Video Warriors are on the Hunt

Video Communication & Production

Jim Stinson (2002, The Goodheart-Willcox Company Inc., www.goodheartwillcox.com, 350 pages, $44)

This textbook is just the ticket for teachers looking for a manual. Beautifully crafted with easy to read text, color photographs and detailed illustrations, Video Communication & Production covers everything from soup to nuts in the world of video production. Although this book is clearly designed for use in the classroom, all videographers will find that it contains an abundance of information to reinforce their knowledge.

The book’s first two chapters should get novices’ video-production pursuits up and running. The following chapters hone in on video production, covering camcorder systems and operation, lighting, audio, composition, program content, editing and more.

Although no literature can replace hands-on training, when it comes to video production, this book gives a very good overview of the production process. Rating 5

Video Warriors: Creating Hot Graphics With Cool 3D

(2000, Ultimedia International Inc., www.videowarriorstraining.com, 1 VHS tape, 40 min., $15)

If you own (or are planning to buy) Ulead’s Cool 3D software package, this video will interest you. Video Warriors offers an overview of the software, highlighting four main tutorials including Setting the Style, Animating Light, Animating Properties and Animating Objects. While the video doesn’t cover every nook and cranny of the program, it does allow beginners to cut their teeth as they create and move text and objects in a simple, step by step manner. Users would be best served to view this tape alongside your workstation, stopping during the lessons to practice individual techniques.

The information offered is not overly technical and moves fairly quickly. It also presents tips on compositing and key frame animation and includes some nice examples at the end of the tape. This video is a good complement to your hands on use of Cool 3D. Rating 4

Premiere 6 For Macintosh & Windows

Antony Bolante (2001, Peachpit Press, www.peachpit.com, 548 pages, $20)

This book claims to provide a quick and easy way to learn how to use Adobe’s popular video-editing software, Premiere 6. It further claims to be a visual quick-start guide, using images and diagrams, rather than lengthy text. The book has more pictures and illustrations than the Premiere 6 manual, but they tend to look similar – small to medium-sized in black and white. And while the book is less lengthy in text, there is certainly still a great deal of reading to do.

Make no mistake, Premiere 6 for Macintosh & Windows provides a lot of good information, and it does cover Premiere in-depth. And the $20 price tag is a great deal. However, if you want to really learn how to use this program without lengthy reading and picture deciphering, I suggest taking a hands-on class in video editing, specifically in Premiere. After you have taken a class, this book would be a useful reference guide. Rating 3

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