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I've written a long list of soothing thoughts that I want to make into a video that will help my clients relax and recenter in a meditative way.

I could make a barebones PowerPoint presentation that features 1 sentence per slide and then record my narration of it.

Having the text both visible and audible is nice.

But barebones PowerPoint is boring.

I love the idea of having a beautiful, dynamic presentation like this one: https://prezi.com/presentation-template/creativity-paint/

But that tool isn't quite suited for my purposes because I'm not making a presentation that is structured into different topics and subtopics. (I tried to force my list of sentences into a structure artificially, but it was taking too long in Prezi and still didn't even look good since it's not meant to handle full sentences.)

Instead, I have a long bullet list of sentences that I want to read aloud while the words appear on the screen in pleasant and entertaining way.

Maybe fading in, sliding in, zooming in, etc.

What tools could I use? (Ideally not more complicated or time-consuming than PowerPoint)

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One possibility is to use Audacity or similar to create named or numbered audio clips (with a matching list of the texts) possibly mixing it with some suitable soothing background sounds (e.g. Whale Song or Pan Pipes). Then you can use MoviePy to create text frames for each text, possibly overlaying on a suitable image, and to stretch that single frame to a video clip of the same length as the matching audio clip and arrange them in a specified or randomized order into a movie file.

To use MoviePy you will need python installed and a number of dependencies automatically installed during pip install moviepy and for this specific use you will need the optional ImageMagick installed and, if you are on Windows, added to the configuration.

MoviePy also used FFMPEG but downloads it for you on the first use.

The good news is that all of the software mentioned above is:

  • very flexible, (e.g. you can easily create numerous variations)
  • completely free both gratis & open source
  • available for Windows, Mac & Linux plus a number other platforms - there is even a docker image!
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    I'm familiar with Audacity and FFMpeg and use them frequently. I hadn't heard of MoviePy and am generally not big into Python, but this is good to know about and might become useful for something else. I think it sounds like more work than I was anticipating for this particular project, but +1 anyway. Thanks. – Ryan Sep 20 at 19:10

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