Digital Assets Ready. Bring on Sophie!

I’m just getting ready to finally start using Sophie. I wanted to have all of my digital assets (a rather unfortunate choice of terms credited to the Center for Digital Storytelling) before I tackle a new editing interface.

I wanted to use several on-screen video captures in order to show the software in action. I used a product called SnagIt. It’s relatively cheap ($40) and is really easy to use once you get the concept straight. One of the biggest things to get right is that when you’re doing a screen capture of a user-defined area, you need to make sure that you set those dimensions to match the output ratio of your video. Otherwise, things will get scrunched up. I didn’t realize this little fact until I had already captured most of my video. Fortunately, having an interface scrunched out of proportion (mildly) isn’t nearly so distracting as when it happens to animate objects like a person or a pet. Otherwise, it’s great.

The other part of the process I just completed was to capture some video of myself introducing the text and also a short transition within the piece. I used Adobe Premiere Pro to capture the video. I’ve used Premiere elements, MovieMaker, and a Sony product before. From what I can tell, there’s not a lot of difference, and they’re all relatively straight forward.

However, I had some of the same frustrations I had with the voiceover, as I was trying to figure out what I wanted while I was in the process of recording it, experimenting with different inflections and subtleties as I went along.

I have to say that’s a lot easier to do in audio software. When you cut something from the middle, it’s usually pretty seamless, unless you have recognizable background noise (anything but a steady hum). When you try to cut video, the image jumps around. It’s distracting. So I had to work on getting it in one take. Over and over and over again. Yikes. That took forever. I also am curious how the framing of my mug is going to work. We’ll see.

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  1. This sounds like a great project Trauman. I’m looking forward to seeing it!

    I’ve played around in Sophie a bit and I think it’s an exciting environment. I’ve also had some frustrations with freezing/crashing on the mac, but it’s lightyears past the first release of Sophie, which I thought was this nice idea but terrible software.

    I’m so glad you’re here at DMAC!

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