Category Archives: Fall 2020

THE JOY IS IN THE JOURNEY

For this final project, I thought it would be nice to do a simple, feel good short film. I wanted to be able to tell a story and teach a lesson all while avoiding dialogue. In its earliest form, the video was intended to be quite a bit longer, with a sort of running narrative of the main character seeming troubled, before deciding to go for a walk, and finding that his worries melt away as he experiences the world around him. The story would have climaxed with the character winding up at a house, and going to knock, before hesitating, and ultimately walking away. This version of the video never came to fruition, however, due to help constraints, time constraints, and a myriad of technological difficulties. On the last note in particular, I feel that the saying, “When it rains, it pours,” is especially accurate. The final product had to be edited in iMovie, as the Premier software would not properly export the files. Despite it all, however, I believe that I accomplished what I set out to do, alibet, on a far smaller scale. The video ends with the main character sneaking his way through the foliage of the dormant rose bushes to finish his walk, a shot that I feel sums up the video nicely, and helps make the viewer more receptive to the title shown at the end of the video: The Joy Is In The Journey.

In addition to this scene layout, I placed the main character in vintage clothing to evoke the feeling that this character has been traveling for a long time. The song that underlines the whole song, Grandpa’s Watch, By David Phillips, was also specifically chosen to evoke a sense of calm and nostalgia towards the production. Phillips use of gentle chimes and constant rhythm provide a driving force for the travel seen on screen, without being overly persistent or forceful.

Over all, though my original plans did not pan out, I am pleased that i could maintain the main core idea with mu limited resources and luck. I think that I actually prefer this shorter version, so perhaps this is simply a blessing in disguise.

F20-P5 Dolphins and a Surprise in Costa Rica

So, this is the story of my adventure swimming with the dolphins in Costa Rica when it was still legal to swim with them there in the wild. I decided to take an adventure by myself and it has been my favorite trip in my lifetime. Being a Travel Agent for many, many years I have been to many places and I still remember this trip like it was yesterday. The adventure began with an adventure. I hope you can follow along as if you were in my shoes. From Boston to Drake Bay was the first part of the adventure. I had to overnight in San Jose then off in a cessna for about 30 min, to a van through the banana fields down to the river. Then down the river for 1 1/2 hours to the ocean where we travel to Drake Bay, my home for the next 10 days. The next morning began the next adventure with a wonderful surprise at the end! There were many days we swam with the dolphins, but this was a once in a lifetime experience!

You should believe everything you hear about the dolphins they are the most magical, playful, inquisitive, and charming animals that you can ever interact with. I was so close to them while swimming, that I could reach out and touch them and they were not bothered in the least by my presence. This is only one story of my adventures swimming with the dolphins.I hope that everyone has the chance to go swim with them, you will not be disappointed! 🙂

This whole process was harder than I thought. There are things that I like and other things that I was really annoyed with. I had my story in mind. I had previously taken the Visual Literary class where I had already had a storyboard all laid out. I enjoyed looking for footage to match my experience. When trying to put this together I got the sequence but it was very long. It took a while to cut out stuff to keep this under 3min. I pieced together pictures with videos from my personal archives as well as some videos from the lodge Delfina Amore, and some free stock footage.

For the technical. I had a few issues I’m not sure if it’s just my computer, but Adobe kept locking up and then crashing. It was very frustrating and time-consuming. This was especially difficult when trying to narrate it. At times the program would not record then it would, again frustrating. I just took it out. I was also confused on how to get everything all the same size. With practice… it will come. I wish that there were more in-person instructions on how to do these.

P5 Final

Landon Coleman MUL 101

The title of my movie is called, “The Technological Error”. I was going for a PSA style video that showcases the addiction to cellphones. I think that it has an intensity that is captured well and shown thoroughly. People these days use technology heavily and it is almost essential to have a phone at this point. I wanted to basically test my workflow and see if I could do the work that I imagined. I wanted to use all the software that I had learned this year including Audition, Premiere Pro, and After Effects. I also wanted to use my camera to take the video since I had only used an iPhone to record before. Trying all these things required me to learn many things like how to videotape using a real camera, how to do certain edits in Premiere Pro, and how to create text animations in After Effects. This project proved to be a challenge and there was a learning curve for sure. Everything took longer than I planned and nothing went as I expected. My girlfriend was a huge help in this project and I want to thank her for being a great actor. As for the things that I enjoy about this project, I really loved the outcome once the music was added. I think the music is at a perfect audio level to carry the viewer through and bring a higher understanding of the characters’ emotions. I think I demonstrated how much life can revolve around something as small as a phone. My main goal is for even one person to have some extra motivation to get up and go outside and take a break from technology.

My video!

