Friday, March 4, 2011

Special Olympics and Making Videos

I am busy uploading new videos, but while I wait I thought I'd talk about other things.

Firstly, the Louisiana Special Olympics office has been flooded with wonderful scarves. The goal is 1400.  922 received is the last count I saw. I'm sure they will have more when they open those boxes. You can see a photo on their Facebook page.

They received scarves from over 135 cities in 37 states and some from Canada as well. Friday was the last official mailing day for that office, and on Monday  they received 53 packages containing 237 scarves. Go, crocheters! Everyone must have waited to send their scarves at the last minute. Some of these may also have been passed on from other SO offices who received more than needed.

I don't know about other offices, but when I've contacted the Louisiana office, I've received a very prompt reply with the information I asked for. I hope they meet their goal and are able to post photos of the sweet smiling faces wearing the scarves. I'm sure there are privacy issues so not sure if that is allowed.

How about a quick glimpse into the world of making videos at the Petits.

First I have to decide on a topic, the yarn, the hook and anything else I need. Everything has to be compact because my space is limited to the length of my arm. LOL

I sit in the black chair with the video camera right in front of me. My arm has to go between the video camera and the "green screen" which is a cloth that came with the program I'm using.

When you hear a clicking sound in the video that is because my hook hit the camera. heh

I am thinking of getting a table tripod at some point, but not really sure if that will help or not really.

In any case, I record, view, back up, re-record and so on, until I've accomplished more or less what I set out to do.

Then I bring the whole setup into the living room and start Pinnacle Studio 12, which is the program I use to edit the video. Great program. I upload the video to my computer using the "capture" function. You know - give it a name, create a working project file etc. The video plays as it is being captured, so a 40 minute video would take approximately 40 minutes to upload.

When the upload is complete, I then start editing it. That take hours and hours because I am still learning. :-) I put the little opening and closing sequence and add the titles before each section if needed, any fade ins and outs necessary. That's all really just personal preference and not actually NEEDED. Sometimes there is a small flub. Like I call a single crochet a chain. I can't change that so I either have to live with it or do it over. In some cases the offending piece can be deleted or silenced, depending on how much leeway I have. I try to leave a bit of "blank space" between sections so I can have that leeway, but if I'm talking and mess up, well, that's me. LOL

I have found I really enjoy teaching by video. I'd love to have a real "studio" where I could put the camera behind me focused on my work and a monitor in front so I could see what you see. Sometimes I get involved in the process of crocheting the piece and forget to stay in frame. I'm getting better at it though. :-)

After the project is edited, then I have to "make the movie". This puts it into mp4 format so I can upload it to YouTube. Making the movie takes a good while.

Once that is done, I have to upload it to YouTube. This takes I guess about an hour for the videos I've done so far because I now do it in high def. I think they put a little HD by the ones that are in HD. I think the quality is much better on those so I'm willing to take the extra time with them. After uploading, YouTube processes them, which takes another half hour or so.

You think I'm done now, don't you? Well, almost. If there is a small flub that requires additional explanation, I can add a note using the YouTube tools. I've only done that a couple times, but I do need to go through the last videos and see if there is anything that needs fixin'. If YOU find something I miss, please do let me know so I can fix it asap if it's possible to fix.

Part 1 of the upcoming 4 part series of videos will include More Crochet Basics. You will see things like changing color, reverse single crochet, post stitches, extended double crochet, extended triple crochet and the X stitch on this part.

Part 2 will have filet crochet, how to work in a space, how to work between stitches, front loop and back loop of stitches, and front and back of work.

Part 3 will show height of different stitches and teach the extended stitches.

Part 4 will have increase and decrease stitches and more.

That's all for now.

Happy crocheting!