July 2017 - S-Films

Best Strategy for Making a Viral Video

By | Info, Tips/Techniques, Video Production | No Comments

Viral Video– We all watched Charlie bite his finger.  We’ve seen cute cats and dogs and squirrels doing cute things.  We’ve watched, laughed and cried at what we’re seeing on the internet through youtube, vimeo and facebook.  But what is the key to making a hit viral video?  How can you make a video that will go viral?  What we’ll talk about here is the viral video for corporate marketing– not just the everyday guy that wants his fifteen minutes. Viral Video Defined First off, let’s define what a viral video is.  To be “viral,” a video must be passed around.  Someone sees the video and then posts it on their page, or tweets it to their followers.  And the numbers must be high.  YouTube monetization doesn’t really make a difference until you’ve got over 25,000 followers or a million views on a video.  So let’s use those as a benchmark.  Also, a viral video is usually between 15 seconds to three minutes.  Occasionally they’ll go longer, but rarely over five minutes. Many clients come desiring…

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The Industrial Video Shoot- Have the Right Tools

By | Corporate Video Production, Info, Tips/Techniques, Video Production | No Comments

The Industrial Video shoot comes with it’s own unique challenges.  And by industrial, I’m referring to a corporate video that is manufacturing/construction based.  As with any job, having the right tools can make the job significantly easier while increasing quality.  Try painting the outside of your house with a tiny brush.  Or no brush at all.  But have the right brush– or step up to a sprayer or power roller, and the job is completely faster and with better quality.  Tools are everything. Industrial Video Tools The tool box for the industrial video begins with the camera.  Most video professionals will use the camera and the tripod, and use it for most of their shooting.  It’s like the screwdriver.  Whether the job calls for big screws, or little screws, they might try to make the single screwdriver work for everything.  Even turning around to hammer with the handle or pry when necessary.  But a quality company will have more tools in the box. Micro Cameras – GoPros and sport cameras bring new capabilities to an…

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Hot Corporate Filming

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Corporate filming in the summer!  And down here in Dallas, Texas, that means things are heating up this time of year.  For the corporate film set, this can have some major impact.  So in today’s blog, let’s talk about temperature and it’s effect on shooting industrial and corporate video. Hot Corporate Filming When shooting in a hot environment (July in Texas certainly qualifies), you can expect production to slow down.  If you’re shooting indoors, it’s not as big a deal.  But if you’re shoot is taking place outdoors, this can lead to a huge time delay.  With the heat, the crew starts to move slower.  People need more breaks.  When you schedule the shoot, make sure you allow for these delays. Logistically, try to avoid parking the base camp in unprotected hot areas.  Look for shade and areas that people can take cover from the sun. Outdoor Shoot Equipment Water – You will need plenty of water for crew, talent and client.  Nobody needs to be a hero and try to make it without properly hydrating.  Bad…

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The Corporate Video Spokesperson

By | Corporate Video Production, Seminars, Tips/Techniques, Video Production | No Comments

The Corporate Video Spokesperson In corporate video, sometimes it’s beneficial to have a person talk directly to the audience.  They look right at the lens to tell the story.  This is called being a corporate video spokesperson.  In today’s article, we talk about the skills necessary for a spokesperson on camera for your corporate video.  In decades past, most people were unaccustomed to performing in front of the camera, looking directly at the camera.  But thanks to today’s selfie culture, there’s quite a few budding “spokespeople” at every company. The Non-Professional and the Professional Actor However, this article is not limited to just non-professional actors (company employees).  The professional actor can benefit from a review of proper tips and techniques of being a spokesperson.  The non-professional actor is one defined as working for the company, has not had acting lessons, and does not work as an actor.  The professional actor is someone who has had training and routinely works as an actor in the industry. Here’s a sample of a non-professional spokesperson.  And here’s a…

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Video Production – What are Apple Boxes?

By | Corporate Video Production, Info, Tips/Techniques, Video Production | No Comments

Video Production Apple Boxes For you new to video production, or maybe you’re a corporate client on the set of a video being produced for you, you might hear the Cinematographer or someone else call for a “half apple.”  Well, he’s not asking for a previously bitten into piece of fruit.  Apple Boxes have been around in the movie and film business for almost a hundred years.  The history is a bit cloudy, but it’s reasonable to assume that early film crews saw a box sitting there and put it to good use.  And maybe it had some apples in it.  Or just looked like an apple box.  Either way, the term was adopted and stuck. Where Do You Find the Apple Boxes? Apple boxes are usually part of the grip equipment.  They are used for just about anything on the set.  A box to stand on.  To make an actor taller.  Prop a tripod leg up.  Raise a set piece.  The uses are endless through the decades. “Full Apple, please.  And Make it Texas.”…

