Quick Focus

Existing Groups

San Diego Amateur Movie Club
3625 Kingsley St.
San Diego, CA. 92106
Contact: Brenda Lantow
Phone: (619) 222-1320
E-mail: bllantow@worldnet.att.net
Meetings: Monthly

Start Middle End Video Club
RR #1
Wellanport, On. Canada LOR 2J0
Contact: Don Suob
Phone: (905) 386-6100
E-mail: None
Meetings: Monthly


8 Tips for Making a Stellar First Video

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8 Tips for Making a Stellar First Video

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Long Island Movie Makers
1642 Wales Ave.
Baldwin, New York 11510
Contact: Robert Grando
Phone: (516) 546-0629
E-mail: None
Meetings: Monthly

Seeking Group or Will Organize

  • Christine Benson
    30 Vista De Oro
    Placitas, NM 87043

  • David L. White
    1130 Nelson Merry
    Nashville, TN. 37203-2800

  • Dennis Whipple
    2315 Marine Ave.
    Gardena Ca. 90249

Videomaker’s User Group Resources Free Listings
Let new members know about your group. For inclusion in our user group listing, submit your request to "User Groups," c/o Videomaker, P.O. Box 4591, Chico, CA 95927; fax (530) 891-8443; e-mail editor@videomaker.com. For a list of existing user groups and/or video enthusiasts seeking or willing to organize a group in your area, send a SASE to our mailing address.

Web Listings
Expand your user group’s horizons by posting your information on the Videomaker Web site. Send your request to "User Groups" at the above address or visit http://www.videomaker.com/usergroups/.

Online Forum
Visit the Videomaker Online Forums at http://www.videomaker.com/forument.htm to network with other user group members and organizers.

User Group Startup Kit
Videomaker‘s user group startup kit contains everything you need to start and run a successful user group: how to find members, publicize meetings and conduct screenings; sample newsletter, newspaper ad and meeting agenda; discounts off Videomaker merchandise and more. For more information, call (530) 891-8410, ext. 242 or e-mail customerservice@videomaker.com.

Web Watch
The Bijou Café
Based in Van Nuys, Ca., this site is dedicated to showing film, video and media works that have found no other avenue for conventional distribution. Visitors to this site can watch a variety of independent works, free of charge. The Bijou Café has won six major design awards since it’s debut in April.

Entry Deadlines
The American Motion Picture Society (AMPS) invites amateur film and video makers to submit their to submit their productions in the 69th "American International Film and Video Festival. The closing date of the contest entries is September 15th, 1998. The cost to enter is $5 for members and $8 for non-members. Productions are limited to 30 minutes in length. Applications may be obtained by contacting: Roger Garretson at 30 Kanan Rd., Oak Park, Ca. 91391-1105.

Also, AMPS invites all Amateur film and video makers who are residing west of the Mississippi River to submit their productions for the "Ten Best of the West" contest. Productions are limited to 20 minutes in length. A $10 entry fee is required. The entry deadline is September 18th. Applications may be obtained by contacting: Gordon Cambell, 2746 Tyler St., Long Beach, Ca. 90810.

Both festivals require film entries to be submitted on either 8, Super 8 or 16mm. Video entries may be submitted on VHS, S-VHS, 8mm or Hi8.

Quick Focus

New Camcorders From Canon
Canon USA has introduced a new Hi8 camcorder, the ES7000V. In addition to a built-in 3.5 inch LCD monitor, the ES7000V will include low battery consumption circuitry for longer recording time. Other features will incorporate image stabilization, digital effects and fade options, and a 16x zoom optical lens with 72x digital zoom.

In addition to the ES7000V, Canon has also introduced the ES3000V standard 8mm camcorder. The ES3000 contains comparable features found on the ES7000V. The ES3000V uses a slightly smaller color LCD monitor at 3.0 inches.

Both products were released to retailers this month with a suggested list price of $999 and $799 respectively.

Truckers Training Truckers
How many of us have had to sit through those extremely boring training videos, either for our jobs or our schools. You know the ones, the really dry-as-dust videos that only truly benefit insomniacs and tax attorneys. Well contrary to popular opinion, training videos do not have to be a drag to watch. Ask a group of truckers from Motor Cargo, in Salt Lake City. Eight truckers and a dispatcher have produced an entertaining (yes, I said entertaining) video about how to catch billing errors due to inaccurate shipment descriptions. Yawning already? Wait. The team of truckers donated 400 work hours to produce, direct and actually act in scenes relating to billing mistakes. Motor Cargo paid for the editing. The video seemed to be a success. In a test study, conducted by the company, $16.48 per bill was saved because more accurate descriptions and checking took less time to do. This was attributed to the video. Kevin Avery, employee-involvement coordinator for the 700 employee freight company was quoted saying that "It’s the first training video I’ve seen people excited to watch.

Way to go Motor Cargo. Keep on trucking."

Scotland Yard Goes Digital

London’s Metropolitan Police force is testing a remote capture system that is designed to catch the bad guys. The system that is being tested is comprised of a compact digital camera, laptop computer and a global telephone system. Combined, this system can send videos or still photographs of suspects to a central bulletin board via modem. The information can be accessed by the entire police force. Do to the cameras low-light capabilities and high quality resolution, images can be transmitted directly from the crime scene. Sherlock Homes would be proud.

Cyber Bikers Hit the Road

On the week of July 11th, two riders on specially rigged motorcycles drove from New York to Orlando, Florida on an excursion they called the "Binary Biker". The road trip merged motorcycles, art and technology. Their destination? SIGGRAPH ’98, the country’s largest art and technology conference. Bruce Wands, Chair of the Department of Computer Arts for the School of Visual Arts in Brooklyn, New York and Rick Barry, Chair of the Department of Computer Graphics and Informative Media for The Pratt Institute in New York, along with several other motorcyclists and artists made the trek.

With video cameras mounted on the motorcycles, the bikers broadcast their trip on the Internet by uploading digital images and video to a Website. Images were uploaded at the end of every day of the week long trip. According to Don Halm, of SVA (The School of Visual Arts), " The purpose of the project was to transmit culture and art to the world wide audience on the Internet. By traveling through the Amish Country, the Blue Ridge Mountains, North Carolina and Florida, the riders hoped to give web users a closer look at the country’s cultural fabric".

The trip was dedicated to Bruce Wands’ friend and SVA colleague, Dan Preda, who died in a motorcycle accident when he and Wands were on their way to the 1994 SIGGRAPH conference, also held in Orlando. Wands and Preda had planned on creating a CD-ROM of their 1994 trip. This year’s trip finalized the idea they had started four years ago. The event was sponsored by The School of Visual Arts, Pratt Institute, New York City SIGGRAPH, Hitachi Home Electronics and Budget Rent-A-Car.


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