Sunday, September 26, 2010

EDLD Multimedia and Video Technology - Week 5 - PSA Video

EDLD 5363 Multimedia and Video Technology - Week 5 - Analysis of the Video Production Process

Each member of the team had high expectations for the end product and took his/her responsibility seriously. Our video, “Be Careful What You Post Online,” was carefully guided from conception to post-production using the original storyboard and a carefully laid out plan for the video shoot. It was this detailed planning that assisted the team in filming strong, compositional footage.

Working as a team is challenging but working with a virtual team is even more. A team approach (if it’s a good team!) can infuse the project with fresh ideas and creative solutions. Our team had a good mix of people---and it helped that most knew each other personally!

From the onset, there was great coordination among us. Each member took on assignments they felt comfortable with. Sandy K. suggested the concept of the video and wrote the initial script. Further revisions were added to the script by Kim G. and myself. Brian P. offered his technical expertise during the video shoot and in the editing process. Suggestions on camera angles were done by me and revised on the set. For the graphics, Sandy K. suggested using Polaroid photo frames. I took her idea and produced the graphics. Kim G. directed the video shoot and offered her editing skills during post-production. Each team member matched his/her skills and experience to specific parts of the project. But, it was Sandy's tight coordination of the project that allowed ample time for post-production, which is a very time consuming process.

I work with creatives and let me confess that it is extremely difficult to let go of ideas. Working alone on a project sometimes can be easier in the sense that we have complete control of the outcome. Throughout this entire project, I had to let go and trust that the team members were going to pull through professionally--and they did!

Copyright as a whole was not an issue for us since the graphics were royalty-free stock photography and music was not used in the final product.

It was a great strategy taken Dr. Abernathy to make the project a team collaboration. I think that the video production would have been too much for one person to do alone within the allowed time. Working as a team allows for different points of views and fresh ideas. It also allows us to break the project down into manageable pieces. I think that the end product turned out to be much better than if I were to have done it alone.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Saturday, September 4, 2010

EDLD 5363 Multimedia and Video Technology: Week 2 - Free Video Editing Software

There are numerous video editing programs available online for free download. Many of these offer a thirty-day free trial subscription while others are considered open source. CNET, a website that reviews technology-related products and services, offers a list of programs that are absolutely free. Among the two most popular downloads are Windows Live Movie Maker and VideoPad Video Editor Software.

I decided to give VideoPad Video Editor a try. As a precautionary measure, I downloaded it from the CNET website. Having worked on Windows Movie Maker before, I wanted to try VideoPad to compare both. Both programs, for being free, offer the novice plenty of options to assist in editing non-commercial videos. For commercial or more professional projects, Adobe Premiere Pro CS5 and Apple Final Cut Pro have the market. Interestingly, VideoPad offers its video software free only to non-commercial users. All others must pay to download. On the other hand, Windows Live Movie Maker is free for Windows users.

As I opened VideoPad for the first time, I was surprised at its professional Adobe Premiere-like interface. Unlike Movie Maker, its online Help tutorial is not as user friendly. One of the greatest advantages that VideoPro has is its ability to export in numerous formats--wme, mpg, mp4, mov, flv, swf--to name a few. This is the total opposite of Movie Maker which offers very few output formats. Yet another benefit of VideoPad is that it offers complementary audio and photo/image editors¬ also free at download.

Another useful aspect of both programs is the ability to record a narration and import music. This can be accomplished by using two audio tracks. An internal microphone allows the user to record the narration. The music must be uploaded in a separate track. In order to synchronize the narration and music, I suggest that both tracks be uploaded to Audacity and saved as one track.

Both programs offer fine transitions and special effects to choose from. Opening and closing blank slides or frames can be used to announce the title of the video and the final credits.

All in all, VideoPad Video Editor Software and Windows Live Movie Maker offer enough options for the novice. For higher end video editing, Adobe Premier or Final Pro Cut are the preferred.

The Internet provides a plethora of open source products to assist educators streamline their instruction. No longer do school districts need to spend huge sums of money supplying the classroom with expensive programs that demand yearly upgrades. Now, educators can download free programs to teach their students with. Because our students are tech savvy, they will usually find many of these programs exciting and easy to use. It would behoove the technology director of each district to learn what is available free before purchasing expensive programs.