Monday, July 30, 2007

Advertising: There are only 12 kinds of ads

Some of the schools in this area have an interesting way to introduce media literacy and video production to their students. The assignment: write, produce and edit a television commercial about a product you have created.

This approach requires students to research, write, practice, shoot and edit on a very tight timetable. Skills from graphic arts, reading, writing, acting, narration, photography, and technology use are all integrated into this project. OF course, time management is also needed, because these projects are due on a specific date, no excuses allowed. It's an eye opener when kids discover this. has an interesting article on different styles of television advertising. Author Seth Stevenson and advertising mogul Leo Gunn discuss 12 basic ways that a commercial can get and hold your attention.

You may not agree with the way these ads are categorized, but you will admit that discussing ad styles while referring to Geico, iPhone and other commercials that students are familiar with will grab your students' attention.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

What can you do when editing?

Post production (editing) is when you transfer your video clips to the editor and start putting things together. So, what things can you do when you edit your raw video footage?

Remember, you only have two things to work with: audio and video. So, what can you do when you edit?


Add music

Add sound effects

Add narration

Adjust volume


Trim clips to the exact length you want

Add titles

Add transitions (cross fades, page turns)

Add effects (black & white, slow-mo, backwards, etc)

Add scenes in any order you want

Remember that if you shot several “takes” of a scene, you need only use the best take. Also, you can put scenes in whatever order you like. It doesn’t have to be in the same order you shot it.

What can’t you do??

Make a blurry picture sharp and in focus.

Remove the “shake” from a shaky shot

Turn the audio up a lot, so a very soft voice is easy

to hear.

Remove background noise to make voice easy to hear.

Remember you can’t make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear. To have the best finished product, start out with good video and good audio. You can’t “fix it in post.”