With the recent introduction of the 9.7-inch iPad Pro, Apple managed to fit inside of it a 4K-capable camera. Not only is this a first for the iPad line, but it opens up a ton of possibilities for its creative user base — myself included. Check out “Surprise Snow Storm” below for an example.
That video was entirely recorded and edited using only my iPad Pro. It truly is an amazing device that enables me to express my creativity. Drawing and painting with the Apple Pencil is one thing, but creating video content is an entirely different experience. And as someone who has been making YouTube videos since 2006, I feel right at home with Apple’s newest tablet.
So, what is the video editing process like on the iPad Pro? Firstly, it’s important to mention that the selection of video editing apps in the App Store is severely limited. There aren’t many choices as of today, but thankfully iMovie ($4.99) is pretty much all you need when getting started. It’s also developed internally at Apple, so you know it’s guaranteed to be reliable.
Creating a new iMovie project is simple. Opening the app presents you with three options, but you’ll want to tap “Projects” and then the large plus sign. Tap “Movie” and then choose your theme. I prefer “Simple” because it’s a basic approach and not overly flashy. Once you select your theme, tap “Create” in the top right corner.
This is where things get interesting, especially if you are new to video editing. The user interface is fairly easy to understand, but if you need help, simply tap the question mark icon at the top of the screen. This displays a handful of hints that can help you quickly navigate and get the hang of how to use iMovie.
Once you take a few moments to familiarize yourself with what’s available, you will want to begin dropping in your video clips. If it’s not already selected, tap the “Video” icon in the media browser and find the clips you want to use.
Selecting a clip will present several options. For now, focus on simply using the icon that resembles an arrow pointing downwards. Tapping that automatically drops your clip into the timeline, which is where the majority of your work will reside. Continue to do this for each clip as your project grows.
Once all your clips are in place, you might want to consider improving the style of your project a bit. This can be accomplished in a variety of ways. What I usually like to do is go for a clean presentation. Something that helps achieve this is by inserting cross dissolve transitions between clips. This simple approach can be quite effective and it really helps tie the project together.
To add clip transitions, tap the small line icon between the clips in your timeline and make your selection. iMovie currently gives you six to choose from: None, Theme, Dissolve, Slide, Wipe and Fade
Another way of dramatically improving your video is to add a soundtrack. Similar to selecting and dropping in clips, this can be achieved by once again accessing your media browser. Tap “Audio” and you are presented with all audio files that are on your iPad. Find something you like and drop it into your timeline.
Repositioning music files in your iMovie project can be very restrictive, but with sound effects you have complete freedom. Apple even provides a library of effects to have fun with. Of course, you are free to import your own.
Once you feel like your project is complete, you’ll want to export it as a regular video file. Tap “Done” in the top left corner to go back to your project’s main screen. In the bottom are three icons. Tap the middle icon to display your share options.
As you can see, you have plenty of choices. If you prefer to keep things simple, then tap “Save Video” in the bottom left and the video will be exported into your Photos app. Otherwise, you can upload your video to a variety of platforms. This includes YouTube, Facebook and even iCloud Drive.
Considering how well integrated everything is, editing with iMovie on the iPad Pro isn’t bad at all. If anything, the experience is actually quite seamless. Sure, it’s not the go-to solution for all editors, but going this route can certainly be convenient.
Finally, it’s worth noting that iMovie is available on other iOS devices. I simply chose to use the 9.7-inch iPad Pro as an example for the fact that it includes a 4K camera. As a creative, that just seals the deal for me.