The Bollywood Bounce is a Stop Motion Choreography video produced using 30 dance move photos from the Maharaja Palcace in Mysore India, which were then imported into Powerpoint and used to create a stop motion choreography sequence to the song Paper Planes by M.I.A.
The Making of The Bollywood Bounce
1. My photographer shot 30 photos of poses at the palace. We tried to vary the photos by being polar opposites. Like if one photo I stretched right, the other one I would stretch left.
2. I imported all of these photos, and then loaded the song Paper Planes into Camtasia for Mac.
3. I took key parts of the song and broke them down into 8-16 beat measures, then sequenced 4 or so photos in Powerpoint, to repeat in a pattern that matched the lyrics.
4. Using 86 BPM for the song (which I found by googling it), I set up each slide in Powerpoint to advance for either 0.35 seconds (for 8th notes) or 0.69 seconds (for longer quarter notes or pauses).
5. After exporting the movie from Powerpoint and syncing it to the song in Camtasia, I then copied and pasted it in other similar song segments.
6. I repeated this process over and over until the song was complete, and for reference, I did delete a whole verse and chorus from this version of the track so that the video would be more concise and easy to watch.
Below is an example of how I used Powerpoint to sequence 8 beats of the song “The Bollywood Bounce”, a stop motion animation video filmed at the Maharaja Palace in Mysore India, just outside of Bangalore, during the Bangalore Boon.Read More
Google’s Doodle for Les Paul has inspired songs from aspiring interactive musicians all over the world for the last 12 hours. When Google updated their homepage Doodle with an interactive interpretation of a Les Paul guitar people started creating any and every song they could think of in a standard major chord – like Redemption Song by Bob Marley, Ode to Joy by Beethoven, Paparazzi by Lady Gaga, Here Come the Sun and Hey Jude by the Beatles, and who knows what else hasn’t been discovered to play yet.
Here’s my contribution, a Google Doodle cover of Wish You Were Here by Pink Floyd.Read More
YouTube has rolled out movie rentals, and as the world’s most visited online video site, seems to be in prime position to take down NetFlix. What do you think?Read More
When Charlie Sheen went crazy, web content producers had a feeding frenzy of link bait and viral memes related to his shenanigans.
One of my favorite traffic winners from this frenzy was Yowie, an interactive video chat room. Two comedians from the Upright Citizens Brigade scene launched a marathon “Two and a Half Days of Two and a Half Men” campaign using the Yowie platform to live cast themselves watching episodes of the show, while onlookers participated through live chat, watched the show along with them, and even joined the show as a video chat guest in some cases.
I was so impressed with some of the advances in interactive video Yowie has made (in comparison to GotoMeeting, Skype, ChatRoulette, etc.) that I had to hear more from Yowie Founder Jamie Snider about their plans for us marketers, creatives and entrepreneurs.
Rather than write out our conversation, I interviewed Jamie through the Yowie platform, and screen captured select video snippets which are embedded below. If you’d rather watch the whole 45 minute archive of our interview, awkward silence and all, visit it here http://www.yowie.com/Show/2mi.
Otherwise, take a few minutes to watch the clips below and learn more about how Yowie will change the face of interactive video. Below the videos are links to several comedians and celebrities’ archived livecasts on Yowie.
How was SXSW?
What happens to live video chats when they’re over?
What was the inspiration for Yowie?
How are people using Yowie?
Yowie vs. Chatroulette
Using Yowie for Marketing
Sharing Video with Yowie
Recent Celebrity Sightings on Yowie
Dianna Agron (Glee): http://www.yowie.com/show/245
Amy Poehler (SNL and Parks and Rec): http://www.yowie.com/show/21k
Paul Scheer (The League): http://www.yowie.com/show/19k
Paul Tompkins (VH1): http://www.yowie.com/show/12j
Marc Maron (WTF Podcast): http://www.yowie.com/show/1siRead More
To get over his fear of flying, he spent 30 days living on an AirTran plane.
To prove that New Yorkers really are nice people, he was physically carried by 155 city-dwellers over 9 miles through the island of Manhattan.
He’s lived for a week in an IKEA, visited every Starbuck’s in Manhattan in 24 hours, and convinced 95 mayors across the US to grant him the keys to their respective cities.
And incredibly, he’s built an audience of millions for his unique hybrid of guerrilla marketing and viral videos through media coverage and appearances on Jay Leno, ABC, Fox and CBS, The Today Show, Huffington Post and the LA Times, to name a few.
Brands clamor for stage time in his wildly popular one-man productions, yet he manages to stay down to earth, doing it all for the love of the creative process, and making time for fans, friends and family along the way. I caught up with Mark recently for a phone interview to learn what makes him tick and how you might go about achieving similar results.
Read on below for the interview and samples of his viral life-as-artwork projects.
Why do you do the things you do?
I’ve been doing comedy for years, and I’ve always been more into big concepts, huge, grandiose ideas. I love falling in love with an idea that excites me, and then, the challenge of pulling it off. People saying to me, “there’s no way you can do that,” and then launching into this process; sometimes it’s a week, sometimes a month, but it’s always a real whirlwind journey.