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Shared Storage Review

Shared Storage Review Small Tree Titanium Z5

By | Reviews, Tips/Techniques, Video Production | No Comments

Here’s our shared storage review of the Small Tree Titanium Z5 portable system.  We are not quick to review products– too often, product reviews are written right after receiving the product new and before there’s been time to work through bugs and get the product up and running.  So we are writing this review of the Titanium Z5 (TZ5) after we dragged the box through a heavy duty 8 day, on-location conference where we had four computers plugged in.  An important note– looks like Small Tree has renamed this product to ZenStor.  But I’m not sure at time of this review. Our Need We are a video production company located in Dallas and Fort Worth.  We have clients who want us on site to video capture their events– conferences and seminars in many different cities.  Often, we need to edit onsite and deliver videos throughout the conference.  One client has an annual event that we do with a crew of 8– with three dedicated editors and graphic people.  In previous years, we all worked on individual…

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5 Worst Actor Auditions

By | Corporate Video Production, Seminars, Tips/Techniques, Video Production | No Comments

Actor Auditions from the Director’s POV As a director, I have sat through some really powerful actor auditions.  And we’ve discussed important things to do when auditioning, whether for a feature film, corporate video or a commercial.  But today, I’m going to mention five things you should never do when auditioning.  I could play you some pretty incredible audition videos, but I don’t think I could ever get the talent releases. 5 Worst Actor Auditions Face Covered By Sides – I have one audition tape where the whole time, the actor is covering up.  I don’t know if it was his first time, but I hope so.  An egregious error like this from someone with any kind of training is a hope killer for new work. Trouble Reading – A real painful to watch audition, is the one where the actor isn’t really prepared (hasn’t looked over the sides or it’s a blind audition) and they just can’t read words on the page.  For the Learning Disabled, I recommend that you prepare and memorize if…

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Hair and Makeup for the Corporate Film or Video

By | Corporate Video Production, Important Info for Your Corporate Video, Tips/Techniques, Video Production | One Comment

Are You Ready For Your Corporate Film Closeup? Welcome to another Sfilms165, corporate film help in 165 seconds or less.   Let’s talk about being Hair and Makeup Ready for the Camera. If you are getting ready to do a corporate film interview, representing your company, you will certainly want to look your best and be prepared.  If you don’t have the benefit of having a Professional Makeup Artist on set for your interview, you will want to take these tips into consideration. Why is Makeup Necessary for the Corporate Film? The camera and lights can sometimes wash out your skin tone.  Therefore Makeup is necessary to help you look your best, cover blemishes, take care of a shiny face, and accentuate your natural features.  In the olden days, the technology was fairly poor and the film running through the camera needed a lot of light to get a good exposure.  That’s why you see actors from the roaring twenties to almost be in white face.  Skip forward to today, and the need for makeup has certainly been reduced….

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the keyman adam baldwin acting tips

Top 3 Acting Tips – Movie Director to Actors

By | Faith Filmmaking, Seminars, Tips/Techniques, Video Production | No Comments

Acting Tips from a Movie Director There are many acting tips from actors to actors.  Not much from directors to actors.  I have directed five feature films and have worked with hundreds of actors. (My first film “The Keyman” starring Adam Baldwin is available on iTunes and Amazon Prime).  Some of them famous, many of them local to the locations and cities we shot the film in.  But there are a couple of things I wish every actor knew on the set.  Things that could save me time and money in production.  Time and money allows me to spend more on areas I need it to tell the story. Director’s Job First of all, let me tell you what my job is as film director: Guardian of the Story.  Every decision I make should go through this filer– does it help or hurt to tell the story?  Unfortunately, we are all human and all have ego.  So I can look back and see some decisions made as director were not always for the benefit of the…

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Top 5 Corporate Video Genres

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Here are the top five corporate video genres in use today.  The important word is “today.”  It’s amazing how much the industry has changed in the last couple of decades.  Because new technologies result in new video uses and corporate video genres.  Decades ago, corporate video was fairly exclusive to training and advertising.  Consequently, tomorrow’s list might be different. Top 5 Styles or Genres of Corporate Video Today Internet Marketing – Social media creates a whole new usage for corporate video.  Facebook, twitter and instagram have become important avenues for telling your corporate story.  Or highlighting a product or service, like this. Training/Education – Getting all the employees on the same page requires consistent training and education.  This is a key benefit of utilizing video in your learning department.  A video is going to say the same thing, the same way, every time.  And the words have been carefully chosen.  When a speaker is in front of the room lecturing, who knows what will be said this time over last time. Commercials – The television commercial spot is a…

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