Using a small presentation may be interesting to introduce a movie. Then, why no lead it directly to an interactive menu that will allow access to different chapters of the movie. For example, in the introduction of a journey where some clips, incrusted on a map in order to illustrate a comment on the sites visited, are transformed into thumbnail buttons for the menu of the film.
Like in the examples below:
Introduction of a menu for a trip to Argentina :
Introduction of a menu for a trip to Australia :
The introduction will consist in the integration during the commentary of small clips on a background composed of a picture, possibly complemented by a musical background. The video background may be animated, but generally, it's not indispensable, especially if the clips themselves are animated. This background may be, as in the previous examples for the introduction of a journey, a map of the country visited tracing the route traveled.
You can give any shape to clips (usually rectangular). We choose an oval with a white border because it is often more aesthetic. For this, we will create an oval mask with a graphic editing software. We will use the free software "GIMP", explained in the tutorial of Saby : Create transparent areas in still images with Gimp
But we could also refer to the tutorial of Papy that uses photoshop : Thumbnail Buttons Without Borders by TIWA
Step 1: Create a clip mask and a button with GIMP
When opening Gimp, click OK in the dialog boxes that may appear (even if error messages). After 30 seconds of Internet updates, the software appears with three windows that you can reposition and resize. In fact, we will use only two : the toolbox and the image editor.
1.1-Creating the video clip mask
Click on "New File" to bring up a window "create a new image". Set its size depending on the format of your film (1920x1080 full HD, 1280x720 to 720p, 1024x576 standard Pal 16: 9, 768x576 in PAL 4:3, 16:9 853x480 NTSC, 640x480 in NTSC 4:3 etc ...).
Then select in the "toolbox" the ellipse shaped icon that you spread inside the rectangle created earlier.
You need to create 3 zones: the transparent inner part of the ellipse, the invisible outer part of the ellipse and the visible circumference of the ellipse.
Select "layer-transparency-add alpha channel", then press the delete key. The characteristic checkerboard of the transparency appears in the inner part of the ellipse. It is, indeed, this zone which was implicitly selected.
We are going to paint in green the outside of the ellipse. Why in green? Because it is the color generally used to return an invisible zone, as we shall see it later.
By "selection-to invert" the outside of the ellipse is selected.
To change the color of "the background" in green it is necessary to select the background, here black (1). A window opens in which you select the green rectangle ( 2 ), then validate (3).
After selecting in the "toolbox" the icon "paint" (1), drag it inside the selection (2) (outside the ellipse) and click : the selection is tinted green.
To create the border of the ellipse, select the inside of the ellipse by "selection-invert" as previously :
Select "border" that you set to 10 pixels. Validate.
To paint the border in white (or any other color except green), proceed as previously: click the "background color" in (1), select the white rectangle in (2) and confirm (3).
Place the paint can (1) on the border (2), click the border that turns white
The oval mask being built, there is nothing else to do than to register it in format Targa with the name, for example, "MasqueClipOvale.tga" (the format Targa allows to save the alpha layer of transparency) in a working directory (that you shall find back later!).
1.2-Creation of the mask of thumbnail button
To create the thumbnail button mask of menu, you just have to make transparent the outside of the ellipse. For this, select the outside by using "tool of continuous selection",with the icon representing a magic wand (1) in the toolbox.
Position it on the green zone in (2) and click. Hitting Del key will then replace the green background by the checkerboard. So, only the circumference of the ellipse is visible.
Only remains to record the targa in the working directory under the name "MasqueBoutonOvale.tga," for example.
Step 2 : Clips creation
Now that the masks are made, we will use them in Pinnacle Studio to create small clips that still be overlayed on a background image in the introduction.
After having inserted in the timeline the video of the first chapter of the movie, you limit its duration to equal the one of the introduction video (in this case 32s in the example).
Select "tool box video" in (1), then "change the properties of the selected clip" in (2), set the time in (3) and confirm (4).
Put on the overlay track (1) the image file "MasqueClipOvale.tga" previously created, set its duration to the same than the clip. Turn off the sound by clicking the little speaker in (2). (otherwise, the sound of the clip will be mixed with the background music of the introduction).
