Slideshows have been around for a long, long time: ideally, they put all your photos together, add transitions, and create a story from nothing but photos.

The perfect slideshow maker not only lets you add photo transitions, but also allows you to add music and text. In this article, I’ll show you how to achieve this with a free online editor called Kapwing, so you don't have to download any transition packs or expensive editing features. Here's how you can get started:

  1. Upload your photos
  2. Add transitions and customize
  3. Make an intro and outro
  4. Download the slideshow

1. Upload your pictures

First, open the Kapwing Studio and ‘Click to upload’ the first photo. Next, click ‘Scenes’ and upload the other photos for your slideshow.

A screenshot of the Kapwing Studio uploader.

Now you can edit duration on each scene to make your photo appear for more or less time. If you’re sharing it to social media, consider a shorter time. If it’s in-person, try a longer time. Also, you can change the aspect ratio and background color on the left side.

A screen recording demonstrating how to set the slide duration for a slideshow in Kapwing.

2. Add transitions and customize

When you’re ready to add transitions, navigate back to the studio and click the photo you want to add to. Next, click the animate tab on the right side menu. These animation effects create the transition when a photo changes to the next. The fade and reveal animations work best for slideshows.

A screenshot of the Kapwing Studio with a fade animation in progress.

Customize your photos with drag and drop text, elements and images. In this example, I created a lower third title by adding a white rectangle element with a text overlay. This is great if you want to give your audience context for each photo. You can add this to your slides or create a totally unique design.

For a high-quality slideshow, transitions might not be enough – adding music to your project can enhance it greatly. To add music, click the Upload button and upload any audio file from your own computer, or just paste a link to YouTube, SoundCloud, TikTok or any other music location online.

3. Download the slideshow

When the slideshow is finished, click Settings in the top right to change the video quality to High, then click Export Video. Once it’s done processing, download your slides and they're ready to share.

If you're not signed into a Kapwing account, sign in or sign up using your Google or Facebook account – once you've signed into a Kapwing account, the watermark in the lower right corner will be removed from your final image.

A screen recording showing how to download content from Kapwing.

I hope this article helps you make touching, beautiful slideshows, no matter how much editing experience you have. If you're interested in more tips and tutorials on creating great digital content in 2021, take a look at our YouTube channel, Kapwing App. In the meantime, look through some related articles on photo editing with Kapwing: