Quickly Edit Images in DaVinci Resolve (Step-by-Step Guide)

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DaVinci Resolve not only supports video and audio editing, but also supports image editing.

You can edit an image, color grade, animate and export it.

Today we’ll see specifically how to edit images – right from importing to resizing, cropping, fading out, adding effects, transitions, etc.

Let’s dive right in!


Table Of Contents


Can DaVinci Resolve Edit Photos?

DaVinci Resolve can edit photos like it can edit video and audio clips. It treats them as a clip so that you can resize, crop, transform, animate, and color grade them.

When I first started, I was unsure whether DaVinci Resolve would edit pictures like video. My main reason for editing stills was to create stunning images along with videos for Youtube.

I color grade all my videos in Resolve and also wanted to do the same with the photos (which were shot through mirrorless cameras).

I didn’t want to leave DaVinci Resolve and switch to other photo editors (like Photoshop).

That is when I found out that Resolve could actually edit and color grade photos!

We’ll see how to do that in a moment!

The first step is to start importing your images in DaVinci Resolve.


How to Add / Import Images in DaVinci Resolve?

This is how you import single or multiple images:

  • Launch DaVinci Resolve.
  • Click on the “Media” page.
  • Click on the Media Storage” tab from the top.
  • Click on the 3 dots and select “Show Individual Frames”. (This will display individual images instead of clubbing them together as a sequence).
  • Select the location of your images from the left-hand side, which displays all your connected hard disks.
  • Select all of your images, right-click and select “Add into Media Pool”.
  • Click on the Edit” or “Cut” page, click on “Media Pool”, and you’ll see all the imported images in the “Master” bin.

After importing the images inside DaVinci Resolve, next step is to add them to the timeline.


Related Articles:

How to Crop in DaVinci Resolve (In Less Than 2 minutes!)

Still Images in DaVinci Resolve (9 Things You Should Know)


How to Add Images to a Timeline in DaVinci Resolve?

  • Import the images to “Media Pool“.
  • Drag and drop the desired images into the timeline.
  • If there is no timeline, a new timeline will be created and it will ask whether you need to change the timeline settings according to the image settings.
  • You can specify yes or no based on your needs.
  • The images are now added to the timeline.
  • You can start editing the images like any other clip.

The selected images will be added individually if you imported them with the option “Show Individual Frames”. If not, the images will be added as a single clip.

After you drop images to the timeline, you’ll note that each individual image clips will be of a certain duration, say 5 seconds.

You can change this default value if you need to.


Related Articles:

DaVinci Resolve Picture in Picture (How to Do Quickly!)

How to BLUR ANYTHING in DaVinci Resolve (Explained!)


How Do I Change the Duration of a Still Image in DaVinci Resolve?

The default standard still duration is 5 seconds in DaVinci Resolve. However you can change the value to your desired seconds, say, 3 seconds.

This is how you change the still image duration:

  • Go to the menu “DaVinci Resolve” -> “Preferences”.
  • Click on the “User” tab.
  • Click on the “Editing” option.
  • Under “General Settings”, change the “Standard Still Duration” value to your desired one, say, 3 seconds.
  • Click on “Save“.

Next time when you drop an image on to the timeline, it will be of 3 seconds duration.

The next way is to change the still image duration in the timeline itself.

After you drop the image to the timeline, you can grab the head or tail end of the image and drag them left or right to change the duration to your taste.

Once you have successfully placed an image in the timeline and changed its duration, next you can resize it to your liking.


How to Resize Image in DaVinci Resolve?

You can resize or transform an image by clicking on the “Inspector” tab and perform the below operations:

  • Zoom in or zoom out
  • Change the Position of image in X (horizontal) and Y (vertical) direction
  • Rotate the Image
  • Change the Pitch of the image
  • Change the Yaw of the image
  • Flip the image horizontally or vertically.

Let’s dive into each of the operations for more clarity.

How to Zoom In or Zoom Out an Image in DaVinci Resolve?

  • After dropping the image into the timeline, select the image.
  • Click on the “Inspector” tab to reveal the settings.
  • Under “Transform“, place your mouse over the “Zoom X” or “Zoom Y” value and drag to the right or left for zoom in or zoom out (without changing the aspect ratio).
  • If you click on the link to disable it (which is placed between X and Y), then the aspect ratio is not maintained.

How to Pan / Tilt (Change the Position of) an Image in Resolve?

  • Select the image from the timeline.
  • On the “Inspector” settings, click on “Transform” to reveal the settings underneath.
  • To change the image position horizontally or pan, place your mouse over the “Position X” value and drag the cursor to your left or right.
  • To change the image position vertically or tilt, place your mouse over the “Position Y” value and drag the cursor to your left or right.