Save your clip by selecting the "make a movie" (1) tab and then in the window that opens, select "file" (2), create the file in (3) by giving it a name in your working directory.
You repeat the same operation for other clips that will be inserted in the introduction.
Step 3: Creation of the introduction
Once the first phase of the editing done, with comments and music on the map with the route, for example, at the appropriate time we will insert clips made previously. There are two options: the clips are still there after their appearing (as in Argentina, video) or a clip disappears with the introduction of the next clip (as in Australia, video). In both cases, the principle of the overlay is the same, but the first case requires several passes with Pinnacle if the number of clips exceed 2, because with the title-track there is an additional overlay track (see the tutorial: Third Video Track with Pinnacle Studio). With Avid Studio or new Studio versions just one pass because it has an infinite number of tracks.
Here to appreciate the difference with the demonstration video of Australia, we use the intro Australia but this time with animated video clips that will remain present after insertion. We will use 4 clips.
In the main track of the timeline, put the video introduction and set the first clip previously made on the overlay track at the place provided by the comment. Align the end of the clip to the same of the introduction, select the overlay track and click "video tool" (1), then the tool "overlay image and color" (2). Select "overlay image" tab in (3), move the clip with the mouse and resize it using the handles (4).
Then select "chroma key" in (1), select the green color with the eyedrop tool if possible (2) (but it is not essential, green initially chosen is sufficiently pure), and then select the overlay color (3). Miracle! Green background disappears to reveal the oval clip in the country of rugby! This is the recompense for your efforts since the beginning of the tutorial!
Using the title-track, as the second overlay track, insert the second clip to the right place, adjust its length and its position, size, chroma key as before. After saving the file, delete the whole (via the Recycle Bin or "file-new project").
Place the video previously recorded on the main track and the following clips on overlay tracks and proceed as above.
Only remains to make the menu with thumbnail buttons modeled like the clips.
Step 4 : Creating menu.
This requires taking a screenshot of the last frame of the intro. It will serve as background for the menu, adding background music which can also be the same that the introduction. In the "toolbox" (1) select the tab (2) "take frame" and after clicking "enter" (3), press the "save to disk" in (4). Give the file a name "fondMenu.jpg" for example and delete everything.
We are going now to create the menu.
To do this, place on the timeline (or storyboard) the introduction video that you just created, and the video chapters.
Select the first chapter video (after the introduction) (4) and click the "toolbox" (1), "create a title" (2), and confirm in the dialog box "full size conventional "(3).
Setting up the Menu background:
Click the background in (1), then open the folder (2) where your files have been previously recorded and select in (3) the background you just created.
Select, this time, the button (1), then choose the elliptical button (2) and drag and drop it to the background (3).
Size it with the handles and position it so that it coincides exactly with the image of a clip. It is the subterfuge, because the video will pass from the introduction to the menu without we realize it. Magic!
We repeat the same manipulation for the other buttons.
Check (2) "thumbnail button", set (3) the length of menu cycle to 20 s for example, then select the symbol "highlighting the shape of the button" in (4) (and it is the ellipse that will be highlighted), and finally set the "color of highlighted" at your convenience in (5).
By clicking OK, the menu will appear in second position on the timeline (story board) (if not move it). On the timeline there must be : introduction video, the menu, and then the video chapters of the film. Thus, the film will start by the introduction before stopping on the menu.
Only remains to assign chapters to the thumbnail buttons. To do this select the first button (1), then position the timeline scrubber where you want the corresponding chapter, and click in (2) "create a link for the selected button". Then go to button number 2 and assign the corresponding chapter and so on. Validate "animated miniature" in (3). After a test with the "preview launch" (4), save the project.
If everything is ok you can create your DVD / BD by going to the tab (1) "create a film", by selecting "disk" (2) then "create disk" in 3.
Tip: you should rather create at first the contents of the disk but without burning (see "parameters" (4)). Then control the file in a video player, before burning.
and this is the result :
In this tutorial, we learned how to create with Gimp, clips and buttons masks and how to use them with Pinnacle Studio in the introduction with clips of a film that leads to a menu so that the clips in the introduction are transformed in chapter thumbnail buttons.