Guest Post: Creating a Moving Magnifying Glass Effect in Camtasia Studio 8.1

Today’s post comes to you courtesy of Instructional Designer, David Demyan (). I was introduced to David for the first time via Twitter, but it turns out he’s a former TechSmithie and is no stranger to our crew! He tweeted this tutorial for making a unique magnifying glass effect in Camtasia Studio, and my jaw dropped when I saw it. Thankfully, he agreed when I asked if he’d be interested in sharing it on a broader scale, so he’s here today to share the technique with you. You’re going to love it!

In my business, clients are always asking for advanced effects. I guess since they see them in other media, it’s logical to expect some of the same “wizardry” in technical training. So I am always searching for the next big trick. I knew there was something special when Camtasia Studio rolled out layers and advanced animations, something that I could mold to meet client demand. I quickly developed a technique several months ago to use a magnifying glass to highlight and magnify a portion of a screenshot by positioning an image of a magnifying glass over a portion of a screen with a blown up circular image of that area in the glass.

Magnifying Glass graphic, Courtesy of David Demyan

One night about a week ago, I could not sleep as a concept churned in my fevered brain: why couldn’t the same technique be put in motion, like the magnifier was moving over an image to show details below? I worked on it in the middle of the night and proudly tell you that it worked perfectly on the first try. In my dozing/waking synaptic activity, I had figured it all out and just needed to put it into practice. Believe me, I was just as surprised as anyone seeing it for the first time. I realized with the tools now at hand, the sky is the limit on what can be accomplished just using what we have available in Camtasia. My heartfelt gratitude and congrats to the TechSmith team for making it possible.

Can’t see the video? Watch it on YouTube!

Thank you, Dave, for sharing with us today! If you try out the effect, please share your results in the comment section below. We’d love to see how it works for you!

Want to play along at home but don’t have Camtasia? Don’t fret - download our free trial!