Documenting your life // making a dvd using iphoto

You may have learned by now that I am passionate about documenting my families' life. I try not to be, as funny as that may sound, because most of the payoff will be when I'm no longer alive, but I have an innate itch that keeps me at it.

Months ago, I shared several different paths for completing a family photo album, scrapbook, journal, and photo dvd's. However, shortly after sharing my routine for turning my phone videos to dvd for t.v. viewing, my process became too difficult and inefficient. So, here we have it, the second installment of DOCUMENTING YOUR LIFE.

I originally solely used idvd for converting my camera or phone videos to dvd but after several mishaps where the program showed an error half way through exporting, I decided that I had invested too much time for this same error to repeat itself. I had to find an easier way.

I became intrigued whether a program like picasa or iphoto where you can make and save slideshows offered something for conversion to dvd. I had no luck with picasa, but iphoto looked promising. So, with the help of my husband a.k.a. mac pro, we figured it out! I am now kicking myself for all the hours spent trifling in idvd only hoping my program wouldn't crash. And, I might add, although this does take time, it is so easy and so worth it, just do it and don't let yourself get even more behind!

How to//
>Open iphoto and make sure you are in your PHOTOS section under LIBRARY as seen in the left hand column.
>In the bottom right hand corner, click on CREATE and select SLIDESHOW. Your slideshow will appear under SLIDESHOWS in the left hand column. You can them rename it with your desired title.

>If you're videos aren't already in iphoto, Import [drag and drop] your movies [I keep mine on a hard drive and so I simply highlighted them all and drug them and hovered over my newly created slideshow. They will drop in and import. [note here how many minutes of video your dvd holds so that you can decipher if you need to split your slideshow into two.]
>My videos automatically arranged themselves by date but if you do add videos after the fact, they will import to the end of your slideshow. So you may need to now go in and rearrange the order. Simply highlight and drag where you would like each video.
>If you would like to include a title to your video, click on the TEXT SLIDE icon in the bottom right hand corner. It's nothing too fancy, but I like my dvd to be titled in the video itself. The title will show on your first slide and then disappear.

>You will also notice in the bottom right hand corner, several other selections. You can change the design and layout of your slideshow by clicking on THEMES, you can select background music by clicking on MUSIC [I always de-select "Play music during slideshow" and make sure to then click on "Make this your default setting" at the bottom of the page so that it stays de-selected], or do a little tweaking in SETTINGS [the only thing I change in settings is the ASPECT RATIO, change to IPAD/TV (4:3)].

>Once that is done, you can play or preview your slideshow, make sure your slideshow is highlighted in the left hand column and click on EXPORT at the bottom of the screen.
>A window will pop up. I always de-select "Automatically send slideshow to iTunes" just because I don't want the extra space on my computer used but this is optional. Then click on CUSTOM EXPORT.

>Another window will pop up, asking where you would like to save your video. Make sure your video is selected to MOVIE TO QUICKTIME MOVIE in the export drop down menu in the bottom middle of the window. Click on SAVE!

>From here, your video is exporting & saving and may take anywhere from 20 minutes to an hour or two depending on how long your video is.
>Once your video finishes the export process, click on your video [will appear as a little black square], wherever you may have saved it. Then click on FILE and select ONE STEP DVD FROM MOVIE. It will then ask you to insert a dvd. Do this and repeat the waiting process once again! Your video will burn onto your dvd and pop out when it is done.

I know that this tutorial probably looks a little overwhelming when you see the number of steps, but when you are actually doing it, it is a breeze. I can't tell you how many cold snowy mornings we've spent cuddled up watching home videos and laughing and remembering and enjoying. I always say, what is the point of taking videos if we leave them on our computer or a hard drive and never look at them? I won't pull up individual videos from individual files and watch them, but if they are streamed together on a dvd, well, I will.

Feel free to email if any questions [] Good Luck!



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