How to Rotate Image in DaVinci Resolve?

There are 3 ways in which you can rotate an image in Resolve as per BlackMagic:

  • Usual circular rotation (2d rotation).
  • Rotating the image from left to right, towards or away from the camera.
  • Rotating the image from top to bottom, towards or away from the camera.

Here’s How You Do a Normal Rotation

  • After dropping the image into the timeline, select the image.
  • Click on the “Inspector” tab to reveal the settings.
  • Under “Transform”, grab the small circular knob against “Rotation Angle” and drag it left or right to rotate your image.

How to Push Away or Bring Forward the Top or Bottom of an Image in Resolve?

  • Select your clip.
  • Click on the “Inspector” tab and click on the “Transform” setting.
  • Under “Pitch” – Drag the small circular knob left or right to push away or bring forward the top and bottom of the image.

How to Push Away or Bring Forward the Left or Right Side of an Image in Resolve?

  • Select your clip.
  • Click on the “Inspector” tab and click on the “Transform” setting.
  • Under “Yaw” – Drag the small circular knob left or right to push away or bring forward the left and right of the image.

How to Flip an Image in DaVinci Resolve?

  • Select your clip from the timeline on the “Edit” page.
  • Under the “Inspector” tab, click on the “Transform” setting.
  • Against “Flip“, there are 2 buttons – when you click them, one of them flips the image horizontally, and the other flips the image vertically.

How to Resize an Image Using Onscreen Controls in DaVinci Resolve?

You can also transform the image by selecting the “Transform” option from a list of dropdowns found on the bottom left corner of your timeline viewer.

This will activate the on-screen controls of the image.

Using the boundaries, you can drag them to resize your image, like:

  • zoom in, zoom out,
  • rotate,
  • pan,
  • tilt, etc.

How to Crop Images in DaVinci Resolve

  • Under the “Edit” or “Cut” page, select the image in the timeline.
  • Click on the “Inspector” tab to reveal the settings.
  • Click on “Cropping“.
  • There are 4 options – Crop Left, Right, Top, Bottom.
  • Adjust the small circular knobs till you get the cropped image of your taste.

How to Crop Images Using Onscreen Controls in Resolve?

You can crop the image by selecting “Crop” option from a list of dropdowns found on the bottom left corner of your timeline viewer.

(Make sure you select the clip form the timeline).

This will activate the on-screen controls of the image.

Using the boundaries, you can drag them to crop your image. As you crop, you’ll notice that the crop settings under the “Inspector” tab will also change accordingly.


After transforming, cropping different images, you might need to copy the same settings to other clips, without needing to repeat the same set of steps. If this is the case, then read the below one:

DaVinci Resolve Copy & Paste: (Quick Tips to Save a Ton of Time)


Now that you are familiar with resizing, cropping your images, now let’s move onto the next step in editing.

How to Ripple Trim an Image in DaVinci Resolve?

After importing the images into the media pool and placing them on the timeline, click on the “Trim Edit Mode” button (shortcut is “T” key) below the timeline viewer.

Now head over to the tail end of the clip and drag left and right to ripple edit it. Ripple edit will ripple or affect the entire timeline to the right of the clip (the one being ripple edited).

How to Trim an Image Clip Without Rippling?

The normal trim is by pressing the shortcut key “A”, also called “Selection Mode” and then dragging the head or tail of the clip. This will not ripple the timeline and will leave gaps.

If you want to know more about finding and deleting gaps, then read:

How To Delete Gaps & Clips in DaVinci Resolve (the Right Way!)


How to Cut an Image in Resolve?

  • Under the “Edit” page, import the images into “Media Pool”.
  • Drag and drop onto a timeline.
  • Click on the blade button below the timeline viewer or press shortcut key “B”.
  • The mouse cursor will turn into a blade when you place it over the clip.
  • Click wherever you want to cut the clip.
  • After cutting, you can return to normal mode by pressing the short cut key “A”.

How to Insert an Image Directly into the Timeline in Resolve?

  • Place the playhead in the timeline where you would like to insert the image.
  • Select the image from the “Media Pool” or double click it to bring it to the “Source Viewer”.
  • Press the “F9” shortcut key to insert the clip directly into the timeline.
  • Insert” operation will push the clips to the right.

How to Overwrite an Image Directly into the Timeline in Resolve?

