Childhood Story

For my second video assignment, I completed the “This is My Story” prompt. I decided to share a funny/crazy childhood story.

This story is inspired by a true story that happened to me when I was younger. When I am asked to tell a crazy story, I always think of this one. A lot of things happened to me when I was a kid, most of them happened because I was a rebellious kid that rarely listened to my family…

So story time: I accidentally super glued my eye shut and it wasn’t pretty. I guess you can say that it was a sticky situation! As a kid, being stuck in bed for weeks and not being able to see was the worst. But lesson learned: Don’t mess with super glue, duh!Image result for sticky situation meme

To make this video:

Before filming, I typed my story out on my Notes app. I separated the story into multiple lines so I know what to write on my flashcards. Then I used my iPhone to record the video.

After filming, I went to iMovie to start a movie project.

Then I named my project and picked my theme. I went with Playful.

I imported the video and clicked Audio to pick my background music. I used Theme Music- Simple.

I made sure to remember to add a starting and ending title!

Once I saved the video project, I uploaded it to YouTube and all done!

 

A Day in My Life

For my first video assignment, I chose to do the “60 Second Day” prompt. This was filmed on Saturday, June 15th!

I’m going to be completely honest, this week hasn’t been the greatest. I felt like I had little to zero energy. The first half of the week, I didn’t even leave the house… I mostly stayed in my room and was on the computer. But I was either working on my blog or just watching YouTube videos. I guess it was just that kind of the week.

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So when I had a somewhat productive day on Saturday, I had to film this video. I agreed to do a Zumba class in the morning with my sister. It was my first time going and I know that I’m not the most coordinated person. But to my surprise, I liked it more than I thought I would.  Then I filmed the rest of my day!

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How I made this video:

After transferring all the video clips I made throughout the day to my computer, I went to iMovie and started a Movie project.Image result for imovie

Immediately, I picked the Simple theme on iMovie and named my video project.

After that, I imported all of my video clips and put them in the right order.

I moved on to creating the opening title at the beginning of the video as well as an ending title. 

In between some of the clips, I added some transitions.

I slowed down one of the clips, using Speed – Slow 50%.

After watching the video all the way through, making sure the transitions and everything are fine, I went to Audio – Jingles to select a song for my background music. I chose to use a jingle called Peach Cobbler.

Once the background music is set up, I saved the video project and uploaded it to YouTube!

Look at, Listen to, and Analyze the Joker

I decided to analyze a film that is recognized by many except by me. Crazy to think about it but I don’t think I’ve ever fully watched the Batman movie, The Dark Knight. I know, insane! But here I am, about to analyze a scene of the Joker.

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Look:

There are many characters in the scene. The camera uses the “wipe” transition effect, where the camera glides across the room, to capture the different characters’ faces. There were also many jump cuts because multiple characters are talking.

At times, the camera seemed to follow the characters’ movements. For example, when the character at 0:36 jolted from his seat, the camera also moved upwards. Same goes for when the character sat down at 0:45, the camera slowly shifted downwards. For around twenty seconds, the Joker was speaking, and I noticed that the camera was still and focused on him.

This particular scene is set in some sort of kitchen. From the looks of it, I don’t think that there are any additional lighting, apart from the kitchen’s ceiling lights. The lighting seems to be dim all throughout, which gives it an eerie vibe since it is a scene with the Joker.Related image

Listen:

At the beginning of the clip, Joker’s laugh was very distant and soft, which became progressively louder. There seem to be many pauses in between conversations. Perhaps this was because the Joker speaks very slowly and carefully.

Sudden movements and the feeling of panic are noticeable by the sound of heavy breathing, gasps or people shuffling around. When the characters moved,  I can hear the sounds of chairs scraping against the floor. Because the Joker is quite scary, he often talks in such a low voice, almost a whisper. I can almost feel the anger in the other character’s voice as they screamed. This scene did not have any background music. In my opinion, the lack of background music actually added tension and suspense to the scene.  The video ended with a sudden slam of the door.

