MP4 Video Within Transparent Image Area

 Lesson 3

What is an MP4 video?

An MP4 file is a media-containing file that will hold video, audio, text and images.


MP4 video

In order to have lots of entertaining YouTube videos, you must add lots of variety to the various videos.

One way to do this is to occasionally have an MP4 video playing within a still image like the example here.

34 steps

This is how you can have an MP4 file playing within a still image in 34 steps.

      • To start, use GIMP or Photoshop to make a transparent area within a still image
      • Add a transparent layer
      • Merge the two layers
      • Click on Erase icon
      • Make sure the erasure is solid

      • Erase the outer perimeter of the area you want transparent
      • Increase the diameter of the erasure to about 40 pixels
      • Erase the rest
      • Save it as a PNG file
      • Now we will use Keynote and ScreenFlow to create a sample MP4 file
      • MP4 videoDrag an image onto a Keynote slide
      • Add an Appear effect to the image
      • Press Cmd C to copy it into your clipboard
      • Press Cmd V many times to paste another copy of the image down a bit and over to the right
      • Paste the image onto a second slide, enlarge it and give it a Pop effect
      • Paste the image onto a third slide, enlarge it and give it an effect of None.
      • Start ScreenFlow, select first slide of video and click Keynote Play button many times
      • After third slide shows up, wait several seconds and then stop recording
      • Save video with descriptive name
      • MP4 videoChange size of video to 1920 by 1080 pixels
      • Use Clip Inspector to reduce length of first portion to 2 seconds
      • Click on File > Export with a Web-High preset to save video as an MP4 file
      • Drag image with transparent area onto a Keynote slide
      • Drag MP4 file over transparent area of image
      • Give the MP4 file a Start Movie effect
      • Click Back icon
      • Now add text to below the image
      • Click text icon
      • Drag text box downward & make bold
      • Add a colour to match main image
      • Give it a Drop effect
      • Save Keynote file
      • Click Play button to check your work
      • Record with ScreenFlow


Lesson 3 homework

For this homework, you will have to know how to make an animated GIF.  If you do not know how to do that, read the blog post entitled How to Make an Animated GIF.

      1. Go to or and find an interesting free picture within which you will play an MP4 file.
      2. Use GIMP or Photoshop to create a transparent area within the picture.
      3. Create an interesting 10-second MP4 file that is somehow related to the free picture you downloaded.
      4. Create an animated GIF that illustrates a topic you are passionate about.
        1. Think about the Real Men animated GIF here
        2. Choose a topic about which you are equally  passionate
        3. Go to or and find a free picture that would illustrate your passion
        4. Create the animated GIF. Try to use several of the techniques used in the Real Men animated GIF.

Next lesson