While the weekend had its ups and downs, I suppose that overall it was productive.
On Saturday I had a bit of quiet time and finally got the opportunity to make the video on painting and finishing the “America!” word art. The process I used to do so is simple, but needs to be done in multiple steps and I thought it would be the perfect opportunity to show a variety of painting and finishing techniques in one video.
I had only made a couple of videos with the new camera, and I am still getting to know the settings and so forth, as well as learning how to do the main set up so that everyone could see what I was doing. I had the camera on my right side, just over my shoulder and after shooting the first segment and reviewing it, I noticed that because I am right handed, it would possibly be best to have the camera on my left. When I first started watching the segment, I was concerned because in the beginning all you could see was the top of my hand while I was applying the paint to the piece. But thankfully as the video progressed, I had moved so that you could actually see what I was doing.
I continued to shoot from that angle because it did give a good view of things as long as I remained conscious of where my hands were and what I was doing. But I think on the next one, I will try from the left side and see if the results aren’t a bit better, as it was a bit awkward to turn my hands to face the middle while painting and not hit the tripod or the camera. But in the end, all went well and I was pleased that you could see everything clearly – especially the part about float-shading, as I get asked to demonstrate that process quite often.
All in all, even though I am still learning I feel that I am getting a bit better. Once I got rolling I was able to just do what I know how to do and not feel too nervous. There were several times when I forgot the camera was there and I was able to proceed as if I was talking to an actual person instead of a camera.
I shot the video in seven segments to keep things as short and to the point as possible. One thing I learned in my previous videos is that people do not need to watch me go through the entire process to understand what I am trying to teach. While some don’t mind doing this, I found that it could get a bit tedious and I tried to show enough of the process to get my point across and then finish that part off camera. Hopefully this kept things from getting boring and long.
As it turned out, the entire video (once edited and spliced) was just over 35 minutes long. I was surprised at how long it was because when making it the time seemed to go by quickly. I hope that there is enough information on it so that people stay interested for its entirety.
Because of the length and the high quality settings I used, it was quite a large file (2GB) to upload to YouTube. It took me just over five hours to do so and while I was able to work on my computer during that time, I was nervous about doing other things because I didn’t want to do anything to interfere with the process. It finished uploading about 6 or 7 pm after what seemed like a long day of editing and saving.
Once I went to check it out however, I noticed that there was a fairly large black frame around it, which made the actual content quite small. After spending over an hour trying to figure out why this was so, Keith and I discovered that I had not initially saved it in a 16:9 ratio in Windows Movie Maker (the software I used to edit it) and that in order to correct the aspect ratio, I would need to re-save it properly and re-upload it to YouTube. That meant another six hours of work. :(
Needless to say, I was not pleased and felt rather stupid. But knowing that it would be much better full screen, in my mind there was no other choice. So back to square one . . .
I went to bed around midnight and the video upload was at 62%. Part of me was nervous leaving it to upload on its own, but when I awoke this morning, it was fully loaded and had a couple of views already. Good.
I wish I were smarter on the computer. While I do know a couple of things, there are so many areas in which I see room for improvement. At some point, I may add some on screen text to the video but for now it is good and my information is available in the description and the credits so that people can find me and the site if they choose to do so.
Most importantly, I do feel that the lesson itself is good. While there is a lot of information offered, I believe that I broke things down into easy steps so that even someone new will be able to understand them. I hope everyone likes it.
The video is here:
Please feel free to leave honest feedback. I really do want to offer information that is of value to others, and hope that this video accomplishes those objectives.
Thanks for looking. :)
-- Designer/Artist/Teacher. Owner of Sheila Landry Designs (http://www.sheilalandrydesigns.com) Scroll saw, wood working and painting patterns and surfaces. "Knowledge is Power"