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This post brought to you by Givit. All opinions are 100% mine.

There is a new way to edit videos on the go, and I'm thrilled to be chatting about Givit, a easy to use iPhone app that lets you make and share highlights from your videos with your friends.

Just to get some basic info out of the way, the app is compatible with iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad (it requires iOS 6 or later). The app is completely free, so head over and Download Givit.

Okay, now that we got those basics through, lets talk about the app. I downloaded the app to my iPhone and took it for a test run. The interface is very clear and easy to jump right in. I followed my dog, a Basset Hound, for an hour and documented what he did in videos. Now, the whole hour would have been impossible to shoot on my iPhone, so I took a lot of very short videos. The first thing that struck me about Givit was that it had no limit on how many videos I could pull from to make the final edited video. The next coolest feature was the Live Highlighting. As you are recording, you can simply tap a button to highlight cruical moments to make it easier to go back to them. Other features included motion effects (like slow-motion and speeding up shots), titles (lots of different styles), music, and still photo intergration. This tool can be used greatly to string together photos and videos for big life events or even a normal day to share with family and friends on the go.

When you are done editing your video, it takes less than 30 seconds to share it across the web- YouTube, Twitter, Facebook… As if sharing the video wasn't enough, Givit also gives users 5gb of Cloud Storage. Interested in downloading the app? Leave a comment and let us know what kind of videos ou'd be editing with the app.!

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Posted on June 17th, 2013 by Spark | Leave a Comment (2)
Filed Under Entertainment

daily filmmaking tips

As independent filmmakers we have a lot on our mind from the beginning of the process with budgeting, scheduling and raising funds (to even shoot the film), through production where we might be forced to wear many hats (line producer, production manager, production coordinator, accountant, production assistant), through post production where we might even edit the piece. With all of those jobs, it can be really hard to keep track of everything. The things that can fall through the cracks are what can hurt you the most.

For example, it is easy to shoot scenes, transfer them to a main hard drive and forget about them. Only, hard drives aren’t forever. They can crap out, or them can break due to mishandling or environmental conditions. You want to have a process and calendar in place where you have regular hard drive maintenance. You need to see which hard drives are holding up, which need to be wiped and how they are all doing. Never just back up data on only one hard drive, make duplications on at least (at least, more are better) two hard drives. Also back up all scenes on a high quality tape (DVC Pro, Beta… not just MiniDV). Nothing is worse than losing all of your hard work, trust me on this, I’ve learned the hard way.

When you are finished with a hard drive and you are 100% sure that all files (and hidden files have been erased), than you can consider going through the process to recycle hard drives, or you can sell them (Ebay, Craig’s List, garage sales, etc).

Posted on September 6th, 2010 by ThePit | Leave a Comment
Filed Under Filmmaking Resources

Filmmaking 101

Welcome to the third part of our Filmmaking 101 series. In part 1 we looked at affordable print ideas, in part 2 we talked about how social networking could help get your film seen, and in part 3 I want to discuss your website. Click on the filmmaking tag (at the bottom of this article) to see the other parts along with some recent screenwriting tips.

Your Website
So, you have Facebook, Myspace, and YouTube profiles, why would you need a website for your film? One word, professionalism. Social Networking sites are perfect for keeping people informed and getting people to your main website, but they shouldn’t replace your actual site. Your website has a few key factors that you need to look into and decide on before you even get to design it.

Domain Names
First and arguably the most important factor is your domain name (aka URL).  It is best to choose domain names that are easy to remember and easy to spell out. You need people to be able to remember this name and tell it to others, without them screwing up the spelling because of abbreviations or cheesy word replacement (I.E. using l8er instead of later).  Personally I like to have two distinctively different domain names pointing to my film’s website. The first one is a name that is close to the film’s title. You’ll have to do a search to figure out if the names you are brainstorming are free.  Usually if the title is taken, you can at least get something with the word film or movie at the end. For example, if Thunderman.com is taken, you could always try ThundermanTheMovie.com. For the second name I like to be more creative and use something that will look cool on posters. I’m currently working on a zombie film, so in advance I bought TheDeadAreRising.com. I can picture a 1000 ways to use the url in ads both online and in print.  I used to use Yahoo to buy my domains, but I learned the hard way that just because they are affordable, doesn’t make them good. Now I have moved all of my domains to GoDaddy, who not only has a great interface, but they have helpful customer service and are honest.

Web Hosts
While it is easier to buy your domain names and web hosting fromt he same place, it isn’t always the best idea. For example, I host some of my websites on Powweb, but their domain names are overpriced.  I can buy a domain for half the price from GoDaddy.  Now in the reverse, I feel like GoDaddy is great with domain names, but their web hosting is lacking.  You need a web host that offers you a ton of space and monthly bandwidth, and they need to be able to handle different scripts and CGI. You’ll likely have a ton of videos, photos, and a blog on your website. Make sure that the web host you decide to go with can handle what you need before you waste any coin on it. It is also a good idea to always keep up with current web hosting news. Not only do you want a great deal, but you need to choose a web host that is stable, reliable, customer friendly, and has a proven track record.

Design
The design is going to be key in keeping visitors at your website and to encourage them to keep coming back. I prefer websites that are clean and easy to navigate.  Include information about the project, but don’t go overboard. Don’t give a complete play by play of the film, don’t spoil the ending, and don’t post your full script. Include your film’s trailer and make sure that the quality is top notch. A blog is a great way to keep the film’s website content fresh and to add new content regularly. You can post behind the scenes photos, videos with scenes, or even just share experiences with the filmmaking process.

You are going to spend a lot of time and effort getting people to this website, make sure that they have something good to look at when they get there!

The Hollywood Reporter talks to Mark Lindsay, Richard Guardian, and Ariel Veneziano about dealmaking, the new found challenges for selling independent films at the American Film Market, and how the dwindling economy has hurt the independent market.

Continue reading to get THR’s scoop on what sold at the 2008 American Film Market.

Read the rest of this entry »

Stock Footage for Free is a great place to find free stock footage for your videos.  I came across this website while looking for royalty free stock footage that also cost nothing to download.  It has a lot of great footage from around the world in both standard and high definition.  They let you use their footage in all of your projects including commercial projects.  The best part is that there are absolutely no fees, or catches.

Don’t forget, there are also a lot of good sites for free stock images.

Posted on October 11th, 2008 by pjflip | Leave a Comment
Filed Under Filmmaking Resources
Are you having trouble finding the right sound to go with your new moving picture? Can’t afford a fancy orchestra? Or even a high school composer? Don’t have the time to waste before you miss an online contest deadline? Well, than you can thank Peter John Ross of Sonnyboo Productions.

He went ahead and made 20 pieces of music that he is offering to the public to use that are royalty free. Unlike most sites that offer royalty free music, Mr. Ross is completely cool with you using the music on films that you are trying to sell and make a profit on.

The catch? Absolutely none. All that he asks in return is that you credit him (which I know you would have done anyway). All of his tunes are instrumental, so you don’t have to worry about cutting around lyrics, and he offers a wide variety of sounds; from an “Ultimate 80’s Anthem”, to “Jazz”, “Techno”, “Soul” and downright “Eerie”. There is something for every genre in the 20 songs. Worse comes to worse, you can start cutting the different songs together or you can use them as a base and add your own beats (from Garage Band or a similar program) over them to create something new.

You can get the free beats here, and view Peter John Ross’ films here.

Posted on August 5th, 2008 by ThePit | Leave a Comment
Filed Under Filmmaking Resources