Ken Burns Effect

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    • #40626

      I’m interested to use the ‘Ken Burns’ effect within travel style doco’s where a B & W still shot comes to ‘life’ with colour and movement (video). I’m aware of the basics and also the video editing processes.

      My question centers around preparation, pre shooting thoughts, resolution requirements of the still images etc. and possibly examples!

      Equipment is a Sony HXR-NX5U used at highest def., Nikon D5000 for the stills and FCE4.

      Thanks in advance

    • #174214

      One of the problems I’ve had with using high res images is they are too big – I usually shrink them down to no more than 3840 X 2160 if doing HD or 1440 X 960 if SD using my photo app (I use Paint Shop Pro but PhotoShop works as well) along with other cleanup, correction & retouching.

      There is no benefit and you’ll just make your NLE work harder and make decisions for you if they’re too big.

      Also, I don’t know how FCE does this, but in Vegas I have a switch I assign to each still image (or the track if it contains all stills) named “Reduce Interlace Flicker” whcih seriously helps reduce the flicker you can get when zooming/panning stills.

      Interesting bit of trivia – Did you know the “Ken Burns” effect was not invented by Ken but by his brother? Ken just made it famous….

    • #174215

      Making ‘MoPho’s’ (motion photographs) is fairly easy using Photoshop and layers (though I believe you could do it in Paint Shop Pro.) Trick is if you have After Effects you can pull the layers in as a composition and go to town moving your elements around. I think you can do it in Premiere CS3 and later too. In FCE? I’m not too sure. FCE is a barebones NLE and though I guess you could bring in each layer as a separate video track element, that would be a monster PIA!

      As for what resolution your photos should be, convert them to the size of the format you are editing on. Having them in super-high resolution is of no real advantage unless the format you’re editing in can handle it. So if you’re converting photos for use in video you change them to pixels (not dpi!) meaning;


      DV = 720 x 480

      HDV/HD = 1220 x 720, 1920 x 1080


      DV = 720 x 576

      HDV/HD = 1220 x 720, 1920 x 1080

      Shoot your images in hires jpeg. When you get them into your computer for photo processing, do your color corrections and then convert them to one of the formats above which your camera works with. You’ll need to drop down the dpi (dots per inch) to 72 which will make the photo much easier to work with. Because you shot the image at hires, there will be enough info left after conversion the photo won’t break up when you do closeups or put it up on a large screen or projection. The catch is, you’re going to need a program like phoshop, paint shop, and probably AFX, Boris FX or Apple Motion to make it look like ‘Kenny’s’.

    • #174216

      Also, since you are apparently Mac-based, using FCE, you might take a look at Photo to Movies software (about 50 bucks and worth every dime). While there are resolution issues – I currently scan photos/images at 300 dpi and get excellent results in SD when I push in or pull out, using P2M. I’d stick with what the other two have said regarding production resolution. The other good thing about P2M is it automatically processes the photos you drag into the window, setting them up for rectangular vs square pixels. There’s more, but you can read and decide for yourself at Photo to Movie.

      The b&w to color thing, of course, is done in your photo editing or video editing software and is a simple time transition.

    • #174217


      I checked out that P2M, that’s a handy little program for $50 bucks. However, you could do the very same thing in your NLE with keyframing and if it has ‘zooming’ effects. P2M looks like it be a lot easier and quicker.

    • #174218

      Hey Guys,

      I really appreciate your input and understand most of what you are advising.

      Composite1; Although creating some kind of 3d motion within the photo’s elements themselves is not my initial requirement, it certainly is another possibility to look at. In my change from windows to Mac, I have also put on my list ‘Aperture’ (the mac photo editing program) and of course After Effects for Mac. I feel that the changeover needs to be a bit force fed and not hang on to my windows knowledge during the learning curve.

      Final Cut Express4 although not up to Studio, has a lot of hidden strengths which are only realised when you see its 1000+ page on line manual – (yes it does layout with plenty of page ‘white space’ but readability is high!)

      Having used Premiere CS3 and previous versions as far back as Premiere 4.2 (really old!!!) I’m aware of NLEs growths in power. However my style of editing has never really tapped into those extremes and as such Express will probably suffice.

      EarlC; thanks also for your input and I’ll certainly have a look at the P2M which you suggested. I currently live in Vanuatu which is a western Pacific island nation where our internet ranks as interminably slow and we are also in the dark when you guys are enjoying the day…..I’m not complaining just excusing my slow response time on this forum and it’ll take all day to look up P2M.

    • #204339

      A really quick and easy way..i just finished a project for a 100 year anniversary. I loaded all the pics in ProShow it. One click will give you tons of 3d dissolves,efx,colors etc..Great Program. Then I rendered as a HD file, from there I loaded into premiere where I cut the slides into live current day video. Then burned all to a Blu Ray…Sharp as a Tack in HD


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