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Lights, Camera, Action!

We all know the fun of watching home movies. Well, the ones of our “homes” anyway.

It’s never been easier to create and share home movies than it is now, thanks to user-friendly programs like iMovie (Mac) and Windows Movie Maker (Windows).

Think videos, pictures, background music, text, and even voice overs … all at your fingertips. Of course, you don’t need all of these components to make a fun movie, but they are all available.

  • Videos: take them with your digital camera, phone, or designated video camera.
  • Pictures: take them with your digital camera, phone, or scan them from hard copies.
  • Background Music: purchase songs from iTunes (or other internet-based music stores) or upload them from a CD.
  • Text: introduce “chapters” or events with customizable text right in the movie software.
  • Voice Overs: speak directly into your computer’s internal microphone — or into an external mike you plug in — and create a unique voice file.

Once you have the “pieces” in useable formats, open the movie program and insert the components. From within iMovie or Windows Movie Maker, you can move images into the desired order, trim videos as necessary, designate transitions between sections, insert text, and fade in and out the music and narration as appropriate.

Once your movie is complete, you will need to save it to a format others can enjoy: a dvd, a file to upload to YouTube, or a file you can email (be careful: all but the shortest movies are too big to email).

Most computers have one of these basic movie-making programs. Before you need to make a movie, learn to use the features in your program so you will be ready when a special event arises.

Happy directing!