I recently was called upon to create a video from still photographs as part of a celebration of life event.
Many of the still photos were black and white and 30 to 50 years old.
So, I cracked out my old flat-bed scanner and got it configured on an XP machine since there was no driver available to run the scanner on Windows 7.
I then scanned the photos in at a default resolution that allowed for excellent quality when displayed on a modern large flat screen display.
I did not have to concern myself with compression of photo file size because I had no intention of uploading the images or video to the internet - I simply had to prepare the video to be displayed on a large flat screen television that could output HD in 720 P.
And yes, some of the resulting photo file sizes were very large – some were 4 megs or more.
Once I had my chosen photos scanned in, my next task was to import the scanned image files into a video editing program.
Yes, I wanted to make a movie “Ken Burns” style.
I wanted to simply make a movie from still photo images so that I could add a movie title and captions to individual images, etc.
I chose to use Windows Live Movie Maker because it is a free download if you are on Windows 7. It is also easy to use and I was already familiar with the program and it’s capabilities.
It will only run on Windows 7 and you can download it for free here: http://explore.live.com/windows-live-movie-maker
The program downloads and install quickly and is intuitive to use.
You can add a title for your movie and control the order and timing of your “slides”.
And yes, you can add an audio narration or background music.
You can add captions to your photo images.
You can incorporate simple transitions between slide images.
You can add credits to the end of your movie.
And finally, you can choose a format to publish and display your movie.
In my case, I wanted to burn the finished movie to a re-writeable DVD.
For some reason yet unknown, I had trouble and was not able to burn my movie to DVD.
Then I ran out of time and it was time for the event.
How could I show the movie on my brother-in-law’s big screen tv?
I could save the movie as a .wmv (Windows Movie) file – so I saved the movie and put it on a 2 gig usb flash or thumb drive.
Then I simply handed off the usb drive to my nephew who is also technically inclined.
When I showed up to their house for the gathering my video was playing full screen on the large flat screen TV.
I asked my nephew how he got it running and he told me he simply plugged the usb into his Sony PS3 which connects to the TV via dvi (or hdmi) and walla! 50 year old still photos were displaying in high quality and full screen!
I received many compliments and also some questions of how I accomplished this excellent result.
So, this post is for you.