What is PhotoStory?

Photostory will allow you to create a slideshow about a topic using pictures, text, narration, and music to get your point across. Photostory is available on the class laptops and can be downloaded for free from this website if you want to use it at home.
Please note though that other versions of Photostory are not compatible, so it is best to finish your story wherever you start it.

Some Tips to Get Started:
Step # 1 Find your Storypencil.jpg
  • A good photostory begins with a good vision...what is it that you want your audience to gain from your slideshow? Try answering this question as specifically as you can: "This story will be about..."
Step # 2 Make a Plan
  • BRAINSTORM!! Think about what images you might use to convey your points and create a STORYBOARD to roughly sketch out an order of your images, text and narration. Remember a STORY has a beginning, middle and end. So start to plan how you will incorporate these.
Step # 3 Find Good Visuals
  • Collect high resolution images for your Photostory, and save them to a folder on the DESKTOP of your computer. (NOTE: Avoid saving images to your M Drive because you will fill your space quickly. Also, do not save images by copying and pasting them to a word document).
  • Import your pictures into Photostory and organize them most effectively in your timeline. Use your storyboard sketch to help you.
    • You can select and import multiple images in several ways:
      • Click first image, then SHIFT CLICK on last image
      • "Lasso" or CLICK DRAG over multiple images to select a group of pictures
      • Use CTRL CLICK to select multiple images
  • Delete a photo by selecting the photo in the storyboard and clicking delete
Step # 4 Add Text (sparingly!)
  • Add text for title and conclusion slides and to support specific areas of your photos as you see fit. Remember...too much text will take away from the overall effectiveness of your story. Rely more on pictures and narration to get your point across.

titles.JPGExample: title2.JPG

Step # 5 Write a Script
  • Use the Narration window to type in your narration for each slide (on the "Narrate your pictures" page) OR type your script in a separate word program

Step # 6 Rehearse and Record *IMPORTANT: Do not record your narration until you are ready to finalize your video. Recordings are automatically saved to the computer and will be lost if you continue working on a different computer or in a different version of PhotoStory.
  • REHEARSE your narration so that it sounds natural. Put some expression into your reading so it does not sound like you are reading...more like you are talking to your audience. IF you sound like you are bored or terrified of people hearing you...this will come across to your audience and make them feel the same way.
  • RECORD narration on the "Narrate your pictures" page. Choose the photo where you want the narration to appear. Then click the red record button to begin recording and the stop button to stop recording. The narration will be assigned to that photo. To record narration for multiple photos at one time, click on the photos to change the photo as you record -Photostory will match the recording to the selected photos. Click the curved arrow button to DELETE narration from a photo -it will only be deleted from the selected photo.
  • NOTE: Each slide will play for the length of your narration.
Step # 7 Add Transitions
  • Add transitions to your photos to make your story flow and look visually appealing
  • On the Narration Page select the Customize Motion button. Then select the TRANSITION tab. Click on a transition to preview it (or click the preview button).
  • You can also change how long the transition will display. You can speed up or slow down the transition by selecting "Number of seconds to display the transition" and then changing the number of seconds.
  • Make sure you SAVE when you are done selecting your transition.
Step # 8 Add Music
  • Add appropriate music and adjust volume to allow narration to stand out. Remember to select music that enhances, not detracts from, your overall purpose.
  • Select the picture where you want the music to begin playing. If you want one song to play for the length of the slideshow, then select a song that is long enough. (The slideshow will continue even if the song ends early.)
  • Choose select music to find and use music saved on your computer.
  • Choose create music to use and modify music instrumentals provided by PhotoStory. You can change the music by genre, style, bands, and mood. You can also change the speed (tempo) and intensity of the music. Remember that your music should always match the content and purpose of your slideshow.
  • Preview the slideshow with the music to make sure that the music aligns with the content and starts and ends in the right places.
Step # 9 Preview and revise
  • PREVIEW your story and adjust any awkward motion using the "customize motion" button.
Step # 10 Finalize your Photostory to make it a video file.
  • FINISH and do not just "save" your photostory... UNLESS you need to continue working on your project at another time.
  • When you are done editing and ready to turn it into a video you must:
    • Select "save your story for playback on your computer"
    • Choose where you want to save the video
    • Give the video a specific title
    • Click NEXT
    • Then the video file will be created

Cool Ideas for your PhotoStory

Customize the motion of your photos.
  • Do you want to focus on a specific part of a photo? You can zoom in on the photo to draw attention to that area. You can also zoom out on a photo - start by showing a small area and then zoom out to show more of (or all of) the photo. The customize motion function should enhance your story (content and purpose) and not be distracting.
  • On the Narration, page, select Customize Motion. Then select the Motion and Duration tab.
  • Check the box "specify start and end position of motion"
  • Change the "start position" of the photo by dragging the arrows to change the position and size of the rectangular box. What do you want to see when the slide appears? Drag the rectangular box to control what part of the picture will be seen. To show the full picture, do not drag the box. Repeat this step for the "end position" of the photo. How do you want the slide to end? What do you want to see at the end of the slide?
  • Under Duration you can change how long the picture will be displayed.
  • To zoom in: Do not change the "start position." Move the box in the "end position" to what you want to focus on. The slide will begin by showing the entire photo and then gradually zoom in on the selected area.
  • Example: See the picture below. I change the motion of the picture to zoom in on a specific area. In the "start position" the full picture is selected, but in the "end position" only the math equation in the picture is selected (by dragging the rectangular box). When played, the slide will gradually zoom in from the full picture to the selected math equation.


Still have questions about PhotoStory? See the PhotoStory FAQ.