Sometimes you go back to things…Fairytale to Video

Sometimes you go back to things you started but never finished.

I had left this just sitting on my hard drive from a few weeks ago. It seems this summer I am doing assignments, but ones I create myself instead of straight from the assignment bank. This started as Writing during the Bugeron106 Fairy Tale Festival. After going through writing – I pushed and did an audio reading of it so that I used my voice – something I was hesitant in doing. I moved on somewhat and created a PDF file of the writing with some pics to include in a FlipBook tool exploration. I still was trying to figure out how to used it in video and not just a slide show and had started playing around in iMovie with it. The drawback was not enough created art pieces to go with the story to hold it together so it was mostly an audio book. I left it and went on to new things.

Then I get mentioned in a tweet by @mdvfunes to @cogdog if my soundcloud version would help him in his K12 Keynote information collection. I had pondered how to help him out – but haven’t been able to condense my thoughts into something understandable and video.

The fairy tale is 11 minutes – longer than the 3 minutes that was requested, being another reason. I still have to think about if I can pull it off and if it would be helpful. Still pondering.

So as I was having my morning caffeine – I pulled up the video I started on the fairy tale. I am not sure if it is just time passing or because it is too dang hot outside today to want to do anything but sit still and keep cool – but I started to watch it and it didn’t seem as awful as I remembered leaving it.

So I looked at  a few options, added some titles and cleaned up some bumps. I used some Bitmoji avatar pics to stay with the storybook feel. I was surprised at how many can fit.

It is still 11 minutes plus and I don’t have all my attributions added yet. There are only a few – but they need to be added. Not sure it is anything Alan can use either, but will pass it on. It did feel good to take something that was left in the dust and at least polish it up a bit and have it in a form to share whether it is as something to learn from. The previous state was just a mess of files ¬†– at least now it is connected.

I am getting to like iMovie a bit more. I can use it on my laptop or desktop so it allows me to be near family or in different rooms which is a perk. FinalCutPro means I am held in the office room. With this I found I could use some of the trailer templates and convert to a movie. The trailer templates are more polished and featured than the movie themes and it is nice to start with a base to edit from and not totally from scratch.

One thing which would be really nice is if iMovie Storyboard was somehow usable and a tool in iMoive for any movie. How great to improve planning and writing skills if it was possible to lay it out in a storyboard that converted it to the video like the trailer templates – but allowed you to be the director and decide what features and how long and what order. Is there such an option? Still looking – let me know if there is!

and here it is – A Story of Connections: DS106 and the Ed Administrator. Thanks to the Fairy Godfather – Alan Levine and the ds106 Guardian Angel – Mariana Funes, along with all the people and characters who are #4Life and continue to support and create.

Open sharing and connections are the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. They are the everyday simple acts of kindness and reaching out that together make wealth in life. Sometimes they become the awesome out of this world-never thought it could happen events, but mostly it is the true enrichment of the small touches that together add up. 

Give one – get many.
Open and share – you will never regret that you did.

and how appropriate – with auto upload from iMovie you can’t define your thumbnail cover – it automatically chose @NanaLou- ¬†perfect!

Seeing Forest Folk x7!

Multiply Photo

puffintransblogIcelandic Week at the Bovine County Fairy Tale Festival seems to be causing multiple sightings of wee forest folk! Cousin Ron has hinted that we are not alone in Bovine County – but I am seeing more elves, fairies, and gnomes than terrestrial beings so far.

This is a visual assignment from the ds106 assignment bank. Multiply Yourself. I decided to multiply a Gnome named Boo (wonder if he is related or knows MamaBoo?) He is a playful guy popping out of the garden with a hearty laugh.

I had to set the scene. Set the camera on a tripod so it wouldn’t move and then place Boo in different places. Since he is a little stiff – I could only pose him at different angles of direction and depth from the camera.

After getting some shots, I uploaded to Photoshop and loaded them as a stack so that they all went into the same project file and at the same size.

From there it was selecting one as a base and then using the selection tools to cut Boo out and then cut the backgrounds placing him with the base photo in place. Since he is mostly in the foreground there was not as much detail in layering needed.

Another reason for choosing this assignment was to see how it might be useful in creating a fairy garden tour….still have that on my mind and bubbling.

I think I might teleport over to the Village and see if any of the forest folk have been in the gardens….


3 Bears, A Blonde, and a Fabulous Creative Group

Final version of Goldilocks and the 3 Bears – A group effort! Putting it at the top of the post – details follow.

Within thpuffintransbloge #burgeron106 summer retreat participants, Mama Boo put a call out to recreate Goldilocks and the 3 Bears as an audio recording. Cousin Ron, Nanalou and Dr. M, and myself  РBernie Burgeron, jumped in to work on it together.

Mama Boo created a Google Doc with some points she needed to put the audio together. The group quickly stepped up and volunteered to do the reading of lines. Rochelle Lockwood even enlisted the help of her grandson РDJ!

Things came together and the group helped me in stretching and taking the steps to recording as Goldilocks. I sort of got over the hearing my voice – but also realize I have to figure out how to get a better sound input. Either mic or environment. I do know to stand when recording – it was great to see Rochelle post about her grandson DJ knowing to stand to record!

