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iMovie: The Missing Manual by Aaron Miller, David Pogue

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Chapter 2. First Things First: Import Your Footage into iMovie

Before you can do any editing, you need some video to work with, and that’s where this chapter comes in. In it, you’ll learn how to import your raw footage, and, with a little help from iMovie, how to keep your clips in good order.

Importing Video

When you import raw footage into iMovie, it winds up in a sort of folder known as an event. Why? Because Apple figures that most of what you record revolves around events in your life, like vacations, weddings, and graduations. And if, over time, you import hours of footage, you (and iMovie) need some way to organize all that material. That’s why, when you import footage from, say, your iPhone, iMovie asks you to assign that video to an event (or to create an event to assign it to).

You’ll learn all about events in the next chapter, but for now, it’s time to import your clips to iMovie.

Importing Basics

You can get your raw footage from a lot of sources, only one of which is a camcorder (do they even make those anymore?). For example, iPhones, iPads, and iPod Touches shoot video, as do almost all digital still cameras. Most cameras store your footage as files, but some older cameras store it on tape or even on a DVD.

But no matter the source, any importing you do involves five initial steps:

  1. Connect the device to your Mac.

    How you connect it depends on what you’re connecting, but to do any importing, you have to connect a device to your Mac. That applies even if you want to import ...

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