How to Create Animated Spotlight Effect in Camtasia

camtasia, video tutorials, working with videos

Discover an Animated Spotlight Trick with this Camtasia Video Editing Tutorial. HIghlight different areas of your screen to draw your student attention. Create your screencast training content with confidence using these tips and techniques.

Video Transcript

Do you make software demonstrations using screen capture video? 

Do you need to highlight different areas of your screen? 

Then in this video I'll show you a cool way that allows you to highlight different areas of your screen so your audience can't take their eyes off your screen. 

Sounds interesting?

Then keep watching. 

I'm Ramgopal from  

We help you build your audience on YouTube and monetize your expertise. If you are new to this channel, please consider subscribing to this channel.  

Common Issue with Screen capture videos

The usual and unprofessional way of highlighting different areas of your screen is to use your cursor as a laser pointer. 

And keep circling around the area you want to show. This sends the audience in a dizzy and it doesn't really look professional.  

Now take a look at the alternative way of presenting the different areas of your screen.  

First I draw the viewer's attention to a specific area of the screen. They don't really have to follow the cursor. 

Once they finish the explanation, the area of highlight moves to another area and you have a neat caption that explains what that area is about. 

Once that is done, I show the third area with the corresponding caption. 

This makes it quite easy for the audience to follow what you're saying, even if I want to show the small areas. 

I can show it like this and the beautiful movement of the area being highlighted ensures that your audience stays with you all throughout and this is a far more professional way to present the different areas of the screen. 

Now let me show you how I achieved this animated highlight so you can do it in your own demonstrations. 

How to create Animated Spotlight Effect

Here we have the screenshot of the screen and I'm going to highlight three different areas on the screen. 

The first thing I want to highlight is the top area called as PowerPoint Ribbon. 

For that I need to go to annotations. 

And here the 4th tab is called as Special. 

You click on it and you get blur and highlight. 

The one that we want is the second one, called a spotlight. 

So let me click on that option and place it on a separate track. 

Now when I move my playhead onto that area, you can see that I have this spotlight shown. 

If you want to adjust the intensity of Spotlight, I can go to this option here for properties and increase the intensity like so. 

So that the area that is highlighted is even more accentuated. 

We're going to use custom animation in Camtasia to achieve the effect that I showed you. 

Adding Custom Animation Effects

So let us go to animations and go to this option called custom and you will find that in the animations tab usually zoom and pan is shown. 

So you need to click on animations tab and that gets you to this option here called custom. 

Now I'm going to click and drag that option and place it at the start of the highlighter or. 

The spotlight now you see a green arrow here. 

There is one end which is red in color which shows the end position and we have the starting position shown with this small spot here. 

Now at the starting position, I want the entire screen to be shown, so I'm going to make sure that I place this highlight so that it covers the entire screen. 

Now this is the starting position. 

Now how do I want the end position to be? 

I'm going to move the playhead to the end position. 

Can you see here? Now my playhead is at that point where there is red circle. 

Now I want to adjust this so that I only highlight the area that I want to highlight. 

So here I have this area being shown and this is called this PowerPoint ribbon. 

Now to reinforce the terminology used for this area, I'm going to use an annotation for that. 

Adding Annotations and Callouts

Let me once again go to annotations and this time I'm going to choose the first one called as callouts and here I have this option that I really like. 

So let me click and drag this and place this over here on the screen. 

Now I can double click on the text and write what I want to right now. 

In this case I'm going to say that it is called this PowerPoint ribbon. 

And then I can select everything and change the font type. The font type that I like is this one called Tw Cen MT condensed extra bold.  

Now that looks really neat. If I want I can increase the size of the font like so and then I need to change where this color points. I can click and drag this yellow point here. 

To point out the area that I want to highlight, this is PowerPoint. 

Now to add a bit of drama, I'm going to introduce a behavior for this one. 

So let us go to the behaviors option. 

You can choose any of these options available. 

I'm going to choose the simple one called as popup. 

Let me click on that and then drag that effect onto the call out. 

You can always change the properties of the behavior by going to this panel here. 