  • Place the playhead in the timeline where you would like to overwrite the image.
  • Select the image from the “Media Pool” or double click it to bring it to the “Source Viewer”.
  • Press the “F10” shortcut key to overwrite the clip directly into the timeline.
  • Overwrite” will not push the clips to the right rather will overwrite any other clip with the selected clip.

How to Replace an Image Directly into the Timeline in Resolve?

  • Select the clip in the timeline which you would like to replace the image from “Media Pool” or “Source Viewer”.
  • Select the image from the “Media Pool” or double click it to bring it to the “Source Viewer”.
  • Press the “F11” shortcut key to replace the clip directly into the timeline.

There is also one another way to – insert, overwrite, replace, fit to fill, place on top, append at end, ripple overwrite.

Drag the image the “Source Viewer” and place it on the “Timeline Viewer”, Resolve will bring up options for you to choose.

You simply need to drop on the required option to execute that particular operation.

Before executing this, make sure you place the playhead to where you want the operation to be executed in the timeline.


How to Add an Image Over a Video in DaVinci Resolve?

  • Under the “Edit” page, create a timeline and place some videos.
  • Import your desired images.
  • Right-click on the timeline header and add a new video track.
  • Drag and drop the image on this new track directly above your video.
  • Now select the image, click on the “Transform” option from the bottom left corner of the timeline viewer.
  • The onscreen controls are activated.
  • Now you can drag the boundaries to make the image smaller. This will reveal the video.
  • Now the image will look smaller, with the video as the background.
  • Using the onscreen controls, you can pan, tilt or rotate the image to your taste.
  • Click on the “Transform” option again to disable the onscreen controls.

How to Fade Out an Image in DaVinci Resolve?

Fading out an image in DaVinci Resolve is very easy.

You don’t need to add a transition every time to fade out your clip (be it image or video clip).

Fade out operation can be done using the fader handles, which are available in the left and right top corners when you place your mouse cursor over the image or clip.

These fader handles are white in color. You can grab them and move towards left or right for fade out or fade in effect.

Very simple!


How to Add Transitions to Image in DaVinci Resolve?

There are a lot of built-in transitions inside Resolve, which can be found under “Effects Library“:

  • Dissolve
  • Iris
  • Motion
  • Shape
  • Wipe
  • Fusion Transitions
  • ResolveFX Transitions.

You can go through the list and choose your favorite one.

Here’s how to add transitions to the images.

  • Go to the “Edit” page.
  • Have at least 2 images placed end to end in the timeline.
  • Click on the “Effects Library” tab (next to “Media Pool”).
  • Click on “Video Transitions” from the toolbox (on the left).
  • Click on your favorite transition, let’s say, “Blur Dissolve” and drag & drop onto the boundary of the 2 images.
  • Click on the transition and it will display the transition settings under the “Inspector” tab in DaVinci Resolve 17.
  • You can play with the settings to your taste.

How to Add Effects to Images in DaVinci Resolve?

There are a lot of built-in effects in DaVinci Resolve to get your desired look, like:

  • Fusion Effects – Binoculars, CCTV, Video Camera, Drone Overlay, etc.
  • Resolve FX Blur – Box Blur, Lens Blur (Studio only), Radial Blur, etc.
  • Resolve FX Color – Invert color, False color
  • Resolve FX Light – Glow, Light Rays, Lens Flare (Studio only)

(Some of them are for paid version (Studio). If you try to use them, then Resolve will place a huge watermark on top of your image.)

You can access Effects by clicking on:

  • “Effects Library” under “Edit” page.
  • “Effects” under “Cut” page.

This is how to add an effect on an image in a timeline:

  • Go to “Edit” (or “Cut” page).
  • Click on “Effects Library”.
  • Click on “Effects” under “Toolbox” from the left.
  • Choose your favorite effect; let’s say, “Binocular” under “Fusion Effects”.
  • Drag the effect and drop it onto your image in the timeline.
  • Click on the image to reveal the “Effects” tab under “Inspector” for further fine-tuning (in DaVinci Resolve 17)!

You can also play with other effects and their settings till you get the desired look.


You may also find the below posts helpful:

Quick Export in DaVinci Resolve (+ Shortcut & Useful Tips)

Is DaVinci Resolve Good for Gaming Videos? (From a Gamer!)

Why Does DaVinci Resolve Start at 1 Hr? (& How to Change it)

How to Change Resolution in DaVinci Resolve (Quickly!)

All About Audio & Video Clips’ Link in DaVinci Resolve (Must Read!)

How to Reverse & Retime Audio in DaVinci Resolve (Must Read!)

How to Split Audio Channels / Tracks in DaVinci Resolve (Explained!)

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