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Brett Juchniewicz
video critique
on Jul 15, 2008 at 3:20:12 pm

This is a video I've done for my school about this past orientation. I was wondering if I could get some feedback from you guys (and gals) to see what I could do better for future work.

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eric pautsch
Re: video critique
on Jul 15, 2008 at 3:50:53 pm

This should be on the demos forums...but

Basically very boring. Titles are boring and sometimes out of title safe. I guess you need interviews. Also work on your lower 2/3. Spice it up a little - needs graphics. Don't take my criticism to should see the crap I produced in College :)

Don't worry 10 years you'll look back at this project again and say " OMG...what was I thinking?" :)

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Michael Sacci
Re: video critique
on Jul 15, 2008 at 4:24:23 pm

Since this is for college kids you need to speed up the cuts, big time, need a lot more shots to do it but you don't need to stay on anything long at all. Also cut to the music.

Always get in the habit of color correcting, Even basic 3-way would go a long way.

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Greg Ball
Re: video critique
on Jul 16, 2008 at 6:32:56 pm

I'm lost on the purpose of this video. What are you trying to accomplish? What are you hoping your viewing audience will take away from this video? What should they feel, learn, remember?

You also need better shots/camera work. Most of the shots here are wide, with multiple people in each shot. Consider that close-ups of people can create emotions such as excitement, warmth, motivation, fun, etc. Your video looks like an edited slide show. There's really no reason to use video with that type of footage. Your final video could have been better if you used all stills.

Secondly, does anybody care about the people in the video? Why use those shots? This video just looks like you found several shots and decided to cut it together. No rhyme or reason.

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Mark Suszko
Re: video critique
on Jul 17, 2008 at 4:09:55 pm

Can't wait to see the reactions of the admin people when they hear/see they've been referred to as "the suits".

I LOL'd. Your target audience will, too. The "suits" might not. Be careful with campus politics.

Where I see room for improvement is, your exposures look poor, like you shot everything on auto-iris and the auto-iris was making bad decisions. These shots scream out for better lighting than just existing lighting.

Now, this could also be a side-effect of encoding for youtube, so I might be wrong and the original shots may have been better exposed. But I'm guessing not. Go manual iris control and use the zebra bar display if you have that in your viewfinder menu. The exposure of people with blank walls behind them, in un-supplemented lighting (lecture halls and the like) looked weak because of a lack of contrast and low overall vid level. You might want to play with enhancing this footage using the 3-way color corrector in FCP, or playing with the use of Transfer or Blending modes in your timeline, to combine multiple identical tracks of video that push the bright highlights and darken the shadow details a bit... give a wider dynamic range overall. I think that will help "punch up" the shots.

Your shot composition has a lot of similar shots, a lot of wide shots in a row. If you alternate these with tight and medium shots to break it up a little, this will look better. The overall pace feels slow against the music you chose, so I'd really shorten the shots.

What you have going on with the extended, single sentence thing, interrupted by reference shots, is taking wayyyy long to get to the "punchline", IMO. I got impatient waiting for the text to get to the final point. This needs to be tightened up considerably, because the pay-off tag is not worth that long of a wait.

I tend to fall in love with my footage too much and usually my first assembly cut of anything I care about is always way too long because I can't bear to throw away good shots. But that's the essence of American style editing: the raw footage is a block of stone and you keep removing things until the best is all that's left. European style editing is more of an accrual or building-up process, like adding lumps of clay to a bust a piece at a time and shaping it as you add it on. Either method is valid in general principle. But you should decide which method you're going to use, and apply some more discipline to the additions or subtractions.

You as the shooter/editor have seen all the raw footage and you have already put it into a personal context; one that a new viewer does not have. It is important to remember that the audience has no idea what significance you may have attached to the footage by your inside knowledge of it. They may not "see" it the way you already do. You CREATE the significance to a viewer by the application of your cuts and timing, and the juxtaposition of the images to create a new, more powerful meaning. That usually also means shortening along the way, removing distractions and things that don't reinforce the basic message.

All your shots could have gotten their points across in 2-3 seconds. Doesn't mean the should each BE 3 seconds, necessarily. That's wrong and boring too.

Take a cue from your music and use the rythms there to pace some of the shots, and I think it will play better.

We've all seen and done worse in our early careers, so don't feel embarassed, rather, look at this as useable raw material for the next version of a more refined cut. The key is not to waste time crying about what's past, but to strive to always improve the next thing you do, add one new touch.

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Mike Cohen
Re: video critique
on Jul 23, 2008 at 5:42:06 pm

Was this an assignment for class, or is this actually going to be used as part of orientation or on the school's website.
My own alma mater has some pretty dismal videos on their alumni website.
If this is to show to students, then the others have hit the nail on the head - it is boring.
Watch MTV or whatever it is college kids watch these days, and try to emulate what you see - but with purpose and intention, not just to copy.
Needs some design - even superimposing the college's logo in the lower right, but that logo should be in the supers also.

Show to your friends and see if they pay attention.

Good luck.


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Joe Garcia
Re: video critique
on Aug 14, 2008 at 2:04:57 pm

Hi Brett

FYI I am pretty new to editing so I think I can speak for 'outside looking in' crowd.
That said my opinion is as follow:

* I took offense at 'The Suits' thing, sure I thought of them all as 'The Man' back in my day (dating myself) but ,,, is that how they'd want to be remembered. Calling them the suits is kin to an attack depending on ones perception.

* Along the way we meet a bunch of people who have a given area of expertise but they are all doing one thing, talking form a lecture or podium. Just me IMO that is, but I'd rather envision them in the midst of their environment.

* The last part of the video just before, 'Orientation is over' does nothing to recruit is that is what this is intended to be. The kids are eating, drinking, sitting in groups and such. Almost waiting for something that never arrives. My thinking would have been to visually depict a transition. I'd follow some 'newcomers' for a few scenes where they are arriving, being welcomed in, going from 'newcomer clothes' to lab coats and libraries, a study hall moment, working in the lab, the face of a kid who just had a 'eureka' moment.

* Last, i like all the responses but would encourage you to study Mark Suszko's comments. I think Mark has the 'time and grade' (army term) and is giving you a wealth I cannot but strive to posses.

nuf said


Gen 1:1

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grinner hester
Re: video critique
on Aug 7, 2008 at 2:18:36 am

If you habve more b-roll of students, it could use it. I'd slow at least the suits up top as my ear wants to hear some Nat sound with real time talkin heads. I think it'd look good if you slow mowed every shot
..and added more shots.

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