At the beginning of our journey we looked at some of our favorite videos and made a list of elements that made them awesome.  As we work toward our final projects, we will want to remember what these elements are and evaluate our work on these points as we proceed.

We may not achieve all of them, but we should at least consider all of them.

The Big 5

  1. A great topic that is
    • compelling
    • important
    • novel
    • surprising
    • entertaining
    • drawing an interesting comparison
  2. A great story, which might include:
    • a gap between what is and could be
    • or some other engaging element
    • high stakes
    • a core conflict
    • a compelling arc – intensity rising and falling
    • good character development
    • immediately and continuously engaging
    • strong feelings and emotions
    • a strong driving narrative
    • or continuous insightful comparisons that engage the viewer
  3. Technical Excellence in capturing footage, including
    • appropriate lighting to match the mood and intensity of the story
    • appropriate camera movements (smooth, handheld, pans, zooms, tilts, etc.)
    • interesting and beautiful backgrounds, set design, and costume design
    • aesthetic and appropriate composition and framing
    • appropriate color schemes to match the mood
    • clean audio
    • subtle audio cues that add realism
  4. Outstanding Editing, including
    • appropriate rhythm and pacing
    • good timing
    • appropriate sequencing
    • aesthetic and appropriate transitions
  5. A strong theme or point that is
    • reasonable (or demonstrated to be reasonable)
    • compelling
    • novel
    • insightful

Remember: Assuming this is not your final work, final results are not as important as what you learn from the process.

PRO TIP: Put all of your work inside a folder called “Practice” to remind yourself that whatever it is you are doing is PRACTICE.

Vision Exercises


Your Next Challenge:  Final Project Trailer

Create a trailer for your final project, set to music.  This is an essential first step for you to start clarifying precisely what you want to do.  Many shots from this trailer can and should end up in your final project, so consider this the start of your final project.




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