Category Archives: Motion Graphics

Authentic Not-For-Profit Video

The Santa Clarita Valley Senior Center - An incredibly active place!

When asked by a friend to create a video for the Santa Clarita Valley Senior Center to show at their annual fundraiser and donor appreciation dinner I simply said, "Yes." This is what one does when a friend asks so nicely and has done you several solids in the past.

Thus began a fairly amazing journey into the world of the aging here in the Santa Clarita Valley. I found that age does have its downside for many, but for the most part you are only as old as you and your health want to be. I found people well into their 80's exercising, learning languages and computers, going on trips and playing cards. Yes, cards are a great social and mind-maintenance pastime.

I also found an adult day care center that deals with the range of stages of Alzheimer's disease. Many seniors there were in the early stages and just a bit forgetful. Others were further advanced and needed almost constant supervision.

In all the various programs there are leaders, staff and volunteers, that truly care about each person there, that take the time to teach at the given person's level of understanding and ability.

The volunteers in all areas - food prep and delivery is huge - range in experience from first timers to decades-long contributors. Each has their own story of how they got involved, why they stay, and usually a favorite memory of one person that they touched along the way making an impression on them that stuck through time.

I hope you enjoy this video and that it inspires you to volunteer somewhere near you, or, if a senior yourself, that you find a desire to get out of the house and go meet some new and interesting people.

Testimonial Advertising

This television commercial was captured and edited from the patients own words.

Working with director Tom Mescall on this project, we ran a two camera shoot with five different patient groups. Hearing their first hand from-the-heart stories, of the struggles they went through prior to bariatric surgery and the changes in their life since, made for some wonderful footage and commentary.

It is about the moment.

Using two cameras when conducting interviews is wonderful, and three might even be better. It isn't just about having different framing, it is about having the cameras move and keep framing visually interesting. Having one play it safe leaves only one to have fun with. Still, it seems that there is always a moment captured where it all comes together, where the spontaneous voicing of a real situation brings an understanding to the eyes, where a genuine emotion is conveyed beyond the words spoken.

Authenticity in advertising is critical to reaching people at a place where they believe what they see and hear. A rehearsed script rarely comes across as anything other than what it is, and loses much in that reception. Typically, authentic advertising is based upon a testimonial or other proof of worth. These stories are best captured in a video interview.

The video interview process is much more than simply showing up and asking questions. Research is needed beforehand to discover the intent of the organization, their manner of achieving those goals, the nature of the volunteers and employees and many other factors. Similarly, knowledge of the public perception is important, particularly that part of the public that is the demographic target of the video.

Using real people in advertising requires a unique skill set of the interviewer. Having the knowledge of the research noted above, the interviewer must be able to ask questions in a manner that invites the person to discover in their own way the answer. Often, the same question may be asked in a couple of different ways to achieve similar answers that are spoken in different tone, wording, or facial expression.

It is a debatable point as to whether a pre-interview helps or hinders. I fall on the side of hindrance. By experience I have found that the first conversations with a person about their company or organization are the most candid, the least prepared, and the most effective at capturing a person in the real moment of their enthusiasm. A prepared interviewee is one that often hesitates to find the "right" words they thought they wanted to say when. Spontaneous interview responses yield genuine responses.

Support for this thinking comes from most of the late night talk show hosts. They rarely visit with their guests before the show, wanting a more candid and spontaneous interview.