5 awesome iOS apps for moviemaking on the iPad

iMovie for iOS is Apple’s video editor for the iPad, iPad Mini and iPod Touch. It is designed with a touch interface in mind and provides a very intuitive user experience. For the classroom, iMovie is a powerful tool for students to create content and demonstrate learning. However even with its growing list of features and effects, some students (and teachers) may already be looking for more functionality from iMovie. If you and your students are looking to do more with video production have a look at the following applications that can help extend the scope and potential of iMovie for iOS.


Green Screen (Do Ink, $2.99)

Multiple video tracks allows you to do some pretty complex chroma key work on your iPad!
Multiple video tracks allows you to do some pretty complex chroma key work on your iPad!

There are several green screen apps for iOS but Green Screen by Do Ink is the one that I like to use. It offers multitrack editing of footage so you can choose to use prerecorded media to produce your shot or scene. There are also helpful tools like Lock Exposure which prevents your camera from trying to brighten and wash out your green screen. Once you have produced your shot, save it locally to your Photos (camera roll) and then retrieve it in your iMovie project when you import videos saved on your iOS device.

With the ability to do some green screen work on the iPad, you are no longer limited to a classroom or school setting. A picture, graphic or video can now serve as your background and setting. For the creative student, this now opens up a new door of possibilities for their video projects.

For iPod Touch and iPhone Users try Green Screen Movie FX (Epocfield Ltd, $1.99)


Explain Everything (MorrisCooke, $2.99)

A compelling app for the classroom, Explain Everything is a fantastic addition to a videographer's iOS device.
A compelling app for the classroom, Explain Everything is a fantastic addition to a videographer’s iOS device.

Make no mistake, Explain Everything can stand on its own as a fully featured application. However this application has been extremely helpful in creating unique and specialized clips for my video projects. Explain Everything allows you to record and capture annotations of images and videos. This application records both your voice and the changes you are making on the canvas/screen. With the ability, to save finished projects locally to the iOS device, these video clips are available to import into iMovie.

Similar to the added creative potential of green screen (chroma key), the ability to video capture annotations made on the touchscreen opens a new world of functionality for iMovie. These screen captures may help students illustrate new concepts, demonstrate innovative solutions or showcase unique creations.


GarageBand (Apple, $4.99)

Apple’s own GarageBand application for iOS is a useful tool to help out with the audio facet of video production. GarageBand may be regarded as a powerful application for music recording and editing, but videographers will appreciate its ability to create and refine audio elements for videos. You can use GarageBand to record and edit your own sound FX, foley work or voice overs and then import the finished products directly into iMovie. You do have the option of recording voice and sound from within iMovie but I find it much easier to edit and manipulate audio recordings within GarageBand. For the more musically inclined, GarageBand also provides the ability to create your own soundtracks and theme music for your video projects.


iStopMotion (Boinx, $9.99)

Plenty of features to help create some amazing stop motion animations.
Plenty of features to help create some amazing stop motion animations.

Like ExplainEverything, iStopMotion can stand on its own as a compelling platform to create stop motion animation. With this app, you have access to a wide range of helpful tools to create your own stop motion footage. You have the ability to adjust frame rate, add audio and even set up your iOS device as a time lapse camera. You have a number of options when it is time export out your finished product, but for the purpose of using this footage within iMovie we will need to export our finished clips to the camera roll.

iStopMotion provides students the chance to create their own animations that they can then bring into iMovie for a larger project. The animations can help illustrate a concept, tell a story or help breakdown a complex process. Students can also use stop motion animation to create unique visual effects as well as their own animated titles.

If the price is a little steep, try the LEGO Movie Maker (The LEGO Group , free)


Intro Designer (dgMotion Mobile, $2.99)

Add some animated titles and text to help give your iMovie project a unique look.
Add some animated titles and text to help give your iMovie project a unique look.

Recent updates to iMovie for iOS have added more animated titles within the app itself but if you are looking for some other options for titles and credits have a look at Intro Designer. The app makes use of premade templates, animations and sound FX but you provide the text and titles. Templates are grouped into different themes that should help you find the appropriate style for your project.

Completed animated titles and credits are then exported out to your camera roll as video clips where they are now available to import into your iMovie project. Even though you are working from preset templates, you still have the ability to trim and edit these finished video clips to fit your specific movie title and credit needs.

Honourable mention goes to IntroMate by Ralph Huber ($3.79)

App Stacking = Endless Possibilities

Coordinating the use of these apps along with iMovie is a type of application stacking where the product from one app is then imported into another application where it is changed and edited again. But this is just the beginning! For example, there is nothing stopping you from creating an animated clip using iStopMotion and bring in your finished clip into Explain Everything where you can add in some labels and callouts. From there, that finished video clip can then serve as a backdrop as you place yourself in front of the animation using the Green Screen app. From here, you can narrate the animation and explain what the viewer is seeing. After this new clip is completed, bring it into iMovie where you can add in other supporting clips and media. The sky is the limit…

Have fun!

– K. Takahashi

What apps do you use with iMovie?







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