Jan
7

Author:

ProShow Producer Tip: Create Image Reflections

Header

In ProShow Producer, the ability to create gradient layers is instrumental in the construction of many slide styles built into the program, as well as those available in our Effects PacksIn a recent article, I showed you how to use gradients as adjustment layers to simulate realistic lighting. Today I’m going to show you how to utilize gradient masks to create an image reflection below your images. While it’s not necessary a complete effect on its own, hopefully you can use this skill to construct more complex effects and make your images pop.

Setting Up Your Reflection

  1. Add an image to your show to create a new slide.
  2. Open Slide Options and click on the image in the layers list. In the Layer Settings tab, change the zoom to 75%, then change the position to [0, -8].
    Zoom and Position
  3. Right click on the image in the layers list and choose Duplicate Layer
    DuplicateLayer
  4. Select Layer 2 in the layers list.
  5. In the Adjustments tab, change the Opacity to 35% for layer 2. Also check the Horizontal flip option under the Editing Tools section.
    Opacity and Flip
  6. Go to the Effects tab, then change the Rotate Center to [0, 50]. Change the Rotate value to 180.
    Rotate Center and Rotate
  7. Click the Copy button at the bottom of the Effects tab and choose “Copy to Next Keyframe (All Layers)”.
    Copy to Next Keyframe

Now your image should be mirrored below the original one. The next step is to create a gradual fade of the mirrored image.

Fading Out the Reflection with a Gradient Mask

  1. Right click on layer 2 in the layers list and choose Add Masking Layer > Add Gradient.
    Add Masking Gradient
  2. In the Gradient window, set your gradient up as follows. The key steps are changing the Resolution to 1280×150 and the Angle to 270 degrees.
    Gradient Window
  3. Go to the Layer Settings tab. While Layer 2 (the gradient mask) is selected, change the position to [0, 40].
    Gradient Position

There you have it. When you play back your slide, you should now have a subtle reflection below the image. If you want to make it even more subtle, change the opacity of the reflected layer (now layer 3) to something lower than 35% in the Adjustments tab. If you have any questions, feel free to leave them in the comments section below.

Jan
6

Author:

Using Transparent Layers in ProShow

Learn how to use transparent layers to make your own creative effects in ProShow. This video shows you how transparent layers work in ProShow Gold and ProShow Producer and how to use Photoshop to cut out parts of an image.

Try ProShow free to get started. ProShow is award-winning, easy-to-use slideshow software that turns your photos, videos & music into video slideshows!

 

Jan
2

Author:

Make a Year in Review Photo Slideshow Video

Photographer Jeff Cable makes it a tradition to compile a ‘Best Of‘ slideshow each year as a way to look back on his favorite images of the year. From shooting the Winter Olympics to capturing amazing wildlife images in Costa Rica, Jeff’s year of photos spanned across the globe. Watch his video above to see some beautiful images and get inspired!

Ready to make your own video? Gather up your favorite photo and video memories from the year and drop them into ProShow. Using the wizard and built-in effects, you’ll have a polished and professional slideshow that’s ready to share in just a few minutes. Check out the tips below and get started by trying ProShow free here >

Tips for putting together your Year in Review Slideshow:

  • Lead the show with your best images for maximum impact.
  • Add an introductory slide with the year you’re re-capping.
  • Use effects to keep your audience engaged and the show flowing.
  • Not sure how long your show should be? Check out our handy slideshow timing calculator tool to gauge how many images to use in your show to match up to your music.

Have you made a Year in Review video? We’d love to see it, add a link in the comments below!
 

Dec
31

Author:

Photodex: Our Year in Numbers

It’s been an amazing year and we couldn’t have done it without our awesome ProShow fans! Check out these fun stats we dug up that give you a glimpse of our year in numbers. Cheers to 2015!


The longest customer service phone call of 2014 was 4 hours and 36 minutes. End result? Problem solved, happy customer!


3,076,334 is the number of minutes viewers logged watching our ProShow demo videos and training videos on YouTube this year.


Rise and shine! We buy breakfast for our entire team each Wednesday – because breakfast tacos are a great way to get over the ‘hump day’ blues. That’s 53 team breakfasts and counting!


Our creative team has made 60 all-new FREE downloadable ProShow FX (Slide Styles and Transitions) this year for our awesome customers.


10,342 people tuned into our ProShow Podcast this year. A free, top-rated podacast with the latest tutorials from our training experts!

Thanks for being a part of our year!
 

Dec
18

Author:

Free Printable DVD Cover Template for Your Video Slideshows

Free DVD Cover Template

Going the extra mile when packaging gifts makes a big difference in the overall impression one has on the receiving end. If you’re planning to give a DVD slideshow as a gift or as a deliverable for clients, fortunately, there are many tasteful options for packaging your discs.

If you’re looking for an affordable do-it-yourself option, try our FREE printable DVD cover templates. All you need is a color printer and a few minutes. Includes editable template options for Adobe Photoshop and Microsoft Word (1997 and up). Download them today!

Free DVD Cover Template Download

Download: DVD Cover Template

Template Dimensions (designed for standard clamshell DVD cases):
Full Bleed Print Size: (11″ x 7.45″) | Final Trim Size: (10.77″ x 7.2″)

  • (.PSD) template is compatible with Adobe Photoshop* CS2 and up. (Due to the complexity, Photoshop Elements is not supported).
  • (.DOC / .DOCX) templates are compatible with MS Word* (97-current)

*For assistance on how to use either of these programs, please consult the software documentation

Download

Using the Photoshop Template (.psd)

The following tips assume a basic-intermediate proficiency in using Adobe Photoshop. Please consult Photoshop’s documentation for more in-depth instructions on using a certain feature.

Open the .PSD file in Photoshop. The editable layers will be grouped as shown below. (To see the guides & front-only / back-only previews, turn on the hidden layers within the ‘GUIDES…’ layer group).

Free DVD Cover Artwork

To edit text, select the ‘T’ type tool and click in any text placeholder to start typing. You can change the font and colors as you like. Colors for header bar, text & spine can also be customized.

Free DVD Cover Artwork Layout

To swap the existing sample photo with your own photo, double-click on the photo placeholder (it should read ‘Open/Add Image/Save’). You will see a (.psb) smart object window pop open. (You can also right-click on that photo layer instead of double-clicking and select ‘Edit Contents’ to open the .psb smart object window). Place or paste your own image on top of the original photo layer. Make sure you resize your photo appropriately to fit. Save and close the .psb file (but keep your DVD template .psd open).

DVD Cover Artwork Free download

Once the DVD template has been customized and you’re ready to print, make sure all optional ‘Guides & Previews…’ layers are hidden. Also check to see that the ‘Trim Marks’ layer group IS visible. You will want these to assist with cropping your DVD cover to its final trim size, once printed.

DVD cover artwork download

If printing directly through Photoshop, in the Print settings dialog, set the orientation to ‘Landscape’, with paper size set to 8.5 x 11″ or larger. Note: The template will flow right up to the edge of the sheet, meaning a small, but acceptable margin may get cropped off). Once printed, trim using the built-in crop marks.

Using the Microsoft Word Template (.docx)

The following tips assume a basic-intermediate proficiency in using MS Word. The template may or may not work correctly in other programs (such as OpenOffice, Google Docs). A .doc version of the template is also included for MS Word 97, though images will need to be manually added instead of using the newer ‘Change Picture’ feature (available in the .docx version).

Open the .DOCX or .DOC file in MS Word. To edit text, click in any text box and start typing. You can change the font, size & text color.

Free DVD Cover artwork download for Word

To change the color of the header background or spine, right-click on the area you want to change until you see an option for ‘Format Object’. (You may need to do this a few times until you get the right spot, since it is important that your cursor be hovering over the correct object and not overlapping boxes in the same spot). Under ‘Fill Color’ – pick the hue you want to use.

Free DVD Cover artwork template for Microsoft Word

To change a photo in the template, right-click on either photo placeholder (the template will have 2 sample photos, one on both the front & back). Select the option > ‘Change Picture’. Select a photo on your computer to use. (Note: In this template, landscape / wide orientation photos work best. Portrait photos will also work but you will most likely want to resize them after they are added).

Free DVD Cover Template Download for Microsoft Word

Once you have finished setting up your DVD cover and are ready to print, select the ‘Print’ option. The template is setup to print on 8.5 x 11″ or larger sizes of paper. (Note: The margins will be very narrow on the edges – if one of the edges of the trim guide gets cropped after printing, use a ruler or straight edge against the header background edge to draw any missing trim lines. Trim the edges with scissors or paper cutter and insert into your case. Voila! Your DVD is ready for gifting.

Got the right tool to build your slideshow?

Planning to make a slideshow for the holidays? With ProShow, it takes just minutes to create a beautiful slideshow video using the automatic wizard and instant effects. To get started on your slideshow, get ProShow 6 today. Upgrade or try it free today.

Make a slideshow for the holidays with ProShow


 

Dec
17

Author:

ProShow Producer Tip: Create Realistic Lighting When Tilting Images

StudioLighting

The Tilt feature in ProShow Producer can be a great tool to add some 3D effects to your images. But to create a more professional 3D look, you’ll want to make sure that your image reflects light in a realistic way. Today I’m going to show a creative technique that can help enhance your custom effects.

The Basic Concept

When you use the tilt feature, envision a source of light in relation to the image. It may help to hold a glossy photo in your hand and see how it responds to light as you tilt it. In my example, I’m going to have a source of light that is directly in front of the image (or more realistically, somewhere behind the viewer).  As I tilt to the left, the light’s reflection will move toward the right of the photo; as I tilt to the right, the reflection will move to the left.

To recreate a light source, my preferred method is to use an Adjustment Layer. The adjustment layer will be configured to increase the brightness and contrast of the image. I’m using a gradient for my adjustment layer so there is a smooth transition from the white (affected) and black (unaffected) parts of the layer. From there, it’s a matter of using pans to position the adjustment layer – and more specifically the white parts of the adjustment layer – over the image in tandem with the tilt behavior of the image.

Note that the following steps will allow you to create a very specific example of this effect, but hopefully with a decent understanding of the concepts, you should be able to apply it in any custom scenario you want to create.

Setting Up the Slide

  1. Insert an image into your show to create a slide; I’ll be using one with a 3×2 aspect ratio.
  2. To better visualize the effect at the beginning and ending of the slide while I’m working on it, I’m going to use zero-second transitions and a 5-second slide time.
    CropperCapture[773]
  3. Open slide options, then in the Layer Settings tab, change the Zoom of the layer to 85%.
    CropperCapture[774]
  4. Next, click the [+] above the layers list and choose Add Adjustment Layer > Add Gradient.
    AddAdjustmentGradient
  5. In the Gradient window, set your gradient up like what’s shown below. Note that the type is set to Linear, there are 3 color stops (black on the left and right, white in the middle), and that the angle is set to 0. Click OK when finished.
    CropperCapture[776]
  6. Once the gradient adjustment layer has been created, make sure it’s selected in the Layers list, then go to the Adjustments tab. Here we’re going to change the brightness to 75% and the contrast to 25%.  By doing this, the lighter areas of the gradient will increase the brightness and contrast of the image below it.
    CropperCapture[777]

Creating the Motion

Now that the slide has been set up, you will have a gradient adjustment layer (the light source) and an image underneath it. The next step is to apply your motion. In my example, I’m going to do a simple left-to-right tilt.

  1. Go to the Effects tab and select layer 2 (your image).
  2. Add a keyframe in the middle of the timeline (2.5 seconds for a 5-second slide time).
    CropperCapture[778]
  3. On keyframe 1 of the image layer, change the Horizontal Tilt to 20. On keyframe 2, change the horizontal tilt to -20, then on keyframe 3 change the horizontal tilt to 20.
    CropperCapture[779]
    CropperCapture[780]
    CropperCapture[781]
  4. Next, let’s select the gradient adjustment layer (layer 1), and add a keyframe in the middle of the timeline (2.5 seconds).
  5. On keyframe 1 of the gradient layer, change the Pan values to [75, 0]. On keyframe 2 change the Pan to [-75, 0]. Then on keyframe 3, change it to [75, 0] again.
    CropperCapture[782]
    CropperCapture[783]
    CropperCapture[784]
  6. Preview the effect to make sure it works well for your images. If you have a wider image, you may want to increase the pan values (e.g. 90 and -90 for the Pan values); for narrow images, you may want to decrease them (e.g. 60 and -60).
  7. Lastly, to make the effect fit in with the other slides in your show, change the transition times around the slide from zero to something larger like 1 or 2 seconds.
    CropperCapture[785]

Your slide should be complete now, and it should appear as if light is reflecting against your image as it tilts. If you have any questions, feel free to leave them in the comments below.

TIPS:

  • If you’re not familiar with the Tilt feature in ProShow Producer or you just want to get more hands-on experience with it, check out this tutorial on Creating a 3D Tilt Keyframe Effect.
  • When using adjustment layers that are set to the default ‘grayscale’ mode, remember that the white areas of your layer will apply the adjustment values to the images below it, and the black areas will not. Gray areas will apply the adjustment to a limited degree.
Dec
15

Author:

New ProShow Web Theme Released: Holiday Aura

Just in time for the holidays, we’ve released a trio of new themes for ProShow Web called ‘Holiday Aura’. Each one turns your photos, videos and music into a polished video, complete with holiday ornaments, cool animated effects and festive backgrounds. ProShow Web makes it easy to highlight your favorite photo & video memories of family, friends and clients.

To add a festive holiday look to your videos, use the new Holiday Aura theme and pair it with one of our great holiday music selections available in the ProShow Web music library. Below are a few of our favorite songs for the holidays!

Top ProShow Web Songs for the Holidays:

  • Carol of the Bells by Chris Haigh
  • Deck the Halls (jazz piano mix) by Olive Musique
  • Dance of the Sugar Plum Fiary by the Apollo Symphony Orchestra
  • It Came Upon the Midnight Clear by DnRtracks

Make a holiday video slideshow today >

 

How-To + Tutorials

FAQ Friday: Top ProShow Questions and Answers

Friday, January 9, 2015

The top 5 most buzzed about topics and questions about making video slideshows with ProShow. These come directly from ProShow users just like you and are collected by our customer service…

ProShow Producer Tip: Create Image Reflections

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

In ProShow Producer, the ability to create gradient layers is instrumental in the construction of many slide styles built into the program, as well as those available in…

Using Transparent Layers in ProShow

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Learn how to use transparent layers to make your own creative effects in ProShow. This video shows you how transparent layers work in ProShow Gold and ProShow Producer…

Make a Year in Review Photo Slideshow Video

Friday, January 2, 2015

Photographer Jeff Cable makes it a tradition to compile a ‘Best Of‘ slideshow each year as a way to look back on his favorite images of the year….