Creative 50th Birthday Present - A Great Idea for a Memorable Gift

Need ideas and inspiration for a creative 50th birthday present?

Sometimes, the best gifts to give to someone aren't things you can go out and buy at a store, but something you've put time and effort into creating.

A great idea for a creative 50th birthday gift is to make a memory video for the person. With a computer, some photographs (both old and new), any video footage, and some time, anyone can create a sentimental compilation movie that documents and celebrates the first fifty years of a person's life.

So how do you go about putting together this creative 50th birthday present?

The first step to making a memory video for a person is to gather your sources. Ask family members for any photos of the person growing up, and if possible, baby photos, as well. You'll also want to ask for photos of the person's parents and siblings, and even close friends from various points in their lives.

When piecing together this creative 50th birthday present, be sure to hit lifetime-milestones, such as first car, graduation, marriage, births of children and grandchildren, etc. Keep in mind, though, that due to the fact that most of these photos will be the hard-copy print only, you'll be spending a lot of time scanning each image and uploading it into your computer.

Make sure that your computer has a movie-making program, such as Windows Movie Maker, or iMovie for Macs. You'll want to upload any video footage you'll be including in the video at this time as well.

Before you begin your real project, you should take some time to make a short, three-minute practice video, so you can figure out the features and options. Yes, it may seem like a lot of work, but this will really help you to be comfortable with the program and you'll be less likely to quit with frustration while doing your actual project! Also, be sure to find out what types of files are compatible with your program, and save your media accordingly (.jpg, .wav, .mp3, etc.). Doing this now will save you a lot of time and wasted effort.

What's the next step for this creative 50th birthday present?

Once you're familiar with the program and have all of your visuals uploaded, get a pen and paper and write up a sequence. Include the songs you'll be playing, and what images and videos will be coinciding with each. Be sure to include the length of time for each element, so things line up where you'd like them.

For this creative 50th birthday present, a good idea would be to find a song that was popular the year the person was born, and play that at the beginning while you show a montage of baby photos. Remember, you do not have to use the entire song - if you only have 60 seconds worth of photos to show, you can select a portion of the song of the same length to play at that time.

Another suggestion is to find out what the person's wedding song was, and to play that while showing pictures of their dating and marriage.

By now, you're more or less ready to actually put this creative 50th birthday present together.

After you've written out your layout and sequencing for the video, you're ready to drag and drop each element from your workspace to the movie timeline. Take your time - missing just one file could throw your video off by seconds to minutes; and, be precise.

After you've simply dragged and dropped, hit "play preview" and watch what you've got. If you're happy with the general layout, go back and add transitions between photos, adjust volume of music and / or videos, and add an opening and closing message to the show. Watch it again. Make edits as appropriate. Repeat this process until you're absolutely sure it's where you want it. Then ask a friend or family member to watch your creative 50th birthday present, and ask him or her for inputs.

Now, the hard part is done. Simply purchase some DVD-R discs from your local media or electronics store, insert into the computer, and make a DVD recording. Throw a big party for the birthday-person, and show your creation on a big screen. Be prepared for laughter and tears, and a big hug afterwards! A creative 50th birthday present like this will mean so much to the one who receives it!

Have fun!

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