Final Project: Seasons

by Jeff Pagano

Seasons

As it turns out my final project is a bit different than I’d originally envisioned. I’d started with the idea of watching YouTube tutorials to learn some extra cool transition effects, but I ran into a detour. I swerved, but still learned a lot by putting this together.

I’ve changed the name from “Transitions” to “Seasons” because I feel that would be more understandable to the viewer. It turns out I had some interesting video on my iPhone that I could use. And I know traffic isn’t a season, but it thought I could squeeze it between Spring and Summer and the segment turned out so cool and was so much fun to put together I couldn’t leave it out.

One final note: I’m big on sound design (or so I’ve recently learned) and I found my ambient sound effects were a distraction, so I muted that channel before exporting.

Enjoy!

‘Gloves’- A Silent Film

This project ended up taking a very different turn than I had expected. Originally, I was planning on creating a serious chase scene, before providing a comedic break in the very last scene. I had to pivot a little bit after reviewing the shots from the shoot. The lack of a tripod or a good camera (other than my phone camera) made the shots much more difficult to create in the way that I had imagined. For one it was very difficult to keep a still frame without a tripod. No matter what, the angle of the camera will always shift enough to noticeable throw off the frame. For another, the rapidly encroaching darkness brought a lot of grain to several of the shots.

I had decided to plan the shoot right before the sun started to go down, so that I could have the growing darkness coincide with the escalation of events in the film. What I hadn’t anticipated, was how hard it was to correct the phone camera for low light. Even when I brought the lighting up in the darkest of shots, they appeared much more grainy. I had been expecting some grain to show up, though I didn’t think it would be quite so bad.

These difficulties resulted in a lower overall quality of the shots than I had hoped for and it led to a choppy narrative. To correct this, I decided to instead go for a comedic tone for the whole film. Editing was crucial in changing the narrative, and I was able to (hopefully) flip this project into a slightly more successful one.

Thanks for watching!

Gabriel Martinez

Alex Starke Final Project: Short Tales

For this project, I wanted to create a trailer/promo for my book of eight short Sci-Fi/Fantasy stories, Short Tales. Previously, I had done a few promos for my other book, Thor’s Travels: The Adventures of an American Jack Russell Terrier in Europe, but they were mainly slideshows of photos with a music background. For Short Tales I decided to incorporate some B-roll video, outlandish images, and some composite creations. A lot of time was spent choosing what I thought would work in respect to video and images–always fun doing though. Being as how this would be a short trailer/promo, without interviews or actors, I worked the project like a real-time story board as I progressed along. Putting it all together in Premiere Pro was a fun challenge, I had to remember a lot of what I had forgotten about the program, but once I got in a groove it all started to come back. Then there is always the music, for something like this it had to be motivating and upbeat. I spent hours listening to differing tracks, then trying them in the video until I felt I had found the right choice. Creating titles and adding a bit of animation to them took some time as well, but I enjoyed spending the time doing this aspect of the project

In the end, I feel the whole thing has come together pretty well, though I probably could have spent a lot more time on refinements. I am never totally satisfied with my creations, I feel there is always room to make them better, but one has to move on to the next thing at some point and let their baby go. The book itself is available on Amazon, in both paperback and Kindle form. Sometime in the future, I may also do an audible version as well. I also have another book in the works that I hope to have done in the next year, we’ll see, but in the meantime Denali online will be showcasing one of the stories from the work in progress, Welcome Home, Daniel, in December. I hope you’ll check it out.

Final Project

With my project, my goal was to capture how life was before and during COVID-19. In a somewhat creative style of a “documentary”. Being stuck at home for months had made me reflect on my life more. It made me realize how much freedom we had to do whatever we desired. Hanging out with friends, going to concerts, doing anything really. We did not have to bat any eye before leaving our homes. This pandemic made everyone realize how quickly everything can be taken away from us. After most enjoyable things were taken away from us, we’re left with being stuck at home. Living the same day over and over.

In the beginning part of my video, pre-COVID-19, I included various clips from my life. I made sure to keep the beginning all fun and saturated because that’s how life felt. It slowly fades to black and white to showcase the drastic change the world has taken. The world feels empty even though life is still going on. The COVID-19 lock down was very gradual, which was why I had a slow fade from bright colors to darkness. Then in March was when it went downhill, so I included some COVID-19 statistics to paint the picture more clearly. I mentioned in my video that we are essentially living the same day over and over. Which is why you see many of similar clips in the end repeating, to show that as of right now we are stuck in an endless loop of living.

