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Windows Movie Maker: Guide to the Storyboard

written by: Shane Burley•edited by: Rhonda Callow•updated: 7/4/2011

Here is an overview of the Storyboard view in Windows Movie Maker, which is an alternative to the Timeline.

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    Story Panels

    One of the things that set Windows Movie Maker apart from other video editing applications is that it provides an alternative sequence view to the Timeline. Windows Movie Maker gives us the Storyboard, which is an alternative that places the video clips into a classic pre-production Storyboard view. This is different in that each video clip exists in its own self-contained box.

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    Main Boxes

    The primary area of the Storyboard in Windows Movie Maker are the main video boxes. This is where you drag and drop a video clip into and in here it exists as a single autonomous unit. Most the edits and alterations will have to be done to the video clip before it goes into its box because you are very limited as to what you can do once it is in the box. For example, you cannot do any primary lengthening or shortening edits.

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    Video Effects

    In the lower left hand corner of each video box is a little white box with a grey star in the middle. If you want to add video effects to the clip you drag and drop a video effect into this box. Go ahead and go into the Movie Tasks side bar and select “View video effects” from the Edit Movie heading. This will bring up a number of video effect graphics in the middle display where the Collections usually are. Here you can select a video effect and get a preview of it in the Viewer. When you find the one you want you can drag and drop it onto the video effects box inside the video clip box.

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    Video Transitions

    In between each video box is a smaller box where you put video transitions. You go through the same process as with the video effects where you drag and drop them into the box from their open display. These tend to only appear in between clips in Storyboard instead of at the beginning or end.

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    Can and Cannot

    You can still do things like add text to the video, but what happens is that once you have completed the text preparation process it is automatically assigned a video box where you want. For example, if you put together a title slate you can choose to have it at the “beginning” and it will automatically appear in a new box that is slid in before the others. Either way you are still extremely limited in Storyboard view and unless you just want to arrange a few simple clip together you may want to go with the Timeline display instead.