This is an overview of how to use PhotoStage to create a video slideshow.

Adding Photos

Start your project by adding files to the Media List area. Every image or video you add to PhotoStage is considered to be a slide. To add files to PhotoStage, either click Add Media dropdown button on the toolbar and choose to whether Add Media from Computer or Add Media from Camera/Phone, or one of the Add Photos, Add Videos or Add Audio buttons to the right of the Media List. In the file browser dialog, select the files you wish to use and click Open.

Once your files have been added, if you wish to remove any of them, right click on the files and select Remove item(s) from the menu.

Adding Media to the Slideshow

Once you have added all of your media to the Media List, you can then add them to the slideshow. You can do this two ways:

  1. From the Media List area: Just select the file in the Media List and, with the left mouse button pushed, drag it down onto the slideshow area. Alternatively, you can right click on the selected file and choose Add items to the Slideshow from the menu. Your slide has now been added to the slideshow and is part of your project.
  2. Add to Slideshow button: Click on the files you want to move so they are highlighted, then press the Add to Slideshow button, at the right side of the Media List.

Once your files have been added, if you wish to remove any of them, right click on the slide and select Remove selected slides(s) from the menu, or Remove all slides to remove all the slides. In alternative you can use the delete button (with a red 'X' icon) below the preview panel, this will remove the slide that is currently visible in the preview.

Adjusting the Duration of a Slide

If you want to change how long a slide is displayed for, you can click on the length of time displayed below the slide on the slideshow or by double clicking on the slide. A dialog will appear, showing the slide and a textbox with the current duration in it. Change the number to be the amount of seconds you want the slide to display for, then click Apply to apply the new duration to the slide.

Editing Slides on the Slideshow

You can add effects to your slides on the slideshow by first clicking on the slide, then on one of the effect tabs located on the left of the preview, you can choose between Edit, Effects, Animations and Text. The tabs are accessible also from the Video top menu. To apply effects to multiple slides at once, select the first slide, hold the Shift key and left-click on the last slide you want to select, then select the effect you want to apply from the Video -> Apply Effect menu. To learn more about the different effects, please see Effects.

To add a transition between slides, click the button between two slides on the slideshow and pick the transition you wish to apply, change the duration if desired, then click Apply. Alternatively, you can select the first slide, then click Video -> Transitions... in the top menu. You can also multi-select slides and apply a single transition to many slides. To learn more about the different transitions, please see Transitions.

Sorting Slides on the Slideshow

You can sort your slides on the slideshow by right clicking anywhere in the video slideshow and selecting Reorder All/Selected Slides from the context menu, a context submenu will open showing the possible ways to sort your slides. If more then one slide is selected then only the selected slides will be sorted.

Selecting Multiple Slides on the Slideshow

There are three ways to select multiple slides on the slideshow:

  1. By holding the Shift key and then pressing left or right buttons on the keyboard.
  2. By holding the Shift key then clicking the last slide you want to select.
  3. Double clicking on a slide then dragging left or right to select multiple slides.

Adding Audio and Narration

You can add a soundtrack to your slideshow by first adding the audio file to the Media List area (using the Add Media button from the toolbar). If your audio file is not long enough for the slideshow, you can add another audio file to the Soundtrack area after it.

Alternatively, you can choose to add sound effects from the NCH Sound Library by right-clicking any empty space on the soundtrack and selecting Add Sound From NCH Sound Effect Library from the context menu. In the same way cliparts can be added from the NCH Clipart Library by right-clicking any empty space on the slideshow and selecting Add Clipart From NCH Clipart Library from the context menu. The file you choose will be added at the location you have right-clicked.

You can also add narration to your slideshow. First select the slide you would like to begin narrating from, then click on Narrate button from the toolbar. Configure the narration options if needed, then press the Record button to begin recording. When you have finished narrating, click the Stop button. The narration will automatically be added to your slideshow from the point you selected.

Only one sound file will be heard at a time, and sound files will automatically fade to allow another sound file to be heard. For example, if you have added a video slide, its audio will be heard over the soundtrack or narration. A narration will be heard over the soundtrack.

Saving and Loading Your Video Project

If you want to save your project, select File -> Save Project As from the menu and select a destination file to save your project to. Saving this way will allow you to come back and edit your slideshow project later.

To load the saved project select File -> Open Project from the menu. Then select your saved project file.

Warning: When you save your project file you do not actually save your slides into it. Only filenames are saved. If you want all the data including slides, narrations and soundtracks to be safe do not rename, delete or move any files that are used in the project from their original folders. If you want to move your project together with your files you have to go to Files -> Back Up Project Files to Folder.

Creating the Movie Slideshow

Once you have finished putting all your pictures, videos, music, and narrations together, you still need to build the slideshow. Open the Video Output Setup window by clicking the Export button on the toolbar. Select the destination device and format you want to build your project for. Change the name of your output video file in the Save Destination field. There is a help page for every destination type (access them by pressing the F1 key while you have the page you need help with open).

Once you have selected the output format and save options, click the Create button at the bottom of the tab to create the movie. If you have not saved the project, a dialog will ask if you want to save before creating the movie.