workflow help needed for videography/photography website

Discussion in 'Web Design and Development' started by rawdawg, May 26, 2009.

  1. rawdawg macrumors 6502

    Jan 7, 2009
    For 2 months I've been spending hours a day trying to understand web design. I am a videographer/photographer with desperate need of a web site I can edit/manage as I build more material.

    I attempted to ask for help here many times while pursuing this but am afraid of appearing as a newbie who doesn't search the forums. But I've looked everywhere and am simply overwhelmed by what seems to be a lacking standard for what is the right way of going about this. Being a Mac guy I always have Final Cut Pro as being the "right way" and it's manual as being the guide. But my hunt for the right way to go about web design has ended up with so many options I'm lost.

    It does appear people generally agree h.264 in a flash wrapper appears to be the way to go. I've even seen tutorials on how to do it in iWeb. QuickTime on the other hand offers their easy "Export for Web" setting but I haven't been able to find out the specifics of those settings (i.e. one-pass or 2-pass encoding, etc.). But even more frustrating is getting it to work properly. Using the 'easy' export for web, I drag the reference movie to where I want it and after I publish it's supposed to choose which bitrate version to use depending on the connection speed. The choices are desktop, optamized for iphone (size I assume), or 3G. Online it always uses the desktop high-bandwith version despite the size I make it and the 3G one simply doesn't work. I feel there is a step I'm missing in getting it to work with iWeb and I'm confused why Apple wouldn't explain this better.

    A huge frustration is just all the different ways of going about this. I know they each have different advantageous but come one now, there has to be something we agree on! Exporting itself has been a nightmare for me as I pleaded for help here. If I could buy you a beer for advice there too I would....

    As for building a website. Do you iWeb to not be very good? I've seen so many suggestions (just looked at DVKitchen today) but nobody's agreed upon which is best.

    It appears I have a lot of questions and I don't want to keep coming here with every little thing. It seems everyone seems to know something I don't. I've read the stickies here and a million other places but haven't found clear cut advice on how to proceed.

    If someone could please take the time to help me I would gratefully appreciate it!
  2. rawdawg thread starter macrumors 6502

    Jan 7, 2009
    Well, after researching this all night I now realize it doesn't work that simply. The "export for web" feature creates HTML that you have to manually edit and insert to the iWeb generated page. It's a little annoying this wasn't explained clearly and odd this feature wouldn't be easily incorporated into iWeb being this is Apple we are talking about.

    So that answers that concern. But what I really want to know is what is the best way to go about presenting video content!? Seems like a question that has been asked a lot yet still it hasn't been answered.

    As I stated before it appeared most agreed that Flash (or H.264 in flash) seems to be the most compatible. Does everyone think it also provides the best image quality and playback performance? I'm sick of wasting time researching and learning what ends up being unfavorable methods.

    What is better:
    Having the QuickTime "export for web" advantage of dedecting internet speed and providing a better sized version of the movie
    Using flash or H.264 in a flash........?

    Or can you do BOTH with Flash!? What should I do?! I simply want the best possible option.
  3. ChrisA macrumors G4

    Jan 5, 2006
    Redondo Beach, California
    You have to define "best". Best from who's perspective? The best looking site and the easiest to use site with the best quality video is going to be very time consuming to build. A lot of hand work will be required to find "stills" from your video and turn them into clickable images and you have to make multiple bit rate versions of your video and so on. Lots of work.

    The simplest thing is to just put all the video files in one folder and let the web server create a default index page. That would take exactly zero effort to put together.

    You will have to decide how much time you can spend and then say "What is the best I can do in XX hours?"

    One good plan might be to doownload and of the pre-built free "gallery" type web sites. This will be a bunch of PHP or Perl code that you can upload to a web server. THen your site will work a bit like any of the comercial photo hostig sites. There are several of these you can get for free.

    Here are a few of them.
  4. rawdawg thread starter macrumors 6502

    Jan 7, 2009
    Thank you, ChrisA, very much for your reply! I knew from the start my question was a rhetorical one... in that it begs the question "it depends"...., sigh...

    I'm not trying to create a masterpiece of programming like website for a Hollywood blockbuster. By best I mean something clean and elegant and plays videos on a page with excellent quality and playback at a reasonable size (although 1280x720 would be great for the HD stuff I have).

    I already expected and have preformed significant 'hand work'. To edit my films took months sometimes anyhow. It's just what good are they if I don't have a website to display them. Esthetically I want something like a nice photographers website, except with videos and stills (seperate pages perhaps).

    I've even tried wordpress and wasted countless hours not understanding how to do it. It's like everyone knows of some secret manual because for the life of me I can't figure out how to do anything despite my trying for weeks.

    I do thank you for your suggestions and will look into it. As far as how much time (x hours) I would like to put into this. As many as it takes as long as I'm actually making progress. I've wasted 2 months and haven't even figured out how to put my name on the chalkboard. This web stuff is insanely un-standardized. So go ahead and hit me with the BEST way to do it so I know which route to take and I'll do it! Thanks

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