The Art of the Business

A blog dedicated to artists who are serious about their business.

FLIP-ing out October 12, 2009

Filed under: Flip cam,Marketing with YouTube — Rebecca Coleman @ 10:30 am
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Here in Canada, we are celebrating thanksgiving today. It’s also my dad’s birthday, so as I write this post, I’m running back and forth to the kitchen, checking on my pies and frosting the cake.

On Friday, I finally invested in a Flip video camera. Yes, I know, I’m a bit behind the times: the Flip was originally introduced in May of 2007, but I had some other tech tools (like a new Mac) that I needed to invest in before I got to a video camera. My plan for the next series of posts is to talk about the Flip, how it works, and how you can use it to create videos to market your work.

First off, a little about the camera. The Flip is the darling of bloggers everywhere because it is so uncomplicated. It’s small: only a little larger than my BB, and has 4 MB of storage (enough for 2 hours of video). It shoots at 5.6 µm pixels, and saves the video as MV4.

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Why is all this important? Because you want video quality that is high enough so that you get good colours and resolution (read: no pixelization), but is not so high that it takes hours to download to your computer or upload to the web.

The coolest thing by far about the Flip is the pop-out USB connection. No more searching for cables! Anywhere you have your computer and an internet connection, you can shoot and have it on the web within minutes.

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The other wonderful thing about this camera is its pricetag: my Flip Ultra cost $168. The HD model will run you about $250. Here in Canada, they are available only at Wal-Mart.

Stay tuned for more FLIP-ing out. I’ll document my experiments as I learn to use the camera, shoot and edit video, and use it to market your work.

In the mean time, my son lost his first tooth on Saturday, so I thought it only fitting that my first Flip cam video be devoted to that (I know, it has nothing to do with arts marketing, but the timing was right!).

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Uses of video: Blog intro August 18, 2009

Filed under: Blogging,Marketing with YouTube — Rebecca Coleman @ 7:14 am
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I’ve been thinking so much lately about how to start incorporating video into my blog. I just got a new Mac with a built-in webcam, so it’s not implausible to think that I might start doing some vlog posts at some point.

But what I’ve been really wanting is to have a video with me introducing my blog. You see, while you might be able to get a sense of who I am from my written voice, I really want folks out there to get a sense of my energy.

So, yesterday, I asked Simon to shoot a video introduction to my blog for me. The results are below. I’d love to hear what you think, and if you think this might be something you could apply to your own business. This video is on YouTube, but will live permanently on my “About” page.

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Using moving pictures to promote your show January 23, 2009

This week, I’ve been writing posts on the topic of visuals to accompany your publicity campaign. We talked about the two photo shoots you need for your show, the publicity shot, and the production photo.

Today, I want to talk about moving pictures. While it’s true that theatre does not translate well on video, many companies are taking advantage of new, and more accessible technology to help get the word out about their shows.

If you haven’t taken advantage of The Next Stage’s  video listing services yet, you should. It’s free, easy, and fast. He will meet with you, and then he shoots you, speaking directly to camera, about why the  audience should come see your show. Within the day, it’s up on The Next Stage Video Listings page, and available to you through YouTube. You can embed it to your Facebook event page. This kind of video works because people are very passionate about their shows, and your passion while speaking about it can be very contagious.

If you want to try to get your play featured on the evening news, you need b-roll. B-roll is, essentially, footage of your show that you supply to TV news stations, in hopes that they will do a story on it. Because the quality of your footage needs to be high, this is not something you can just do yourself, unless you are a professional cameraman or director. You need to hire a professional.

The key to B-roll is to keep it short–I recommend under 3 minutes. Chances are, if you are lucky enough to actually get your footage on the air, only about 10-30 seconds will air. You may want to supplement your footage with short interview segments by directors or stars.

Here are some examples of how you can use video to promote your show:

Bard on the Beach
Stuff 2 Do
The Ash Girl
(this is a show I worked on last year–we shot a couple of video trailers for it)
If you are doing a lot of videos online, you can set up your own ‘channel’. Check out this example from the National Arts Centre.


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