How to successfully install OpenShot for Linux and have blender correctly integrated to it.

OpenShot Video Editor

OpenShot Video EditorI was recently asked from my daughter to help her to create an intro for her first video in YouTube and I thought this was a good occasion to "revive" our weekly IT lesson on Saturday when we gather for a 30 minutes session on Software usage, (Computer only), which includes always different content.

To my surprise, so far we had never touched that topic, so it was exciting and I needed a bit of research prior to it.

After a few trial and errors I ended-up choosing OpenShot as Video Creator/Editor. The reason is simple, it offers great features and it is less prone to crash when compared with some other software for Linux that I have tested so far.

Now, the topic of today isn't going to be on how to create an intro video, which I believe there is plenty of tutorials online already, but actually how to make OpenShot work with a great feature built-in called "Animated Titled".
This feature allows for the creation of 3D animated text titles simply using a built in template or one already created from yourself using Blender, (this last feature for those advanced users). This feature is a great bonus to the software but unfortunately won't work out of the box and that is why I am writing this tutorial today.

In order to successfully use the 3D Animated Text Templates, Blender needs to be installed in your machine and OpenShot correctly set to point to it. I found the online documentation a bit confusing and by following the tutorials I ended up with almost giving up as there was no way this thing would work, however, in the end with a  bit of extra tinkering I have found a way to make it work and I will share this with you in the simple steps below.

So, if you had trouble so far on your attempts to have the 3D animated titles work here is what you need to do from A to Z:

STEP 1

If you don't have it or you have an old version from the Ubuntu repository it is time to download OpenShot from its website at this url: http://www.openshot.org/download/, this is an "appimage" file so requires no installation, you just need to give it permission to run as an executable and run, (see image ).

Step 1 Download OpenShot

STEP 2 

Place your OpenShot appimage file in the desktop or anywhere else where you like to have your apps, (see image ).

Step 2 - Place OpenShot on desktop

STEP 3

Now is time to run OpenShot, let the program load and then press Ctrl+B from your keyboard, this will open the "animated titles" prompt box and most surely on your attempt to open any of the templates, your error will appear that OpenShot needs to find a correct path to Blender. The error could be caused either because you don't have Blender installed in your computer or because the path from OpenShot to Blender isn't the right one. If you know that Blender Is already installed in your PC make sure it is the latest version, (2.78c at the time of writing), as the version from the Ubuntu Repository Is not always the most recent and earlier version might not work properly or might not work at all.
In any case, as explained in the next step it is probably best to consider downloading a fresh new version as this isn't going to be a big file, (see image ).

Blender error on OpenShot

STEP 4

Download the latest version of Blender from its website at this url: https://www.blender.org/download/, (see image ).

Download Blender

STEP 5

Extract Blender to your home folder, rename the folder to something more user friendly if you like it, (see image ).

home folder

STEP 6

Open the blender folder you have just extract in your home folder and copy the path from your file browser URL path, (see image ).

copy path to blender

STEP 7

Now go back to OpenShot and from your keyboard press the combination keys Ctrl+Shift+P to open the preferences prompt box, (see image ).

Configurations before changes on path

STEP 8

In the input field for Blender Command (path) replace whatever is there with the path from your home folder you have just copied, remember to add to the path also blender as the final executable file, (as shown in the image).

Configurations after changes on path

That's it, you should now be able to successfully run the 3D Animated Text Feature and make some great video intros for your YouTube Creator Channel.

Feel free to post comments or to ask more advice in case you have trouble following this steps and as always...stay creative..!

About the author

Web and Graphic Designer and also a tech enthusiast.
I love to design web sites, logos, brochures, banners and anything that sends a message to an audience. I do it for both the private and the commercial sector.
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