Critique Please – ASD – Confused

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    • #45746

      This is way out of my comfort zone, but it is a project my daughter has been asking me to do for some time now. This is just an intro.

      I’m pretty thick skinned, so any critique will be appreciated, good or bad. Thanks in advance.


    • #189573

      Audio. Instead of speaking at about 10 feet from the mic. Either speak directly into the camera mic or use a lapel or handheld mic.

      You don’t HAVE to record the narration directly to the tape. When I film weddings, I connect a lapel mic to a digital recorder. Just a standard Olympus WS-100 dictation device then usb it to the computer and synch it up in the editing software.

    • #189574

      Thanks EVG, I’d not thought of an external recorder.

    • #189575


      Event’s got your number. Audio’s the main killer. You’re choices are; put a lavalier (lapel) mic on the talent, use a support and ‘boom’ the talent (preferably with the mic off camera) or do an ADR track after the shoot. The first two you can do without much trouble in the field or studio. The third is trickier and you’ll have to use the same model mic used in the shoot and recall the talent to record the ADR track.

      Event’s right in that you don’t have to record your narration directly to the tape. You can use a separate recorder or depending on the audio software available, record directly to the computer in wav, aiff, mp3, etc. Make sure whether you’re recording natsound, field audio, narration or ADR that you use mic foamy’s, fuzzy muffs, pop stoppers and do it in as quiet a space as possible. Right now, the best way to salvage your audio is to record ADR tracks and redo your narration track using the previously suggested means.

      Video wise, I could have lived without all of the ‘whizzy’ text transmissions in your opening titles. That stuff works for kids only programs, but I figure you’re pitching this to adults about kids. Pick one that’s not too annoying and go with that. Also, give enough time for one title to fade down before fading up the next. The word ‘confused’ was plainly overlapped by the episode title.

      When you shoot/edit training and info videos don’t hold on a single shot too long. You have to keep the cuts moving at a good pace because these types of videos no matter what the subject matter can get boring quickly. That shot in the intro with the two women talking was way too long. I got it they were there supervising their children but holding for six-seven seconds without any pertinent action is too long. When you show someone doing something like typing or using a laptop, don’t forget to go in for a closeup of what their typing/searching for. Your narration gives the impression their doing something pertinent to the film so a 2-3 second CU of what’s being typed or what’s on the computer screen will bring the viewer along.

      Don’t forget to white balance for each new scene. Unless the paper on the Interim Report is actually yellow-green, you need to white balance. It wouldn’t have killed you to put some light on it instead of going with available light.

      Show the discussion topics prior to introducing talent/experts. Avoid long lists of topics like the 9 you had in the intro. Figure out a way to group them in tighter ‘bundles’ so you won’t lose the viewer with what they’ll perceive as a ‘ton o’ topics’. You can hit them with the more in-depth list when you discuss the ‘main topics’ as a related group. Once you’ve ready to focus on topic points, then roll out your talent/experts. Mentioning Lorraine verbally is good, but when she comes up as a ‘talking head’ put her full name and title onscreen as a secondary intro. That reinforces her presence to the viewer and takes away any lingering ‘who is this?’ in their minds.

      Oh, and tighten the cut introing Lorraine as we can see both the light fading up and her nervously looking offscreen. It wouldn’t hurt to let her introduce herself when she starts up and as a director try to get you’re talent to loosen up. The ‘deer in the headlights’ look doesn’t inspire viewer confidence in the talent. And, the full length shot is good for 2-3 seconds but afterwards a pop-in to a MS will allow the viewer to clearly see your talent and still leave enough room for your graphics.

      I wasn’t too fond of the composites with Lorraine and the ‘virtual people’. The WS with her on the chair was too wide MS would have been better and you should have had her ‘interact’ with them more. Switching back and forth from the super WS to the close-up of didn’t ‘sell’ and looked ‘gimmicky’. Also, you used hard cuts and fades between Lorrain’s takes, again pick one (fade or takes) and stick with that. There was also a cut that was so short I didn’t know what was going on.

      Now, I didn’t hate it. As a producer, I would say its somewhere between an assemble edit and a rough. No way would I stamp that as final product. Clean up the audio, put some more thought into your basic edits and your basic shooting when you shoot the next episode and I believe you’ll have a fine program.

    • #189576

      Many thanks Composite, your comments are appreciated.

      I take your point about white balance, but the report papers are actually Yellow! And I now realise that the audio is not good. πŸ™

      Thanks for the pointers on the shots sizes, I’ll be a lot more careful with the next one. Again, many thanks for taking the time.

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