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The best video editing software to make a PIP video
  • Support adding graphics or videos to overlay tracks
  • Customize the position, size, width, shape of PIP videos
  • Background blurring effect and PIP opacity & blending mode available

How to Use Picture in Picture Effect in iMovie 9/10/11?

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Aug 30, 2022• Proven solutions

Picture in picture is a feature of video that plays in a small window on top of another one. The iMovie picture in picture effect is usually applied to create special video effects, like showing someone is narrating the scenes that happened in the main clip or to show something else is happening at this moment.

iMovie gives you the full option to use this advanced picture-in-picture effect. Drag videos to iMovie and open your iMovie project, then follow the steps to learn how to create a picture in picture video in iMovie.

Need to add PIP to your Windows PC? Use the Best iMovie Alternatives for Windows to accomplish it.

Part 1: An Easier Way to Add a Picture in Picture Effect to Video with Filmora

To make your own picture in picture video in Mac, other simple and good-to-use video editing software - Wondershare Filmora - is highly recommended.

It supports adding a picture in picture graphics or videos to overlay tracks for decorating your movie. Besides this feature, it also has other common editing effects such as trim, crop, split, add text, sound, transition, intro/credit, mosaic, tilt-shift, face-off, jump cut at the beat, etc. to videos.

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How to create a picture-in-picture on video with Filmora?

Download Win VersionDownload Mac Version

Step 1. Place your videos on the timeline

Import your media files to Media Library by choosing "File" > "Import Media" or directly drag them to the program.

Drag-n-drop the primary video to Video Timeline, and then drag the video or picture you want to add to the primary video to the PIP tracks.

Now you can move them to the right time when you want them to show up, or trim and extend their length to adjust the lasting time by dragging the indicator.

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Step 2. Personalize your PIP video

Now you can customize your PIP video. Double-click the video or picture in the PIP track and the PIP Inspector will pop up.

On the right part of the window, you are allowed to adjust the size of the PIP video or picture by dragging its edge and moving it to any position you like.

And on the right part of the window, you are provided three editing options: Motion, Mask, and Green Screen. You can go to the respective tab to add the effect you want.

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Step 3. Save your video

After finishing the above operations, you can preview your PIP video by clicking the Play button. Then hit on the Export icon to save your video to Mac, mobile devices, DVD discs or directly upload it to YouTube and Vimeo.

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Watch the video below, see what Filmora can do for you, and download it to try.

Download Win VersionDownload Mac Version

Learn more detailed information about How to Make a Picture in Picture Effect Easily.


Part 2: How to Use Picture in Picture Effect in iMovie 9/11

Step 1. Turn "Show Advanced Tools" on

To activate the iMovie picture in picture effect, Advanced Tools must be turned on. You can go to iMovie Preferences, and click "General", and then you will see a popup window as below. Select "Show Advanced Tools" to turn it on.

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Browse to find the music you want to use in your project, or you can use the Search field to find the audio file you want by name. You can add music clips from your iTunes library directly.

Step 2. Select a video clip that you want to use as a picture-in-picture

In the Event Browser, choose a video clip that you want to apply as a picture in picture clip and drag it to the Project Library where you want to add your picture-in-picture effect. And a menu will pop up, choose "Picture in Picture" to apply video picture in picture effect in iMovie.

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After then, the picture-in-picture clip will appear above the video in Project Library like below. If you want to change the position of the picture-in-picture clip, you can simply drag it to another video clip. Furthermore, you can drag to extend or shorten it.

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You May Also Need: Add Watermark to Video in iMovie to Protect Your Video

Step 3. Preview and adjust iMovie picture-in-picture clip

Press the Space bar to have a view of the iMovie picture-in-picture clip. When you are previewing the picture-in-picture clip, you can drag the frame to change its display size to achieve a better result.

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Besides, more functions of iMovie picture in picture effects are provided. Double-click the clip or right-click on the small Action menu on the clip and select Clip Adjustments, and an "Inspector" will pop up. Here you can set the way the iMovie picture in picture clip shows, the border width and color, etc. to make it best suit the video.

You May Also Like: How to Split Screen (Side by Side) in iMovie?


Part 3: Add and Adjust Picture in Picture Effect in iMovie 10

If you are using the iMovie 10 version, you will find the above steps of adding PIP effects to video in iMovie is not suitable. Don’t worry, below are the steps about how to add and adjust the picture-in-picture effect in iMovie 10.

Drag the clip or image that will be used as a picture-in-picture frame and drop it above the background clip in the timeline.

Step 1. Click the Video Overlay Settings icon, and click the Picture in Picture option from the drop-down box.

imovie picture in picture effects

Step 2. Now Adjust the PiP Effect:

Choose the transition style for the PiP clip among Dissolve, Zoom, and Swap. When you choose Swap, the background/main clip will transform to the PiP window. You can also adjust the duration of the transition effect by entering a value in the field.

You can drag the corners of the PiP frame in the viewer to resize the PiP window size and position it anywhere you like. iMovie also allows you to add shadow to the PiP window and set the borders to make it more visible.

Step 3. Click the Apply button to save the changes and apply the PiP effect.

That's it. If you still have any questions about using the picture-in-picture effect in iMovie, drop a line below to let us know.

author avatar
Shanoon Cox
Shanoon Cox is a writer and a lover of all things video.
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