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Thread: Looking for reviews

  1. Default Looking for reviews

    Hello Everyone,

    I recently completed this short film, and am looking for some reviews. I am hoping to one day produce a short film for the NFB (national film board) so I need to step up my game. I have a few concerns, but I don't want to steer anyone in a particular direction. I am looking for diverse feedback.

    In Search of the Salmon World - YouTube

    This piece if best watched in High Def.

    Anyway, look forward to hearing your comments. For editing I used FCP. A lot of the slow motion, as well as the titles were done in motion 4. Songs mixed in soundtrack pro.

  2. #2


    I didn't like the opening sequence. I liked the shot of the bear but I didn't like the wobbly camera bit or the page fold transition. I think Geoff and Martin did a good job in front of the camera and Birgit did a good job with the narration. I think the piece needs trimming down, a lot. There is a section at around 3:30 where nothing happens and there is no sound for about 25 seconds.

    I could be a much better piece if it was trimmed down to 4-5 mins.

  3. Default

    Midnight Blue,
    Thank you for taking the time to review the piece. It is amazing how many people watch it and don't provide any feedback. The "wobbly" camera was left in intentionally because the bear was moving toward me and I got scared. I wanted to convey this element of fear in the film, but as you, and others have mentioned, it just seems like bad camera work. Good eye on the long pause. We had more green screen stuff, but decided at the last minute to cut it out. Maybe I should throw it back in. I was also concerned about the fluctuating audio. As well, I nearly took the "big steelhead" sequence out entirely. I wasn't convinced it added anything to the film.
    I was also told that the mask I used in motion in the intro wasn't neatly fit to the characters. I got a little lazy there, and being new to motion, there were a few gaps.

    What kind of transition would you suggest instead of a page fold? I agree that it isn't the most visually appealing. Kind of looks like a cheap commercial.

  4. #4


    I did get the idea with the bear and being scared but then going back to another shot of the bear like that spoiled the initial idea. This is the kind of thing that needs trimming out. I think it would be better with one or the other but not both. Editing is often brutal when you have two good shots of the same thing you as the editor have to decide which one to use by evaluating which will add most to the piece you are making. I did notice the dodgy masking but didn't want to over whelm you with to much. If you need to stretch the piece out because of instructions from the director or client you could always add some slow mo with emotional music.

    I've always be one for just using a fade or a straight cut. And only use other transitions if I felt it was really appropriate to the piece.

  5. Default

    Midnight Blue,
    Thanks again for all the help. After listening to your suggestions, I am going to re-cut the piece and see what it looks like. Your observation that it is too long seems to agree with the fact that on u-tube, very few viewers go back for a second look. I will take out the first bear shot, (there are actually several cross fades in there) and simply go with the bear standing. I think that is the more powerful shot. The portion where there is little action or sound was meant to show our frustration at not getting the shots we wanted, however, even to me it seems a little tedious, so I will cut it down to a minimum. I think I will also take the big steelhead sequence out. The terrible audio is just something I can't get over. I am struggling with what to cut out of the underwater sequence, as I wanted to include even more. As for the poor mask in motion, I think I will leave it. There must be a better way to do it though. I am sure I remember seeing someone using an "edge finder" of some sort, rather than tracing it out point by point as I did.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Surrey, UK
    Blog Entries


    Hi Jim,

    I've moved this thread to the "User Videos" Section because this section is dedicated to feedback which is what you said you want.

    Unusually for me I didn't see it as too long. I didn't really expect to be interested in the material, but I did find myself being drawn in and was quite happy to watch to the end. So well done on making a very watchable film.

    A suggestion for showing time passing/frustration. Have a locked off camera and shoot yourselves in a number of different positions within the frame. Then edit together short (three second) clips either with a fade to black or a cross-fade between them.

    Well done for trying out the green screened images of Geoff and Martin - but I'm not entirely sure it worked. It may simply have been their positioning on the screen but something just didn't "feel" quite right to me.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    San Diego, Ca, USA


    I like the intro but after that, I felt like the paceing slow down alot.
    Shots look really good. Exposure and composition.
    I would recommend giving a little more though on audio. There was alot of ambient sound that would of sounded good with some low music.
    I wasn't into those greenscreen pop ins. I think it looked a little cheese plus, they weren't that important since your already giving the visual. It's not my style but if it is yours, I recommend making the transition a little more animated and add some swashes/sound effects to the transition.
    I stopped watching at about 4mins cuase I felt it was going to take to long and it wasn't going anywhere.
    Another thing I recommend to everyone is making all your text in photoshop and saving as a .png file, to make a transparent layer. Editing programs are really weak at letting you modiefy your text.

    I liked what I saw but I just felt it was too slow. I hope that helped a bit.

  8. #8


    i also would like people to view my art video created in total with 10 art students. it is based on our fears and is a way to introduce ourselves to others through video. thank you if you take a look!

    {Link deleted - it has nothing to do with this thread]
    Last edited by TimStannard; 10-14-2011 at 03:56 PM.

  9. Default

    Hello Everyone,

    I must say that I am most impressed with the participation in this forum. Tim, thank you for your kind words, and for taking the time to view the film. This was my first attempt at green screen, so I went back, and compared my efforts to those I have seen in the past. It seems as though in my video the "character" is far smaller than is customary. As well, the eyeline might be incorrect. Or perhaps it just isn't the right timing. I did insert clip changes behind the speaker while he was on screen, so perhaps this was distracting. Solo, thank you for the complements on the shot composition and exposure. I had some trouble with exposure at the canyon location, and actually blew out a bunch of beautiful footage of jumping salmon. In the hunt for more detail in the shadows I ruined several shots. Also, when I auto white balanced my camera it gave me a reading of 11 000 k, which wound up looking weird. I manually changed it to 9000, which seemed to help, but I have never seen such high temperature values.
    You seemed to stop watching at about the same spot as midnight blue noticed the lag in action, so perhaps the commonality is telling me something. If anyone is interested, I could post episode 2 (when I produce it) in progress, scene by scene. 30 seconds or so. I could then incorporate feedback before I compressed the whole piece.

    Once again, thanks everyone for the feedback.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Warsop, Nottinghamshire.
    Blog Entries


    Overall - not a bad video by any means - but - a little 'spit and polish' required here and there I think. The opening does have a somewhat dated look for me, but I do have an inherent hate of cheesy transitions. I think the male voiceover was slightly louder than the female (certainly one to the other at the beginning did seem so) and after that opening sequence I thought it settled down quite nicely. Good combination of shots - interesting to see how you got what you did too, and the underwater scenes near the end were close to amazing - those fish close up - wow.

    The long (18 seconds - I counted) period of silence at 3:26 puzzled me. Not even ambient sound - and there was a sort of 'crash' into the fish jumping - I'd probably have used that time to voice over an intro as to what was coming.

    But really - I'm nit picking - great video man - keep at it, edit maybe slightly tighter, check sounds before rendering and I'm sure they'll get better.

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