As a former videographer, I’m still amazed that I can pull my iPhone out of my pocket and shoot video with a single tap of a button. I imagine that by now portable camcorders are struggling to survive. But these days even editing videos is nearly as easy as shooting them, particularly when using a new app like, Lumify (free download).
The nonlinear capabilities of Apple’s iMovie greatly simplified the editing and production of home and professional videos. It helped revolutionize the digital video industry. Apple has even brought iMovie to the iPhone and other iOS devices. It is literally possible to shoot and edit a video on your iPhone and show your movie in less time than it takes to bake a cake. But guess what? Lumify simplifies the editing process even more, making it as easy as cracking eggs in a bowl. Let’s learn how.
You can shoot videos directly from within Lumify, or import existing clips from your Camera Roll. This amazing app takes a series of shots—each just a few seconds long—and analyzes each clip and trims them down automatically. And within a minute or less Lumify creates a short video with smooth transitions and background music.
Unlike in-camera editing on camcorders, which are “destructive” of the original during the editing process, Lumify retains the original unmodified video, thus allowing the user to go back and easily re-order and re-trim each clip to their liking.
Here’s an example of a video made with very little editing effort using Lumify. It consists of 10 scenes lasting just 30 seconds in total. Something like this would be quite tedious to do in iMovie given the number of cuts and transitions, but Lumify makes it incredibly simple.
You may have noticed in this movie that there is no audio. Because of the way Lumify quickly edits together clips, audio would complicate the process and may result in cutting off any audio in mid-sentence. Quite frankly, even editing together clips with audio in iMovie can be cumbersome and time-consuming. The developers of Lumify told me however that they are considering enabling users to turn on the original audio on a clip-by-clip basis, as well as other “advanced options,” in future updates.
How to Lumify Clips
Though Lumify can do the editing for you, it is still important to have a storyline in mind when shooting your video clips. Each clip in your story need only be 15 seconds to a minute long. And about 6-10 individual clips should be sufficient for a thirty second or longer movie.
You can shoot your videos using the built-in iPhone camera, or shoot scenes directly from Lumify. If you are importing shots from your Camera Roll, Lumify will identify those clips and you simply select the order in which you want them to appear.
The next step in the process allows you to also rearrange those clips and review them before the automatic editing process begins. As you review individual clips, you can highlight parts that you would like Lumify to include in the edited production. While you don’t get complete control over the editing process, I think Lumify does a pretty good job of selecting the important parts for editing together a movie. It’s almost as if it actually reads the content of your video clips.
Next, you can select from one of four theme songs in Lumify for background music, or you can choose a song from your iTunes library. You can also swipe your finger across the screen and apply one of 10 filters (e.g. Sepia, Documentary, Grunge.)
Before the editing process begins, you can adjust the soundtrack and duration of the video and preview how it will look. I find the curtain image in the preview section distracting, but if you turn your iPhone in the landscape position, you can preview your video full screen and the curtain disappears. The curtain, is of course not a part of the final production.
Lumify analyzes your clips and highlights, and does its magic, producing an edited movie in less than a minute or so. It creates a 1080p HD version. Lumify is fully optimized for the iPhone 5 and iOS 6. It is also compatible with all iPhones/iPod Touches that support video recording, but the iPhone 4S/iPhone 54/iPod Touch 5G are recommended. You can go back and re-edit, and add or delete scenes in your Lumify productions anytime.
I really like Lumify because for simple home clips, I don’t have to haul out iMovie to do the editing. You can save your Lumify-produced movies to your iOS device’s Camera Roll, share it to the Lumify gallery, or send it privately to family and friends via email.
Let us know what you think about Lumify. Is it an ap you might try using?
For other ideas about editing video, check out these articles: