Reminiscence is a beautiful form of human reflection. Recollecting the life events of a loved one after their passing helps people get through the grieving phase. However, this can be tough and doesn’t happen naturally for everyone. Sometimes, the harder it gets to reminisce, the more necessary it becomes. And during such times, it helps to view or create something that is dedicated to the life lived by the dearly departed; like a token or tribute – a meaningful funeral slideshow.
A person’s life is more than just a collection of images. It is a journey, filled with color, sounds, words, and emotions. A video tribute helps the funeral attendees visualize and at the same time pay their respects.
It is a meaningful way to honor their memory and keep it alive.
If you are creating the video yourself, it might help to view some tribute examples. Meaningful funeral slideshows can be created for pets too. Loved ones who died in the line of service for the country can have a special style dedicated to them:
This is for Libby. It is a beautiful video set in chronological order.
This is for Robert. It is a detailed one full of thoughtful moments.
This is for a Good Boy named ‘Shadow’.
There are a lot of ways you can make your tribute. Have it come from the heart, and represent the unique life they lived.
Keep these in mind before you create a funeral slideshow
These points will help you stay grounded as you read through the ‘Content’ section later:
This means the configuration the video is saved in. Please speak to your funeral director to check if they support .mp3, .mp4, .mov, etc.
Different systems have free software which you can use for your video. We suggest you give Rocketium a try.
Not everyone might make it to the funeral. Give some thought to how you would like to share the video across to them and even the attendees. Where CDs may not be convenient, digital links to upload can be the way to go.
Funeral videos generally last about 5 to 7 minutes. As you progress through the video, try not to deviate from this timeline. If you have extra content, you can always create a second, silent video and play that in a loop during the refreshments at the funeral.
If you would like some assistance or have an expert make the tribute professionally, you can reach out to those who do it for a small fee.
Keep the following in mind as you proceed through the article.
- Photos – Limit your selection between 35-40 meaningful photos
- Clips – 1 or 2 short clips that are under a minute.
- Music – Search for peaceful, relaxing music.
What types of content you should make for a Funeral slideshow
Pictures tell a story.
Selecting the right ones from a pile can appear daunting. Try thinking about what the person would have wanted to share. It also helps to think about how that person made others feel, what they meant to their family, what their unique personality and traits were, and then pick the photos that represent them best.
Some of the best images are those that show the person smiling and inaction. Always pick ones that center the focus on them, like solo shots and portraits or images with just two or three other people. Pictures of them playing with their pets are often a great choice. Do avoid those of them in a large group. Instead, try group photos that have just a few close friends and family.
Happy memories like catching a fish on a family trip or making a snow angel help people remember the simple and joyous moments of their life. Proud achievements like college medals or graduation ceremonies too are valuable moments that are worthy of being in a tribute video.
Try to include images that represent the unique communities they were associated with their life. This is an opportunity to share a side of them that many may not have known much about. For example, their job and how much they loved it, their hobbies, their favorite past times, their sports, and if they ever believed or participated in a Cause.
The sequence with which you arrange these images matter. Chronological order is a classic way to gently guide the viewers through the unique life that they had spent. Keeping the video centered around successful moments and other memorabilia is also another way to go.
We often discover more about people after they’re gone. So remember, It is okay to change your mind and include more aspects of their life in the tribute as you go through their images. It would always be meaningful in doing so, and a beautiful way of sharing those parts of their life with the rest of the family.
Choosing images can become an important healing process. And it won’t be that hard, because, with some of them, you’ll just know.
Clips bring memories to life.
A good tribute can be structured like a montage of both warm pictures and colorful videos to add depth to the life of the person. Like with the photos, try to choose those clips that capture the person’s personality. If they were good at public speaking, a clip of their first words as a child followed by a clip of them giving a speech at a ceremony would show their life in the interesting way it developed.
Select short clips that center the focus on their life. Clips of graduation, marriage, playing with children or pets, birthday party surprises, etc., can all remind family members of the eventful life led by them. If they had a memorable characteristic like a loud open laugh or a catchphrase then adding a clip of that would show how unique they were.
