|DSLR Video Magic: An introduction to shooting, editing and producing your own videos
Nichols Duration: 4
Weeks Cost: US$195
Watch Robin's introduction
Ever wondered how to make movies with your digital camera? Nearly all digital cameras now have a high quality HD Video feature built into them. But the process of actually making the video is always considered too hard and time consuming. After all, video editing used to be so complex, right?
In this class ROBIN NICHOLS shows you how to plan and shoot simple videos using your own camera and then how to edit them with easy-to-use (and free) video editing software.
This four-week class is carefully structured for both PC and Mac users so it really doesn't matter what camera you own, or what computer you use. In fact you'll be surprised at how easy it is to make impressive videos from your own footage...
What the Course Covers
Firstly Robin provides students with a broad overview of the medium. What is video, how it differs from still image making, and of course, its similarities. He then touches on what you can do using HD video, highlighting some of the recent TV programs and movies that have been shot using cameras like the Canon EOS 5D MkII and the EOS 7D. He discusses the impact this has had on the professional market, with journalists increasingly under pressure these days to bring home video footage, as well as still images.
Each lesson has its own movie assignment. Once complete this is easily uploaded to Robin's teaching site at www.vimeo.com, a high-quality, free video sharing website, for tutor assessment. Starting with a basic set of exercises, students are encouraged to shoot their first 'mini movie' at home. You won't need any special equipment other than a camera that shoots HD video and one of the two recommended (and free) software applications to follow up and make a simple edited sequence.
The class really is designed with the time-poor in mind. After all, the general perception is that making videos takes a long time, right? Robin will prove the opposite. If he can assemble a two-minute video from a bunch of clips shot on holiday in less than 15 minutes, so can you!
Important shooting and editing terminology is explained thoroughly, along with the complexity of file formats and, most importantly, the file codecs, the tricky compression settings that control how good, or bad, your video looks once edited and ready for burning to DVD or uploading to your favourite social website. Robin demonstrates in great detail how the two video editing tools work so you can learn a great deal while actually making your own video. He demonstrates how to import, display, sort, edit, trim and output footage your first video project. He also highlights the best video editing applications in the business so, once you have mastered the basics, you know what to look for when upgrading.
Lesson Two incorporates a range of different shooting techniques. Essentially techniques for getting the smoothest, nicest-looking video footage possible so that when you come back from a big trip, you'll really appreciate the quality of the results you end up working with.
In this session we discuss the gear you can make, or buy, to help make your video shooting results appear classier and far more professional.
Lesson Three gives you a practical overview on how to add very cool special effects like transitions, graphics, titles, captions and more, to your video show, how to source and use music as a soundtrack, and how to find and use sound effects to add a totally different dimension to the production.
We also look at how to combine still images into the video project to make a stunning video of your family, friends, travel or special occasion.
Lesson Four, the last part of the class involves a more detailed movie-making assignment incorporating some of the shooting and editing techniques learned in this, and the previous lessons. You'll also be encouraged to move up in terms of using more advanced editing software if you have the time, and interest (though this is by no means compulsory).
We also look at how to output your video creations to DVD and Blue-ray media so they can be shared by all the family as well as discussing the best output settings for sending video to YouTube, Vimeo, and other social networking outlets.
- HD Video-enabled DSLR, or compact camera with an HD feature (this means any camera that can shoot at a resolution of 1080p, 720p or 720i) .
PC or MAC, preferably with a fast Dual or Quad-Core processor, and at least 4Gb+ RAM (if you don't have a reasonably 'fast' computer, your editing experience might be a frustrating one!). Adding extra RAM is relatively inexpensive and makes a big difference to computer performance in most cases.
Plenty of spare hard drive space (i.e. 100+ Gb should be enough).
Either Windows Live Movie Maker (PC) or iMovie for MAC software (both are free)
Instructor: Robin Nichols
Like many photography teachers, I’m in the envious position of being able to combine one of my life’s passions, photography, with my job. And, even though I tend to spend way too much time in front of the computer, it remains one of the best jobs in the world...
Though born in the UK, I’ve spent the past 20 years in Sydney. I began work in Australia as a cameraman in the audio-visual business, then a freelance photographer. More recently, I worked as a contributing freelance writer for several photo-centric publications, then as a full-time magazine editor for more than eight years. For the past eight years, I’ve run my own publishing business, Better Digital Magazine, producing Australia’s best-selling specialist digital photo techniques publication: Better Digital magazine.
With this publication I’ve aggressively pursued the goal of producing clear, well-illustrated publications written in simple English and have continued to develop this plain-speaking style in other specialist magazines such as Better Photoshop Techniques and Digital PhotoART (a project-based publication with a distinct ‘scrapbooking’ style).
When I’m not travelling, writing for one of my publications or conducting photo tours and workshops, I teach digital photography and Photoshop Elements classes at Sydney University.
There’s nothing I like better than showing newcomers how to fine-tune their compositional skills and then how to get the best from the resulting digital files using a program like Photoshop Elements.
My work can be seen in Better Digital magazine, or online: