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Advice on video for newbie

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by Babs, Aug 26, 2009.

  1. Babs

    Babs Member

    Very soon I will need to make some short videos -- game action clips and post-game comments from coaches. I do not even own my own video camera, so I'm a real beginner here. That said, I'm confident that I can learn.

    Any advice, specifically on the post-game comments? I'll have to ask the questions while doing it, it won't be a scrum situation. Tips on editing? Editing software?


  2. Den1983

    Den1983 Active Member

    We use Windows Media Movie Maker to edit. It's already on our computers. It's beginner-like, but simple and does the job.

    As far as interviews, ask one or two questions at most. Shouldn't take longer than 45 seconds to a minute. Piece of cake.

    It takes a while to get the hang of, but it's pretty fun.
  3. Stitch

    Stitch Active Member

    When interviewing, switch between using shots of the coach talking and game action that pertains to the interview, while keeping the coach's voice track as the main audio.

    I use Final Cut Express at my shop for that and it works well. If the paper is buying a video camera, buy a shotgun mic for it if it is capable of taking one. The built-in mics are horrible.
  4. Babs

    Babs Member

    I'm told that the camera I'll use cannot take a better mic. Any tips in this case?

    This has been helpful so far.
  5. PCLoadLetter

    PCLoadLetter Well-Known Member

    Use the zoom as little as possible. You'll need it a little bit for football, but the less you use it the better.

    When shooting an interview get as close to the subject as possible and widen out the shot as much as you can.

    For game video, whenever possible shoot from the field level about 20 yards beyond the line of scrimmage.
  6. Babs

    Babs Member

    Why do you say widen out the shot? That seems counter-intuitive.
  7. mustangj17

    mustangj17 Active Member

    iVideo is the easiest. Use a basic intro and outro. Like white text on black background.

    Make sure to brand it with the paper's name. Keep it short too, nobody wants to watch a 10-minute clip. Maybe 1-2 minutes.
  8. PCLoadLetter

    PCLoadLetter Well-Known Member

    Because it creates an image that is closest to what the human eye sees, and also minimizes the distraction created by camera movements. A shot from two feet away that is widened out as far as possible looks much, much better than a shot from 5 feet away that is zoomed in. Also, assuming you are shooting this off the shoulder, a wide shot hides camera movements while a zoomed shot magnifies them.

    If you are stuck with a crappy built-in mic it will help your audio, too.
  9. John

    John Well-Known Member

    When I do post-practice videos from time to time, I just ask the coach to talk for 30-45 seconds about what they worked on, the good, the bad, etc. It's one simple take, the web folks at the office don't have to edit the audio and it can run over whatever B roll I've shot, if any.

    Also, frame him off to the side a little, not right in the middle of the screen.
  10. Greg_Brownell

    Greg_Brownell New Member

    Try to avoid saying "uh-huh,'' or anything else, while an interviewee is talking. It messes up the sound. Sometimes that takes a little effort.
  11. Double J

    Double J Active Member

    That's great advice. Now that I'm working in radio as opposed to newspapers, I'm making a huge effort to not interject little things like that. There's a lot of head-nodding going on instead, hahaha.
  12. Shaggy

    Shaggy Guest

    Always have him framed off to one side looking toward the other side. Usually, this works by, for example, having him on the right side of the shot, and asking him questions as you're on the left side of the shot. That ways he's looking across the shot at you, and the whole picture is in play, so to speak.

    Depending on the camera, I think the built-in microphone works OK unless it's windy. If it's windy, you're in trouble. Are you sure a little clip-on mic you can get a Radio Shack won't work? I don't like using them either but if it's windy you don't have a choice. Your interview will be nothing but wind gusts drowning out quotes.

    For highlights, zoom in on the QB before the play starts. Once it's snapped, zoom out and try to follow the ball. It might take a game or two to get it down but I picked it up a lot quicker than I thought I would.

    If a team is in the red zone, go under the goal posts. A touchdown run where the carrier is coming right at you is the best.

    When there's not a scoring threat, shoot the atmosphere. The scoreboard, the cheerleaders, the student section, the student trainers filling water cups. You never know what you might use.

    If it's a video for the web, 2 minutes tops. No exceptions.

    Be aware of where you are. I had the perfect shot of a quarterback dropping back and going deep. The ball was coming right to me. The catch was made right 3 yards in front of me but I had bailed and didn't get the shot. Oh well. I don't want to get leveled.
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