A Couple of Videos

I created these last week and realized I never put them up.

This first one our pastor wanted to show where Macedonia was in the world. Said he wanted it like some scenes from Enemy of the State and not like CNN. So I used the tutorial for the earth zoom from Adnrew Kramer’s VideoCopilot.net. This project was rushed. I was finishing it up on Sat afternoon a few hours before service. It could have been more polished (the color matching from one zoom level to the next, add atmosphere with clouds, and positioning so you know where in the world Macedonia is.

Anyway, here it is:

The second video our pastor wanted to show the aftermath of the China earthquake. He was teaching about the attitude of the Macedonians in the Bible. An earthquake had hit their nation, but their attitude stayed in the right place. This video was rushed as well, could have been tighter in it’s animation and sound score. creating it on Sat before service. It could have been polished off better. The sound track was from the new to me Soundtrack in FCS2 and the sound FX were from Andrew Kramer’s Designer Sound FX

Here it is:

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June 17, 2008. Sound, Video.

4 Comments

  1. Brent Homer replied:

    Hey, quit apologizing for the polish thing. Remember you work at church on a tight timeline. Even really high end productions companies would not be able to keep pace with what we do with the amount of manpower and equipment we have.

    Those where both excellent. Even willow wouldn’t be able to improve on them in the timeframe.

    I have determined that if I ever work at another production house I am going to recruit from within church organizations. Church media people would be all intimidated when they went to the high end post house, and then realize what they where doing was much harder and more demanding.

    btw: soundtrack is the hidden gem in the final cut world….that program is garageband on steroids….so simple, but so powerful. If you look hard, it has like 20 full songs in it that work out great in a pinch as well. just search for the word LONG in the browser clip and you will find them….

  2. Dave replied:

    Brent,
    Thanks for the kind words. In fact all the comments I got from the videos were very positive. My personality is one that’s always striving to improve what I do. While it’s good to be improving it’s easy to become too critical of one’s own work. My wife calls me a media snob b/c I will critique and break down work I see other places (in and out of the church). It’s a balance to be content and pleased that I did the best with what I had (whether that be footage, time, talent, tools, etc…) while always wanting to do better.

    It was one of the hardest lessons I learned in my first few years of working in media is that there is never the perfect piece, you’ll spend forever tweaking those few frames or pixels that 99% of people won’t notice. Guns and Roses anyone?

    One thing I’ve been asking myself lately is does it look right? Not is it right, not is it right if I playback frame by frame? But in the flow of the project, in real speed, does it look right? And if it looks right, then it is right.

  3. Adam Oas replied:

    I forget who said it first, but…
    ‘Videos are never finished, only abandoned”

    I’m constantly de-constructing videos and whatnot, I’ve largely been able to keep it contained internally to my own personal dialog tho 🙂

    Now for the critique…

    The globe > Macedonia piece.

    1) The rotation is way wonky. I know that a straight zoom is uninteresting, but rotation on that arbitrary axis was disconcerting and made it tough to localize the place.

    2) without present day borders it’s even harder to localize the space. I could recognize that it was near the Italian peninsula, but being so close in so as not to be able to see where it is in relation to say the Mideast or even Israel made it seem sort of like it was just a blob in the middle of nowhere.

    3) The overall zoom level was a bit much for my tastes. I’d have started in a bit closer to the globe (Probably with TX centered on the map) then done a rotate (on axis) and zoom to the area, but left it a ways farther out so you can get the sense of where it is in relationship to the surrounding landmass.

    The China piece.

    1) As a standalone piece It was long. (I’m supposing that it was proper length for the presentation tho)

    2) I like the background, but it could’ve used a map of China blended with a transfer mode.

    3) maybe start with a couple photos, then do the video clip you have , then back to photos

    4) the timing of the end of the clips should be adjusted so as to disappear behind the topmost layer as it is still completely obscuring the underneath one.

    So don’t get me wrong. I think both of these are really great work, especially under a deadline! I think that the music/SFX are perfect.

  4. Dave replied:

    Adam,
    Thanks for the feedback and I totally agree with you.

    The Macedonia piece I was using the zoom to add some eye candy and cover some of my blending mistakes. But it does make it very hard to identify where in the world it is going. Especially with the emphasis of World Geography in the schools. But my boss loved the “eye candy” of it. And sometimes that’s what it’s all about. Next time I’m going to try starting out in Texas and move to a foreign location. I’m also trying to see if Google Earth can help me on some of this. Even through they didn’t want the Google Earth look like CNN/ Fox News.

    On the China piece the map idea is a great idea! I’ll keep that in mind if another video like this comes up. I caught the layering mistakes on the China piece after it rendered, but it was too late in the game to fix it. It was showing in 2 hours and I still needed to score and add sfx and convert it to the display format.

    Thanks again for the feedback. I value it from other people who do similar work. Helps me to get a better perspective on my work and hopefully I can improve on it the next time.

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