Once it became easy to post videos online, I realized video was the perfect platform for expressing kind of thinking, this kind of artform. It’s a bonus too that with video, I don’t really have to answer to anybody. I do like collaborating, but I like working on my own stuff. Standup I enjoy, but only somewhat, and with sketch comedy, I’ve seen a lot of people that don’t get along. My projects just suit my creative personality really well.
What are the most memorable moments from your various projects?
I love people’s response to what I do, especially kids. It’s funny, parents will email and say “my kid really loves your videos,” and I’m kind of proud to know my stuff’s clean, its universal.
After I lived on the AirTran plane a lot of parents told me their kids were trying to imitate me on plane trips. I did a Guns and Roses project, playing at CBGBs, a lot of kids came out with their parents – so unexpected, and just from one small magazine mention. Since then it’s just been growing: mentions by Jimmy Kimmel, Rolling Stone, Esquire – one of my projects was the #1 most remarkable thing in culture that week by Esquire.
What is your relationship like with the brands you choose to highlight in your projects?
I have a good relationships with the brands, the vast majority get what I do, and give me a lot of creative freedom. They understand the video has to be entertaining and feel like a natural fit. If not, it looks like a commercial, and people aren’t going to pay attention. Sometimes brands come and bring an idea, and if I need to be honest and say that’s not going to work, that’s what I’ll do. I’ve had plenty of projects come my way and the people behind them ask me “will this get TV coverage?”, and I’ve said no and had to turn them down.
Truth is, though, my ideas never start with a brand in mind – I just want to do something entertaining. Something that would make me and my friends laugh. My video ideas are not driven by money, and I’m not driven by doing this for money, it’s really about the artistic process.
Who/what are your creative inspirations?
There’s really not many that do anything similar to what I do – these types of videos. I love comedians and other creative people that take risks, really think out of the box. I love David Letterman, he was a real innovator of comedy in the 80s. If you look at the last 20-30 years, I think he influenced comedy more than anyone. Also a huge fan of Fred Rogers, from the kids’ show Mr. Rogers. Garry Shandling, Woody Allen, and the Saturday Night Live writer Robert Smigel. [Side note: Smigel is known for sketches like The Ambiguously Gay Duo and TV Funhouse, as well as the iconic Triumph the Insult Comic Dog of Conan O'Brien fame] – yet he’s amazingly humble. I’ve had the chance to meet him several times, and that’s an incredible feeling when you get to know your idol and they turn out to be a really great person.
What would you say to someone who wants to do what you do – what are the steps, what is the right approach?
It took me a long time to get here. I had day jobs in TV for ten years and was doing my comedy at night – probably a total of 20-30 jobs to support me before my passion could pay the bills. For a while I was a doorman at a comedy club and there were so many people trying to make it, really going on this emotional rollercoaster. One I specifically remember was Dane Cook – people don’t see what went into this success, how much time and energy he put into his comedy. Dave Chappelle used to be in the club until 3 am and never wanted to leave, doing multiple sets throughout the night. For most of the people you admire, you’ve gotta realize it didn’t happen overnight.
Look at Adam Sandler, and what he’s doing with his Happy Madison crew – his high school and college friends. Look how far he’s come with this tight knit group of people that believe in him. I recommend getting a trusted group of advisors, it can take you in amazing directions and save you when you’re blinded by an idea you think is good that really isn’t. I made a list of everyone I knew and approached people about helping me out, then weeded out the people that weren’t serious. In the end I found a group of people that really believed in me. At the same time, it’s really important to be nurturing those friendships and giving back. I love helping people out when I can, I think it really pays off in the long run.
Then, try to pick projects you really care about. Its so obvious when you watch something that’s not inspired, like you’re just trying to get noticed, or make a career move. I have no problem coming up with 50 – 100 ideas, but then you have to wait a day or two and see what 1 or 2 ideas really feel strong. My criteria is pretty simple. Does this really make me laugh? Is this really entertaining video content I would want to watch? If so, I write up the premise and get feedback from that group of comedy friends on what would work.
Also, if you want to be successful with this kind of entertainment, you have to build up your social media profile. I’m fortunate because my videos stand out, that’s the reason for a lot of media coverage, but in general you have to set yourself apart from what others are doing. And your reach is what helps get brands on board. I had to get a few videos picking up media coverage before any brands wanted to work with me. I’m much better with traditional media, getting TV or newspaper, but everyone’s a little different in terms of what kind of coverage they’re looking for.
Finally, and maybe most importantly, you have to put a pen to paper and write out goals. You have to have a clear vision of where you want to be and how you’re going to get there. If you don’t there’s just a lot of hoping and waiting. Most of the people I admire had strong visions and set huge goals. Its good to have a 3-5 year plan, and then be flexible with how it might turn out.
For more about Mark and his work visit his website markmalkoff.comRead More
Did All That Really Happen in 2010?
