Wait! Don’t shoot!

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It’s over, like, really, really, over!

From time to time I check out a forum for video pros, The Creative Cow. The COW stands for “creative communities of the world”. Here, the best and brightest in the video production world weigh in on issues, interests and techniques, as well as new products and tutorials. It’s been a bit slow on the video news end for my tastes so I haven’t been around to check up on any new doings.

Last night, I thought I would stop by and the first post was a hysterical “It’s Over”. This veteran video producer was just dumped by one of his long term clients because he thought it looked so easy, why not shoot and edit his own stuff?

Boy, the sky was falling last night. The thread was at the quarter mile length when I dozed off. Some of the more level headed pros went to great lengths to assuage his fears but to no avail. “It’s over, I knew it was coming”.

Someone else shared how he walked by his neighbor’s garage and saw a bunch of teen aged kids in there standing in front of a green screen shooting a commercial with iPhones for a school project. An hour later he was at the pawn shop cashing out.

Now it should be noted that he never saw the finished product, didn’t stop to think that the audio might have sucked worse than their Mom’s Hoover (by the way, audio is 70% of the visual experience) and that their editing chops might be at the kindergarten level. No time for that, he was gonna bail. Home Depot had an opening.

The main issue is, video production equipment has been pretty much dumbed down over the last five years thanks to Apple and Adobe. It’s cheap, easy and accessible. Today, you can pretty much blindfold yourself and aim in the opposite direction and still get the shot.

Slight exaggeration but you get the point. This is a bone of contention with pros who get their timbers shivered with each new update in their industry. These video companies are trying to attract new players and who can blame them.

Time was, when you could get a functional set up for about 200 grand. Not including service agreements. Thank you Avid. Now we’re talking spare change compared to those days. Anyone can get in and they are. I’ve been noticing this trend for quite a while now and had clients tell me they’ll take it from here.

Boy, the money I made bringing Frankenstein back to life. “But it looked so easy”‘. I’m afraid there’s more to it than point and shoot.

There’s intangibles like experience, interpersonal skills, talent, artistry, empathy, direction and the kicker, service. Yeah, service. These projects never go as planned and most times you’ll have to glue your sleep deprived ass to your editing chair and lean in for the long haul.

You can put a lot of linear images together, but without the right intentional decision making, which is called editing, or post production, you may as well use Powerpoint.

To further the point, we all have keyboards, have you ever written a novel? Someone can hand you a hammer and you can either smash your thumb or build a house. Your call.

If there are any novices out there who think video production is easy, give me a call, I’ll let you borrow a lens cover, it’ll most likely improve your quality.

If you have any questions or need personal advice, please feel free to view my work here.

Bob O’Hearn

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Please note: I welcome comments that are offensive, illogical or off-topic from readers in all states of consciousness.

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