Windows Movie Maker - Transparent Overlay

Adding a logo or image overlay to your video using Windows Movie Maker

Ever wondered how to add your logo, graphic or watermark to your videos?
Works well for YouTube videos - display your logo, branding or website address on your video.


UPDATE 2016: 'Windows Live Movie Maker 2012' & Windows 10 users please see below.

Video image overlay
There are only a few simple steps involved and then you can use Windows Movie Maker to overlay logos etc. on your videos.

logo to be added on WMM video...
This is the logo I've added to the video in my demo


I've borrowed a video about my hosting provider's (Freeola) InstantPro web design/builder package just to demonstrate the image overlay!

For this demo I've added the logo above using Windows Movie Maker - play the video on the right to see the logo.


Steps required to add a logo to a video

Add additional files to Windows Movie Maker - this is a one-off task unless you want to update your logo or graphic.

Two files need to be added to Windows Movie Maker.
An XML file that contains instructions about the new effect and the logo or required graphic.

Open Windows Explorer and locate the Movie Maker directory. In my Windows XP setup it's:

C:\Program Files\Movie Maker\Shared

In this folder/directory place your logo file:

DEMO: Logo added to above video to show the image overlay

Create logo or graphic overlay
I'm saving my Movie Maker video in 640 x 480 format - so I've created a transparent PNG file that size that contains my logo overlay.

View the logo here (or right-hand click and choose "save target as..." to download a copy).


*TIP* Creating transparent Moive Maker overlay
You can use the free pixlr online application to create your graphics if you haven't got dedicated graphics software to hand - view create transparent overlay instructions.


Then in
C:\Program Files\Movie Maker\Shared\AddOnTFX
add an XML file - I've called mine mm-logo.xml I've added the contents opposite.
View XML file here (or right-hand click and choose "save target as..." to download a copy).

Movie Maker XML customisation

Contents of mm-logo.xml


<TransitionsAndEffects Version="1.0">
<TitleDLL guid="{353359C1-39E1-491b-9951-464FD8AB071C}">
<Title name="My logo!" iconid="13" >
<Param name="InternalName" value="TitleStandard"/>
<Param name="Description" value="My logo"/>
<Param name="LogoBitmapFilename" value="mm-logo.png"/>
<Param name="LogoRect" value="0.00 0.00 1.00 1.00"/>
<Param name="IsOneLine" value="true"/>
<Param name="BoundingRect" value="1.00 1.00 1.00 1.00"/>
<Param name="MaxCharacterCount" value="32"/>


Adding the logo to your WMM video


Start up Windows Movie Maker.
Add a video as normal or edit an existing one. Select the video (click on a clip in the Time Line) then click
Tools > Titles and Credits.


Use the displayed link to add the title on the selected clip.
Even though you won't be adding any text you need to type something (any random letter will do) so you can continue. 
Then click Change the title animation scroll through the available animations until you see one called "My logo!" - select it.

You will see in your preview window that your logo or graphic will now be displayed.

Stretch out the 'Title Overlay' that's now shown in the Time Line so that your logo is displayed for all of the video or for as long as required.


That's it - you have now customised your video with your logo!


Microsoft Expression Encoder 4 - image overlayUPDATE 2016

I was just about to update this page for Windows Live Movie Maker 2012 that I'm using on my Windows 10 PC with the instructions to add the image overlay etc...

I though this would be straightforward, just changing the file path locations etc. BUT It seems WMM 2011/12 doesn't allow the same customisation using XML files as the earlier version did.


It looks like the easiest free solution for people using later versions of WMM is to add the logo overlay to your videos using Microsoft's Expression Encoder 4 software. Both WMM 2012 and Expression Encoder are available for free direct from Microsoft.

I've just had a quick play and it looks like the Timeline option to "Add Visual Overlay" in Expression Encoder is actually a lot simpler for people than using the earlier XML file solution. No special files to create and you can easily position your logo over the video by dragging it with your mouse.

View my Expression Encoder Logo Overlay instructions.



Creating transparent overlay
View instructions on creating a transparent overlay using a free online graphics editor if you haven't got your own graphics software program.