Generate YouTube Shorts Videos using Python

Brief overview of YouTube Shorts

YouTube Shorts is a relatively new feature introduced by YouTube in 2020, designed to cater to the growing demand for short, engaging, and mobile-friendly video content. These short videos, typically up to 60 seconds in length, provide content creators with a new way to express their creativity, reach new audiences, and take advantage of the increasing popularity of short-form video content.

Inspired by the success of platforms like TikTok and Instagram Reels, YouTube Shorts allows users to create and share brief, entertaining videos that can be easily consumed on-the-go. The vertical video format is tailored for mobile devices, making it easy for viewers to watch and navigate through these short videos with just a few taps on their screens.

YouTube Shorts can be found in various sections of the YouTube app, including the homepage, a dedicated Shorts tab, and the Shorts shelf, which randomly displays short videos relevant to the user’s interests. Content creators can also incorporate popular music tracks from YouTube’s library, which can be used as background music to enhance their Shorts videos.

In this tutorial, we will use Python to create YouTube Shorts videos by combining multiple images. This technique can be used to create wide range of informative videos.

Why should we consider generating YouTube Shorts using Python?

Creating YouTube Shorts using Python offers several advantages for content creators, especially those who wish to automate the video creation process or need to generate multiple videos at scale. Here are some reasons to consider using Python for generating YouTube Shorts:

  1. Time-saving: Python allows you to automate the process of creating YouTube Shorts from images, saving you time and effort. Instead of manually editing and combining the images using video editing software, Python can help you quickly generate videos with minimal input.
  2. Batch processing: If you have a large number of images and you want to create multiple videos, using Python can streamline the process. With a few lines of code, you can generate multiple videos with different images and settings, making it easier to produce content at scale.
  3. Customization: With Python, you have complete control over how out videos are created. You can easily apply custom transitions, effects, text overlays, animations, and background music to your videos, tailoring them to your specific needs and preferences.
  4. Cost-effective: Python is an open-source programming language, which means you don’t need to invest in expensive video editing software to create Shorts. Additionally, the libraries used for video processing, such as OpenCV and moviepy, are also open-source and free to use. This makes creating YouTube Shorts with Python a cost-effective solution for content creators on a budget.
  5. Consistency: Using Python to generate your YouTube Shorts ensures that your videos maintain a consistent style, format, and quality. By defining your preferred settings and styles in your Python script, you can maintain uniformity across all your Shorts, enhancing your brand image and making your content more recognizable to viewers.
  6. Flexibility: Python is a versatile programming language that can be easily integrated with other tools and platforms. This means that you can use Python to not only create videos but also to automate other tasks related to video production, such as fetching images from a database, resizing images, or even analyzing video performance data.
  7. Learning opportunity: If you’re new to Python, creating YouTube Shorts can be a great opportunity to learn and apply programming skills. Python is known for its simplicity and readability, making it an excellent language for beginners to start with. By working on a practical project like generating YouTube Shorts, you can enhance your Python skills and gain valuable experience in video processing and automation.

Hence, using Python to generate YouTube Shorts can save you time, provide greater customization, and offer a cost-effective way to create engaging short-form content. By automating the video creation process, you can focus more on generating creative ideas and producing high-quality images for your Shorts, while Python handles the technical aspects of combining images, adding effects, and exporting the final video.

What type of content we can use to automatically generate Shorts using Python?

When generating YouTube Shorts using Python, we should use content that can be auto-generated to a large extent and it should not require any voice over or presence of an actual person in the video.

There is a wide variety of such content ideas that you can use to create engaging and entertaining YouTube Shorts. Here are some examples of content that can be used to generate Shorts using Python:

  1. Quotes and Text Animations: Share inspiring, motivational, or educational quotes by overlaying text on visually appealing backgrounds or images. Python can be used to customize font styles, sizes, and animations of the text.
  2. Data Visualizations: Present data, statistics, or infographics in a visually appealing and easily digestible format. Python libraries like Matplotlib or Seaborn can help you create the visualizations, which can then be combined into a YouTube Short.
  3. Timelapse Videos: Showcase a series of images captured over time, such as a plant growing, a painting being created, or a cityscape transitioning from day to night. Python can be used to combine these images into a smooth timelapse video.
  4. Event Highlights: Summarize key moments or highlights from an event, such as a conference, sports game, or concert, by combining images or short clips into a single YouTube Short. Python can help you automate the process of selecting, arranging, and transitioning between these highlights.
  5. Art and Creative Projects: Showcase your artwork, illustrations, or photography in a visually engaging manner. You can use Python to create a dynamic gallery of your work, complete with transitions, effects, and background music.
  6. Educational Content: Create bite-sized lessons or tutorials by combining images, text, and diagrams to explain a concept or demonstrate a skill. Python can be used to create these Shorts efficiently and maintain a consistent style throughout your educational content.

For this article, we will be using some images with motivational quotes to create our YouTube Shorts video with the help of Python.

Creating input images for Shorts video

We will create a vertical video using a few images as the frames of the video. The images would have colorful backgrounds and some text on top.

There are many free tools and softwares that we can use to create the images that will be used as input by the Python code to generate the Shorts video. We can use Canva, MS Powerpoint, Google Slides to create such images and we can easily put quotes or any other kind of text on these images.

If you want to create infographics at scale and use them as your video frames, then you must check out our article on generating infographics using Python.

For this demo I have created the following three images with motivational quotes.

Python code to generate YouTube Shorts video

Before getting started, put all the input images in a folder or directory. I have put the images in a folder called “images” in my current working directory.

Then import the required libraries.

import cv2 # (OpenCV) version - 4.7.0
import os

Then we will define a function that will do most of the heavy lifting. It will combine the images in the ‘image’ folder and generate an MP4 video. The user can also control the frames per second and the duration of the video.

def create_video_from_images(images_folder, output_video, fps=10, duration=6):
    images = sorted(os.listdir(images_folder))

    # create path to the input images
    img_path = os.path.join(images_folder, images[0])
    # load image
    frame = cv2.imread(img_path)
    # extract dimensions of the image
    height, width, channels = frame.shape

    video_writer = cv2.VideoWriter(output_video, 
                                   (width, height))

    # total number of frames for the video
    frames_per_image = fps * duration

    for image in images:
        img_path = os.path.join(images_folder, image)
        frame = cv2.imread(img_path)
        for _ in range(frames_per_image):

    print(f"Video {output_video} created successfully")

This function takes four arguments:

  • images_folder – Path to the directory where we have kept the input images
  • output_video – Filename of the output MP4 video along with its full path
  • fps – Frames per second for the video
  • duration – Duration in seconds for each image in the video

So, with the help of duration argument, we can alter the length of the video. The function finally returns an mp4 video that can be uploaded to YouTube as a Shorts video.

To call this function you can use the below code.

# generate video
create_video_from_images("/images", "out.mp4")

Code Download

If you want to add audio or music as well to your generated video, then download the entire Python code from this link.


To sum it up, generating YouTube Shorts using Python offers a powerful and efficient way for content creators to create engaging short-form videos across various content types. With Python’s versatility and the availability of numerous libraries, you can automate and customize your video creation process to suit your specific needs and preferences.

From dynamic dashboards and data visualizations to educational content and creative projects, Python provides the tools necessary to create eye-catching and entertaining YouTube Shorts that can help you grow your channel and stand out in the competitive landscape of short-form content.

Use the power of Python for your YouTube Shorts creation process and unlock new opportunities to showcase your creativity and connect with your viewers in a unique and personalized way.

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