Your self-produced newscast

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by iMacZealot, Jan 31, 2008.

  1. iMacZealot macrumors 68020

    Mar 11, 2005
    Are you interested in TV news and news production? Are you an aspiring journalist, editor, producer, etc? How far along are you?

    I'm not that far along. Every once in a while, I'll do a fast paced 90-180 second news briefing. I paraphrase stories from CNN, format news scripts in Word in a two column format I've seen from my times in television studios, and I run it off Prompt! 7 on my old iMac as I record myself in front of my green screen on my HV20. After putting it together in FCP, I've made this in less than 6 hours.

    The main thing that bothers me and holds me back is the fact that I can't get any corresponding video footage. Also, I don't think the presentation as a whole is that great, but I'm working on it. I'm thinking about making a documentary about the music industry and illegal downloading, which I could do a good job of.

    What do you think of what I'm doing? What are you doing?
  2. kjwebb macrumors regular

    May 19, 2003
    Just a few production tips.

    Overall, you could have the makings of a good product. There are a few things though that destroy or damage the production.

    Firstly, try going closer (ie. have more of a medium shot compared to a wide shot) and adjust the camera so there isn't a huge amount of headroom (the space above your head). This might also give you better sound if your just using the internal microphone on the camera.

    With the sound, it was a bit hard to tell what you were saying. The best thing to do is either get a cheap lapel (wired is usually cheaper, but try for wireless). Also, try and have the music faded down a bit more.

    The graphics were okay, although I don't see the point of the last one. The intro graphics didn't fully make sense (90 SECOND WORLD).

    Try and experiment with camera angles, graphics and the sound and you will get something that looks quite good. There can be a far bit of learning, but you are on the right track.
  3. HCK macrumors newbie

    Feb 1, 2008
    Tokyo, Japan
    Yeah, your sound needs work, but to be honest, that's the most common weak spot in indy production (good sound design in general).

    I agree that you have too much headroom. You should be closer to the camera as well. News reporting in an intimate experience. As an anchor, you're trying to build trust between yourself and the viewer, so the closer you are to the camera (not TOO close) and the way you present things really impact the opinion the viewer will have of you.

    Also, instead of doing many stories, focus on maybe 3 stories you want to tell the viewer about and work on re-writing those so that they are interesting. Limit your newcast to around 1:15 or less. The important thing is to give the most amount of information in an entertaining way in the least amount of time.

    It's good to see someone your age take such a keen interest in broadcast news! Good luck in the future!
  4. puckhead193 macrumors G3


    May 25, 2004
    i liked the end slogan "you are now up to date" very nice
  5. zioxide macrumors 603


    Dec 11, 2006

    That's the first thing you need. I could barely hear what you said. It was way too soft and there was too much echo.

    Also, like it was said above, the framing was pretty bad.


    There's an example of how you might want to frame it if you're going to use a graphic in the corner.

    Also, make your lower 3rd go across the whole screen. Having just a floating text box looks weird.
  6. iMacZealot thread starter macrumors 68020

    Mar 11, 2005
    I agree; whenever I have audio of just someone speaking, every camera I've owned does a terrible job of picking it up. This was shot on an HV20, which is better than others I've owned, but it's still pretty bad. I've always planned to get an auxiliary microphone, and I really should now because this is my first camera with an external mic plug (believe it or not.) I saw a general purpose mic at SonyStyle last weekend about 2/3 the size of my fist for $99, but if I can get a lavaliere for $35 like the link above, I may just get that.

    I think I'm going to fade out the vamp music after the bumper in my next one. It was a little too distracting.

    I also agree with the framing; I recorded it that way so I could scale the video to a bigger size if I needed to (which I did), but I just never got around to it.

    I agree; 90 Second World was a stupid name, and that logo was one I made in about 90 seconds in PowerPoint. I made another video last week similar to this one, and for the bumpers, I made the motion backdrop white, and the program title, which I changed to "First News", wiped onto the center of the screen and was the same format as my lower thirds except it was larger and white text on red.

    What do you mean by floating? My lower thirds were imitations of the ones seen on the international feed of CNN. I like the simplicity of them; some lower thirds on newscasts are overly distracting and impractical (Fox News Channel comes to mind.)

