If you’re like a lot of people, you may spend a lot of time watching YouTube for research purposes. The video site has become a bit of a hub for anyone, anywhere, to post their opinions and self-imposed wisdom on everything, from dating advice to video game reviews to style tips. It is, to a certain degree, wonderful that anyone with a mildly decent camera can reach so many people now on their chosen topic to YouTube about.

However, with that, there can come a problem, especially to us videographers (we make a living trying to make sure we avoid these things, so forgive us for being a little too perfectionist). These are problems of the technical sort that come from the lack of knowledge Continue reading “MAKING THE MOST OF THE TALKING HEAD: BASIC REVIEW VIDEO TIPS”

Relax! It’s Just An Interview: How A Loose Interview Structure Always Beats Heavy Scripting

General conventions teach us that preparation is the key to success. If you have a plan, and a backup plan in case the plan fails, and a backup to the backup in case that one fails, then there’s nothing to keep you from succeeding. In the case of video interviews, I have seen many people new to interviews try to go by this concept when their turn comes to be interviewed; they have an answer to everything, heavily rehearsed and down to every word.

And the end result? Interviews that aren’t so great. Terrible at worst, lackluster at best. What we end up getting on camera tends Continue reading “Relax! It’s Just An Interview: How A Loose Interview Structure Always Beats Heavy Scripting”

Viral videos- How do I get one?

Viral videos are everywhere, there are music videos that are so bad that everyone has to see how bad they are, parents who document their cute kids doing something incredibly funny or there’s a challenge campaign that is used to create awareness for a larger organization. This last one was the case for the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge last summer, which was so popular it’s a heavily featured part of the Youtube Rewind:2014 video which mashes together all the most popular Youtube videos redone by popular Youtube stars summing up our year on Youtube.

The ALS Ice Bucket challenge was an interesting type of viral video because it wasn’t just one video that was viewed millions of times, but a video chain where people were doing the challenge and then challenging 3 more people to do it and/or donate $100 to the ALS Association. Continue reading “Viral videos- How do I get one?”

Startup Event Videography

One of our talented friends who offers event organization services Greg Gioia called us up to film an event for a start up event in San Francisco. He needed one videographer to film one-hour PowerPoint presentation and a speaker on stage, and film the before and after reception and mingling of the 100 or so people attending. This event is for a corporation called Counsyl.

Counsyl is a tech company involved in genetic testing in pregnancy. They develop technologies that make it affordable for anyone. At the company event, they gave a presentation to train or inform other employees and business partners about their newest technology and discoveries.

Before and after the presentation, Continue reading “Startup Event Videography”

Filming for an Keastase Audition Video at W’s Salon in Santana Row

Back in December 2013, we were called to film an audition tape for a spot to style at Fashion Week in New York. It was for a hair stylist who works at W’s Salon in Santana Row. The artist was pressed for time and we had four days to complete the video. The look was expected to be a two-shot against a white backdrop as the stylist talks about the hair style she is demonstrating.

We cleared the space at the salon location and set up a white backdrop. We had two softboxes to light the subjects and backdrop and one LED for fill, one camera at WIDE angle on a tripod with the wireless lav connected to the camera, and the second camera was on monopod with a Rode mic for extreme closeups.

Things to improve: Our lighting mistakes during production has reared its ugly head during post. What I would like to do in the future for this style is to have two more LED panels to flood the white backdrop to get rid of the shadows. Two more softboxes or LEDs would be lighting the subjects at the forefront. At least this time, we had to chroma key the colors and shadows from each shot from the unproperly lit backdrop. Here are the results below.

The good news is that the artist made the cut and served as a stylist at the 2014 Fashion Week and few to New York for training the next month.