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Free 5 hour video boot camp

Video Boot Camp Lesson Guide– Free Download!

By Teaching and Training, For Pros, Your Questions Answered Leave a comment

It’s the start of the school year.  Coming up: a year of student video projects.  And hours of misery for viewers.  If only there was a way to make student video better.  Hmmmmm…. Wait– I’ve got it!  How about this free 5 hour lesson plan to help your students do better video?  Teachers and trainers have been downloading it in droves, and why not?  It’s free!  Nothing to buy, no email address to leave. If you’re a teacher or trainer, or know one, check it out.  And if you HAVE used the Video Boot Camp lesson guide in your classroom how’d…

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5 Tips for Father’s Day Video that Doesn’t Suck

By Tips and Tricks, If you’re new to video, Better Home Video, Your Questions Answered Leave a comment

Father’s Day Video.  Memorable–or as undercooked as the runny eggs and cold toast the kids bring Dad in bed?  Here are a five tips to improve the video you shoot this Father’s Day. 1. Find the Hero: Focus your attention on someone– anyone!  Having a hero invites us to think about our videos as stories about someone, which makes them more intriguing. Choosing a hero changes the video.  For example, if Dad is the hero, your story might be “Dad gets woken up for breakfast in bed– at 4:30am.”  Told from Dad’s point of view, the story might alternate shots of the kids…

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Story as a Magical Organizing Force

By Tips and Tricks, If you’re new to video, Better Home Video, Your Questions Answered One Comment

I have a brain that likes things logical, nicely ordered and in line. You follow the rules, you get the result. I can’t get my head around the order of shots, stories and putting it all together. Once a week we go to the grandparents house for dinner. We have a niece and nephew, 4 and 1 respectively, who come over as well. It is a good time had by all and I want to capture the moments as they learn and grow. I just can’t figure out what the story is. I get that I should take short shots of what’s happening but when you put them all together, will it make…

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Can a Teaching Video tell a Story?

By Tips and Tricks, Teaching and Training, Your Questions Answered Leave a comment

How can I better use storytelling techniques for teaching science? Does numerical data contribute to the story, or is having a data table in a video a sure recipe for having viewers click away? By the way: your book is awesome. In the video I’m working on now, I keep counting to make sure I’m not violating the 10 second shot rule! –Glenn Wolkenfeld Nice job, Glenn. This is a fast-moving, clear, well-produced teaching video covering a bunch of cool stuff about surface area. For those of you to whom it did not occur that there was a bunch of cool stuff about surface area, I…

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Video as a Collaborative Art

By Teaching and Training, Feature Film, Television, For Pros, Your Questions Answered 2 Comments

I just shot my first video ever, and had some trouble getting the actors to do what I wanted. When you’re directing, how much of the performance is up to you, and how much do you let the actor come up with? -Nick How much do I let the actor come up with?  All of it.  As much as I’d sometimes (fortunately rarely) like to climb inside an actor’s head and push all the buttons myself, I can’t.  Nobody can.  The actor has to do all the work.  I may try to help guide or manage, but you really can’t…

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Getting Started in a Video Career

By Video Marketing, Teaching and Training, Feature Film, Television, For Pros, Your Questions Answered 3 Comments

Hi Steve, My Dad gave me a copy of your book to help my roommates (all of whom are filmmakers at NYU) make great films in their classes.  It’s been a really helpful guide for them! I was just wondering, since I’m majoring in acting, if you have any tips for actors trying to get into these “videos that don’t suck”. Do you have any advice on how to find projects to work on without being one of those desperate wannabe actor people who annoy every agent and production company in the city trying to get some kind of work? Nicole…

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Who Needs a Hero, Anyway?

By Tips and Tricks, If you’re new to video, Better Home Video, Your Questions Answered Leave a comment

I’m a pure novice at making movies, so your book was exactly what I was looking for!  I made one diving video from a point & shoot underwater camera and tried to use your tips, but I struggled with “the hero” – the fish maybe? the turtle?  Help! –Kaidra M. The “hero” thing can be tricky, but it still works underwater. The idea of choosing a hero is to make your video about someone. To keep you from randomly pointing and shooting. The key concept: it doesn’t matter WHO the hero is. Without a hero, your video is about whatever catches…

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Checklist: 20 Questions to Make Your Video Great

By Tips and Tricks, If you’re new to video, Better Home Video 6 Comments

Since everyone alive today has been watching film and video from birth, we all have some idea of what bad film and video look like.  It’s that stuff you click out of instantly on your browser or your remote, often within 15 seconds of starting it. “I know bad video when I see it” works great when you’re the consumer, but not so well when you’re the creator. Creators not only need to know bad video when they see it, they need to know bad video before they see it.  Ideally even before they start shooting it. How do you see the…

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