This is a journal to reflect on my learning for the ADP Video Course. I intend to keep this a fluid journal and add my reflections as I complete assignments.
Class 1 Color Video
This was a interesting project for me. I have used Apple video products in the past and am pretty accomplished with Final Cut Pro and iMovie. I appreciated the simplicity of the assignment, along with the lecture video, which I consulted a lot. I ran into some issues with Titles, and I'm not sure if it was a result of an update, but I couldn't find titles under the new menu. I had to track down title, found something under legacy title. It worked, which is an important lesson. Even if the tutorial / lecture says something that doesn't work or make sense, there is always a way.
I used my own pictures for the video. I figured I would be using my own photos a lot and wanted to experiment with resizing them. Seemed to work, and definitely something that my students will be doing. Pexels is great, but I always prefer to use my own work when I can.
Class 2 Thematic Video
I really enjoyed this week's assignment. I chose to create a video with found footage rather than attempt one with my own footage, although I have been thinking about doing the advanced assignment as well. I struggled to find a topic at first, and settled on waves. My thought was, to begin the film with calm water and have a progression of shots to more and more white water and waves. The hardest aspect of this was to find appropriate footage. I used the link to pexels video and was able to locate some good shots. I would have loved to have some bigger waves, but those shots included a surfer and I did not want to have any humans in the short film. 20 seconds goes quick, I found myself cutting a lot, even after I adjusted the clips with in and end points. I am happy with the final product.
The video links the tutors included this week were wonderful, especially the video that went over all of the various cuts and dissolves that filmmakers use. I found myself watching TV and thinking about the transitions and cuts the directors were choosing to use. I still have trouble seeing myself with the ability to plan all of that out ahead of time, but will keep trying. Definitely a step in the right direction. Even with these first two weeks, I have more knowledge and information which I may share with my students. I'm looking forward to the rest of the class.
Class 3: Shot Reverse Shot
I enjoyed this assignment and had the opportunity to incorporate my daughter into the film. My daughter is seven, thus I am very familiar with knock knock jokes. I wanted something in addition to the punch line and settled on one of her favorite toys when I saw the owl knock knock joke.
Shooting the joke took about twenty minutes and a lot of trial and error. I did go into the shoot with a small shot list, and we experimented a lot. My daughter really enjoyed filming my portion of the films. I wanted an establishing long shot with some dialog and then a mix of close and extreme close up shots. I wanted to add a pan when she looked down and away toward the stuffed owl.
I wanted to establish an 180-degree line and also attempted to frame the subjects to they were looking into the correct areas of the frame. Editing was tough, when we were shooting, my daughter and I were telling the joke back and forth. I attempted to get her to slow down but I didn't have a lot of pauses to work with. Definitely, might have changed the way I shot the dialog with her.
She enjoyed it so much we shot two additional interviews. If I have time, I'm going to try to cut up the interviews and post them as well.
Class 4: Movement
Ok, this one was harder than I anticipated. I was able to conceive of an idea in my head and plan the shots I needed. I was working under a time constraint, had to get the footage at school as my daughter's birthday party is this weekend and I am slammed at home. I captured all of the footage myself, setting up the camera and shots, reviewing and retaking as needed.
Originally I planned on developing more of a story, deciding between the paper cutter and the scissors, but 20 sec is not a lot. I think I needed the shot of me walking to the paper cutter for the sake of continuity, I suppose I could have moved it closer but the cut of me getting up and walking across the room turned out well. However, that was a long take and necessitated me editing a few other scenes out.
I also wanted to film more cutting sequences, but was having a hard time with continuity and pacing. I could have made it choppy with a lot of cuts in a row, making it seem like I was cutting quickly, but I just felt it didn't work with the time constraints, A 30 sec short film would work for that approach.
I am happy with the result, although the cut aways at the beginning might be paced a tad better, but that is nitpicking. I could have reshot the big transition scene but don't have the time.
Class 5 Instructional Video
This was a hard one for me this week. I struggled with trying to find an appropriate topic, especially for a 90 sec video. I don't have any classes, I'm a specialist, thus I had to find something to talk about that would work. I originally wanted to do a video on binary search algorithm, however decided that 90 seconds would not cut it.
We are transitioning over to gmail inbox for our school next year and thought that some instructional how to videos would be a good idea. Thus, the idea for this video was born. However , I had to keep cutting and cutting to get down to 90 seconds. I believe my first go was about two and a half minutes.
The editing process, cutting extraneous parts of the video, pauses, etc.. was actually pretty enjoyable. I was able to begin to focus on what I really wanted my audience to know.
That being said, this isn't my best work. I've had a crazy week with the end of school approaching and wasn't able to give this my full attention.
I am happy to report that I will be teaching a video production elective for our MS next year and look forward to bringing everything that I have learned into my classroom.
I really enjoyed this course. Of many online professional development courses I have taken in the past several years, this course is one of my favorites. The main reason is the creative component of the course. I felt free to explore ideas while I was learning. The instructors encouraged individuality within the framework of the assignments. The projects encouraged me to think about the process along with the product.
My primary creative background lies in photography. While I am familiar with digital video production, I haven't had the opportunity for more formalized instruction. I am very comfortable with Photoshop, InDesign, and to a lesser extent Illustrator. Premier, on the other hand, was a completely different animal. I had virtually zero experience with Premier. After completing the course assignments, I feel comfortable enough with Premier to go ahead and teach a video production class in the fall.
I am going to structure the class in a similar vein as this course. Giving smaller, easy to digest, assignments that build towards a final project. Rather than a instructional video, I am going to encourage my students to produce a sixty second documentary. Forcing them to tell a story in sixty seconds. I will also incorporate the reflection journal in class. This was a vital step in my learning, and gave me insight into my peers thinking when I was viewing their video assignments.
My students will learn by doing, I will give them just enough information and parameters to give them guidance a a framework to work with. Other than that, I look forward to seeing what they will come up with and accomplish.