Two Sites that Turn Your Library Photos into Videos

Here are two sites that make it easy to turn a set of library photographs into a fast and fun video to post on YouTube or share on your library website. How about trying one of these for Massachusetts Library Snapshot Day?

Both of these sites have lots of options for selecting photographs, including pulling in a set from Flickr. I find that it’s easier to create a set of 12 – 18 selected photographs and put them into a set on Flickr to use for the video. Both sites are pretty simple to use, especially if you follow the instructions, and both keep adding new features, so I won’t attempt to document them here, but here’s a couple of examples using some of my library photographs.


Animoto — Animoto makes photo slideshows that somewhat resemble movie trailers. You select the images you want to use, choose a musical clip from the large assortment provided, and then let Animoto create the video. They match the music and the images to create various animated transition effects, and no two videos are alike. In fact, if you don’t like your first attempt, you can let Animoto try again and you’ll get something different. There are other options here — you can mix video clips in, add some words and upgrade to a Pro account for higher quality, longer videos, different styles and to remove the branding.

Animoto Overview — Check this page for more information on how to get started


Pummelvision was designed to do one thing only, but to do it well — it creates a rapid slideshow of a large group of photographs matched to a beat. There are few options here, although you do have two choices for the speed: fast or very fast.

Art Babble

Play Art Loud! ArtBabble.orgArt Babble is one of the most interesting, informative and stylish art websites I’ve ever seen and it’s no surprise that it won the MW2010 Best Overall Museum Web Site award at the Museums and the Web Conference in April.

ArtBabble is a project developed by the Indianapolis Museum of Art to share and showcase their high-quality videos about art and artists. They have since been joined by an impressive list of museum partners that includes the Museum of Modern Art, the Smithsonian American Art Museum, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, the New York Public Library (and several others.)

The videos are beautifully presented, with all the usual features of a video site — commenting, sharing, downloading and embedding. Each video is enhanced with notes providing images and information, synchronized to specific points in the video. These are shown to the right of the video, and it’s easy to explore or ignore these while watching the video.

There’s quite a variety of videos here both in terms of style and subject matter. Two of my favorites are an interview with Beverly-born artist Wil Barnet from the Smithsonian American Art Museum, and a lecture on Hello Kitty by New York Times business reporter Ken Belson, who wrote the book “Hello Kitty; The Remarkable Story of Sanrio and the Billion Dollar Feline Phenomenon.” I’ve embedded those videos below, but you’re really better off following the link and watching it on the Art Babble site to get the full effect.

This site is a great resources for students, teachers, and anyone with an interest in art.

Meet Wil Barnet

Meet Wil Barnet

Hello Kitty

Hello Kitty — Hello Kitty: The Global Brand with Nine Lives by Ken Belson

C-Span Video Archives

The C-SPAN Video Library launched last week, opening up access to an amazing reference resource for students, journalists and anyone interested in history and government. This includes over 160,000 hours of political and public affairs events covered by the C‑SPAN Networks since 1987, free, well-organized, searchable, and easy to share. For example, embedded below is the first day of the Scalia Confirmation Hearing, in which Justice Scalia responded to questions about his views on federal-state relationships, the Constitution, death penalty, abortion, national security versus individual rights and more.

» Read more

Depression Memories on Video

The New York Times has announced an oral history project called The New Hard Times. Readers are invited to interview friends or family members who lived through the Great Depression, and have them share their memories and offer their advice for surviving hard times.

A good example is this video conversation between 96-year-old business school professor at New York University and one of his students :

Professor Ernest Kurnow.

One woman who lived through the Depression has become something of an Internet celebrity sharing her recipes and memories on YouTube. 93-year-old grandmother Clara Cannucciari is the star of a series of videos called Depression Cooking with Clara, made by her grandson, filmmaker Chris Cannucciari. Clara’s old-fashioned, simple cooking and engaging manner have won her many fans.

These videos are also good examples for anyone interested in doing an oral history project for their family or their community. Many people freeze up in a recorded interview, but are more comfortable and natural when they are demonstrating a favorite activity, and the results can be more interesting for the viewer as well.

Depression Cooking with Clara, Episode 4 – Peppers and Eggs

Information in Video

For my What’s New with What’s New presentation for the Boston Regional Library System:

JoVE : Journal of Visualized Experiments

JoVE describes itself as “a peer reviewed, free access, online journal devoted to the publication of biological research in a video format.” Founded in 2007 by Moshe Pritsker, JoVE is a collection high-quality, professionally recorded videos from the labs of top universities and research institutions, showing cutting-edge research in the life sciences. The emphasis here is on demonstrating experimental techniques which are often difficult to understand or replicate based on written description in journals. JoVE’s videos are included in PubMed, and they recently began adding videos in the areas of medicine and psychology.

JoVE is one of a growing number of sites sharing high-quality science videos aimed at everyone from elementary school students to graduate students, professional scientists and the general public.

Science Video Sites

Links on Science Videos

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