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FotoMagico 5 Pro From Pictures to Stories By Ric Getter Now that you have all those great images and video clips from your summer holiday, you’re probably beginning to realize that clicking through the albums or even the repetitive transitions and rhythmic zooms in and out generated by Apple’s Ken Burns effect aren’t doing them much justice. You really want to tell a visually appealing story. You could do it manually in a video editing or effects program, buy that’s a lot of time and work. And if you’re a pro, and if the photos at hand are from a wedding or event assignment, that means money. You need something better. Some years ago, Germany’s Boinx Software recognized that need to build great photo-based slide shows and brought us FotoMagico. It revolutionized photographic storytelling with its focus on creating beautiful video montages from still photos and video clips. The new version 5 offers even greater creative control and improvements that enhance the program’s power, particularly for customers opting for the versatility and control of the Pro version that we’ll be looking at here. Managing Media The program opens with a wide and clean workspace, now honoring Mojave’s dark mode, if you like. The large Main Stage is where you set up your animations and watch your results. Below is where you build your Storyboard of clips and work in the Pro versions versatile timeline. To the right are a selection of panels that house your media and design options. You’ll start off your project by loading media into the Image, Movie, and Audio Browser panels. Your Apple Photos and Aperture libraries are automatically available. (Unfortunately, after a recent architecture change by Adobe, this is no longer true for Lightroom. However, as Lightroom users know, exporting images is easy, so this isn’t a great setback.) FotoMagico 5 is fairly indiscriminate in the kinds of images it will accept, but will warn you when an extremely large file could slow your playback and will offer to convert it into a high-quality JPEG–large enough to leave plenty of room for zooming in. Selecting a folder will display its contents in a thumbnail window below. One feature that we find really helpful is the green badge that appears that shows you the photo has been used in your presentation, something very helpful for long shows or late nights. FotoMagico 5 handles video clips much the same as still images, something very useful if you’re shooting both stills and video from a DSLR. (Face it, when it comes to smooth zooms a DSLR lens just doesn’t cut it.) The Audio Library is instantly plugged in to your iTunes and Garage Band libraries, your Music folder and any iLife sound effects libraries may still live on your system. Story Time The Storyboard (the only view in the standard version) is the best place to get your clips in order. They’ll slip right in with

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