This project was probably one of the most difficult tasks I have tackled in a long time. I have great software but I am not familiar enough with how it works to use it effectively. I used Adobe Premiere Elements 9 to edit this podcast.
The whole process began with writing a script...no problem. Then we needed to record an audio podcast, again, no problem (listen to the audio podcast by clicking the ► below).
- Computer: Dell Inspiron 15R N5110 Laptop
- Microphone: Logitech Stereo Headset H149 with microphone
- Digital Camera with still and video capability: Nikon D3100
- Camera Lenses: AF-S Nikkor 18-55mm 1:3.5-5.6G & AF-S Nikkor 55-300mm 1:4.5-5.6G ED w/ HB-57 Hood
- Memory Card: FujiFilm High Performance 8GB Class 6
- Memory Card Reader: Rocketfish High Speed CF/SD/SDHC Card Reader
- Tripod: Precision Design PD-57TR Photo/Video 57” Tripod
- Photo Editing: Adobe Photoshop Elements 9
- Video Editing: Adobe Premiere Elements 9
- Sound Editing: Audacity 1.3.14
- MP3 Encoder: LAME v.3.99.3 for Windows
Well, of course, nothing went smoothly after that.
The day of the recording the room I had reserved was already occupied by several students studying for a quiz. I waited patiently as they were supposed to be packing up. The security guard told me that I could head in as they were moving out so I could use the room. When they were still in the room after I had been waiting for 10 minutes I went down and started setting up my equipment. Finally, they left the room to head to another space that was located for them. I breathed a sigh of relief and began to record my footage. About 20 minutes into recording as I was just getting comfortable someone walks into the room as I am recording. I decided I better post a sign so everyone would know that I was video taping. That didn't help much since another person walked in shortly after putting that sign on the outside of the door.
I was so happy to be done with my recording and couldn't wait to get to post production: Editing. If only it was that easy!
Things I learned from this experience:
Have security lock the door next time so no one accidentally interrupts the recording session.
It is difficult to frame yourself in a shot when you don't have a camcorder that has a front facing monitor. I was using a Nikon D31oo to do this (no front facing monitor). It also doesn't allow for smooth camera zooming in and out as there is no toggle switch only the barrel of the camera lens.
Adobe Premiere Elements does not like when you have your project files in different locations. I learned this the hard way after having the program crash on me for 2 days. I was ready to give up but Google saved the day. I read anything I could find on what could be causing the problem and someone mentioned putting all the files in the same folder. This worked much better. The program didn't work flawlessly but it at least stopped crashing on me.
My SDHC card reader failed and I couldn't get my footage off of my memory card. I ordered a new SanDisk MicroMate SDHC card reader and so far it works like a charm.
I also decided to buy a new memory card after reading my camera manual and the Producing Video Podcasts: A Guide for Media Professional by Richard Harrington and Mark Weiser. Both suggested getting a better quality card for the video footage as it would record smoother and allow for faster transfer to my computer. I purchased a SanDisk 16GB Extreme SDHC Card Class 10 45MB/s UHS-1.
I learned that my Nikon did not have the option of attaching an external mic to record sound directly. It only has an internal mic that does not pick up adequate sound. Therefore, I purchased an audio-technica lavelier microphone to use with my Sony IC-Recorder.
After viewing my footage and starting to edit, I thought I just might have to break down and purchase a camcorder. I decided though that if I was going to do this it had to be a camcorder that had a jack for a microphone. This would cut out the need for me to edit the sound separately from the video (or so I thought). I went and purchased a Canon Vixia HF R200 HD Camcorder. Well, my thought about not having to edit audio separately was tossed out the window as the quality of audio that was recorded using my lavilier was horrible. (Side Note: The lavilier microphone worked beautifully with the Sony IC-Recorder so I know it wasn't the mic that was responsible for the poor recording). The file format of the video was also different than that of my Nikon. My Nikon records with a .mov extension. The Canon records with a .MTS extension. When editing in Adobe Premiere Elements the Canon footage would not play appropriately. The footage appeared to bounce on the screen. There is probably a way to fix that but I needed to get this project done so I decided to re-shoot some of the scenes with the Nikon.
When I checked the new footage that I recorded and the audio, I realized that I had never turned on the microphone so needless to say I was back at square one.
Saving the video in an appropriate file type to send to my professor is another story...
Let me just say that the podcast is done but there are several glitches. I know that I will be revisiting it and making improvements. That is just the way of my type A personality. Whenever that happens I will be sure to post the updated version for all of you to see.