Newbie tale of 50th wedding anniversary video in 2 weeks.

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Newbie tale of 50th wedding anniversary video in 2 weeks.

Post by NCjim »

I'll be brief... just the facts.

Total of 4 kids in the family and I signed up to the task of creating the requsite "video show" part of the 50th wedding anniversary.

First task was to outline the topics of the movie.

I decided on....

1) My parent's parents and their families
2) The marriage
3) the Early years with young kids
4) Transistion years - kids growing up
5) Something funny
6) Poignant wrapup / conclusion

I decided that 20 mins would probably be tops for what I could hold peoples attention if I did a good job. Tried for 3 minutes per segment.

Fortunately my sister a few years ago culled my dads 8mm film down to an hour long VHS tape. An initial scan of that revealed I would be able to use at most 6-7 minutes. That means 10-12 minutes of still images which means about 120-150 pictures at 5-6 seconds each. The 8mm film content was biased towards segments 3-5 so I had a rough idea of how many pics I needed to scrape from family albums and such for each segment.

I'm an engineer and masochist so I started keeping a log of my hours.

Of coarse the music is absolutely critical. Spent 30+ hours crusing iTunes picking the songs.

Here are some songs that didn't make the cut but might work for your anniversary project

10,000 maniacs - like the weather / More than this
Paul simon - Kodachrome
Beatles - In my life
Pretenders - 2000 miles
Johnny cash - won't back down/ Ring of fire
katrina - walking on sunshine
Madonna - ray of light
Shania - Forever and always/ Gonna getcha/Your still the 1/Luve gets me everytime
Keith urban- somebody Like you
Sinatra- fly me to the moon/HAd to be you/come fly with me/U make me feel so young/way U look tonight/from this moment on
Roxy music - more than this
Kraus- When U say nothing at all

The song winners for me were...

1) Armstrong- Wonderful world (Parents of parents)
2) Sinatra - Best is yet to come (The marriage)
3) Byrds- Turn-Turn-Turn (Early years with young kids)
4) GoGos - Vacation (Transistion years - kids growing up)
5) Right said Fred - I'm too sexy (Something funny)
6) 10,00manics - These are the days (Poignant wrapup / conclusion)

In retrospect, the segment 5 music is probably the worst of the bunch and will probably not stand the test of time very well. But I was really pressed for time and it went over rather good with the particular images I had.

So here is my hour log....

30 - Music selection and capture
20 - Still Picture capture and cleanup
20 - Video capture and snatches from YouTube
15 - Segment 1 rough
8 - Segment 2 rough
8 - clean segment 1
13 - Segment 2 modest effects + picture pans/zooms
6 - Tweak seg 1/2
8 - Learn DVD burn process and test burn of segs 1+2
13 - Seg3 turn-turn-turn
10 - Seg4 gogos vacataion
4 - Seg5 I'm too sexy
11 - Seg6 - These are the days
7 - Rework seg5 (abbreviated to 90 seconds and tightened up)
10 - Various titles through segs1-6 (probably less then 20)

That totals up to around 180 HOURS for 18 MIUNTES of finished material. Ouch.

A nice round 10 HOURS per each minute. This was for a brand new newbie to Videostudio but OTOH I had a basement recording studio as a teenager and as an engineer I understand and can envision the editing process and the building of a project. I somehow crammed that 180 hours into a very short 2 weeks before the showing. That was a very stressful 2 weeks and obviously I advise you not to get yourself in that position.

There were some obvious time hogs. I had a grand scheme of recording some video segments with my kids about going back in time (and doing B&W actors in a color world) and having some kind of mini-intros into each segment. It would have involved some green screening and some special effects but that got booted due to the time crunch. I ended up snatching some ed sullivan material from youtube and twisting it into tiny intros for the first 3 segments. Changed Ed's "So ladies and Gentlemen...The Beatles!" into "So ladies and Gentlemen...The Smiths!" . Changing that one word took about 4-5 hours and 5 overlaying sound filters/effects to make my voice approximate Ed's.

After all the work I had put in I wasn't about to let the grand premiere have any technical faults. Had at least two of EVERYTHING. Multiple disc copies, multiple DVD players, backup DV tape, two high res video projectors, backup sound system in case DJ setup was bogus. Checked out banquest room beforehand and checked screen (was a really nice 16 footer) and lighting issues.

Traveled to parents home for Thanksgiving and anniversary party was on following Saturday. Other kids flew in. Gave a short preview to one sister to keep the other brother/sister from bugging me to see it. She got quite emotional and just told the others to hold their concerns.

So the time comes after the special dinner for the showing amongst approx 150 people or so. Start it up and head for the back of the room praying for no technical issues. The retro Ed Sullivan intro puts them on their heels right from the start. A lot of clapping, shouts, and gasps during the whole showing. A very nice standing O at the end. A lot of laughing and handshakes afterwards. Was somewhat surprised by how many people appreciated and recognized the effort that went into the timing of pictures to the music. Not too bad for the first production.

6+ months later I'm now in process of a making a 2-fold 6-panel package to send out to attendees. Will have the "classic" version plus my original vision with mini-movies. Also plan to have a narrated version with parents reminiscing as the video goes by.

Here's a little snippet of seg3 and some seg4.

Put it on Youtube. The A/V is In sync but the Utube compression artfacts make it darker and more pixalated. It gets the point across though.

Note: Veoh has had some real bandwidth issues. I've seen stops and pauses to the point that A/V sync is out of whack.

Sure would be nice if Ulead invested in a little bandwidth for this registered users group and had a native place for some hi-res user videos. With some reasonable limits on a per person, and the fact that traffic won't be like youtube, it wouldn't cost much.
Last edited by NCjim on Sun Jun 10, 2007 7:05 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Post by sjj1805 »

Absolutely brilliant, I loved every minute of it.
Nice mix of super 8 film, still photographs, music, pan and zoom, synchronisation of screen to music.

I have moved your post over to the members samples forum, we don't want this to get lost as new posts push it down the VideoStudio threads.

Thank you for also sharing with us the breakdown of the time involved in the various stages of production, imagine giving this project to a professional who charged by the hour!

Well done.

Post by GraemeJ »

WOW....absolutely brilliant, well done :shock: :o :D

Post by NCjim »

Thanks for the kind words.

I never used VEOH before and I went to VEOH a little bit ago and they obviously have some bandwidth issues. Video was practically unwatchable with skips, pauses, and horrible synchronization. Will probably put a 320x160 on Utube.

Here it is.