That’s what my friend said when she saw the first draft of 2010: A Search Odyssey.
The initial idea: Take the top Google Search trends from each month of 2010 and make a video mash-up of the corresponding news stories, with “Sprach Zarathustra”, the legendary intro music from 2001: A Space Odyssey, as the soundtrack. Have the videos flying out of moving walls of images from each event (using the CoolIris Firefox plugin), and create an immersive audiovisual experience that would sum up 2010 in 2 minutes and 10 seconds. Check out the video below, and then read on if you’re interested in the origins of the idea and the various tools used in the production process.
The Result: “2010: A Search Odyssey”
Put on your headphones and relive 2010 in 2:11.
The Making of…
Like most ideas we endeavor to bring to life, things changed a bit on the way:
- When I heard Kanye West’s “Lost in the World” track the other I day I just knew it had to be the theme song for 2010. As luck would have it, it was a perfect counterpoint to Sprach Zarathustra, thus was born the remix soundtrack you hear in the video below.
- Some of the top breakout search trends of 2010, like “Groupon” or “US Open”, didn’t make very interesting stories, so I fudged it a little bit – adding the Old Spice Guy, for example.
- The Cooliris browser couldn’t quite create the effect I was looking for, coupled with a too-low frame rate with my screen capture program, so I just mirrored one fly-through of Google Images results for “2010″ and kind of faded it into the background, bringing more attention to the actual videos of the events.
- Since I put the finishing touches on this the morning of 1/1/11, I thought it would be appropriate to mash in some video from the Times Square ball drop. I think it worked out pretty well.
- When I exported the video it was 2:11 long. Still appropriate, maybe even more appropriate, I changed the hook to 2:11 instead of 2:10.
The production process was an exciting and complex challenge. I’ll try to lay it out here in a way that’s easy to follow:
1. I found the intro to 2001: A Space Odyssey with the full version of “Spach Zarathustra” on Youtube and used the Firefox plugin Download Helper to download the video to my computer (a Macbook).
2. I downloaded Kanye West’s “Lost in the World” on iTunes, and since you can’t import copyright protected music into Garageband, I screencaptured with Camtasia while the song was playing, to create a blank video with the audio track.
3. I imported both videos (I had to use Handbrake to convert the downloaded video from .flv to .mp4) into Garageband, removed the video tracks, and mashed-up the two songs into a remix. I chopped up “Sprach Zarathustra” to match the timing of my “Lost in the World” remix and miraculously, perhaps somewhat presciently, it worked out to just about 2:10.
4. I imported the final remix into Camtasia, to use as a master guide for my in-head storyboard.
5. Using Google Insights for Search in the Chrome browser (for some reason it doesn’t work right for me in Firefox), I looked up the top searches in each month of 2010 and came up with a list of 24 big events (as ranked by breakout search trends). I curated the list by what I remembered to be big conversation pieces, and added a couple of my own.
6. Using Download Helper again, I downloaded corresponding videos for every story from Youtube and used Handbrake again to convert them all to .mp4 (from .flv). So that I wouldn’t have to import and edit every video in Camtasia, I used Quicktime to trim each video to a much more manageable 10-15 second clip with a good soundbite.
7. In Camtasia, I imported all the videos, including the intro to 2001: A Space Odyssey. I then screen captured: A. the intro of me typing the title in Google Search, and B. the scrolling background image of Cooliris navigating through 30 pages of Google Image results from the search “2010″.
8. After lining up the intro sequence of 2001: A Space Odyssey and the Google Search screencapture, and the outro image of the 2001 sunrise, I created hashtags of the search terms, using Camtasia’s Text Editor, and Zoom-In and Fade-Out transition features to produce the flying animation you see with all the search trends. I ordered these to define when each video would come in to view, and provide some additional visual cues for the viewer.
9. I put the Cooliris screen capture in place under the hashtags and faded it out to about 20% transparency.
10. I placed every 2010 event video in time with the corresponding hashtags, and using the same Zoom-In transition, created the flying and disappearing event.
11. Saving a separate Camtasia project, I deleted everything other than the 2010 event video sequence, exported it, and brought it into Garageband to add some EQ and delay to make it stand out just a bit from the Kanye remix. Then I lined that up with the original remix track, re-exported it and imported it again into Camtasia.
12. Needing some filler to add emphasis to the first audio break and more climax to the ending, I found video of the 2011 ball drop in Times Square, downloaded it from Youtube using Download Helper, converted it using Handbrake, trimmed it using Quicktime, imported it into Camtasia, and lined it up to fit the track so the countdown would hit with the final orchestral swell at the end.
13. Exported it, uploaded it to Facebook and Youtube, then through TubeMogul to a couple other video sharing sites, and bam.
2010 in 2:11.
If you made it this far, live in the Triangle area, and are interested in how you can come up with video ideas and distribute video online for your business or passion, you may want to come to the next Going Viral: Making and Distributing Online Video. Thanks for reading!Read More