Monday, October 2, 2006

Has it Been That Long Since My Last Blog??

One week after our multimedia summit, and I'm still trying to figure everything out.

Dave returned the 120GB recordable drive today (it wouldn't record), and we're looking into getting a different hard drive to record on. I had hoped that I'd be shooting in large format by this time, but sadly, this setback is just another stumbling block as I try to manage shooting video, before I forget all that was discussed at the 3-day boot camp in Allentown.

My reaction now is to delay my attempt to shoot my dream project. There are so many things going on in Baltimore. The city center is expanding. The large vacant hotel building near the Basilica is being demolished. The city plans on vacating and razing hundreds of vacant and abandoned row homes and structures in order to extend the revitalization of the city so that what's been gained won't be for naught with good neighborhoods bordering decaying communities.

Yet I'm still trying to work this out and get shooting.

Oh well.... I'm stoked about what we learned in the Allentown boot camp. Brian Storm was an incredible speaker, and he chatted about merging multiple formats to create one seamless and new style of clip. Storm (his website is prefaced that newspapers are dinosaurs; they're on the endangered species list. People are getting their information on the web, and they don't believe what the media force-feeds them, for the most part. Even local TV is being shredded by lack of interest. The growth is in the web, and the interest is still in videos and images. Take a look at Myspace, or Youtube. Even the most quirky vids can generate millions of hits. So, how will journalists feed this appetite?

Storm says we should give 'em what they want. But shooting stills or standard video just won't cut it. Producing a story may. Feel free to shoot images, but enhance the experience by capturing good audio and video, and 1/10th of your work is done. The other 9/10ths is completed in post production, since he estimates that 10 minutes of work are needed for every minute of work recorded, whether it's video or audio. Wow. Just a hint, start being more economical, instead of thinking that "it's only disk space."

He suggests that we have a part of our sites to shed light on our creativity. We need someplace to sing. We must have one corner where we can do what we want, without getting an approving editor's blessing, in which we can let our creative juices flow. Only then can we grow and learn. We have to take ownership of our space and of our own projects. Having this in place will let us experiment and develop a style in this generally-uncharted environment.

With regards to the amount of working sites on the web, very few people have tapped into the new style. Hell, we don't even know what to call ourselves. Even the structure of news-gathering and contest submissions haven't caught up. So many traditional journalists are thinking old-school. It's going to be like NPR meets VH-1. Photography has been around for 150 years. Moving film has been captured since the turn of the century, to the 1900's. Newspapers have churned out editions for 200 years. And this is a nation on ADD (attention deficit). Makes sense to shake things up a bit, huh?

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