For close friends or family members who couldn’t make it to their funeral, you could record short clips of them saying a few words in remembrance. This helps bring the family together at a time like this and show the way their lives are impacted. Speaking out would also help them progress better through tough emotions.
Do keep a watch on the duration of the clips and if they go well with the images you’ve selected. A tribute is best patterned with both photos and videos throughout the duration. Select a sequence that allows the viewers to feel a sense of warmth for the person towards the end.
Words are powerful.
Short and meaningful sentences show the viewers how important the person was to their loved ones. Remember, you do not have to add text to every image. Alternatively, you can also add text with just a dark background (and music). It is an opportunity to show viewers the emotions everyone is left with after their passing. Here is a chance to share how unique they were and how missed they will be.
“Vivian was like a mother to us all”
“We will never forget how loved you made us feel”
When it comes to words, you can always include touching verses of short poetry, poems, and also prayers. Try to select ones that relate well to the person so that reading it adds a beautiful layer of depth to the video. You can also include the person’s favorite quotes and the vows of a family. For example, a group picture of them with their children and the words,
“We love you, forever“
Words can set the tone for your video since people find it easier to infer from them rather than images. The font styles do make a difference, as do the transition for the visuals. So do be careful to keep the flow of words smooth with light and comfortable transitions. These are called effects and we speak about them in the next section. The sequence of the clips and images will help maintain a gentle flow for the text. An honest, loving collection of quotes, poems, and prayers can evoke a sense of warmth and respect for the person, and for the life they lived.
Music is emotion.
The sounds you add will envelop the video and complete the memorial tribute. Choosing the right music can be tricky; you want the audio to fit well with the visuals and blend easily with the different tracks you pick. Usually, it is enough to select 1 to 2 songs. Fewer songs also mean fewer transitions to edit. A good transition is one where the music changes seamlessly to complement the visuals. As long as you have good transitions that fit the picture, you can select more than 2 songs.
Gentle instrumental music is always a classic selection that suits the memorial videos. Peaceful music not only complements the video but also evokes comforting thoughts that help articulate the messages in the text. If applicable, you can even include the person’s favorite song where it fits the flow of the tribute. Warm guitar chords with smooth vocals and a gentle drum beat are another way to go. Try to select those that help the aggrieved feel the right emotion.
After layering the images and clips in a gentle sequence, writing the appropriate text and completing it with the comforting music, you will have completed the first draft of your memorial tribute.
If you like, you can also add a few effects using the same software while assembling the content discussed above.
Animations, effects, and motion graphics
Avoid bold lettering and thick fonts. Cursive ones with good legibility in italics are often the best choice. Be sure the style is legible enough for the older members of the attendees at the funeral.
You can also use an ellipsis at the end of heartwarming sentences to maintain the thought-evoking quality of tribute videos.
Pro Tip: ‘Sans’ fonts appear smoother since they fit gently against the visuals.
Transitions & Animation
You can add transition effects to the different frames in the funeral slideshow. A classic choice would be the ‘Fade in / Fade out’ effect. You can also add effects to the text; a ‘shimmering star’ effect can be used to make the person’s name appear as if sprinkled on by silver stars.
Please use animations sparingly as they can distract one from the essence of the tribute.
You can adjust the tone of the visuals to reflect any emotion you may want to convey. Experimenting can help you understand what that may be. Some examples are ‘Vivid’ for a dynamic range of colors, Sepia for a warm, antique finish, and a the popular ‘Black & White’ for general reflection and slow motion.
Pro Tip: If available, try looping a clip of the person twirling in slow motion until fade out. You can use the ‘Loop’, the ‘SlowMo’ and the ‘Black & White’ effect for this. This could be a beautiful display as a silent video played during the funeral refreshments. For a man, you can simply add the same effects to a larger slideshow of photographs that didn’t make it in the main tribute video.
Thank you for reading this article with us. We wish you a comfortable experience as you work through making your tribute video. We hope it helps you celebrate the life they lived and remember them fondly for the way they lived it. If you would like any help putting the video together, you can always find us here.