You can replace the background image, add your own music, change fonts and text colors and position the buttons right anywhere right in you want right in Premiere Elements if you start with one of the "hokey" templates.
Creating your own templates is a bit more challenging because, although the templates are PSD files, they have a rather complicated structure. In fact, when I create my own custom templates as giveaways for http://Muvipix.com, I always start with an existing "hokey" template and replace the layers one at a time.
If you're a high-level Photoshop user, you may be able to figure it out by dissecting an existing template (as well as the folder the templates are in). Otherwise, I dedicate a large portion of a chapter to explaining how to do it in my combined Photoshop Elements/Premiere Elements book.
Premiere Elements allows for user DVD template customization within the Disc Menus section of the program just a SG has mentioned. It is an opportunity not to be downgraded.
But, if you want "more", then you consider customizing Adobe DVD templates that came with the program. You can do that by editing the psd files for the main and scene menus using a program like Photoshop Elements or Photoshop CS or later. The use of Photoshop CS or later is a sure thing in this regard; whereas the use of Photoshop Elements for this purpose has become chancy. Chancy in the sense that one really needs to open the Layer Groups in the .psd to get at some serious customization and Photoshop Elements does not always do that. These Layer Groups are Photoshop features, and you need to get "lucky" to get Photoshop Elements to open them. It used to be no problem in that regard when Windows XP 32 bit was involved as the computer of choice for running Photoshop Elements. But, unfortunately Photoshop Elements on Windows 7 and 8 most often refuses to open those Layer Groups.
If you have Photoshop CS or higher you can create your own DVD templates from scratch if you are one to pay attention to details and instructions. Wherever you edit the .psd files, a miswritten code for the layer or a misplayed file or incorrect placement of the .psd in the folders/file directory results in failure for the DVD template to work and/or display in Disc Menus within the program. I mention Photoshop CS or higher here since Photoshop CS and higher allows for subLayer Groups within the majorLayer Group; whereas earlier version of Photoshop do not. You will see the merits of subLayerGroups once you open your first DVD template .psd file.
For a comprehensive and very detailed view of what is involved in editing or creating your own Premiere Elements DVD Templates, please review one of my threads on the topic at a forum where I am no longer visiting nor answering questions..
So, if you have any questions on what I wrote in that thread, please ask here in your thread.
I took it for granted that you were referring to DVD Menus.If more than that, we can discuss the considerations involved in applying the concepts to Menus creation for Blu-ray disc format on Blu-ray disc (As an aside, whatever the case, Stop Markers do not function for playback of Premiere Elements Blu-ray disc format on a Blu-ray disc.)
Welcome to the forum.
As both Steve G., and ATR have mentioned, customizing one of the included Menu Sets is a great, and easy way to go.
Imagine one of those Menu Sets to be a house. First, they include the necessary "foundation" (Layered PSD file), then the "framing" (the actual structure of those Layers), and finally, the "exterior finishes." When on customizes an existing, Library Menu Set, they have almost complete control over those exterior finishes, to suit their tastes.
I would study those Library Menu Sets, ignoring the Images for the Background (a separate Layer in the PSD), and concentrating on just the "structure," say the exact number of Buttons (special Layer Sets in the PSD). If you find one that suits your needs, then it is easy to replace that Background, the Text, and many other aspects. One can do much of that work within PrE, but Photoshop/Photoshop Elements will allow even more control.
One caveat, when doing the customization, is that Buttons (defined as a rectangle, that encompasses ALL elements in the Layer Set, that IS the Button) cannot overlap, even by one pixel. The Library Menu Sets are designed with "room" around each Button, but if one increases the Type's font size by too much, there can be overlap. The DVD-specs. do not allow for that, and with good reason. Just be aware of that limitation, when customizing the Buttons.
What one does in the customizing process, is limited only by their imagination, and that NO overlap aspect for Buttons.
As Steve points out, a Photoshop "power-user" can create PrE Menu Sets, but it requires a full understanding of the structure of a Menu Set, and all of the necessary conventions within. With PSElements, one cannot fully "create" a Menu Set from scratch, but can do a lot more customization of an existing Menu Set. Still, PrE offers a lot of power, when customizing an existing Library Menu Set.
If one really knows Photoshop, and also understands the necessary structural components, plus naming conventions, etc., then the linked article here, will get them started: http://forums.adobe.com/message/2490848#2490848
Thank you folks for your replies and counsel.
I have been editing in PE since 2006 but never solved menu-making. I should also say that I never latched on to Photoshop though I do understand what layering is. I prefer to do this all in PE.