I did some listening of files and offered some sound effects as a starting base to add as well. RonaldL added some more sounds to round out the choice.

An awesome product came out of it – Stone Soup of life and shows that a village working together is greater than its people alone.

The audio was SO inspiring – I just had the desire to put it with visuals after listening to it over and over.

I checked to see if anyone else was already on that path and asked for help. I began by gathering visuals that Bugeron106 has created. I then filled in with using photos painted ornaments that I made a few years ago. I also needed to get my mind around characters, Burgerons, ds106 participants and everyone else in between.

With the high sign from the group I began to put the audio story together with visuals. I scanned old pictures of Bernie – all black and white and put them in Photoshop. It was kinda like making paper dolls. I found pictures that looked like they would work.

Collaboration Fantastic!

The thrill of working on this project was the collaboration. From the start with audio – Dr. M was involved by supporting, cheering, asking questions and throwing out ideas. Mama Boo started it all with her audio idea. Cousin Ron seemed to wake up each morning and have something to add or an idea – he even created some music and when he saw the visuals started, went back into the audio and added more sound effects. Dr. M mentioned maybe the Headless Inkspots would enjoy creating some music – so I put out a call to see if creating an intro and exit for this video and to be used for any others in a series that may develop. Everyone jumped right in and the best of everyone pulled it together.

Adding Visuals to  Audio and Video Editing

In photoshop I had to get rid of the backgrounds, clean up the edges and add color. I used the color replacement brush to add color. The picture for the kitchen table was mad by cutting and pasting the fabric design of the coat she was wearing to make it look like a robe, and then adding a foot with a shoe on the end.

I especially like the one on the cover of her peeking around the tree. This one worked perfectly!

I then took pictures of some bear ornaments I had painted some years back. These too went into photo shop and were cut, blended and made with transparent backgrounds.

I needed backgrounds so went to Flickr Creative Commons and found some for the path, the cabin inside and outside, the chairs, the beds, and the bowls of porridge. All were CC=O licenses – so that made it easier.

On several I used Transform commands of scale, skew, perspective, distort. I found holding Control while in the section I could easily move from one to the other. With the repetition of the story it was basic in determining the scenes.

I knew I didn’t want just a slide show and would need to use different editing features to give more movement and direction. For the chair of Baby Bear getting broken I created a GIF of breaking up the chair and exported it as a video clip to include.

I used IMovie as the video editor. I wanted to use Final Cut Pro and I did start in FCP – but for some reason I switched it must have been a good reason when I started, but I don’t remember what I ran into any more that made me switch.

IMovie I find is great for quick and great looking video, but it really does a lot of deciding for you and to override those effects, there are hoops to go through. I choose NO THEME so I could have as much control as possible.

The Ken Burns effect is simple, but easier than adding key frames and adjusting so that was a plus. I figured out after I started that my photos should be made in 1920×1080 pixels in Photoshop so that I wouldn’t end up with the black bars on the side of the video. So back to Photoshop and readjusting most of the stills I created.

All things¬†continued to snowball. IMovie doesn’t have more than a one step backward feature or a save as feature – at least that I have discovered yet. This works against me as I like to try things and go back. If I changed something and didn’t like it – I had to remember what I had and recreate it again and hope it was what I wanted.

The other fun part of doing a fairytale was ignoring all the film rules of transitions and other things! No Hitchcock effect here or worrying about if the characters were strong or weak etc. They were bears and a fairytale! All rules out the window. I think I used more than 50% of the available transitions – but they all seemed to fit and make the story move. Door transitions – opening circles, swaps when changing from one bed to another. Each one has a purpose not just whimsy. Hopefully they are not noticed as transitions and more as the story being told.

Features I used:

To add more interest to the video I used the FlipClip feature in video effects to turn the rooms around. This was I could use the same still, but zoom and pan differently as well as give it a different point of view and not seem like the same. It also helped in hiding a little of the photoshop that wasn’t as clean in the first photos I created. I almost wanted to go back and do them over – but there comes a point when you need to decide improved skills will be great for the next project or you won’t ever finish or move on!

I also used the video effects for the beginning and end clips to give the photo of Nanalou and the Treehouse more of a dreamy effect and to allow the text to show more.

oh….I to make sure viewers knew who was reading the lines – I imposed the readers photos with green screen features. This helped I thought add more to the visual to personalize it. The drawback is the green screen doesn’t accept transitions – so placing so the pop in and pop out seems more intended has to be futzed with to place them.

Exporting from iMovie seemed easy enough and cut out the step exporting to desktop or coverting to QuickTime and then uploading. However, it then does not allow you to upload a thumbnail of choice. :-(. Good to know for the future.

I also had started recording what I was doing step by step – but lost that discipline early on. If there is something you see and want to discuss – I will be happy to do so with as much clarity and detail as I can remember.

I probably have a good four days in on this. The part I always forget is how long rendering and uploading takes! I don’t count that in as my work time.

Another plus of the collaboration – I have intro and exit clips for others to use now!

Thanks to the group! We did great in my opinion!!