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Keyframe animation with Movie Edit Pro

Let’s say you want to add an effect to a picture at a given moment, animate it in a picture-in-picture montage or modify a color in a certain sequence? How does it work? This can be done using the technique of keyframe animation, in which the user modifies a keyframe at a specific moment. Using the Keyframe Animator in Movie Edit Pro is simple, but if you want to do it properly, it might take some time – but don’t worry, it’s just a matter of practice. Here’s how it works:

In this tutorial, we will animate a picture-in-picture montage (PIP). To do so, we will need to use multiple tracks. Let’s place the master shot, i.e. the image we want to embed into another image, onto the first track. On the third track, we will place the image that we want to combine with the master shot (the second track is reserved for the sound of track 1).

Keyframe animation without presets

Movie Edit Pro includes a series of presets to help you create picture-in-picture montages. In our case, however, we will create our own picture-in-picture montage without using any presets. To do so, click on the image in the third track, then go the fourth tab “Effects” in the Media Pool and select “Position and Size” in the “Movement effects” menu. Notice how an orange rectangle appears around the image in the preview monitor (picture 1). You can click and drag on one of the corners to reduce the image’s size. The result is shown immediately in the preview monitor. Place the image wherever you want. The Keyframe Animator will now animate the image with movement.

At the bottom right-hand corner of the Media Pool, you’ll find several horizontal bars. This is the Keyframe Animator. Click on the white square in the bar (picture 2) in order to set the first keyframe. In the preview monitor, move the image that we placed into the other image. Click on the square again. We have just set two keyframes. Now let’s move the image in the preview monitor again and select the option Movement effects > Rotation/Mirror to slightly rotate the image. Click on the white square of the Keyframe Animator for the fourth time. Set as many keyframes as you need and experiment with the movements.

Once you have set all of your keyframes, return to the beginning of the clip and play it and you will see that your image is moving. In video editing this is what we call a keyframe animation. There are many other things you can do with this function, also in combination with other functions such as effect masks, for example. Here’s a tip: The getting-started video in Movie Edit Pro 17 (this function is included starting with this version) explains how to use the Keyframe Animator in combination with effect masks.

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