Production-optimizing and Budget-saving Tips for Video – by Bill Brandon

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Video is an important tool in the development kit. By making scalable choices of equipment and editing applications and by maximizing your manufacturing workflows, you can achieve a trifecta: saving time, saving money, and making a video that is a great solution for facilitating learning.
In this informative article, hints are shared by video for William Everheart for saving money and tweaking your workflow.
Gear
BB: To create eLearning video, for equipment we have a choice between a cell phone, a digital single-lens reflex (DSLR) camera, or even a camcorder. What are your thoughts about the choices between these three?
WE: particularly when we’re thinking about budgetary limitations First, which one do you have? Men and women carry around a production studio in the pocket and they don’t recognize it, and that is the phone! The cellular phones of today are absolutely amazing in regards to the quality of the cameras that are in them. It has just been demand that is pushed that area of this market, so most of us carry around a telephone that is within a few years old. Within that restriction, I’d say that you have a perfect device for video. Great, use it, if you’ve got a cell phone. It is better than nothing.
Of the other two–the camcorder along with the DSLR –when a person does have money put aside that they are budgeting for video creation, I’d say go with the camcorder. There’s a couple reasons for that. One, the camcorder was designed for that 1 purpose. It is going to have things like longer battery life, the features that you need for video, the characteristics that you need, and longer recording times. It is also going to provide you features that you need for video.
The DSLR has become remarkably common. I use it in some specific cases, but it will have a learning curve in order to receive decent excellent video. It is not one of these things as if you can with your camcorder or your phone you can take from the box, flip it, and begin recording video.
BB: If you decide you’d rather go with a camcorder, are there characteristics that you should look for in a camcorder?
WE camcorders have memory. So you can have memory cards but I also search for features like memory vents. Rather than recording to a single card, this gives you some options. You could fill one card up with a video, then the camera will immediately begin recording. It gives you more recording time. Or if what you are recording is a bit more sensitive, then you might have the camera record to both cards. This way you have a backup copy.
Another thing I look for would be the microphone input signal. I don’t use them because aren’t the very best on earth. Depending upon the quality of the camera which you purchase, the microphone inputs could be something similar to a little 3.5-millimeter jack, which is the conventional kind that your earbuds use with your cell phone–the same size little interface. And, if you’ve got it I like microphone inputs, like the XR input signal inputs. I’m like looking for that kind of thing for scalability since the camera is just one of these things you don’t want to have to buy on a regular basis. To me it’s better to maybe spend a bit more and get those features that you need.
Editing
BB: Let’s talk a bit about editing. Which are the qualities?
WE: I think the thing with editing will be the capability which means you want to search for applications that have the ability to ingest unique forms of media because cameras record from formats that are different. You need something which could ingest these file types that are different. You need something that has a media bin. You’re going to import multiple video clips and you need to be able to hold video clips. You’ll be able to stitch these together. Most of the software is that which we call nonlinear. That means I can pull on unique parts from videos and put them together, almost like a mystery. I am able to pull on 1 video and a few seconds apart and sew them and so on. I don’t always look at brand names in regards to the video-editing applications but most of the applications out there has that sort of thing.
BB: Ok here is a question: with a phone, would you shoot in landscape or portrait in the portrait?
WE: No, it’s not a question. What’s the best format? Honestly, to me it gets back to is my learners ingesting my articles, wherever they watch it on a mobile device or the computer. Traditionally we would say that landscape is how you would like to film, not a portrait, but you know if the needs are suited by the portrait that’s what you have to use. Everything you don’t want to do is switch back and forth between portrait and landscape since once you do the recording, that will mean some creative editing onto the end. I would suggest that you always record in landscape mode, thinking about the manufacturing workflow along with the end.
Workflow
BB: What are the steps in your workflow for video?
WE the key steps are once everything is recorded, organizing them and then going through these records. The camera will have its own means of naming these files. They’re usually serial numbers, it includes the date. So the very first thing I want to do is move in and arrange a variety of video clips. Get that stuff organized, and I like to make certain that I have the recordings all that I need, maybe even set up, or change the design conventions. So if it’s on a sheet of media or onto a device, I don’t overwrite that media until the job is complete I create copies of my own records. I keep that as my backup copy and I’m copying that websites or copying these files. And, for me personally, it’s a matter of having a look at them and going through these video clips. They should all be the same size, same aspect ratio, things like that. When there’s contents that I think I’m missing, I get that taken care of and reach back out. Then it’s on to meeting. This is where you can put on Steven Spielberg or something and your boss’s hat even when you create a mock. What is the look that you are after, and what’s the story that you are trying to inform? I create a simple storyboard utilizing those video clips and attempt to put a story together and see that I have all the material. That is a great way for me. Audio levels is another Fantastic thing
BB do you storyboard?
WE: Yes, I definitely storyboard. I think that is critical. Whenever you are shooting video if it’s going to become one of these on-demand, or more straightforward learning kind of situations, storyboarding will save you a great deal of time in the editing stage and trying to figure out things. Storyboarding permits you to figure out the shots that you need beforehand, prior to going and set up lights, the cameras, and microphones. When all that is installed, you don’t need to have to re-position the camera every moment — “Oh, that did not look good, let’s do so…”
Storyboarding is a great way and how you are going to let it via video. Before you turn on the camera, so definitely a part.
And yes, there’s more!
William has information about video and about improving audio quality which we did not speak about in this post. He’ll deliver these in his presentation, “Better Audio and Video on a Budget”, as part of The eLearning Guild’s L&D to a Shoestring Online Conference April 22-23, 2020. By developing a recording booth; to better illumination and color; to better backdrops (no longer noticeable green display), William can allow you to take back control of your learning material and create amazing audio and video, even when you are on a budget. Registration is available here!

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