    My format is inspired from this. Every story there has a maximum of two or three sentences, which may be a little too fast-paced. I've made one of these about every weekend, so I'm starting to work on my next one now. I was planning on making this one a little longer. The one I made last weekend (not this one) also included weather, but my problem was that they were current conditions, so it went out of date quickly.

    Also, what do you think of my backdrop? It's just a photo of Manhattan I found on flickr and I added some black color stripes to it to make it look like a window. Some people have told me that it looks surprisingly real, while others have said that it's unsurprisingly fake. I don't usually like motion graphics keyed in behind a person, so I try and make it look like a real backdrop, but it's hard to find any backdrops, let alone believable ones.

    Thanks. I'm not really sure what I'm going to do. I've always had an interest in broadcasting and from both sides of the camera, but I also do a lot of work with bands and videos of live performances. I've tried doing short films, but I always get frustrated at not being able to come up with a good plot or being short on resources (such as actors.) My sister is majoring in journalism and she's likely going to intern for the ABC or CNN bureau in Rome.

    Thanks for the input!
  7. jayeskreezy macrumors 65816

    Mar 3, 2005
    also...for most newscasts the anchor is sitting down
  8. Tilpots macrumors 601


    Apr 19, 2006
    Carolina Beach, NC
    Hey Bud,

    If you really want to get in the news biz, start writing your own stories. Go out in your community and find a topic that means something to you. Being in journalism is like shining a flashlight in the dark. You're holding the flashlight, show us what's out there. Anyone can re-hash the news. Only a select few can shine the light where it's needed.

    As for your production, I agree with the others, audio and framing are your weak spots. If production is what you're in to, work on the these things. If journalism is what you're in to, work on your stories. Make us want to listen to a topic that we don't know much about. Make us care about something we have no reason to care about. Make it matter to the viewer, and you'll go a long way. Good luck. It's a tough business to get in to, but if you can tell good stories about the world around you, people will listen. And you'll always have a job!
  9. iMacZealot thread starter macrumors 68020

    Mar 11, 2005
    I agree. I'm thinking about producing a documentary about the music industry and music distribution, as it's a subject I'm interested in, am familiar with, and know some people working in the field. I'm also thinking about inviting my most opinionated friends over and participating in a panel-styled talk show over current events topics. Good ideas? No?

    Yeah, this I made quickly and I didn't have anything else. In the one I made yesterday, I had a podium, but was still standing up. I need to find a good chair.
  10. huntercr macrumors 65816

    Jun 6, 2006
    Hey man, I admire what you're doing. I don't have anything to add about the on camera stuff. I think people have covered that pretty well. What version of FCP are you using? I suggest you use Livetype for your titling and lower 3rd stuff. What you had seemed, well... flat. There's some great tutorials for creating "news" lower 3rd animations etc out on the web with Livetype ( especially the latest version ). Google for it. I think you'll be happier. For everything but long vertical crawls, it's great!

    Anyway, keep up the hard work. You're off to a great start!
  11. iMacZealot thread starter macrumors 68020

    Mar 11, 2005
    I have FCS 2.

    I'd love to learn how to Motion, seeing as it's been sitting in my dock doing close to nothing, but it seems really complicated, even when I mess around with it. I'm an experienced LiveType user and know how to do a lot in it, so maybe I'll use it next time. Like I've said, I don't like news programs like ones on Fox News where the graphics become too distracting, but I could make it work. My lower thirds on this project are just ripoffs of the ones on CNN International.
  12. notatechsav macrumors newbie

    May 12, 2011

    i see this is kind of old, but i had a question. do you use a program for making your newscast or can you just use imovie? i'm not really a tech person so if anyone can help! thanks
  13. macnews macrumors 6502a


    May 12, 2003
    He was using Final Cut Studio to edit his video footage. You can do basic stuff in iMovie as well, just depends how fancy you want to get. I know back before Apple changed to iMovie'08, CNN reporters in the middle east were using iMovie for their brief shots. Not sure you could do the same now, but basic news cast is possible.
  14. MovieCutter macrumors 68040


    May 3, 2005
    Washington, DC
    We use FCP in the field at Al Jazeera English.
  15. notatechsav macrumors newbie

    May 12, 2011
    can you do split screens in imovie? or would i need final cut for that?

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