A critique on a video


macrumors regular
Original poster
May 16, 2006
I have a huge favor to ask. I am a student journalist, and I made this package in May on the immigration protests in Phoenix, AZ. Can anyone take a look at the video and give me some feedback on how I did, and what could be improved?

The video



macrumors 6502a
Oct 6, 2005
I thought the movie had a professional feel to it. Maybe some more practice on the camera work. I noticed there were a few times it looked like you just got the footage from a protester on the street if you know what i mean. There were a few parts that could have been improved on as far as the camera work went like centering. One example is where you are talking in the street, you could lower the camera a little more. Maybe center more on your mouth instead of you face as a whole. I'm not saying its horrible at all, I thought it was done really well. I just figure you would want something you could take from this comment. Also, there was a part where the crowd is screaming and you are talking over them, turn down the volume on the crowd just a little more. Other than that, it was superb!


macrumors 68020
Jul 16, 2002
Salt Lake City, UT
The reporting around the 30 second mark could benefit from the rule of thirds. Compare the shot that you have there with the shot around 1:18. The rally would look more visually pleasing if you were to step a bit to the side.

Also, there are some audio issues. The first clip is to quiet and when you come in, it's a tad startling. If you are going to use some background noise underneath the reporting, grab it all from the same clip or stagger the audio cuts with the video cuts so that the edits aren't as jarring.

These suggestions are just my opinion of course. All in all, I thought it was a well made video; it gave the facts and presented the story without overstaying it's welcome. I hope these suggestions can help you on some future projects.



macrumors 68020
Jul 16, 2002
Salt Lake City, UT
Hehe diamond. You posted that while I was writing and it seems we both said about the same thing. Great minds think alike I guess. :p



Apr 26, 2005
Los Angeles, CA
I agree with what has been said about the framing. I also noticed your vocals suffered from sibilance, so you might want to throw a de-esser on there or something.

Overall I think it's good!


macrumors 68020
Dec 17, 2002
I have television news experience and I agree with what the others said. The talking heads (especially the reporter's) are oddly framed. See how the news stations will give a small amount of headroom on top, with more space to show the reporter holding a mic and/or making hand gestures for emphasis. Keep in mind where the lower-third graphic will be on the screen and leave room for it. The legislator kind of had his chin covered by it.

Two things about camerawork: use a tripod whenever it's even remotely possible, even if it seems like a hassle. It really makes a big difference. Of course, some things happen too fast, or you have to move quickly or while walking to get the shot. Especially with so many videos being transmitted on the web, steady shots are critical to decent compression.

Some of them might have been better if they'd been a bit more dynamic. Maybe a zoom-out or a pan to give the viewer an idea of how many people were there. A camera move like that keeps the viewer's attention better than a static shot of a group of people, even though you're basically showing them the same thing. Try these moves at different speeds or framings because you never know which will work and which won't. Experiment with different shots. For example, what if you were limited to a piece that was half as long as what you came up with? How much would you be able to show effectively? Television news has very strict time constraints.

The others were right about the audio being a bit inconsistent. Some of the cuts were jarring. It's worth it to get a long chunk of background noise that you can fill in for the parts that don't have enough of it. The writing was pretty good, but try to give your narration some more emphasis. Right now it sounds kind of somber, a little resigned to what's going on. Give it some oomph by modulating your voice to convey the importance of the story. By that I don't mean you have to go all "Access Hollywood" about it, but it needs some gravitas. Watch "The NewsHour," PBS's nightly newscast for ideas on how to be emphatic without being over-the-top.

All in all, I think it was pretty good. Certainly better than most student journalists would come up with, especially if your field is journalism and not television broadcasting. Let's put it this way: when I was in college, I was graded on videos that looked worse than that. So keep at it.


macrumors member
May 30, 2007
Okay, here are some suggestions:

>Intro: I would retool the audio volume a bit. I would make the first two clips' volume a little louder, and then I would begin to lower it about ;15 before the third clip begins to about ;15 after the third clip begins. I would more the voiceover slightly more into the third clip.

>I agree with P-Worm and Diamond that the clip beginning at :20 was not centered well. I would step to the side just slightly, and I would make it so that the lower third graphic doesn't go over your face; I would've positioned the camera lower. However, you can't do much about that now, but if you needed to fix that, then I would scale back the lower thirds a little bit and place them a few pixels lower.

Other than that, I am very impressed! I could certainly see you on television. Good luck!