Online Test Banks
Score higher
See Online Test Banks
eLearning
Learning anything is easy
Browse Online Courses
Mobile Apps
Learning on the go
Explore Mobile Apps
Dummies Store
Shop for books and more
Start Shopping

How to Add Visual Effects in iChat

Mac’s software lets you add special effects to iChat with video backdrops. You can also use many of the special effects filters provided by Snow Leopard’s Photo Booth to keep your video chat room laughing.

Adding a backdrop

To add a video backdrop to your video feed:

  1. Choose Video→Video Preview.

    This displays your stunning self in a live video feed.

  2. Choose Video→Show Video Effects.

  3. Use the scroll buttons to move to the backdrop thumbnails toward the end of the Effects library.

    When you click one, iChat prompts you to leave the frame for a few seconds so that the plain background behind you can be correctly “masked” (just like those blockbuster special effects used in today’s films). When your background has been captured and masked, iChat prompts you to return to your spot, and you’ll see that your new static or animated backdrop is in place.

The plainer the background behind you, the better iChat can process and mask your background. A plain wall painted a single color works best.

To use your own movies and photos for backgrounds, iChat provides six user-defined backdrop slots for your own selections at the end of the Video Effects collection. (Click the right scroll arrow in the Video Effects window until you reach the last couple of pages.) To add your own visuals, you can

  • Drag a video from iMovie to an empty User Backdrop well in the Video Effects window.

  • Drag a photo from iPhoto to an empty User Backdrop well in the Video Effects window.

  • Drag a video or photo from a Finder window to an empty User Backdrop well in the Video Effects window.

As long as an item can be displayed in Quick Look, it can be used as a video background. Think of the possibilities!

Adding special effects

To try out a Photo Booth effect in iChat:

  1. Choose Video→Video Preview.

    This displays your live video feed.

  2. Choose Video→Show Video Effects.

    Effects range from simple Black & White to a Thermal Camera look, an Andy Warhol-style Pop Art display, and a number of really cool optical distortions (such as Twirl and Light Tunnel).

    Click a video effect thumbnail to see how it looks on you in the Preview window!
    Click a video effect thumbnail to see how it looks on you in the Preview window!

After you find just the right video effect, close the two windows and start chatting. If you decide you’d rather return your video persona to something more conventional, display the Video Effects window again and click the Normal thumbnail (which appears in the center of the first screen of thumbnails).

blog comments powered by Disqus
Advertisement

Inside Dummies.com

Dummies.com Sweepstakes

Win $500. Easy.