If you’re an ADD producer like me, you can’t just focus on one medium; nor should you. Today’s content producer is like a modern-day multimedia superhero (albeit a geeky one). Writing? Check. Photography? Check. Video production? Check. Oh, and can you compress everything to the correct aspect ratio, file size, acceptable format and upload it to the site’s content manager system within an hour? Check.
An ever-changing medium requires constant learning and adapting, which works for me since I’d get pretty bored typing on the same typewriter for twenty years (I’m also a lefty and permanent ink smudges on both paper and hand were an annoyance). My resources are as varied as my work – I don’t rely on just people or the web; it’s best to mix it up. Here’s a sampling of some of the resources I keep coming back to.
Ethics Statement: these resources are in no way endorsements for companies or products. There are literally millions of websites, companies, and products that producers can utilize; these are simply a few I like and hope you might too!
Philip Bloom: http://philipbloom.net/
This english filmmaker basically launched the DSLR revolution and we can thank him for the trademark slow-motion and shallow depth of field videos that infiltrate Vimeo. His website is essential for anyone interested in shooting video with their DSLR camera. His website includes a personal blog, equipment reviews, tutorials, and even his own B&H store. I take his DSLR advice as the word of God, as do millions of other fans.
Creative Cow: http://www.creativecow.net/
Stuck trying to perfect a camera motion technique in After Effects? Want to make text dance and swirl using Motion? Chances are you can find a step-by-step tutorial on Creative Cow. There are literally hundreds of tutorials covering almost any computer program in the creative media industry. All the Adobe and Apple programs are there, as are AVID, Media 100 – even Maya! Along with Tutorials, Creative Cow has an online magazine, podcasts and community forums. They have saved my butt on many occasions while editing. Plus I just can’t resist that catchy jingle at the start of their videos
B&H Photo Video : http://www.bhphotovideo.com/
This online store carries everything in your wildest photo/video dreams. The prices are good, shipping rates low, and customer reviews are helpful.
My Green Lake / Seattle’s Green Lake Blog: http://www.mygreenlake.com/
Most people I know (five on my street alone!) have bookmarked Editor Amy Duncan’s blog about the north Seattle neighborhood I live in. Duncan’s blog reads like a news site, with interviews, breaking news, photos, and happenings in the ‘hood – that are actually useful to read! No offense to the big news agencies out there, but they need to open their eyes and see what many of us really yearn for; unpretentious, local happenings that have a direct impact on our neighborhood.
Yes, online mega stores like B&H are really great and I’ve bought a lot of stuff there. It’s hard to beat their prices, but don’t let that sway you from checking out your local camera store. It’s hard to beat perusing through an actual camera store (sorry people, Best Buy doesn’t count), handling gear, and getting advice from actual human beings. Glazer’s Camera in Seattle has become a valuable resource for me. I like the fact that I’m buying local, can get expert advice from their professional staff, rent equipment I’m interested in buying, and bring it back if anything goes wrong. I also count on local Vimeo and LinkedIn groups to see what videos are being produced, who’s producing them, and group events I can muster up the courage to attend.
I follow a number of video professionals and companies to find out about photo/video events in my hood, special online deals, and the latest photo/video news (did you hear that the new FCP version bombed?) Some people I follow are:
http://twitter.com/#!/philipbloom (Philip Bloom – of course)
http://twitter.com/#!/AmyWaltersNPR (Ira Glass is not tweeting right now and recommended Amy…so there ya go.)
http://twitter.com/#!/artwolfe (A great local photographer who loves to travel and garden – what’s not to like?)
http://twitter.com/#!/PhotoNorthwest ( Northwest PhotoCenter - education, community and gallery for photographers.)
http://twitter.com/#!/AlexBuono (I went to hear Alex talk about DSLR filmmaking at Glazer’s Photofest last month. He is the DP for SNL’s digital shorts, commercials, etc, and is a super swell guy.)
http://twitter.com/#!/wired (Wired Magazine – we all gotta keep up on the latest techie news!.)
http://twitter.com/#!/Oatmeal (The Oatmeal has zero to do with photo or video, but he makes me shoot coffee out my nose from laughing out loud at the local coffee shop, and that’s worth its weight in gold.)