Photo Montage Videos
1. Decide which and how many photos you want to use. Photos
are on screen for an average of 5 seconds,
or 12 photos per minute
(this is flexible, depending on how you want you video to look)
2. After determining the order of your
photographs, use small
post-it notes on the back to number them. Writing on the backs
of photos can damage the fronts of other
you stack them. If you accidentally leave out a photo,
you can use letter designations (i.e. 42B).
appropriate music from your music collection.
We can use cassettes, CDs or LPs.
4. Write down the numbers for which photos go
with which songs
(i.e. 1 -26 with "Unforgettable", 27-53 with "It Had To Be You", etc.)
5. Decide on the wording for a title screen
and an end screen
(i.e. "John's 50th Birthday" and "Happy Birthday, John. We love you!)
6. Call us to schedule an appointment
to bring in your materials.
(a deposit for the cost of the scanning will be collected at that time)
7. We will call you to schedule
another appointment when your video
is ready to view. You may watch the video in our office, and if any
changes need to be made,
you can let us know at that time.
8. Take home your video knowing that it will be the hit of the event!
If you decide not to use our professional videography services
(and for your child's birthday party, that's perfectly understandable),
are some tips for doing your own videotaping:
2. Whenever possible, use a tripod. Even an inexpensive tripod from
Best Buy will make your video look better than using shaky hands.
3. When shooting indoors, there's almost no such thing as too
light. Turn on as many lights as you can without
affecting the mood of whatever it is that you are taping.
4. Never videotape
someone with a bright light behind them.
This will make their face so dark that you can't see them.
Using a window on a bright sunny
day as a backdrop looks
good to your eye, but the camera can't adjust for it.
5. If you want the date and time to appear in your
camera can probably do this through the menu controls. But
once the date and time are on the tape, there is no way
remove them. Turn the date and time off before you start
videotaping if you don't want to see them in your picture.
If your camera has a white balance control, you should use it.
Usually, there is a setting for indoors and a setting for outdoors.
makes a big difference in getting colors to look correct.
7. If you have a mini-dv camcorder, try to avoid recording
in LP mode.
If you do, you will find it difficult to play the
tape on any other camcorder. Your current camcorder
will not last forever, and
you may lose the ability
to watch your tape in the future.
8. The microphone on your camcorder needs to be a close
to the sound
source as possible. There is no "zoom"
for the microphone on the camcorder.
9. The only sounds that can be diminished
from a videotape
are steady sounds like a fan or air conditioner. Even these
cannot be removed entirely. Sounds such as something
dropped or other people talking cannot be removed.
10. All tapes have some system to prevent accidental erasure.
the spine of all VHS tapes have a small plastic tab
that should be popped out when you are done recording onto
that tape. This
will prevent your VCR from recording over
your footage should you accidentally put it in and press "record".
If you are using clips from a number of tapes, cue them up
on your home VCR or camcorder before bringing them to our studio.
If you are using several clips from a single tape, watch the tape
and indicate the start and end time of each clip. To do this
VHS or 8mm tape, you will need to rewind the tape to the very
beginning, and make sure the counter is set to 00:00:00.
also need a VCR with a minutes and seconds counter.
3. It helps to write down the first and last words that are
during a clip, or to indicate some sort of visual cues so
that the editor knows when to start and stop the clip (and to
remember, if you stay and work with the editor).
4. If you have a script for a voice over, make sure that you
have related visual
images for each line or paragraph
of the script. If you don't have appropriate visual material,
consider rewriting that part of
5. Call us to set up a work schedule. Usually, the first appointment
is for dropping off the materials so the
editor has time to digitize
the tapes and scan any photos. If there is a voice over to be recorded,
this is usually done before
the video is edited, since the video
needs to synchronize to the timing of the person speaking.
6. Allow more time than you think
for editing. We do everything
we can to keep your budget under control, but rarely can a
project be completed in one hour,
no matter how short.