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Analyze:

Everything came together when I was watching and listening at the same time. At 1:03, I didn’t notice before but after the character yelled “FREAK”, the guys in the back made side commentary. Some of them just laughed while others scoffed in amusement. I also noticed that from 1:18-1:29 the camera slowly zoomed in on three characters’ faces, to focus on their reaction to what the Joker is saying.

Just a side note: I found the Joker’s pun, “let’s not blow this out of proportion” clever and funny, I chuckled. It is so crazy that the Joker can have that red smile on his face yet still give you the goosebumps!

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“Reading” Movies?

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I learned from “How to Read a Movie”, that reading a movie is basically analyzing the scene. Roger Ebert mentioned an example that he heard from film critic, John West. The example is that you can analyze films just like how football coaches study game plays. I never really thought of these two things as the same, but it makes sense!

I think that when you are watching a film,  you take each scene and think about several things:

  • What do you see?
    • Pay attention to characters and the settings of the scenes.
  • The impact
    • How does the scene affect the viewers emotionally, or how does the aesthetics of the scene on onto the movie in general.

Roger Ebert states that watching a movie with others can help with answering simple curious questions because the movie being watched in different perspectives.

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One really interesting thing that I learned is about the positioning of characters in a frame. There are such things as “positive” or “negative” tendencies in a composition. “In a two-shot, the person on the right will “seem” dominant over the person on the left… A movement to the right seems more favorable; [and not so much ]to the left.” Overall, the right is more positive and left is more negative.

From the short video of The Shining movie, I got the idea that the Zoom-Ins feature was used throughout the movie to create intensity or focus. For most of the scenes shown, the zoom-in effect amplified the feeling of suspense and mystery.

Until I watched this video, I never realized that there are so many editing techniques and what they were called or used for.

For example, here are a few of the techniques in the video and what I thought about them:

  • Jump Cuts
    • Switching to a different frame to show another character. Other times, jump cuts are used when the actor did several takes to do a certain line.
  •  Slow Motion/Montage
    • This is to make the clip more dramatic.
  • Wipe Transition
    • Help create a sense of movement along with the characters.
  • Fast Motion/ Time Compression
    • Similar to a time lapse

I think that the article and videos were all great background resources to look at as an introduction to video making.

Week 4 Daily Creates

10th of June 2019:

11th of June 2019:

12th of June 2019:

13th of June 2019:

Weekly Summary 3

The assignments for this week were all very new to me because I think I am the most unfamiliar with Sound Storytelling. I am glad that there were several examples and resources to look at.

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At the beginning of the week, I started watching Ira Glass and Jad Abumrad explain the basics of sound storytelling. Here is my summary post about it:

Ira Glass & Jad Abumrad

Moving on to the audio techniques, I watched the TED Radio Hour and some episodes from Scottlo. It was definitely interesting learning about certain things to pay attention to while listening to a story. Here my blog post where I elaborated more on what I learned:

TED Radio and Scottlo

I listened to Moon Graffiti and I thoroughly enjoyed it. Below is my blog post where I share more of my thoughts:

Moon Graffiti

I completed 4 Audio Assignments including the required Sound Effect Story assignment, which added up to 13.5 stars.

Instrumental vs Vocals: 3.5 stars

The Weekend & A Cappella!

Sound Effect Story: 4 stars

A Day in Sound Effects

Tongue Twister: 3 stars

Betty Botter and Her Bitter Butter

Ted Talk Pronunciation Practice: 3 stars

My Own Ted Talk!

I learned a lot while doing these assignments. The major thing that I learned would be how volume can make or break the audio. I spent the most time trying to balance the main audio with background music or just adjusting the volume to make it audible. I know that on one assignment I left the background music a little too loud, which was overpowering.

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The biggest struggled I had was editing the sound effects story and the music mashup. It was all new and I still learning how to work Audacity. The only complaint I have for this week is trying to encode the audio files. I was super frustrated and nervous when my computer kept on rejecting the LAME MP3 Encoder download. An error message saying that it refused to download due to it being from an outside source. But in the end, I figured a way to change the files without the LAME Encoder.

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I hope to familiarize myself more with Audacity because I only used a few of the features this week, but I want to play around with it more and see other things that I can do with the program.

