Making Movies with Kino

Today's inexpensive camcorders can shoot great video. All you need to do a real video project is the right editing tools and, of course, practice.
Put Scenes in Line

When all of your scenes or episodes are free of unwanted frames, put them in the right order. An easy way to reorder them is by using Storyboard. Click Edit first, then click a scene in the Storyboard you want to move and click Cut. Then, select the scene you want to follow it, and click Paste. The cut scene appears before the selected scene.

An even easier way to re-order scenes is by using drag and drop. In the Edit mode, click on the scene you want to move, hold down the mouse button and drag it to the required place in the Storyboard list. The scene appears at this position after you release the mouse button. While dragging and dropping, pay attention to the thin line that indicates the current target position. Drop does not work if the target shows a dotted rectangle. You also can insert previously captured video clips into your current movie project. The Commands/Insert Movie button puts the selected file at the current position, and Commands/Append Movie follows it. Inserted files are split into scenes automatically if required.

Joining Scenes with Effects

After your scenes are assembled, the video part of your movie is almost done, but you still can add some of the effects that Kino and timfx provide. Be careful with effects, though—too many effects can distract viewers. You don't have to put an effect on every scene change, just like you don't have to use a new font in every section of a document. The simplest Kino effect is the Barn Door. Let's join two scenes with it.

Click FX→Video Transition. Select Barn Door Wipe from the pull-down menu. In the other field, choose what kind of door you want. Figure 5 shows a vertical one. The storyboard shows the first frame of the current scene that we want to join with the next one. So we select Frames following and Forward. To see the result before rendering, click Preview. Play with other options of this effect and preview them. When you are satisfied with a result, press Render.

Figure 5. Making the Kino Barn Door Wipe effect—a preview of the effect is shown in the special window.

The render button has a red spot on it to show its importance. While rendering, Kino creates a new file. All previous editing keeps the original raw files untouched—only the SMIL has been changed. Now you can create a new file that is included into the project automatically.

Kino provides the Barn Door effect itself. Additional effects are available through timfx. Figure 6 shows the complete list. Many effects are well known, such as what we illustrate here with creating titles.

Figure 6. Video Filters Menu

Figure 7. Video Transition Menu

Kino also can change the speed of your video. This function is used to add comic effects or make moments seem longer. To change the speed, use the scale bar under Advanced Options and push the Speed button. You also can activate Reverse to play your clip from the end back to the starting point. Changing the speed and reversing can be combined with the Transition or Filter effects.

Making Titles

If you want to add text comments to an episode, dvtitler can help. As an example, let's create a simple album that represents the characters acting in our movie. You even can create it using photos with an image editor such as The GIMP.

First, take a picture of the person and resize it for inserting into the movie. For PAL, the size should be 720×576, for NTSC 720×480.

Let's assume the following for this example. The first person will be shown for five seconds, then there will be four seconds for changing, and then five seconds again for the next actor.

From the FX menu, select Create (5+4)sec*25=225 frames. To keep the number of frames even, we choose Create From File→226 frames, as shown in Figure 8. At the same time, we add the title “Denys Tonkonog”. It consists of two centered lines and initially is located on the top right of the frame. As the final position is the same, the title does not move in the frames. The X offset and Y offset are used to keep the complete title in the frames, even if the movie is shown on TV, due to the possibly limited size of TV screens. The screenshot of the title preview is shown in Figure 9.

Figure 8. A Preview of Creating from File Frames

Figure 9. Making the Title “Olexiy Tykhomyrov”

Figure 10. A Preview of Joining Titles with Image Luna

We create another title, “Olexiy Tykhomyrov”, in the same manner. Then, we go back to Edit mode and use Split to separate the parts for applying the effect. Instead of creating two title scenes, we create four. They are five seconds in duration, then four seconds, four seconds again and then five seconds. The two central scenes (both four seconds) are joined into one with Image Luma.

In FX mode, click on the second scene under the Storyboard. Under Video Transition, select Image Luma. Next, specify the file with luma image. In the example (Figure 10), we used a standard gradient file left_to_right.png. Do not forget to change the mode from Insert to Overwrite. Once rendered, you have three scenes instead of four. The Timeline of the scene with changing titles is shown in Figure 3. Using Image Luma with different files can help you create many interesting effects.

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Kino export

fatpaw175's picture

Thanks for the article! I was finally able to get my DV exported properly with your help.

Problem with registration

Otto E. Tutzauer's picture

I am a Linux Journal subscriber for many years.
As I am located in Germany, I do not receive the Journal with a label
but I would like to participate in the suscriber info.
I am certain that you will help, as this situation concerns many
international subscribers.

Sincerely
Otto

Re: Problem with registration

Anonymous's picture

I'm located in Spain, and receive the magazine via DHL Globalmail from "ALLEMAGNE", with a label (with the subscriber info too 8-)

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