Thoughts of music lead almost inevitably to thoughts of video, and the Duo have a fun time with a video-creation package called Muvee AutoProducer from Muvee Technologies. It may not turn you into the next Spike Jonze, but the Duo found it can turn a mass of unedited video footage into something palatable–or at least pleasantly bizarre.
Steve, conveniently enough, has plenty of unedited video on hand from a recent trip to Japan. After importing the video from his camera, he decided to pull together a video of a baseball game he saw on his trip. Muvee AutoProducer allows you to look through the unedited footage and choose both shots you really want to include and shots you really don’t.
What’s a video without a soundtrack? Angela suggests getting the music ready beforehand. Either MP3 or WMA files can be used as background music; Steve “just happened” to have a Dixieland version of “Take Me out to the Ball Game” on his hard drive–don’t ask–and that was folded into the mix.
Next come styles, of which Muvee AutoProducer offers many. Styles give Muvee AutoProducer structures to which it attempts to map your video; the “personal” style, which emphasizes close-ups and images of people, isn’t right for the footage on hand, and “over-the-top” sounded a bit techno for a Yakult Swallows game, but there are more straightforward styles as well. Steve and Angela found that once you allow Muvee AutoProducer to churn through your video just once (a process that provides plenty of time for a coffee break, notes Angela), it takes just a second or two to try out a different style on the same footage. Since there’s no penalty for that sort of experimentation, the Duo advise you to knock yourself out.
There are a few other tweaks available: You can tell Muvee AutoProducer whether you want shots from your video to appear in order or not, you can tell it how long you want your video to be, and you can decide whether the soundtrack will favor the music or the sound that’s on your original video recording (though you can adjust that only for the production as a whole). Bare-bones titles and end credits round out this phase of production.