Entertain or Die!

Video Sound in a Loud Room

By For Pros, Your Questions Answered 2 Comments

Is there a fix for trying to get decent video sound in a loud room such as a nightclub? Some cameras have a limiter in them that clamps down on the sound levels but leave you with wimpy sound, while others are totally overwhelmed by the sound and all you get is ultra distortion. This situation has always driven me crazy. Do I have to employ an external mike and a mixer if I hope to get acceptable sound? Are there cameras that have the fix on board? –Denis Scherk Our ears come with an awesome sound mixer built in– our brains.  In a loud room,…

Read More

The Rock and Roll of Art

By For Pros Leave a comment

We finished shooting the 4th episode of our new Food Network series $24 in 24 Hours in Cleveland on Thursday.  Last stop:  The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. I spent 9 years of my life working in Rock radio, going to 3 or 4 concerts a week.  For me, Almost Famous is a documentary (if you haven’t seen this great Cameron Crowe film, you should). I was prepared to be all “been there done that” cool about the whole thing. Then I sat down in the Inductees Video Theater. I sat through two of the almost 4 HOURS of…

Read More

Kindle Edition now available Worldwide

By Your Questions Answered 2 Comments

Buying a US-published book outside the country gets expensive.  Or so I’m told by several readers who emailed this week to complain that there was no Kindle edition of my book available internationally on Amazon. News to me and, as it turned out, to the nice people at Workman, my publisher. The problem has been fixed– and you can now get a Kindle edition of  How to Shoot Video that Doesn’t Suck anywhere in the world with just a click of your mouse. It’s available here. Sorry for the inconvenience, and thanks to the readers who pointed it out! Check out…

Read More

Free Book Excerpt: How to Shoot Video That Doesn’t Suck

By For Pros Leave a comment

One of the great frustrations of the digital age is the death of bookstore browsing. Not that it’s actually dead, since there are still bookstores.  But browsing has become much more difficult.  You have to put on clothes, for example, and shut off your big screen and go outside in the really bright light (I think it’s called “the sun”), and possibly have to travel some distance from the bedroom.  And what if someone tried to talk to you while you’re at the store– you know, instead of texting you?  Pretty scary. People of the modern age, I’ve got you…

Read More

How to Compose a Shot that Doesn’t Suck

By Tips and Tricks, Your Questions Answered One Comment

This is my first attempt at a birthday video since reading your book. I think I am starting to understand how to make a video that someone else will want to watch. I included shots that are not really great because I think they’re what the client (my family in this case) wants.  Did I do the right thing?  How can I make my shots better? Mike Padgett Tough call on the client thing, Mike.  You could assert yourself as an artist, but then your family would fire you and you’d be famililess, stuck forlornly scanning the want ads for rare openings…

Read More

How to Use Story to Make Great Video

By Tips and Tricks, For Pros, Press 3 Comments

  If you weren’t in New York last week, you missed a great Video Conference and Festival thrown by Vimeo. Lots of great seminars and workshops at the sold-out event.  I spoke on Saturday– if you couldn’t make it, here are the cliff notes– plus a whole bunch of links for further reading on story: How to Use Story:  10 Points from Steve Stockman’s Workshop @VIMEO Festival June 9, 2012 1.  Entertain or Die:  Nobody watches bad video.  There are too many instantly available alternatives. Remember the Entertainment Transaction:  The audience pays (with time or money) the entertainment must deliver (with an…

Read More

Five Tips on Making Demo Reels that Work

By Video Marketing, For Pros, Your Questions Answered 2 Comments

I’m wondering about demo reels. I’ve worked professionally as a producer (public affairs) for a local TV station, but after re-educating myself in a night program at Emerson College, I want to go off on my own. One of my tasks is coming up with a great sizzle reel. Any thoughts on structure, contents, or style? –Fred Pagano PS:  I bought your book last week at Barnes & Noble. It’s not an exaggeration to say that I devoured it, and I’m still rereading sections over and over again. Problem is, I tend to read it before bed and it keeps me awake!…

Read More

Great Sound? No Problem.

By For Pros 2 Comments

Nothing makes it harder to enjoy a video than not being able to hear what people say (okay, leaving the lens cap on is pretty bad too.) My friend Jay Rose, sound professional and author extraordinaire, sent along this amusing video showing how bad sound pulls you out of a video, and how to prevent it. Great sound is not optional. Check out these posts for more: Video Sound in a Loud Room Is there a fix for trying to get decent video sound in a loud room such as a nightclub? Some cameras have a limiter in them that clamps…

Read More

What are Eyelines and Why Should You Care?

By For Pros, Your Questions Answered 4 Comments

Here is a video that I shot after reading your book. Most woodworking videos are painfully boring, but I and another woodworker are trying to change that. Can you give me any more tips? –Brian I have to admit it did not take much imagination for me to picture a boring video about woodworking. But Brian’s done a great job of making his pretty cool.  Fun action shots, nicely framed, well edited.  This video is probably fascinating for anyone more likely to pick up a lathe than I am.  Which is pretty much everyone. But for those who come to this site…

Read More

The Devils Ride and the Big Apple

By For Pros, Press 2 Comments

This post consists entirely of self-serving news.  Exciting news, but self-serving nonetheless. Those who wonder when we people in the entertainment business will just shut up about ourselves can look here to find something else to read. Motorcycles I’m executive producing a new show for the Discovery Channel that debuts this Tuesday, May 8 at 10pm. It’s called The Devils Ride, and it’s about a San Diego Motorcycle Club. Here’s the cool Discovery Promo.  If you crave more info and can’t wait for Tuesday, Entertainment Weekly has an exclusive three minute sneak preview. Vimeo Festival + Awards I’ll be doing a cool…

Read More
Copy link
Powered by Social Snap