Here’s a pretty neat trick I’ve been using to put a video background to text in a Keynote slide. It takes a bit of time at first but the overall effect is worth it. I use Illustrator as well as Christian Holz’s AI2Key: Illustrator to Keynote converter. Video can also be used as a background for any kind of hollowed out shape :


And here’s how to do it. I inspired myself from The Sign Pad’s “Illustrator Quick Tip: Clipping Masks 101” to figure it out first. I also used excerpts from “The Joshua Light Show – Liquid Loops (1969)” video for the background.

First, start with a new document on Illustrator. I chose the web document profile, as it’s lightweight.




2) Take the type tool and start writing. Make sure you get comfortable with a bold font.




3) Adjust the type so the fill is set to white and the stroke is set to black.



4) Select everything (by keeping the Shift key pressed and clicking to select) and click on Type –> Create Outlines. That will convert the type into paths.

5) Click on the rectangle icon and draw one over your type, across the entire section of your slide.




Then open up the layer dialog box and place the rectangle sub-layer beneath the others, just like this:



Your slike should start looking like this:



6) Go to window –> Pathfinder to access its menu. On your canvas, select your type and then the background (still holding down the shift key simultaneously). Go to the pathfinder window and select the “Minus Front” icon:



Your sub-layers will rearrange into a new group:




7) Select your type again. Choose “Effect –> Rasterize”, while also making sure the resolution is set to “High” and the background is set to “Transparent”.



Finally, export as a keynote file, using Christian Holz’s very neat plugin.




8) Go to the folder location your keynote file is in and open the file.

Once you’re back in Keynote, select the black circles in your type as well as the black background. Click on Arrange –> Group. You can also lock the group in place if need be.



Insert your video, then right-click and select “send to back”. Make sure it’s the right size. You should be set!

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