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How to Add Text to Videos in Shotcut

How to Add Text to Videos in Shotcut

Shotcut is a free video editor supporting multiple text options. Each text offers different features, so it can be confusing to find the perfect one.

In this guide, we will take a ride and cover how to add text to videos in Shotcut.

Text types in Shotcut

There are three different text types, and each one has its benefits:

  • Simple text: Simple text allows you to add text quickly. It does not have many rich text features but supports text codes.
  • Rich text: Rich text brings the rich text editor, including fonts, size, styles, etc.
  • GPS text: GPS text lets you add GPS data to your videos. You must have a compatible device and the GPX file for this to work. The article covers more about this option.

In this article, we will focus on the first two methods.

Procedure to add text

Adding the Text Filter in Shotcut
Adding the Text Filter in Shotcut

Options to add text to videos are video filters. Select the video clip from the timeline and follow these steps to insert text:

  • Open the “Filters” tab above the left side of the timeline
  • Click on the plus icon to add a filter
  • Search for the “text” filter using the search box
  • Click on the filter you want

Once the filter is added, you will see it in the filters area on the left.

Simple text

Timecode and Frame rate display in Shotcut

Simple text is a powerful tool for displaying information. At first, it comes with:

  • Text field
  • Fonts
  • Font size
  • Outline
  • Outline thickness
  • Text background
  • Background padding
  • Position and size options

As you type the text, it automatically adjusts the size in the video preview area.

Text codes

The power of Simple text is the fields that automatically display information. Here are what fields are supported:

  1. Timecode: The timecode field displays the video’s current time.
  2. Frame: This field displays the video frames.
  3. File date: Displaying the file created date
  4. File name: Display the file name

Adding one of the above is simple. Click on the added filter and choose one of the options from the “Insert fields” option.

Related: VSDC vs. Shotcut

Rich text

Rich Text in Shotcut

The Rich text filter offers many rich text editing options. The option is great if you want to add your own text.

Adding the text in this filter is slightly different. Instead of a box in the toolbar, we type straight in the box in the preview window. The box has a top bar with several rich text options mentioned below.

Editing options

Here are the format options that the Rich text filter supports:

  • Bold
  • Italic
  • Underline
  • Font style
  • Text size and color
  • Align text
  • Indent

Text options

We have covered how to add text to videos in Shotcut. Let’s explore some additional features that both text filters have.

Color editor

Color Editor in Shotcut
Color Editor in Shotcut

The Shotcut’s color editor has a few useful text customization options.

After clicking on the “Text color” option from the toolbar, a small color editor window will open. It allows us to change text color in the following ways:

  • Pick from basic built-in colors
  • Use HTML color codes
  • Customize color using RGB (red, green, and blue) and HSV (hue, saturation, and value) color models

The best option is to pick the color from the screen. Pressing the “Pick Screen Color” button allows you to select any color visible in the opened window by clicking on a specific screen point.

Text background color

The text filter of Shotcut also allows you to change the background color of the text. Click on the “Background color” option under the text filter options on the left side.

It will open a color editor window from where you can choose the desired background color.

Position and size of text

Changing the position and size of the text is possible with two methods. The first method is manually adjusting it by entering values for the “Position” and “Background size.”

The second method involves dragging the textbox to adjust its position and background size.

Related: Shotcut vs. OpenShot

Preset animations

Preset Animations in Shotcut
Preset Animations in Shotcut

Another great thing about Shotcut is that it has 17 animations presets to move text from one location to another at the runtime. Both text filters support this feature.

The process of adding a preset is straightforward. To add, select a filter and open the Preset dropdown menu. Choose one of the options. Preview the video to see it in action. Choose the desired one and leave it there.

The preset option does have the time option, so you will have to split the video into clips if you want to display the text at specific times.

Using keyframes to animate text

Keyframes in Shotcut

Simple and Rich text filters support position and size keyframes to adjust them at the run time. Keyframes help animate filters. Follow the steps to add keyframes in Shotcut:

  • Click the clock icon in the text filter options section (a keyframe timeline will be visible)
  • Position the play head at a specific location
  • Change the text’s position or size

A red diamond icon will be visible in the timeline, indicating a new keyframe point.


We have explained the process of adding text to videos in Shotcut. Following these steps, you can add well-formatted text to your video and animate text without hassle.