Video Editing

How to use freehand crop in Clipchamp

Posted June 24, 2022

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An image of a user freehand cropping a video.

Quickly and easily edit the size and focus point of your assets without limitations using the freehand crop tool in Clipchamp.

“Freehand” refers to simply using your cursor to change the asset in the preview instead of relying on presets. Crop certain areas of videos, images, stickers, GIFs, and even change the aspect ratio of an asset by adjusting the corners inside the preview area. You can even keep the focal points of your video in frame with ease. 

Explore how you can save time and let your creativity take over using the freehand crop tool in Clipchamp.

How to use freehand crop in Clipchamp

Step 1. Import videos or select stock footage

To import your own videos, photos, and audio, click on the import media button in the your media tab on the toolbar to browse your computer files, or connect your OneDrive.  

An image of a user importing media.

You can also use free stock media like video clips, video backgrounds, and stock music. Click on the content library tab on the toolbar and click on the visuals drop down arrow, then videos, photos, or backgrounds. Search through the different stock categories using the search bar as well. Drag and drop your video onto the timeline to get started.  

An image of a user adding stock video.

Drag and drop your video onto the timeline to get started.

An image of a user dragging and dropping a video onto the timeline.

Step 2. Freehand crop your video using the crop button

Click on your video on the timeline so it's highlighted green. Editing options will appear in the floating toolbar. Click on the crop button to open freehand cropping options.

An image of a user clicking on the crop button on the floating toolbar.

Next, click on a cropping corner or side handles then drag your curser to crop your video to your desired size.

An image of a user cropping a video using the cropping handles.

Once you are happy with your new cropped asset, click on the done button to apply the crop. If you want to redo your crop, just click on the undo button to exit the freehand crop tool and not make any changed to your video.

An image of a user clicking on the done button.

If you're unhappy with your new crop, just revert your video to its original state using the undo button on the timeline. You can also delete your video using the trash can button then drag and drop the same video onto the timeline from the your media tab.

An image of a user clicking on the undo button on the timeline.

Step 3. Edit your videos position and look

Your cropped asset might have a black background or border, as the video is no longer in it's original aspect ratio. Easily move your video around the preview window to relocate it.

An image of a user moving the video around the preview screen.

You can also resize your video to make it fit your aspect ratio using the fit button on the floating toolbar.

An image of a user clicking on the fit button on the floating toolbar.

If you want to keep your video in it's new size without using the fill or fit buttons, add a background to your video to hide the black border. Drag and drop a video background from the content library onto the timeline below your video.

An image of a user adding a background to the timeline.

Step 4. Preview and save your video

Before saving your new video, make sure to preview by clicking on the play button. When you’re ready to save, click on the export button and select a video resolution. We recommend saving all videos in 1080p video resolution for the best quality. Paid subscribers can save in 4K video resolution.  

An image of a user saving their video by clicking on the export button.

For more help, watch our YouTube tutorial on how to crop a video for free.

Now that you've mastered cropping videos, clean up your clip with trimming tools or add final touches like audio and transitions.

Start creating videos today with Clipchamp for free or easily download the Clipchamp Windows app.

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