I do not want to design a template. Rather, as I have enjoyed editing video with PE and always been amazed by the broad range of tools available, I have a cognitive dissonace as to why in the menu making section there are so many limitations and lack of tools. Sure, I know I haven't learned wheat to do, but that's what it seems like. I just want menus that allow me to add shapes of my choice, buttons, as well as the photo and music. That part I have figured out.
Of course I started with a template, but I do not understand why I cannot right-click and add, delete, or copy those buttons. I know they correspeond to markers, but the buttons provided in the template are not what I want. And yet i cannot make them go away. I can take a layer in the template and drag-minimize it, but i cannot make it go away. I have to stash it outside the safe margin.
I was intrigued by the statement that customizing menu sets is easy. But I have not found the way in yet.
So, it really comes down to this:
How do I delete the button-shape provided by the template and have choices or a way to design a simple rectangle?
Can I just have one-page to my menu, which I prefer, rather than multiple pages in a menu?
Can this be done with easy instructions in PE? If not, point me to a different program because I have seen for years totally cutomized menus on DVD's that were easily made. People start with a blank slate, add their picture and music, program in their markers, select the button they want for the markers, and done, all on one page.
What am I missing??????
I regret any prior explanations of Disc Menu Creation were not helpful to you.
But for what you say you want to do, based on your question
"How do I delete the button-shape provided by the template and have choices or a way to design a simple rectangle?"
You edit the Layer Group representing that button in the .psd file for the main menu or scene menu in the Program Files (best do that with copy rather than the original). And, you do this type of editing with a program like Photoshop CS or higher and, if it can open Layer Group to get at the sublayer groups, Photoshop Elements.
A Layer Group for a particular button can have text, shape, highlight components with which to deal.
It is possible to have just a main menu, paying attention to the type of Timeline menu markers that you place on the Timeline. And, it is even possible to make the existing Scene Selection Menu the Main Menu by changing the file name of the .psd files in the Program Files. Lots and lots of details and lots and lots to learn. Once learned, easy.
But, if you tell me that you have read my very detailed account of DVD Menu Creation and you have no idea what I am talking about, how about this.
a. Tell me what Premiere Elements DVD Template is getting the buttons change
b. What you want them changed to
c. What you intend for highlighting for the buttons for TV remote...text or shape for the highlight
and I will give you a step by step personalized streamlined, but very detailed, how to so that you never have to ask again on how to customize one of the buttons or add buttons to the menu page.
We will be watching for your follow up.
Well, first the authoring capabilities in PrE are semi-automatic. The program does most of the navigation, based on the Menu Set chosen, and the Chapter Markers added to the Timeline. To get that semi-automatic authoring to work, is why I stress the exact structure and naming conventions in the Library Menu Sets - every aspect is very, very important.
What you are looking for is a manual authoring application, like Adobe Encore, but it is only available with PrPro, and NOT as a stand-alone. I use this program, and while everything is manual, I can do all sorts of things, within the DVD-specs. Even with those specs., I can create illusions, that I have "broken the rules," but of course, I cannot.
However, you might find that Sony's DVD Architect (a couple of versions), will do what you want.
PrE's authoring capabilities are quite limited, though they work fine for the vast majority of users. When one wishes to go beyond, then other programs need to be employed.
Alright Romano, I'm willing to try the step by step and I appreciate your offer.
This video I am working on is a Bar Mitzvah shoot I did for some close friends. It is 110 minutes long.
The menu template I am starting with (and wish to deconstruct) is Memories.
I have 14 menu markers placed and labeled, and ready to stack vertially on the menu page. I need no fancy artwork for it, just something stand mostly using colors bluem black, and white. The text can be what gets clicked.
Ready to go on this tomorrow. It is almost midnight here when I saw your latest post. Thanks for the opportunity to try to help.
Just double checking....
a. This is going to be a one page Main Menu with 14 buttons on it? And these buttons will be the type where they are a given color that changes color when when navigating them. Am I understanding correctly that you are not using thumbnails of the images linked from Timeline to Main Menu?
b. What are these 14 menu markers that you have on the Timeline at the moment...Main Menu Markers?
c. What is the typical number of words in the text associated with each of the 14 menu markers?
This morning I worked out the details for a one page menu using Premiere Elements 10 Family Memories DVD Template as the base.
The one page has 14 text buttons and page Title (all editable text). Currently it lacks a Play All button which I can add if you want that option.
Please note that I have started to edit the text for a project involving some of my plant collection - Sceen One through Scene Seven. The color of the text was picked up from the color of the flowers to the bottom left of the page. The text highlight is white. I have tested it on the computer and will give it a try in a run to DVD-VIDEO on DVD disc. Here I am using NTSC DVD-VIDEO Widescreen. Looking forward to your follow up.
Again this is easy to do, but needs concentration and time to avoid any missing of a single detail that might doom the task to failure.
