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  • Windows Movie Maker 2.6 Tutorial Windows Movie Maker enables you to create movies and slide shows on your computer, complete with professional-looking titles, transitions, effects, music, and even narration.

    Understanding the Movie Maker Screen. Windows Movie Maker is divided into three main areas: the panes, the storyboard/timeline, and the preview monitor.

    To begin making a movie, you need to import your video clips or pictures. You will use the Movie Tasks pane on the left side of the screen to do this. If it is not visible, simply click on the Tasks icon on the top menu bar.

    Figure 1

    Figure 2

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    Choose whether you want to import videos or pictures. To import more than one item at a time, select the first one and then hold down the CTRL key as you select the others. If everything you imported is NOT showing up in the main panel, click on the Collections tab at the top, and you will see a listing of what you have imported in the left panel.

    You will note that if you import a video, Movie Maker breaks it into segments. This is done for ease in editing. Bring those portions of the videos that you want to use down to the timeline using the drag and drop method.

    Figure 3

    Figure 4

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    Editing Video. You will note from the diagram in Figure 1 that the bottom portion of the screen is the storyboard/timeline area. To switch between the two, click on the button that says either Show Storyboard (if you are in the Timeline view) or Show Timeline (if you are in the Storyboard view.)

    Features available in the Timeline mode. From the Timeline mode, you can delete portions of the video as well as split a video into multiple segments for ease in editing.

    To delete portions of the video, click on the video that you would like to edit and hover along the edges of the frame until you see a two-sided red arrow. Hold down your mouse as you click and drag the red arrow. As you are clicking and dragging the red arrow, video is being removed. If you want to split the current video into two or more segments, play the video in the Preview section, and at the point where you want to split it, click on the button shown.

    Figure 5

    Features available in the Storyboard mode. In the Storyboard mode, you can add effects, transitions, and give your movie a title or credits.

    Video Effects. To access the video effects, the Movie Tasks pane needs to be visible on the left side of the screen. (Remember, if it is not visible, click on the Tasks icon on the menu bar. (Refer to Figure 2 for placement of the Tasks icon.) Click on View video effects and you will see a screen to the right showing many different video effects. Drag and drop the video effect you desire onto the star at the bottom left of the video segment. You may use several effects on the same portion of video. To delete effects, right click on the star and choose Delete. (See figure on next page.)

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    Video Transitions. Video transitions are accessed from the Movie Tasks pane in the Edit Movie category. You will notice rectangles between your video clips. That is where you click and drag transitions.

    Creating Titles or Credits. If you want to give your movie a professional flair, give it a title and credits! To do so, click on Make titles or credits from the Movie Tasks pane. You will be given the option of where you want to place the title and credits.

    Once you make that decision, you will be given choices about animation, font, and color.

    Drag and drop effect on star of video segment.

    Figure 6

    Figure 7

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    Adding Music. To add music, the Movie Tasks pane needs to be visible on the left side of the screen. If it is not visible, click on the Tasks icon on the menu bar. (Refer to Figure 2 for placement of the Tasks icon.) Click on Import Audio or music. You will then be directed to select the music file from your computer, jump drive, etc. and asked to click Import. When you click Import, it will import the music file into Movie Maker 2.6

    You will note there is a vertical scroll bar on the right side of the storyboard/timeline section. If you scroll down while you are in the Timeline view, you will see a section where you can add Audio/Music, immediately below where you added your pictures or videos. To add your music, drag the music file you imported to this section, just as you did with videos and pictures.

    If you have existing sound in your video that you would like to eliminate, click on the audio levels icon (also found under the Tools menu) and you will see the dialog box shown below. If the marker is at the left, the audio from the video will play; if the marker is at the right, the audio from the video will not play, and the music you insert will play.

    Adding Narration. If you would like to insert narration, you must be in the Timeline view. You can insert narration from the Tools Menu or from clicking on the Microphone icon in the storyboard/timeline section. Regardless of the method you choose, the screen shown on the next page will become visible.

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    Move the playback indicator (the vertical line on the timeline) to where you want to start recording and click Start Narration. Obviously, when you are done, click Stop Narration. Once you have stopped the narration, although it is saved on the timeline, you will also be asked to save it as a file on your computer. Please note that you have a control that allows you to adjust the input level for volume.

    Saving your Project.If you want to have the ability to continue working on your movie, you will need to save your project in a MSWMM format (Movie Maker format.) To save it in this format, on the Menu bar, go to File and Save Project. A dialog box will open, and you will give it a name. However, if you save it in this format, you can only play your movie through Movie Maker software.

    If you are completely done with your movie and want to save it to a CD or jump drive,, you will need to save it using the Save to my computer option on the Task pane. You will no longer be able to edit the movie; however, it will save it in a wma format, which will play on almost any computer. When you click on this option, a dialog box will open, asking you to enter a name and choose a location. Follow the next prompts to complete the process.