Demo: Create a slide show with music in Windows Movie Maker

Snapshot from this demo

Watch this demo to learn how to create a slide show with music in Windows Movie Maker.




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Read the transcript

I just got back from a vacation and I want to share some digital pictures of my holiday with my friends and family. Instead of simply clicking through pictures on a folder on my computer, I’m going to create a fun and interesting slide show that people can watch on a computer or online. I’ll organize my pictures, and even add some music, so people can watch my slide show just like a movie.

Hi, I’m Charlene Shepard, a writer on the Windows team at Microsoft. Today I’m going to show you how to create a slide show with music using Windows Movie Maker.

Windows Movie Maker is a feature in Windows Vista that lets you create home movies and slide shows, complete with professional-looking titles, transitions, and music. Once you create your “masterpiece” you can share it with your friends and family. So, let’s get started.

To open Windows Movie Maker, click Start, type Movie Maker in the search box, and then click Windows Movie Maker.

Movie Maker is divided into 3 main areas:

  • The task and content panes are where you get all of the things that you will put in your slide show.

  • The storyboard and timeline is where you create and edit your slide show.

  • And the preview monitor is where you can watch the slide show as you go.

As I create my slide show, you’ll see how each of these areas is used.

I already have my pictures on my computer, so I’ll click Pictures. I select the pictures I want to include in my slide show, and then click Import. The pictures are copied into the Contents pane.

Now I’ll grab the pictures I want and drag them into the Timeline. I can change the order of the pictures by dragging them to another spot.

Now I’ll add some music. If you don’t have music, you can still create the slide show, but it won’t have a soundtrack. I’ll click Audio or Music. I’ll choose some music I already have saved on my computer. After I click Import the music will appear in the Contents pane.

I drag it into the timeline. To have the music start at the beginning of the slide show, make sure you put the music file at the beginning of the timeline.

Now let’s add some effects. It’s easiest to add effects in the Storyboard view. To change to the Storyboard view, click Timeline, and then click Storyboard.

I’ll click Transitions. Transitions control how one picture changes into the next. Here are all of the transitions you can choose from. I like the bow tie transition, so I’ll add it to my slide show. First, I click the transition and then I drag it onto the transition cell between two pictures. I can continue to add transitions between my photos. Movie Maker has more than 60 transitions to choose from, so play around and use the transitions that you like.

At any time, you can click the Play button in the Preview monitor to preview a transition or your entire slide show.

Now I’ll add a title and finish the slide show. I’ll click Titles and credits. I’m going to put a title at the beginning of my slide show. Enter the text that you want for your title. The Preview monitor shows what the title slide looks like. You can choose the font, text size, slide color, and animation for the title slide. Once the title slide looks good, click Add title. The title slide is added to the beginning of my slide show.

OK, now for some final editing and then I’ll be done. To finish the slide show, I need to go back to the Timeline view.

You can see by the timeline that the song plays longer than the pictures. If I publish my slide show now, it will play until the song is over so there will be a lot of time where no pictures are being shown. I am going to shorten the song by dragging it to the end of the pictures. I want the music to fade out instead of ending abruptly, so I'll right-click the song and click Fade Out.

Time to publish my slide show. How you publish your movie depends on what you are going to do with it. I’m going to save mine on my computer to show to my friends. Later on I might post it to a video sharing website like Soapbox, YouTube, or Flickr. I’ll click This computer. This will create a movie file that can be played on a computer. You can find out more about publishing movies in Windows Help. I’ll type a file name and then click Next. I’m going to keep the default settings and click Publish.

My slide show is done. Now I can share my vacation memories and show off my newfound skills to my friends and family. Lights, camera, action!