In is with style change. 

I don't really want any kind of animation to happen, so let me choose style and say none and then out remains the default way. 

Now when I take my cursor to the starting of this timeline and when I play you can see that this is how the highlight is done and we have this pop up with a neat little behavior shown. 

And I can decide how long I want the effect to remain. 

Now when I go down I can see that this is the point to which I need to have the explanation. 

So let me click and drag the first one. 

The second one, all these effects which are like the spotlight effect and the call out, are presented. 

The point where I want them to be. 

So when I have this cursor you can see till this point these effects remain in place. 

Moving the Spotlight Effect

Now let us say I want to move the attention of the audience from this point to the slide area. 

All I need to do is to extend the spotlight. 

So I'm going to click and drag this so the spotlight can. 

You can use to extend. 

I don't really want this call out anymore, so I'm going to click and drag the end so that it ends here. 

So the way it plays is like this... 

It goes away from the scene after this point. 

Now around this point I want the attention to shift from here to here, so I'm going to add custom animation again. 

So let us go to animations. 

Let me click and drag the custom effect and place it. 

Over here you can see now the end point of the animation corresponds with the playhead. 

Now I can change how the spotlight effect is, so let me click on the Spotlight effect, move it over here, and then adjust the dimensions so that it captures exactly where I wanted to capture. 

Let me click and drag. 

Now this is the area that I want to highlight as the slide area. 

Now I can use the same style that I used for caption, So let me select this right click and say Control  + P and then I'm going to right click here and say paste and make sure that this color corresponds with the playhead. 

Now we have the call out over here. 

When I move the playhead over here you can see that the call out is clearly shown. 

Now I'm going to move this to the side. 

So let me place it over here and then let it point to this side. 

And we're going to call this slide area, so I just highlighted that particular text and now I'm typing a different text here. 

So this is slide area. 

And this keeps continuing till the time I have the explanation going. 

Now, let us say that this is the point where I have finished my explanation. 

Then I can adjust the length of this call out. 

I don't really need that call out anymore and then I can move the playhead a little further and then adjust the area that I want to show again now. 

I'm going to use the custom animation once again in the animations tab, let me click and drag the effect so that it corresponds with the playhead. 

So before this point, this is how the area is being highlighted. 

Now after this point, which is shown by the end of this arrow, I can change the nature of the spotlight. 

So let me select this again and then make some adjustments. 

So I'm going to ensure that only the strip that is at the bottom is being highlighted and this is called as the status bar. 

So let me drag it in such a way and then I'm going to add a caption here. 

Once again, I'm going to use the same caption that I used earlier. 

Copy and then place it over here, paste and then make sure that correspond to the playhead and then when I move the playhead over here you can see that this is how the call out is. 

I can double click on this and change this as status bar. 

And I can change the location, so let me click outside and then drag it over here and then make it point to the status bar here. 

Now that looks beautiful. 

Well, and let's say I only have till this point to talk about. 

I can adjust the length of the call out and then I want to go back to the original screen so the audience can see the entire screen instead of seeing only the parts of the screen. 

So I'm going to move my playhead over to this point. 

Once again, I'm going to use the custom option, click and drag it so that the endpoint corresponds with the playhead. 

And this time I'm going to readjust the Spotlight area so that it covers the entire screen. 

Now watch how the whole animation plays when I go here and click on play. 

The attention is brought to 1 area and then the caption is shown. 

As you can see here. 

Once this explanation is finished, the attention moves to the next area and then we have the caption here. 

Then we move the attention to another area and we have the caption here. 

Of course we need to ensure that this points to the correct area here. 

So let us go back here once again. 

See how that happens. 

Yes, it is pointing to the right area, and once everything is done, we have the whole area shown. 

Now we can continue explaining the rest of the demo. 

So that is how you use animated highlight to point to the different areas of your screen. 

So did you like the tip? 

If you did then please share it with your friends to encourage us to create more such videos. 

In the meantime, watch these other videos in our channel and encourages thanks a lot for watching this video. 

I'll see you in the next one. 

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