Film as dream, film as music. No art passes our conscience in the way film does, and goes directly to our feelings, deep down into the dark rooms of our souls. ― Ingmar Bergman
[one_half padding=”4px 10px 0 4px”]I have had a number of thoughts this week about converting still photographs to video, more than a few of them born out of frustration at not having a clue what I’m doing at any given moment. I had this same feeling about twelve years ago when I first made the leap from film to digital photography. The difference is that the change then felt imperative, that there was no option but to change or be left behind in the dust. I don’t get that feeling about video, but I do have a final thought or two on the subject.
First thought: Video isn’t going away and photographers who want to remain commercially active in the field need, at the very least, a cursory understanding of the medium and the tools involved. My biggest frustration this week has been not knowing the tools. I understand Adobe® Photoshop™, and am comfortable with what I can achieve with that tool. I also understand its features well enough to know that a little goes a long way and that less is often better. I’m not sure those rules apply to video and felt lost more often than not. Perhaps there needs to be classes specifically oriented toward photographers, taking what we already know and translating that to video.
Second thought: The dangers that were present with digital photography are present in digital video as well. Just like Photoshop™, Premiere Pro™ has a lot of different capabilities built-in to address a wide variety of needs and challenges that are common to the medium. A number of the effects and presets are meant to be used in various combination with each other, but exactly how to do that isn’t necessarily obvious. So, there’s the danger of misuse and overuse. That is one of the points we try to make in the first half of today’s project. Just because you can, doesn’t mean you should. There’s a sense of discretion needed and just as with photography when that judgment is lacking it will drive the rest of us crazy.[/one_half]
[one_half_last padding=”4px 4px 0 10px”]Third thought: Video is not going to replace still photography. When I started this project, in the back of my mind were the moving, animated pictures mentioned in J. K. Rowling’s Harry Potter series. The more I’ve played with things this week, the more I’m convinced that the difference between a still and moving picture is too emotionally complex and different for one to fully replace the other. Sure, as technology provides different applications for viewing both we’re going to see popularity wax and wane. They’ll still remain to distinct forms of visual media, though, and each will have its own purpose.
Fourth thought: For the time being, short formats, such as the 30-second ad-styled projects we’ve done this week, may be better for still photographs than trying to stretch them into a long format. Tutorial material would be the exception to that thought, but beyond a couple of minutes a still image in video format feels forced. We expect video to move, to do something, to change in some way. When a still image remains static in video format it’s a different emotion than just looking at the same image in purely photographic format.
Final thought: I don’t want to be a videographer. I’m quite happy with my still images, thank you. Video editing is far too complex and highly specialized for my brain to even begin to make that leap. I can’t imagine ever having the patience necessary to edit actual video segments. One thing I take away from this week is a new respect for those who manage to edit video quickly and efficiently on a daily basis.
We hope you’ve enjoyed our adventure this week. Next week we move to something more sedate. We hope you’ll join us. Today’s original photograph is below.[/one_half_last]