Wednesday, February 19, 2014

HVS Top 5 (plus 1) Movies whose Special Effects Changed Cinema

HVS Top 5 (plus 1) Movies whose Special Effects Changed Cinema

Since we're talking about editing, special effects and post production (stuff that's done to film on computers after shooting) here is a list of movies that changed our world as we sat in the theater:

Star Wars - The granddaddy of modern special effects. Special cameras and computers made miniature replicas, actors and backgrounds blend together into composites so believable we thought we were there . Star Wars gave birth to every space blockbuster we've seen since.

Superman - Seeing superheroes fly these days is run-of-the-mill. But before Superman you would only see them dive out of a window and then land somewhere. The special camera lenses and placement involved in making Superman took us with him high above the skyscrapers of Metropolis.

Jurassic Park - Never before had we been so close to living, breathing, textured beasts such as this. We could almost smell their breath (and it wasn't that pleasant). The dinosaurs were truly the star and movie creatures were never the same.

Toy Story - Toy Story proved that a feature-length computer generated film could be popular. In fact it won a place in the top 100 highest grossing films of all time and served as a template for all animated movies to follow.

The Matrix - "Bullet time" is so popular and effective it has almost become a cliché for martial arts movies. This effect combines slow motion with 360 degree camera shots that makes everyone feel like a ninja.

Avatar - Avatar has pretty much sealed the sum of special effects to this point. It made people capable of just about anything.

At HVS Video Editing is Available to Everyone

Julia had been playing piano from ages seven to seventeen - or in piano years from Chopsticks to Chopin - and was now graduating and continuing on to music school. Her mother, who had fastidiously recorded Julia's annual recitals all those years had a great idea: Why not combine them all? She gathered all her tapes and had them put in chronological order. Then she added the name of each composition as it began. Finally, since the sound level varied from piece to piece, she evened it out a bit. In the end what a story this special video told! Not only did it document the growth of Julia's piano skills but her growth from a cute and shy beginner to a beautiful and expressive artist.

Jim inherited the auto dealership from his dad. The first thing he did was expand. Soon he outgrew that and expanded some more. Now he owned the whole block. When his dad's ninetieth birthday celebration came around Jim knew what to do. There were photos from the initial groundbreaking, film from the first television commercial, and other memorabilia on various media. Jim put it all together as a video on a DVD and gave his dad the best birthday present a son could give his father. Plus, the video now plays in the waiting room and part of it is used on the company website.

One of the most valuable services we provide for our customers is both personal and professional
editing. Do you have various family videos that you want to turn into a project? Are you a business owner with video of your factory or showroom that, with a little polish, would make a good promotional piece? If you have the clips we have the expertise to work with them. Now editing can be easy, affordable, and available to everyone.

So, what really is editing? In it's simplest definition video editing is arranging and enhancing your video clips to portray a story or message. Let's say you decide that it would be a really cool gift to combine your three kids' wedding into a ten minute video. So you start thinking about it and your creativity starts bubbling: "What if I have all three limos pull up one after the other?" you excitedly think. Or, "Wouldn't it be a hoot to have all the kids say 'I do' at the same time?" But these clips are on six different tapes shot five years apart. Not a problem! Selecting and combining these clips sequentially is called......editing. And instead of six tapes scattered to the four winds, you have one beautiful video.

"Why should I edit?" you ask, "I already have the videos." We say: If you enjoy your videos then editing will make them even better:

Editing allows you to tell a story. People are drawn to stories. When you edit you are creating something more interesting than just random video clips.

Editing sustains interest. It will make your videos concise and have a point. For example, "Our Family at the Lake" - showing quick shots of your family on the beach complete with beach music is much more enjoyable than hours of raw video footage.

Editing is fun and creative. It's a way for you to put your spin and creativity on something you love.
You've probably watched enough television and movies in your life to know what editing techniques are effective even if you don't know what they're called. Here are just a few simple editing techniques that can make your videos even better:
  • Transitions - This may sound highfalutin' but it's not. Have you ever seen a photo montage with images that fade out or fade in? Or a video that slowly goes to black at the end? Those are simple transitions you can put on your video.
  • Color correction - Was your wedding shot in a dark church? Is your wedding dress more blue than white? Color correction is an easy way to address many issues like this.
  • Titles - Does your daughter have a sports video that needs vital information like her position, number, weight, GPA, etc. on it? Does your son want composers' names on his musical recital video? Putting titles in your videos is no sweat.
  • Music - Nothing is more effective than appropriate music on your videos.
  • Voiceover - Have you ever seen a 50th wedding anniversary photo keepsake with the husband reading a poem he wrote while they were courting? We have. Not a dry eye in the house.
  • Effects - Yes, even special effects like slow motion, fast motion, or blur are relatively simple these days.
When it comes to editing we say: Whatever you can imagine we can most likely achieve. When you bring your editing project to us here's a very basic map:

Removing footage you don't want
It may sound simple but the first step is just getting rid of video that's not essential to your story.

Finding and choosing what you do want
This is the beginning of the fun - finding the filet mignon of your project.

Telling a story
This is the most crucial part of your editing and the reason you're doing it. And we're here to help you every step of the way.

Adding the "cool" stuff
This is the icing on the cake. Music, effects, titles, etc. are fun and put the finishing touch on.

Whether you are a business owner or have personal videos call us today. Let's team up and create something special from your video clips. Call us today to schedule an editing consultation and session!

Call to make an appointment today!

FamilyTIME Videos ™
Make your child the star of his or her own video! Home Video Studio will create a FamilyTIME™ Video that features the video highlights that you select of "your star"! Perhaps it's a "Baby's First Year" video, a "Sweet 16" video, or even a "How We Spent Our Summer Vacation" video. Home Video Studio will add music, titles, special effects, and produce a three- to five-minute professional video for you.

FamilyTIME™ Videos make wonderful gifts for long distance friends and family, siblings, and as keepsakes to store for your children when they grow up. You could even make a FamilyTIME" Video for yourself and you can be the star! 

Friday, February 7, 2014

HVS Top Five Films for a Sentimental Journey

HVS Top Five Films for a Sentimental Journey
All Aboard! What makes for a sentimental movie? Usually emotions we all share, maybe some losses we've all experienced, always about relationships, and sometimes a few tears. Here are our top five picks. Settle under a blanket and keep a box of tissues handy (guys too).

First stop - Sleepless in Seattle. This movie is ingeniously sentimental because it pays homage to another sentimental classic An Affair to Remember. It has everything - a lonely widower, a kid, a cute girl, and plenty of love's "near misses" that make you wonder if they'll ever get together.

No sentimental journey is complete without a stop in mother/daughter-ville. The inherent love/hate relationship is at it's best here in Terms of Endearment when portrayed by Shirley MacLaine and Debra Winger. Add in Jack Nicholson for some laughs and you have a funny, tenderhearted movie.

Million Dollar Baby. This is a great one with a gruff (but not really) old man, a talented and driven girl, their unlikely relationship, boxing rings and a memorable hospital scene.

Nothing pulls our sentimental heartstrings like a movie about best friends. Next stop Beaches, where, as the wind beneath each others' wings, CC and Hillary grew to be the "bestest besties" ever.

Last stop and our sentimental destination. The Notebook - a story of love that bears all, believes all, hopes all and endures all. Isn't that what love is?