which gives you a frame rate of 24fps, the current standard for movies and animations.
  4. Movavi automatically adds a transition effect to each slide. You’ll want to avoid this when making stop motion, so just click the No Transition option when prompted.
  5. You can add music to your animations by simply selecting one of the many royalty-free options that Movavi offers, or you can upload your own music by clicking on +Audio. You’ll be asked if you want to adjust the slide duration so that it fits the tempo. Click No, as this can mess up your video.
    Movavi Music
  6. If you want, you can add titles and captions by clicking on the Title icon and dragging the title to your animation. Once you’re done, just click Export to finish.

The Last Frame

As you can see, creating stop motion isn’t as hard as it might seem nowadays. You’ll be amazed to see the final product for the first time. Chances are you’re not going to be able to resist trying to refine what you can do. Mac users already have the tool in iMovie. If not, Movavi is one of many apps of the like.

Are there any other iMovie tips that you’d like to learn? Just let us know in the comments section below.

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