I did 4 Daily Creates this week:

June 3rd –

June 4th –

June 6th –

June 8th –

I tweeted some of my classmates and made comments on their blogs. By looking at my classmates’ posts, I realized that even though some of us may have done the same prompt, all the assignments were drastically different. Each person had their own twist to it, which made it unique and personalized to their own style.

The tweets:

I commented on Kelsie’s “Sick Beat” blog post:

 

I commented on Katelyn’s “TED talk pronunciation practice” blog post:

I made a comment on Kaylie’s “mixing it up” blog post:

I made a comment​ on Kashif’s blog about the “TED and Scottlo Summary” blog post:

Lastly, I made a comment on Bree’s “Sound Effects Story” blog post:

In conclusion, this week has made me really come out of my comfort zone when it comes to making my own creative pieces. There are still so much more to learn, and although many of the things I learned from this week were challenging, I’m glad that we had this unit.

My Own Ted Talk!

For my last audio assignment, I decided to do the “Ted Talk Pronunciation Practice” prompt.

I always struggled with giving presentations. The worst part was always getting my words jumbled around. All the random pauses and stutters are what I need to improve. Thankfully with this assignment, it’s just audio, which I think is a lot easier than giving a real Ted Talk!

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This assignment took more preparation than actually making it!  To prepare, I had to watch the Ted Talk video a couple of times, the first time around took longer because I had to write down what the speaker said. Then I watched the video a second time to get a better understanding of the way the speaker was talking.

Then comes the practice. I wanted to not only say the right words but also have the right tone of voice. I read the script a few times before recording just to see how I can to put my own twist to it. I realized the Ted Talk speaker had a slideshow that went along with his speech.  Because of this, I had to remove a portion of the script so that my audio would make sense. Recording the talk took many tries. I would either have random pauses or stumble on my words. Finally, I got a take where I fully went through the whole script in one go!

How I completed this assignment:

I watched the Ted Talk video to write the script and catch details on the tone.

Like I previously mentioned, I decided to take out part of the speech. The words that I planned to skip over are highlighted in yellow.

I used the Voice Memo app on my phone to record my Ted Talk.

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I used Audacity’s Effects – Amplify feature to increase the volume of my audio.

After fixing the volume, I exported the audio.

To change the audio from a WAV file, I right-clicked on the audio, and clicked “Encode Selected Audio Files”.

I selected High-Quality Encoder and clicked Continue.

The file changed from .wav to .m4a.

After that, I uploaded my audio to SoundCloud!

Betty Botter and Her Bitter Butter

For my third audio assignment, I chose to do the “Tongue Twister” prompt. I decided on attempting to do Better Botter tongue twister!

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I have always liked saying tongue twisters. I’ve tried Wood Chuck and Peter Piper, but I’ve never heard of Betty Botter and her butter! So I tried something new.  This took a lot of trial-error, I could not say it right for the longest time! It was bitter, better, butter, Botter, BLAH. I said it twice in normal speed, then I would try to say it faster each time after that. Recording this took many deep breaths and sips of water to get the tongue twister right!

After what seems like 100 takes, I finally got one where I said it correctly. Then I started editing it, which was when I found out the audio was too quiet! When I amplified the audio to the maximum, it was still too quiet!? What?! I didn’t remember whispering… I just remember struggling! Because the audio was too soft, I decided to do another take. This time though, I used my headphones and used the microphone that is attached. I talked a bit louder than last time and made sure I was talking into the mic.

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To do this assignment was simple:

I recorded myself saying the tongue twister on my phone’s Voice Memo app.

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After that, I went to find some free music to put in the background. I found some good tunes from this site. I decided on using the song, In A Jiffy by Stephen Bennett.

I imported my voice memo as well as the background music to Audacity.

I used the Effects – Amplify feature to adjust the volume.

Here was the adjustment to make my voice memo louder.

Here is the adjustment to make the background music softer.

I wanted to make the background music gradually come to an end rather than an abrupt stop. To make this change, I clicked Effects – Fade Out.

Once that’s done, I did one last listen, to make sure everything is good, and VIOLA!

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