As seen on Lifehacker on 13th April 2020
Part 1: Recording your video
First, we need to use Zoom to record the video we’ll be using as the loop. (If you’re not interested in that part and just want to generally know how to use an image or video to create a virtual background, skip down to part 3).
- Open Zoom.
- Create a “New Meeting.”
- Wait for the meeting window to load, clicking to enable your webcam if prompted.
- Make sure you’re in fame in the video.
- Press Alt+R to begin recording.
- Sit there, with a neutral expression, and make tiny movements, as you would if you were listening attentively to someone speak during a Zoom meeting.
- After a few minutes—long enough that the repetition won’t be too obvious—press Alt+R to stop recording.
- Close the meeting window.
- Find and open your Zoom recordings folder, which you can do by backing out to the main Zoom window in the desktop app, then clicking on the gear-shaped settings icon > Recording.
- Copy/paste the recording to a new folder.
Part 2: Trimming your footage
Now comes the tricky part: editing the video so it loops properly. Zoom adds solid black frames to the beginning of videos, so you’ll need to cut those out so your video looks natural. You can do this is the Windows Movie Maker or with other programs like iMovie, Adobe Premiere Pro or Final Cut Pro.
- Open your Zoom recording in the video editing app of your choice.
- Trim out the black frames of the video.
- Save/export your video.
Part 3: Create a virtual background
- Open Zoom again.
- Click the gear-shaped Settings icon.
- Go to Virtual background > “+” > Add video.
- Find and open the video you recorded and trimmed in the steps above.
- This will now be your webcam background while you’re in meetings—however, if you’re trying to use your background to fool people into thinking you’re on camera when you’re not, you’ll need to cover up your webcam with tape or paper so that nothing else shows on top of your looping footage. It would look a bit suspicious for a superimposed you to appear on top of a looping video of you.