In this video, I lay out five simple steps that will guide you from doing something, to making a clear, concise video teaching others how to do that very thing. It’s fun, it’s easy, and you’ll go to sleep at night with a vague sense of accomplishment.
Before you start stressing out about what to do, remember that your video can be about anything. There are no right things, only things. Possible topics include:
You need to stop beating yourself up. This isn't that hard.
Over the long New Years weekend I slapped together all of the video footage that I'd taken with my iPhone over the previous year. I somehow ended up making a real-deal experimental film with close-up footage of insects and long shots of escalators. My friend Carl W was kind enough to help with an original soundtrack. Without music, this would be tough to watch.
UPDATE: This video bookends nicely with this video I made last year.
This past January I participated in the annual Fun-A-Day art show. The event takes place in cities across the country and the only requirement is that participants create one art piece per day for the entire month of January. For my project, I created a daily animation based on the most notable thing that happened each day. At the end of the month I had thirty-one very short films that I stitched together into a silent movie that was shown on a loop at the Rock Paper Scissors Gallery in Oakland.
For the web version of the video, I asked my friend Carl W to help with a soundtrack. I was basically asking for Carl's interpretation of my interpretation of my month. It could have been a huge mess, but Carl came through with a big song that gives the animation some emotional depth. Slam dunk.
UPDATE: Here are some pictures from the show on February 4. (Photos courtesy of Nick L, the show's curator):
On a recent visit to the San Francisco Art Institute, I found a family of pigeons aimlessly wandering around an art gallery. I used my iPhone to collect some video footage and later added unnecessarily suspenseful music (by Andrew Christopher Smith / CC BY-NC-SA 3.0).
Scientists say that after a catastrophic nuclear attack, pigeons will be the only animals left on earth. If, God forbid, something like that ever happens, this is what a leisurely Saturday will be like in a post-human world ruled by pigeons.
Edited found footage, 500 x 400 pixels, black and white, 2010
Over the last week I've been bombarded with advertisements for "Legends of the Guardian", a new movie about brave owls who wear costumes and play with swords. The trailer for the movie is terrible, so I made a better version starring real owls.
I like owls. Why can't Hollywood just make a normal owl movie?
It's been just 24 hours since the "Joy of Christmas" was released to the public. 24 hours too long! I proudly present the "Secret Santas Remix". The new version features special guest stars, a revamped soundtrack, and a dramatically shorter run-time. It's the perfect gift to enjoy with your friends. From all of us, to all of you: Merry Christmas!
Super 8 film, digitally edited, 4:25 minutes, 2008
This film was made for an experimental film class in 2008. It stars Teresa U.
I'd been trying out my rental camera by filming scenes in my neighborhood and creating stop-motion animations of various objects in my apartment. This was my best attempt at pulling all of the footage together into a single project.
You can tell this is serious artwork because it has classical music.
UPDATE: I just realized that with the recent transition to digital TV, the static featured in the film is now a thing of the past. If you are reading this in the future, the static is what used to happen to TV shows when the electrical beams got scrambled in the atmosphere.
Short documentary, digital video, 13 seconds, color, 2009
My sister, Anna U, and friend Julia W recently visited the Bay Area for a long weekend. On the trip, Anna purchased a gag pen in Chinatown that delivers a shock when you press the button at the top of it. There were large warnings on the packaging about the dangers posed to people with heart conditions and pacemakers.
Julia filmed this short documentary about the pen and its capabilities.
Director: Julia W Starring: John U, Anna U, and Aaron C Setting: A bar in Oakland. Three friends discuss the limits of the electrical shock pen. Transcript:
Anna: ...yeah it does Aaron [offscreen]: Are you sure? John: I think you have to make a connection with your own body. [mumbles] So try pushing it. Anna: What? John: You can't shock me. Aaron: Yes you can. [A powerful shock is delivered.] John: GOD DAMMIT Anna: [laughter] Aaron: [muffled] I told you!
Bonus Feature: Here is the climax in slow motion:
UPDATE: I still think I'm right about needing to make a circuit in order to deliver a shock. It looks like the only reason I got shocked is because the side of my hand touched the pen. Can anyone who passed high school physics back me up?
Short film, original score, digital video, color, 1:21 minutes, 2009
My friend Nick S is in the rock band Free Energy. He and the other dudes in the band created this video to teach people how to properly dispose of old Christmas trees. Gather some friends, chop up some wood, and kick back by a homemade campfire. I love how these guys think.