Starbucks – How Many Coffees
BUCKHEAD, Ga. (July 4th, 2014) – Thought it would be easy to have a video conversation with Starbucks at a busy location. Not so. So when trying to find out how many coffees were made at the Lenox Mall location, I got some interesting results.
A quick video again made on the iPhone. This video incorporates a number of previous features already used in the video editing program Cute Cut. I also experimented with music creation software to create the musical score.
This video is part of a series of sample video tests produced to explore video editing on the iPhone. The general idea is to leave the computer, laptop, and even the iPad at home and use the small format of the iPhone to generate video productions.
When I started this project the first problem was trying to find an iPhone video application which made the job easier, and not harder. It turned out a lot of the first choices didn’t even offer a two video track solution for editing, except one – Cute cut. Some applications even want to “import” your clips completely into their own directory, doubling the storage space requirements of your system. In addition, some applications didn’t export to the Camera Roll, resulting in an inefficient workflow of sharing, emailing, or accessing using a third party iOS device file access utility to get to the files directory.
Cute cut so far has been able to push out the videos. It has the two video tracks you need to BRoll between segments, and allows plenty of non-video tracks for photos, audio, text, audio, and something they call a “write on” track with is basically like a little photo editor where you create a graphical image using basic drawing tools.
There is a learning curve to figure out how to do things on it, and you will want to use a stylus when editing. Unless you have really small fingers.
As I grow in developing these short video samples, which are hopefully somewhat interesting in themselves, I discuss various issues or techniques I used for that particular video under these Production Notes.
Some of the issues I encountered with this video, was music or score content utilization.
As with any video, your music score plays a lot in setting the mood and overall tone of the video. However, you can’t just work with pre-recorded music in your productions – without running into copyright issues. And rightly so. Many hours are spent by artists developing music, and they should be protected, compensated and given credit for their work. At the very least, they should be contacted first before using their material in a production.
In addition, using pre-recorded video in postings on Youtube, Vimeo and Facebook, copyright issues will arise if permissions were not granted. Ways around this are to use royalty free music, such as those basic audio resources available inside Cute Cut, or to compose and create the music yourself.
In my video, and after realizing the somewhat limited, but at least available built in music and sound effects inside Cute Cut, I chose to create my own music score and effects.
Fortunately I ran into a music artist at the Apple Store, Jerome McKinzie, who was able to point in the the right direction when considering an iPhone application for music generation.
McKinzie suggested Garage Band, an iPhone, iPad and iOS application which is free, and can be upgraded to the full version for around $5.00.
Just because I now had a very powerful applicaiton to create music for my video, that doesn’t necessarily mean my production needs were now done. I now had to actually become a music maker as well as learn another software application – Garage Band.
Since I have created music before on electronic keyboards, I was blow out of the water with the performance of Garage Band. It had all the instruments you could need to at least start generating music scores for your production. There were automated sequences of music you can generate using Garage Band, or you can go full manual and create the music yourself picking from a number of instruments ranging from strings to drums.
One particular issue I had to overcome and work through was getting my ultimately generated music prepared using Garage Band into my entirely separate application, Cute Cut production.
On my first shot in producing music with Garage Band, I didn’t see an “Export to Camera Roll” option. I did, however, work my way through the export, and share options to ultimately send the music segment to Cute Cut using the “Open with” option from Garage Band.
I first had to “render” the music score, save it inside Garage Band, and then “share” the clip from there.
I then went back into Cute Cut, opened up a music track, and found the recording in an area called “shared library’ using a button at the bottom of screen.
Outside of the interesting issues encountered in my latest video as far as the Starbucks subject matter is concerned above, this production established some new ground when exploring video editing on the iPhone.
One new feature I used was the video rate or speed feature. Okay, the results were so so, but at least it was available. I believe the video was set to play at 25 percent, or at 1/4 speed. It basically looks like a video going frame to frame. At least the audio kept up with the the slow mo, or rather stutter mode effect. Okay, I’m not going to expect the “Matrix Bullet” but at least it was there to explore and use as appropriate.
The key skills developed from this exercise were the ability to generate music for the Cute Cut video production. Again, all production had to be done using only the iPhone. That being said, even though there was a great application available, Garage Band, to create the music, the challenge of creating the music on the small iPhone platform was the next hurdle to jump over.
One thing that is becoming more apparent, I’m using my stylus more and more while editing on the iPhone. The small adjustments to the timeline, miniature menu items, all take a toll after an hour or so “missing” the button with your figure. Double efforts add up, so lets get it right with the first attempt. The use of a sylus helps with this.
You can even use it for the rest of your swiping and touch pad needs. I even started u sing it on my MacBook’s touch pad. Interesting experience, try it.
To recap, Cute Cut does offer some basic built in music and sound fx material to use in a pinch. But they are ultimately very generic, and may take away from the hard work and effort used in creating a video.
Having the basic music tools inside Cute Cut is ultimately a great feature, however, they are very minimal and serve only aa quick and dirty purposed solution.
To add to the production quality of the video, your really going to have to hunker down and start creating your own music.
Devices used: iPhone 5s
Software: Cute Cut, Garage Band
I have a couple of other projects I’ve already recorded still in the to be processed bin. One issue I look forward to tackling is introducing video files that were created outside of my iPhone. That way, I can fiddle with the material in traffic, while goping up an escalator, or while sipping coffee.
Lastly, I’ll be exploring various apps which will create project files which will exportable to the computer version of the software, if applicable. That way, I can get general work done on the project on either the iPhone or on the clunky laptop.