• Video – what we don’t do

    by  • December 5, 2008 • Everything Else • 1 Comment

    City of love HD from Leonardo Dalessandri on Vimeo.

    This is beautiful.

    Beautiful is expensive. Beautiful is hard. Beautiful needs the eye and the skill and the gear.

    We don’t do beautiful. At least, not routinely and often not by intention. Beautiful video costs 10 or 100 times what functional video costs. TV has to be beautiful if at all possible because when two million people will watch your film, it pays to put in the extra effort. When your speed-of-light audience is 5,000 the dynamics are very different.

    This isn’t to say that beautiful doesn’t matter. Beautiful is

    But it’s amazing how much you can get done with ugly.

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    Vinay Gupta is a consultant on disaster relief and risk management.


    One Response to Video – what we don’t do

    1. December 7, 2008 at 4:17 pm

      That is indeed a beautiful video, and of course you’re right that what you’re doing needs to be functional, and doesn’t need to be beautiful.

      However, video achieves nothing if it’s not watched: it has to capture attention. This is why one of the (two!) rules of SciCast is “Don’t be boring”, because boring films simply waste everyone’s time. One way of capturing attention – of communicating value and care – is to be beautiful. It’s one aspect of what TV people refer to mysteriously as ‘production values.’

      Beauty isn’t a requirement, and is often an aspiration too far. However, if we can work in ways that increase our chance of serendipitous beauty… well, that’s worthwhile.

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