Re: Love your thoughts? by Mark Suszko on Oct 11, 2012 at 6:57:24 pm
Well, he may not be conventionally handsome, but I think you need to have way more and longer closeups on your star's face. If you consider the overall shots, their framing and lighting, how often the face is obscured by a mic, hat, backlighting, etc. it's like you're trying to hide him, is the impression I got. Is he in witness protection or something? :-) I would "fix" this with a re-cut that had fewer but longer shots, complete shots on the lyric sections where he hits the chorus and the cleverer wordplay. Get his name in there a couple of times, on signage or other props or set design elements.
The "b plot" going on in the story of the video with the women and the promoter is also a bit undeveloped, and some of these scenes in those needed more fill lighting, I thought. I might have gone another way, perhaps the well-worn schtick of trying to "make-over" the star in some exaggerated way, to which he is totally resistant no matter what you dress him up in. Maybe that's what you were already trying for, but it's not "reading" that well for me. It isn't bad at all, but IMO it doesn't stand out from the pack either, it's highly conventional. And conventional in a crowded market means forgettable. I think if I was doing it from scratch, I'd have fun with BIG visuals, make him the size of Godzilla, make digital sets that look too small for him to be comfortable in, or go with images of out of scale excess, like stretch hummer limos that look blocks long, recording sessions in Carnegie Hall, 30-gallon hats, keylight on set replaced with a kleigl aircraft spot... a lot of prop-centric bits.
Or maybe, he's just a humble guy in his basement, building home made greenscreens, hand-painted backdrops of crowds, and etc to create a basement fantasy of being a huge country star, then he subsequently gets discovered for real when a friend or some glitch leaks a web video of his goofing around which goes viral...That kind of outrageous, wacky thing stands out and gets linked on facebook.
Take all of what I say with a grain of salt though, because I'm not an expert or enthusiast for most country pop music, or country pop marketing.
Re: Love your thoughts? by Bill Davis on Oct 13, 2012 at 4:40:52 am
My question is what's your overall goal here?
You've created a perfectly credible music video that looks like exactly what you've described.
You've done commendable work inside a constrained budget. There's nothing functionally "wrong" with any thing I saw on a basic level. Sure there are little tweeks that someone familiar with production can spot - but everyone here to does video for a living understands that it takes a huge amount of work to get up to the "70% of seriously professional" level. And probably 10 times that amount of work, resources and attention to detail to move from 70% up to 85% or 95%.
Without the money, time, and professional support, it's way tougher to get up the last part of the hill than to get up the first part. And you should be commended for getting a good way up without breaking your bank.
So good for you.
If you get to keep doing these, just improve a few percent every outing. And in a few years you'll likely be doing stuff like the stuff you can see on CMT and you'll know how to fix the little things on a shoot that turns "that's pretty darn good" into "WOW."
Which is the working standard at the top.
Nice job tho. Hope you had fun doing it and made either solid money or the equivalent in relationship capital and contacts along the way.
"Before speaking out ask yourself whether your words are true, whether they are respectful and whether they are needed in our civil discussions."-Justice O'Connor
Re: Love your thoughts? by Lisa Talley on Oct 19, 2012 at 6:10:40 pm
I'm not necessarily a seasoned expert on the topic of editing, so I looked at this from a general audience perspective (as much as I could with a video production background).
The concept of the rising star being pushed in to being something he really isn't was easy enough to grasp. However, the depth of the relationship between him and the object of his affection wasn't as clear. The close up shots used during their first meeting happened too quickly. It moved from his face to hers and then immediately on to something else. The speed at which it happened gave me the impression that their attraction wasn't mutual, that it was more one sided on his behalf. After watching the rest of the video and listening to the lyrics, I'm guessing that meeting should have been an almost 'love at first sight' moment? I think that would have definitely been feasible if the shots lingered on their stares a little longer (the rest would be left up to their acting).
I think the rhythm of the cuts during the performance section of the video were great, maybe one too many quick cuts here and there for my taste, but that's just my opinion and my particular preference. Otherwise it looked very professional.
My only other suggestion would be to let the shots stay on the screen a little longer during the story telling portion of the video. It takes the average human brain a few seconds to register what it is they're looking at. We want to see that story you worked so hard to put together. Overall, it's a pretty freakin' good video.