Friday, March 21, 2014

Editing Tricks for Amateur Vacation Video #114

China 2001:  Xi'an - Tang Dynasty Show

This video is somewhat longer than the other vignettes on my trip DVD.   I wanted to show some of the spectacular "Tang Dynasty Show".

The theatre had no restrictions on amateur video, so I captured almost forty minutes of coverage from various positions.  That old Panasonic miniDV camcorder had no built-in stabilization.  I must have braced myself pretty well, because the hand-held footage is not bad!  Unfortunately my attention sometimes wandered and the framing drifts upward or downward.

Sound is remarkably good from the camcorder's built-in microphone is remarkably clear.  That was a pretty decent piece of equipment (which was pick-pocketed in Paris five months later!)

The Tang Dynasty show is a choreographed Las Vegas-style extravaganza; these highlights capture its essence.  I think the movie is of reasonable length, no one has ever left in the middle of it!

There's an editing trick at 00m:45s.  I wanted to mark the end of dinner by having the stage curtain open.  So I overlaid two copies of a still frame above the main timeline.  Then I used the editing program's "transform" tools to crop the right half from one of the stills and the left half from the other.  It takes five seconds for the halves to slide off the screen, simulating a curtain opening.
(Obviously not a perfect effect.  Your trained eyes will likely detect that people's heads slide off the screen with the curtain!)

Lessons Learned:
Always concerned that I am too much in love with my own footage.  Cut, cut, cut .....
If you don't have the video coverage thats needed to complete your masterpiece, improvise!

The friends who traveled with us wanted to re-live the entire Tang Dynasty Show.  That's only four people out of a potential "world-wide audience!  I know that anyone else would likely be so bored they could lapse into a coma.  So the trip DVD includes a "Bonus Disc" which includes every wonderful moment, un-cut and un-edited.  The bonus disc also includes the entire mashup of Air Rage with Airplane the Movie

All of the China trip vignettes are already loaded onto YouTube.  They may be viewed on one of my YouTube channels: HENBCtravel
I have three other channels that might be of interest:  HENBCvideo (miscellaneous videos that try to look professional, with particular respect for copyrights), RAGEAIR (advertises the licensing availability of my newsworthy videos), and this YouTube Channel of Shame (an odd collection of stuff, not respectful of others’ copyrights).

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