Tag Archives: Video

Interactive: Des Moines Register’s game like feature story

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The Des Moines Register recently produced an interactive feature called Harvest of Change. Designed with Oculus Rift in mind, the newspaper partnered with Gannet Digital to “to tell the story of an Iowa farm family using emerging virtual reality technology and 360-degree video.

The first of this five part series makes the user explore the farm to find icons that tell fragments of the story and unlock extras through special objects hidden in the scenario.

It wasn’t a thrilling experience for me, and though they add a 360º video to download, its 1.2 gb are taking too long.

Update: After downloading the file, we can watch a 360º video intro that will lead us to the farm setting and instead of pics  – like we have in the Des Moines Register website – we have videos. The navigation is a bit buggy though, and it sent me back to the intro more than once.

Probably the full series will be worth it, and this is definitely a great effort to bring virtual reality into news games and storytelling. But after unlocking all the photos and going through all the icons I can’t remember the story.

Was I too focused in the goal that somehow forgot to learn? This is a risk with this type of narratives. It must have some sort of challenge to be engaging:

“Games are about decision making, about consequences of actions. And while you are playing, you are picking up facts, pieces of the puzzle, learning tactics, because you have to, and want to, in order to progress to the next level.”

News as games: Immoral or the future of Interactive Journalism?

Maybe we’ll meet the farm boss in part 5. Until then, let’s stroll around and see what we can find.

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Authors of amazing Interactive Doc “Hollow” explain how they did it

When I started going through “Hollow” (can’t find a better verb, “watching” is not what I did) I was amazed with the amount of elements it has. Imagine a dynamic collage of audio, stills, images, data and video, divided in six different chapters, each one including short but deep, well crafted video stories.

In a nutshell, it’s a story about the rise and fall of McDowell County, West Virginia, USA. The remaining inhabitants of this now decadent area show their lives in this empty land, while making ends meet and trying to resurrect their towns.

Its makers, Director and Producer Elaine McMillion, Sound Designer Billy Wirasnik, Technical Director and Senior Developer Robert Hall and Art Director/Designer and Architect Jeff Soyk, held  a Hangout where they talked about this project, their sucesses and failures.

I’d like to highlight Billy Wirasnik’s advice : “Don’t forget about sound!”. This project relies a lot in natural soundscapes and music tracks, which adds a whole new dimension to the story. Try it without sound and you’ll see what I mean.

Another thing you should notice is that you have to watch some videos to unlock extra  features. It’s a way to reward the users who explore the most.

There is a lot to learn from the mechanics and looks of this interactive doc, especially the mix of still and dynamic visual elements, pushed forward by html5/css3/js cogwheels, and the awesome video narrative.  A must “scroll through” (?!?).

Check out Elaine McMillion’s blog to watch the Hangout videos and access the links they mentioned and other assorted tools and tips for storytellers.

Here’s the trailer for “Hollow”:

Text in video – How to

SG Collins, an Amsterdam based video producer,  shared his views on how to use text on a screen for moving images

I always had problems with the right way to use text in video:the right font; the right size. color and background for it; will it have motion and how to make it more appealing; all those questions that bring my design and typography weaknesses up front and center (which is not many times the right way to use screen text).

This 10 minute video presents the experience based perspective of this videographer and I believe every one who has to put a single word, title, caption, credits or whatever on top of moving images should watch this. This is not a upbeat, fast paced tutorial, because Mr.Collins is a particular fellow (I’ve been following his videos for a while now and I enjoy how personal he can get) but it’s a information packed, insightful product. And quite soothing too, he should do another video about background sounds.

Enjoy it.

 

 

video #portfolio: Two platforms, one artist | Duas plataformas, um artista

Shot two videos with Nuno Prata, hosted in Vimeo and YouTube. Main differences:

  • Youtube was faster, has more virality;
  • Vimeo looks better, takes longer to make the video available for free accounts;

I believe they can be used side by side, depending on your goal: for portfolio purposes I prefer Vimeo, but to get the message out quickly I’d use YouTube, which is a service most people relate to.

What are your other favorite video hosting services of choice?

 

Fiz dois videos com o  Nuno Prata, alojei um no Vimeo e outro no Youtube. Diferenças:

  • o YouTube é mais rápido, tem mais viralidade;
  • o Vimeo tem melhor aspecto, mas com contas gratuitas demora mais tempo a disponibilizar o video;

Acho que ambos podem ser usados em simultâneo, depende é do vosso objectivo: para portfolio prefiro o Vimeo, mas para passar a mensagem depressa usaria o YouTube, que é um serviço com que a maioria das pessoas está mais à vontade.

Que outros serviços de alojamento de video preferem?