As mentioned in part one of this “series,” I will be chronicling my experience making my first video poem. Last week, I selected some film to work with and began making some choices about which pieces of film to use. (I did contact the creator of the Youtube clip of the 1950s cocktail party – it turned out to be a film he made recreating that feel for a birthday gift. I contacted him through Youtube, and he graciously agreed to allow me to use clips from his video in my videopoem.)
So, this week, I have began by editing the film – choosing clips, placing them in order based on where I thought the reading might go, changing clip lengths, adding transitions between clips, etc. As someone who hasn’t really played with video-editing before, the middle schooler in me wasted a LOT of time trying different transitions, knowing that I would end up with something simple, but wanting to see all of the options. (Wipes! Page Curls! Mosaics! Spins! None of which were appropriate for this film, but still fun to play with…) The editing, at least thus far, seems quite simple and intuitive in iMovie, even though I don’t have the most current version.
Once I had the clips in the order I thought they should go, I added titles for the beginning and credits to the end, knowing that those could be easily adjusted later.
I then recorded the poem in voiceover so that I could see the film while I was recording. (I could have done the recording in GarageBand and imported, but recording it in sections while being able to see the film let me know where I needed to pause, add time, etc.) I recorded the voiceover in sections, knowing where I wanted the lines to intersect with the images. This may seem backward to some filmmakers, but I wanted the reading to be as natural as possible, not to stretch it out with long pauses as I have seen in some films. (This may be a personal preference, as I am more auditory than visual, but I often feel I lose something if long pauses are added between the lines of a poem in a reading, even if it has accompanying video.)
It seems to have worked pretty well, and though I originally thought that perhaps I wouldn’t need background music in addition to the reading, it seems like something is missing without it. At this point, I have a relatively complete marriage of film and poem text along with title frames and end credits.
Next Steps: Finding the Right Music to Set the Tone and Learning How to Layer the Audio Tracks for the Proper Volume Mixing. Otherwise known as driving my dogs crazy by playing audio clips over and over while making decisions…