For the last couple of weeks, I have been getting back into video editing again. I say again, because I have been fooling around with video since 2000 and actually taught a semester of video editing for a high school class. Even though I have no teaching credentials or certificates and have never gone beyond high school for formal education. A high functioning retard in the estimation of some of my educational peers. Although I have never pursued formal higher education, I am what they call self taught. This is done with a sneer, when the smarties say it. Harshes their Teachers Union dues paying, I guess.
Everything I have done since getting out of high school, I have learned by doing and sweating my hinder off doing it. I love the internet, to me it is everything the fabled library of Alexandria was said to be and much more. With the advent of YouTube, you can watch people do things that would take you years of hard work, sweat and tears to learn the old fashioned way. I picked up video editing back in the early aughts, when I was running a dial-up ISP (Internet Service Provider). Even ended up doing some video forensics and editing for the FBI back then. Heady days. Fast forward to my job with the school district. I was doing some editing for them, mostly security footage of break ins. Sometime around 2009, the high school decided it was going to start a new class or continue an existing class for something to do with video. They also were going to foist it upon some first year english teacher and she was, to put it politely, not having it. The high school principal stopped me one day in the hall and told me I was going to be teaching the Spring semester of the class. I gave her my best Spock raised eyebrow of WTF and said “Oh really, how’s that gonna work?” She mumbled something about just show up and teach, and made her escape.
The deal was, a “Real” (yes those are scare quotes) teacher would be in the class, I would teach the subject, and she would sit on her behind. Ample behind. The way it worked was as soon as the last bell for class rang, she would gather up her stuff and head out the door. I had 18 juniors and seniors and they were mine to mold as I saw fit. And it went pretty well. I had filmed an hour long skit for a Blue Grass Festival a couple of summers back, a multi camera deal with lots of editing, and we used that for class. Most of the kids were somewhat interested though the whole course. I finished what I had planned about a week before the end of the school year and the “Real” teacher had to take it from there. She showed her gratitude to the class by F bombing them and walking out at one point. Oh well, I guess we are not all cut out to teach. Ba da bump Ding! Thank you, I’ll here all week.
So I’ve been watching a lot of YouTube lately, learning all kinds of cool stuff. A group of people that has caught my interest are Trappers. Good, salt of the earth people doing what we have always done. Trapping fur and keeping rein on the predators. North America was opened and settled because of these guys. The current crop have started putting up video of how they do this and that. If you know anything about trapping, you would know this is an aberration in the way of fur farming. Trappers were some of the most closed mouth, taciturn people that ever came down the pike. Somebody somewhere decided if we were going to keep trapping alive, the information had to be shared. So, a couple of dozen guys that trap, started putting videos up. That got me hooked, and the next thing you know, I got some traps and started decimating the rats we had had a problem with. And then, since all the cool kids were doing it, I put up my own Rat Line videos. Kind of rough at first, but like riding a bike, it all comes back.
I had been using Final Cut Pro for editing software, but it was showing signs of age. Once upon a time I had used Premiere, before it was Adobe’s, and didn’t like it. I recently saw a demo of what you can do with it now, and I had found a new love. Without getting into a lot of inside baseball, it is the bees knees. I had an idea, from quite a while ago, to tape a sunrise in all its glory and then to compress it down to a minute or less, and you get the whole effect without your coffee getting cold. Something that would have taken an entire studio worth of equipment, about a cool million or so, to do.
Well, I got that off my bucket list on the morning of Jan 24th. I looked out the window and I could tell by the early morning glow, this was going to be what I was looking for. Trouble was, the only camera I had was a Sony Steady Shot Digital 8, from around 2003 or so. Teddy said you should always do what you can with what you got. Filmed 52 minutes of glorious sunrise and brought it back to my 21st century video editing software. Now, I won’t say it was easy, and the program told me that I can’t do what I wanted to do. Yah, heard that one before. So, I did it my way. Compressed by something like 5000 percent, I got my sunrise in one minute. I realize it is not a perfect video. Lots of artifacts with the wind in the trees and the camera shaking. Think of this as a concept video, to explore what I could do and work off that. Still, pretty dang cool. And I’m just getting started. Check out my YouTube channel. I’ll be posting my artsie fartsie stuff there. And as always, please Like, Comment and Subscribe if you liked this post. It don’t cost nothin’ and your Mother would be proud of you.