I am attaching a screenshot of the page created this morning. If that is what you were looking for then I will give you the full how to details. If it is not what you intended, please let me where I need to go back to the drawing board.
Gorgeous work, Tony!
Right now I am hung up in trying to get the burn to NTSC DV Widescreen to work in a Premiere Elements 10 Windows NTSC DV Widescreen project using that menu. Everything looks and works great in Premiere Elements 10 Disc Menus section, including Preview and its navigation. The end result was the same whether I used Premiere Elements 10 on Windows 7 64 bit or Windows 8 64 bit (different burners involved).
I suspect the culpit in all this and am in the process of ruling in or out factors causing this. An interesting surprise if it pans out.
Right now I am just interested to know if texasjefe742 says this design or one of its kind is the one sought.
Answers coming soon, I hope. I like that menu and plan to use it myself even if texasjefe742 can use this modification.
How are you coming with the confirmation on the example that I posted as a target for the menu?
The following is another version with shape highlight rather than text highlight. Also, this one has a Play All button included.
Also, of critical importance is whether this one page menu with 14 menu buttons is part of a Premiere Elements project heading for NTSC Standard or Widescreen DVD-VIDEO on DVD disc. If your export is NTSC DVD-VIDEO Standard, you will be able to use your 14 menu buttons. If your export is NTSC DVD-VIDEO Widescreen, you will be able to get a successful burn to disc if there are more than 11 buttons.
All this goes back to some extensive troubleshooting that I did with a Premiere Elements 8.0/8.0.1 user back in 2011. This morning troubleshooting of all this with burn to folder (instead of burn to disc) using ImgBurn for the burn to DVD-VIDEO on DVD disc suggests that this is due to VTS sectors failure (message: VIDEO-TS.IFO is not valid IFO file).
So, your project boils down to this:
a. I can give you relatively sample instructions on how to create one page menu (main menu page) with 14 buttons for your Premiere Elements 10 project.
b. All this assumes a prior knowledge of using Photoshop Elements and/or Photoshop CS or later to edit the .psd DVD Template (but I will include some tips for using these programs as it relates to the task at hand).
c. You are aiming for a 14 button DVD-VIDEO Standard on DVD disc in order to get a successful burn to disc or folder.
d. You should not be aiming for a 14 button DVD-VIDEO Widescreen on DVD disc as per these discussions since that is doomed to burn to disc or burn to folder failure if button count exceeds 11 on that one page.
Depending on your follow up, I will then load you down with details on all.
1. I think your template is awesome.
2. I would like to use 14 buttons and it is to be burned as NTSC Widescreen, so if I need a two page menu, then that is how it shall be.
3. I mentally am understanding that the menu templates are built with photoshop layers, so if we need to go into photoshop, I'm ready to do.
I appreciate your guidance. Thank you.
Thanks for the kind words and the follow up.
I have written instructions for a one page menu with 14 buttons, including a Play All button.
If you need to go with DVD-VIDEO Widescreen on DVD disc, then the plan will be a one page menu with 7 buttons on the one page (which will include the Play All button). But, having a second page (for buttons 8 through 14 that will spill over to a page 2) forces me to include main menu, previous, and next buttons so that the viewer can navigate from page 2 back to page 1. I will get to work on those details and incorporate them in my instructions.
Right now I am trying to decide how to communicate the details on this
a. In this thread, long account even with my attempt to streamline the details
b. Post the instructions in a Premiere Elements blog that I have started and post the link to the blog in this thread.
Unless you indicate otherwise, I am going with the text as highlight version.
Coming soon. If no detours, maybe by tomorrow evening.
Text is fine as the button.
Everything accomplished on the 7 text highlight buttons per page with that Page One containing a Play All button as well as a More icon to get the viewer to the next page for buttons 8 through 14. On Page Two will be the buttons for 8 through 14 as said along with a main and icon to get the viewer back to Page One. When setting up the menus for the project in the Disc Menus section of the program, you will see a Play All button Pages One and Two. To get rid of the Play All on Page Two, double click Play All there. Highlight the text in the Change Text dialog that opens. Press the Enter Key of the computer main keyboard. Click OK to exit the dialog. The Play All button on Page Two is gone for just this project. I did not like it on Page Two. You can leave it there if you think otherwise.
The menus will look like this:
I have just road tested the menus for burn to DVD-VIDEO Widescreen on DVD disc in Premiere Elements 10 NTSC DV Widescreen project. Success for computer viewing and viewing on TV via TV's DVD player.
Instructions coming soon.
I finally have the suggested how to posted to my blog
It was too long and with too many screenshots to post in this thread.
The details can be overwhelming at times, but take it slow, and hopefully everything will fall into place.
Thanks for the opportunity to offer my comments on this.