Do You Know A Good Free Slideshow Software Program?

by Pastastic Matt
(www.pasta-recipes-made-easy.com)

Question: Hi Gary, I have a pasta recipes website and I also sometimes add recipe videos to YouTube. However these take ages to make, what with all the takes and editing etc.

So a friend gave me an idea that might help me ramp up my YouTube output - use the still pictures I have of each recipe to make a quick slideshow movie.

This could be a picture for each cooking step, with a short bit of explanatory text and a soundtrack. Then I could pop that on YoutTube with a link in the blurb back to my full recipe page.

Sounds like a plan right?

The trouble is I am on a tight budget at present. So is there a good free program you know of for doing this? My usual video software, Ulead Video Studio 8, doesn't seem capable.

If not free, then a low-price, great value suggestion?

Thanks in advance!

Answer: Hi Matt, thanks for your question. I popped over to your pasta recipes website and my, do you have a lovely looking site! Just looking at some of your recipes makes me hungry

To answer your question, there are lots of software slideshow programs out there. They do exactly what you mentioned - take a couple of still pictures and the program chains it up into a movie for you. Many of these programs also allow you to add captions, text, audio or effects to your video.

One of my favorite free slideshow software programs is Microsoft Photo Story.
Here's a little tutorial on how to create a slideshow video with Microsoft PhotoStory.

  • Launch Photo Story 3 for Windows.

  • Begin a new story, and add the pictures that you want to use in the story
  • All of your pictures should now be present in the filmstrip. You can click a picture in the filmstrip and click Edit to change the appearance of the picture. Rotate it, adjusting the color, fix red eye or add effects.

  • To add a title to your picture, click the first picture, and then type your text in the text box to the right of the picture. You can repeat this to add text to other pictures. Play with the text styles, sizes, and alignments.

  • You can then add narration and custom pan and zoom effects to your photo story to make it more unique and personal. To add narration, simply attach a microphone to your computer and set up it using the simple wizard. You can then easily record your narration.

  • You can also add music to your story by using Windows Media Audio (WMA), MP3, or WAV files. Simply go to the Add background music page, click the first picture in the filmstrip and then click Select Music. You may repeat this for other pictures as well.

  • Finally, click the first picture in the filmstrip, and click Preview, to see how your video story looks.

  • Save your photo story to compile everything into a video file that you can view in Windows Media Player.
And that's it! That's how you very quickly create a video with Microsoft PhotoStory. Best of all, it's free software.

If you're interested in a cheap commercial software, I'd recommend Corel DVD MovieFactory. This is a no-frills, quick solution for creating slideshow videos which I've used many times before. Sometimes, you just want a quick video to be produced, without going through major video edits. DVD MovieFactory is the best tool for this.

You may also want to consider upgrading your Ulead VideoStudio 8 to the newer version, Corel VideoStudio.

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