Create an iMovie in 10 minutes

If you've got a short home movie to make, and ten minutes to spare, iMovie is the answer. Here's what you can achieve in that short amount of time.

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Next Prev

There are two options open to you and we’ll explore them both (the latter will be quicker than the former). Start by launching iMovie and if you haven’t already done so, go to File > Import Media and bring in all the clips you need to work on (from your camera, camcorder, iPhone, videos on your hard drive, just drag all the ones you want).

Next, click on the ‘Create’ button (left of the toolbar at the top) and choose the first option: Movie. Select ‘No Theme’, name your project and you’ll be ready to begin.

Read: iMovie versus other low cost (or free) Mac video editors

Next »

Next Prev Step 01

There are two options open to you and we’ll explore them both (the latter will be quicker than the former). Start by launching iMovie and if you haven’t already done so, go to File > Import Media and bring in all the clips you need to work on (from your camera, camcorder, iPhone, videos on your hard drive, just drag all the ones you want).

Next, click on the ‘Create’ button (left of the toolbar at the top) and choose the first option: Movie. Select ‘No Theme’, name your project and you’ll be ready to begin.

Read: iMovie versus other low cost (or free) Mac video editors

 

Step 2 of 10:

If this is the first time you’ve opened iMovie, the interface might feel a little sparse and daunting, ignoring the sidebar on the left for now, you have a list of clips top left, a preview section top right and a large empty area at the bottom.

The latter is where you’ll be building your project. To do so, mouse over any clip in the upper left section.

As you move left and right, a preview of what is contained within it appears top right of the interface.

Apple iMovie 10 versus Adobe Premiere Elements 12 comparative review

 

Step 3 of 10:

Click on a clip and a white vertical line appears on it bearing a large ‘+’. Clicking on the ‘+’ will add four seconds of that clip from the white line onwards to your project.

If you wish to be more precise, click and drag to select the exact section you wish to use. Once selected you can also resize it by dragging its edges. When done, click on ‘+’ to include it in your project.

You can also drag the selection to the project yourself - this enables you to add it anywhere in your film, not just at the end of your current build.

Apple iMovie for iPad, iPhone v2 review

 

Step 4 of 10:

Once in your project, those clips are still fully editable: move the cursor to a clip’s edge and the slanted arrow will turn into two arrows pointing in either direction. When that happens, you can extend or contract your clip at that point.

You can also reorder your clips by dragging them in new locations. To get rid of a clip, select it and hit the ‘Delete’ key on your keyboard.

All of this helps you build a project quickly and easily.

Apple iMovie for Mac version 10 review

 

Step 5 of 10:

Transitions can be fun ways to give a definite visual break in your movie.

To add one, click on Transitions in the Sidebar. Select the one you wish from a list of 24, and drag it in between two of your clips. Adding a title is almost as easy: select Titles from the sidebar, choose your favourite and drag it in. It will rest on top of your existing clips.

The placeholder text is automatically selected so replace it and you’re done. You can lengthen or shorten it in the same way as clips (as shown in step 4).

To add a musical score, select iTunes or GarageBand to gain access to those respective libraries.

 

Step 6 of 10:

If you have the time, it’s possible to add special visual effects to your clips, or even apply a little colour correction.

To do this, select a clip and click on the toolbar’s ‘Adjust’ button (top right of the interface) to reveal a row of icons.

The filmstrip icon on the right allows you to add visual and audio filters to your chosen clip with the help of drop down menus (only one effect of each type can be added to a single clip).

To colour correct it, click on the paint palette icon on the left.

 

Step 7 of 10:

Once your film’s ready, it’s time to share it with your friends, family, and the whole online world.

Click on the ‘Share’ button, top left of the interface. You’ll be presented with a choice of eight options, most of which, like YouTube, are self explanatory.

‘Theatre’ lets you save your finished film to iCloud where any of your Apple devices can access it - great for sharing on the go.

‘File’ saves a copy to your computer, enabling you to share it to social media sites not included by default in iMovie’s list of export locations.

 

Step 8 of 10:

If this sounds just too much work for you, don’t despair as iMovie has another trick up its sleeve.

When you clicked on the ‘Create’ button back in Step 1, there was a second option available to you: Trailer. Let’s take a look at it now.

You’ll be given a choice of 29 different genres, each with a number of cast members needed and a specific duration. You can preview any trailer by moving the cursor over it and clicking on its ‘Play’ button.

 

Step 9 of 10:

Once you’ve selected the one you wish to use, the interface will chance and the bottom section dedicated to creating your movie is replaced by three tabs.

‘Outline’ allows you to type in any relevant information like your movie’s title, the name of the people featured in it, and the credits.

The ‘Storyboard’ tab is where all the fun lies: each trailer is built around specific requirements like actions shots, close ups, landscapes, etc. ‘Storyboard’ shows you that list in chronological order.

 

Step 10 of 10:

Select the clip that best matches the request and a set length will be added to your project.

The trailer section will then automatically move to the next request on the list so all you really need do is keep choosing clips and the Trailer will be built as you go.

Of course, a trailer is not the full movie and the eye popping result may well get your friends and family to ask you to create the actual film, in which case, you’ll have no choice but to follow steps 1 to 7!

You can read more iMovie tutorials over at our iMovie Topic Zone, plus:

10 amazing iMovie tips

How to use Maps and Backgrounds in iMovie for Mac

Edit a movie using the Precision Editor in iMovie for OS X

How to use effects in iMovie for OS X

Add titles to your home movies using iMovie for Mac OS X

Get started in iMovie for Mac OS X

10 tips for iMovie for Mac

Make an iMovie in 10 minutes

How to view your iMovie Theatre clips, trailers and movies on any device using iCloud

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