Autobiographic Presentation

Project Description ...

In this project students will create a video presentation of an autobiographical event that had great meaning to their lives. This video presentation will include live video shots, photographs, titles, transitions, narration, and background music. The presentation will be between 2 and 5 minutes long.

Work from home ...

In class we will be using iMovie that comes free with all current Apple computers. If you are working at home on a Windows computer you can use Windows Movie Maker, or a trial version of other commercial software like Sony's Vegas or Adobe's Premiere Elements.

What to do ...

Step One: Planning and Writing

The first step is to choose the topic of your presentation and do some free writing. Open a new Word Processing document in Open Office and write a one page free write about the event you want to present.

Step Two: Paragraphs

The second step is to divide your free write into eight to ten different paragraphs. Each paragraph should contain a complete idea. For each paragraph choose what kind of picture would best illustrate that part of the story. Write a brief description of the picture [in brackets] just above each paragraph in your story. For example if I'm telling the story of a vacation I went on then I might write: [Picture of a car driving on an empty highway.] or [Picture of a plane landing on a runway.] Try to be as specific/ detailed as you can about the picture that you think will best help to tell the story. ** Be sure to write what you want the picture to look like before you start looking on the internet for pictures.

Step Three: Find Pictures

The third step is to collect the pictures that you are going to use for your project. Use Google's image search tools to find pictures for your video. Try to find pictures that are at least 720 pixels high. This will ensure the best clarity in your final product. ** Hint ** In Google, limit your search to "large" pictures. Each time you find a picture that you want to use save the picture into a folder on your computer. Also be sure to write down the name of the painter or photographer (if you can find it) and the title and address of the web site where you found the picture.

Step Four: Record an introduction

The fourth step is to use photobooth or iMovie to record a video introduction to your story. This should be a live shot of you introducing the audience to the story they are about to see.

Step Five: Assemble your Rough Cut

The fifth step is to assemble your Rough Cut Video. Import your video introduction and photographs into iMovie so that all the shots appear in the right order. Practice reading your paragraphs as the video plays so that you can adjust the timing of the pictures to fit your story.

Step Six: Record Narration

Once you have practiced reading your story with the video and have adjusted the timing of the pictures you may begin recording your narration. Use the Voice Over tool in iMovie. Be careful to record your narration. Be careful to select the correct microphone that you want to use and set your levels to get a good volume.

Step Seven: Add transitions

The seventh step is to add appropriate transitions between your video and photo shots. Transitions may change length of each shot. Be sure to review your video to be sure that your pictures and narration still line up correctly after you add the transitions. You may need to manually adjust the length of photos again after adding the transitions.

Step Eight: Add titles

The eighth step is to add titles. Add a shot with the Title of your story either before or after your video introduction. Also add a shot at the end of your video with the names of artists and websites for the photographs that you used in your presentation.

Step Nine: Background Music

The ninth step is to add background music to your video. Search for Royalty Free music online, or search at Be sure that you are selecting music that represents the emotion of the story that you are telling. You may use one clip throughout the video or multiple smaller clips that fit with the pictures you are showing. Either way the entire video must have background music. There should be no silent video.

Step Ten: Export your video

The tenth step is to export your video and turn it in. From the Share Menu choose

Scoring Checklist ...