My experience with this project was very pleasant. I enjoyed looking for the perfect clips to include in the beginning part of my project. Not only that, I had also enjoyed going out and recording real life footage. It was nice to get out of my house and see how everyone is doing during this pandemic. I went out on a Saturday so I got the chance to see everyone at the Saturday market. It was really interesting to see so many people bunched together wearing masks and what not. I put together the whole project in premiere pro and did voiceovers in it as well. I edited the colors of the videos in premiere as well. I thought that lining up the videos with the audio turned out really nice in the end. Overall, my experience with this project was wonderful and I am very pleased with the outcome! It will also be nice to look back at this in a moments time.

The Light

Everything I do in life, I try to do in some meaningful way. But what to consider meaningful is different for everybody. To me, for example, it is seeing beauty in simple things. They can become magical looking if you add a ray of light. I tried to share my vision in this short movie to inspire you in these dark, rainy and cold days. I caught and saved a little bit of light for you!

Now about the technical side. The last time I saw Adobe Premiere, was about 15 years ago. Of course, it has changed a lot. But it was so familiar and nice like a meeting with an old best friend you haven’t seen for many years. I didn’t have much experience with this software before, I still don’t know many tools and functions, I constantly struggle with specific English vocabulary there (you probably remember, it is not my native language, and I am still learning it), but this space rocket dashboard really feels like home to me! I only wish my computer was a bit faster to process the preview window.

For the audio part, I used a recorder Zoom H1n to record my voice. Then I applied my new skills learned this term, in Audacity, to edit the audio files. For the musical part, I used samples from a free library: https://samplefocus.com/

What I really missed during this project was a team. I dream to work with creative and enthusiastic people who can see the world like me or kind of similarly. Besides that, I have felt the lack of knowledge about camera work. My ideas were beyond my skills (of course!), and I felt sad that I don’t have a videographer friend who could teach or explain many different little things to me. But even without having the necessary knowledge, I tried to be creative. For example, I broke the rule of stability and shot all the videos without a tripod. I did it on purpose. I wanted to create a lively, breathing video. After all, we are talking about beauty (in the film), and this is what excites the heart. So there are no stable pictures. Life is generally unstable, and we should greedily enjoy every moment of beauty in it. Yes, “the roses”!

By: Lyu Gramley

(Oh, yes, last week, I got citizenship and changed the spelling of my last name!)

The Living Sunstone – Final

I decided that I was going to do my final project about a story that I wrote in 3rd grade called The Living Sunstone. I wanted to make an overview of the what the book entails to make it seem like it was a cool new book that had just been released. I was planning on using one of my mics to record my audio so I could get it crisp with no background noise but I somehow managed to lose both of them when I moved months ago. So since I didn’t have my mics, I had to use my phone mic. I hope that it doesn’t produce too terrible of audio and that listening to this is somewhat bearable.

I decided that I was going to use old pictures that I had drawn for the book back when I wrote it as well as some new drawings that I made for this video. They’re supposed to look childish and funny since that’s the type of art style I used when making the book back in the day. I wanted to make sure that during the overview, I displayed the correct images so you could get an idea of what the characters were supposed to look like.

Overall, I think that I did a decent job given my circumstances. I think it turned out okay. I would’ve really liked to have my mic to have better audio. I think I did an okay job of explaining the book to possibly entice readers to want to read the book, even though it’s not a published book nor professional in any way. I left out the main plot twist so that if anyone does “read” it, they won’t know the twist in the end!

Final Project(Rednecks and Cereal: Episode I: The Nuclear Problem)

My project was very fun and exciting to make. Despite there being countless distractions for the actors considering the actors either had children or were children. Most of my time was spent setting the scenes and getting the best lighting possible. The place that I was filming had terrible lighting for shooting, which is expected most houses aren’t built for videography. The process was difficult and I wish that the actors and actresses were more flexible and less busy with their lives. I noticed many mistakes that could’ve been fixed if I had more resources and more freedom with the actors and actresses. 

My biggest obstacle was most definitely time, time got in the way of good lighting, actors and actresses responsibilities, and my time with editing considering how many projects I have to do. When I was doing scenes it was hard because it is hard to explain what I want in some scenes, so I ended up acting out the scene in front of my cast multiple times to almost each scene right. I had to record my actors with a separate audio device to get quality audio. Overall it was a challenging experience and that is what made it fun. I had a fun time making jokes, and messing around in between scenes to counteract me ordering them around each scene. 

If I was to do this kind of project again, I would most definitely worry way more about lighting and try to get something less complicated to fit into three minutes of recording.  I would also find actors or actresses that were way freer and I would try multiple angles for each scene, maybe even have multiple cameras in each scene if possible. I did enjoy this project, even though it was a little bit stressful.

Sources: The music from the table scene I got from Adobe Stock and I am allowed to use it. I got the emergency broadcast noise from: https://freesound.org/home/ .