Tyler Stahle | Feb 16, 2018

How to Create an Engaging Family History Video

This is the second of a two-part series exploring apps that can help tell your family history in an engaging way. Read part one.

Presenting family history in an engaging, visually appealing way that attracts the attention of relatives and children wasn’t always easy. After all, to most people, an old census record with great-grandpa’s name was only interesting for a few seconds.

However, thanks to modern technology and digital media, it’s now easier than ever to present your family history in an engaging way that makes the younger generation stop and consider their heritage.

“People need to see [their family history,]” said Lisa Louise Cooke, owner of Genealogy Gems, in her RootsTech 2017 presentation. “They need to visualize it. This is what fun looks like. And this is what real family history looks like. It’s not just a stagnant census record. … I know we get excited about that, but they don’t. … It really is so much more.”

In last week’s article, we examined some popular mobile apps that can help turn old family history photos into eye-catching images that tell a story. In this article, we’ll examine a few helpful apps that will help you turn your family stories into engaging videos ideal for the younger generation.

Adobe Spark Video

Adobe Spark Video is a fantastic video storytelling application that is available for both iPhone and iPad. Use the app to create a stunning family history video by using components such as motion graphics, voice recording, music, and text.

“Spark Video offers an incredibly quick and easy way to convey your stories through shareable videos,” wrote Cooke in her RootsTech syllabus. “Simply record your voice, add photos or icons, select from professional-quality soundtrack music, choose some cinematic-style motion, and you’ve got an eye-catching family history video.”

Adobe Spark Video is available for free download from the iOS App Store.

Animoto Video Maker

Animoto is an innovative web tool and app that will help you create stunning videos about your family history.

“In addition to adding your own images, recording your voice, and selecting from professional music tracks and styles, Animoto allows you to drag and drop in your own video clips,” explained Cooke. “Whether it’s home movies, video[s] of the street where your ancestor was born, or [videos of] current family get-togethers, video clips will bring even more excitement and interest.”

Animoto offers a free trial period for you to experiment with the app’s capabilities. You can then purchase access to the app for as little as $8 a month.

Animoto Video Maker is available for download for iOS and Android.

What other mobile apps do you use to create family history videos? Tweet us @RootsTechConf to join the conversation.

Tyler Stahle

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