Extraordinary Days Require Exceptional Invitations

Putting the Montage Together

Here comes the last step, which is the creative and fun part. Prepare your montage with transitions, music, audio, titles, etc.

The Sequence

  • Choose an exciting sequence, or a good plot, for your montage. Keep it moving.
  • One option is grouping your photos chronologically. It often works nicely. This is how it goes:
    • Arrange the photos according to the child’s age – from being a baby at the hospital, up to the present.
    • Show the child and other people grow over the years. It is interesting to watch.
  • Segmenting the photos by groups, according to themes, is another popular way of doing it:
    • The first section can be dedicated to baby photos; the second to the family; a third to photos with the extended family; a fourth with friends. Then you can have additional sections such as vacations, holidays, school, funny pictures, personal areas of interest (sports, dancing, computers, camp, shopping, beach, music, etc) and so on. Whatever makes sense for your child and family!
    • It is amusing to watch photos of the child in the same context or doing the same thing (at the beach, playing baseball, at the synagogue) over the years.
    • If you are preparing your montage according to themes, it can get a little confusing to watch. Until people realize the theme, the next chapter starts. A good solution is having a page or a title between each section. Show the transition with sweet wording.
    • You can use a different song for each section.
  • A combination of thematic and chronological groupings is a third possibility Smile.
  • So, which way is better? It is a matter of taste!

Montage length

  • The Doc recommends 8 minutes long montage, maybe a little shorter, but not a second longer. Shorter is often better.
  • Each picture should be shown for about 4 seconds. Group pictures should be on screen for about 6 seconds.
  • The Doc once watched a 20 minutes (!) montage. Boring. Keep it short.

Creative Ideas

  • Add motion to the montage. Static presentations that just show one picture, and then another picture, and then another picture, and then another picture, and then another picture, and then another picture… Got the point? Boring!
  • Draw arrows, at some photos, that point to people. Write their names or add funny remarks on screen. It makes people happy.
  • Fancy transitions add a lot of fun to the DVD. The Doc loves using the “image peel” transition. It is a simple animation applet that allows you to smoothly cycle through a set of images with a “peeling” effect. Fade in fade out is another cool transition.
  • If you have a Barmi theme, tie the montage to it, and mainly to the montage’s beginning and ending. For a sports theme, show photos of the BM in action – playing basketball, roller skating, ping pong, sky diving, anything.  Cool
  • How to start montage? Here are a few ideas:
    • A title message, such as “We love you, Bar Mitzvah Boy!”, or “Dana’s Bat Mitzvah, 08.11.2007”.
    • A picture of the pregnant mother (and father!).
    • You can even start as far as from the wedding of the parents or of the grandparents and continue (quickly!) from there.
  • How to end the montage? Here are a few ideas:
    • Incorporate a video announcement from the parents or siblings wishing the BM Mazel Tov and adding a loving message. Shoot it outside in a pretty location, it gets cute.
    • The BM, or of the family, throwing a kiss.
    • A photo of the simcha’s invitation.
    • A “To Be Continued” graphic or animation through the screen.
    • The Doc knows someone who closed the montage with a photo from the candle lighting ceremony. That is one quick guy! Another option is to use one of the formal photos taken before the party.
  • Feel like watching a few samples of BAR Mitzvah montage? And what about samples of BAT Mitzvah montage?
  • Do you have additional ideas? Remarks? Write them down on the comment field below. Let’s talk about it.