Newbie, several questions - animation

Hi, just started trying to use kdenLive for a particular project and I am having difficulties:

My son got a 'Claymation' set for his birthday and it came with Clay Animation Studio, a Windows program that will:
- Import a set of stills and generate a movie at 12fps.
- Allow you to move frames about, delete them, insert them, import others and lengthen them so one shot covers several frames.
- Add a separately recorded sound-track
- Save the generated video as an avi.

This all works fine in Wine except when you add the sound-track. After that, it fails to render or save. So I have been looking at other apps, hoping not to have to re-do what I have already done and I have found KdenLive.

Kdenlive seems perfect except that it either fails to load the avi, or it only loads it at 15fps, meaning all the timings are out and the viedo is far too fast, or it is upside down(!). I forget which of these is the problem as I tried several programs and they all failed one way or another.

So I want to do this again, from scratch. I have the original stop-motion shots we took and the soundtrack we recorded.

Can I...
- Either load the stills in at 12fps or at a faster rate and then 'stretch' the whole video? I can't see a way to do this.
- Stretch one image to last for multiple frames? I also can't see how to do this.
- Insert new frames in the middle and move sections around? I would guess this is intuitive, I just haven't looked since I have been bogged down by the above issues.
- Add the sound-track (I would imagine this is probably intuitive)?

Many thanks for any help or advice.

--- Alistair.

As ttguy said, import the images as a clip. For this clip, you can set the duration of a single image, but only for the whole clip. However, you can now cut and use this image clip as any other clip. Thus, you can cut it in order to repeat sequences, skip sequences, set effects, such as stills, et cetera. This should give you what you want.

This looks perfect, many thanks for the replies. I have looked at the online documentation and think I can manage the stretching (there are a few stills that I want to expand and I think I can do that by slicing either side of the still and stretching into a new clip and stretching that) I will have a go this evening.

--- Alistair

You can also add individual stills directly as images to your project and use them as you need.

Nope, I am not understanding this!

1) If I load the images: [Add Clip]-[Import image sequence] and select all the images, it loads them in as individual images and if I then add them to the timeline, it adds them all individually. This is fine as I can render them to an mpg and then re-import that as a clip. Trouble is, the damn thing runs backwards! Why? How do I turn it round?

2) Alternatively, I can [Add slideshow clip] and point it at the folder. It then imports about 1/2 the images and only plays them one per second! It doesn't seem to matter what I do to the [Frame duration], that just seems to affect how many of the files it actually brings in, not how longeach image is shown for.

Please help!

Comment on 1): the [Import image sequence] option appears to do nothing. I get the same results with it unticked: all the images loaded as individual clips with a 5-second duration. I have to then select them and go to [properties] to change the duration to 0.08s. But they still get added to the timeline and rendered in reverse order.

Hi Alistair, regarding 1) just try selecting the first image of the sequence and all other sequentially numbered frames will be imported automatically in order.

How are your image frames named and sequentially numbered?

I use name-0000.png for example and it works, but using say name0000.png without the hypen doesn't.

It complains whenI try to load a 12fps clip and crashes when I try to render it. These things are not just problems with kdenlive, I have also looked at AVIDemux and Pitivi. None of them will do what I need. It seems fairly simple things to ask of a video editing suite but none of them will do it.

I really don't want to install Clay Animation studio onto Windows, but this is becoming ridiculous!

Are you using a 12fps custom project, a sequential file name like mentioned and then what format are you trying to encode to?

What version of kdenlive and what distro?