Tag Archives: video production colorado

Eric & DadI’m so incredibly fortunate to have enjoyed a great relationship with my father, Jon, for as long as I can remember.  He’s somewhat understated, cerebral and gives everything considerable thought.  He’s kind, supportive, pragmatic and dependable… solid as a rock.  Name all the good qualities you’d want in a father and you’re describing my dad.

He’s taught me so many things… practical things like how to ride a bike, how to tie a tie, how to fill out my W-2s and so much more.  He’s a man who embodies integrity, reliability and family.  He’s helped me appreciate the value of history, art and architecture.  He’s taught me “human” things, too:  how to keep things in perspective, how to see the big picture and the dangers of assuming you’re the smartest person in the room.

One lesson I continue to use every single day, especially in my work at Fireside Production, is that it’s better and easier to do something right than do it over.  He articulated that to me when I was about 15.  He was fixing a water faucet on the outside of the house and I asked him why he was taking so much time on the project.  At the time, I didn’t really see the wisdom of that simple idea, but it has grown with me in the intervening 25+ years.

Attention to detail matters.  Everything you do, in some manner, is a representation of who you are.  I could not have imagined that succinct phrase would apply not only to a weekend project in my parents’ front yard but nearly everything I’ve done since.   True wisdom stands the test of time and circumstance.  Thanks for this one and so many more, Dad!

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IMAG1055The essential elements of every great story include a hook – a compelling beginning to lure you in – a middle, which is the heart of the story and a strong end.  Whether a book, a movie, sometimes even a romance… the story always involves a beginning, middle and end.  This is also the recipe for a successful video.

As a producer, when I’m out conducting interviews I always have the end in mind.  A videographer should also be looking for opportunities to capture a closing shot.  A closing shot often involves the action moving away from the camera – kids walking out of a school, for example – or a shot that represents a conclusion.  This might be the celebration at the end of a race or a sunset as the day winds down.

An ending brings the story to a conclusion.  It can be a short summary, an inspiring statement – one that leaves viewers feeling hopeful or inspired – or a tease to promote the next in a series of videos.  You need to think about how you are closing your video as you’re producing it.

As a producer, I ask questions that inspire a compelling closing statement from the interviewee.  If I don’t hear what I need, I may try asking another way.  These types of questions are typically centered on what’s next or what the future holds… we want to know there’s more to this journey as viewers.  If you’re being interviewed for a video or if you’re hosting the piece, be sure to find a way to work in a memorable closing statement.

Think about that call to action as well.  What do you want people who watch your video to do?  Do you want them to volunteer, check out your website to learn more or share the piece?  Make the call to action strong and clear.

 ”… the sky’s the limit.”  A Great End!


Remember, every great story… ends.  Just be sure you’re planning for and controlling that ending to make it as effective as possible!  What’s the best ending to a story you’ve seen?  Inspire us… we’d love to see what makes your favorite video or movie special.

Posted in Naomi's Interview Advice | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Untitled designIt’s a fact that search engines like Google love video.  A video in a blog ranks higher than a blog without video content.  Embedding video in your blog is a great way to attract readership and get more viewers to see your video.

Here are some tips to make sure you get the most out of your blog post with a video…

Let your readers know there’s a video in your post.  You might even put the word video somewhere in the title.  For example… (Video) Blogging Tips.  Also, consider embedding the video near the top of the post.  That way, the reader will see it right away.

Make sure to use supporting text with keywords in the blog – not just in the embedded video.  Introduce the video and ask viewers to watch. Then, summarize in more detail what the video is about just below the embed.

Make sure the width of the video doesn’t exceed the width of the blog’s column.  When you embed the video, you can customize the size right there on YouTube.

Give the reader a call-to-action at the end.  This is something you should always do… video or not.  Ask them to share the video, comment, sign up for your newsletter, etc…

Remember, video is a great way to engage your target audience and blogging builds credibility – making blogs with video a great way to accomplish both goals!
You can also check out my blog on creating a video blog… a vlog.  http://www.firesideproduction.com/top-5-reasons-to-vlog-for-business I would love to hear more ideas on ways to promote your videos.  Thanks for sharing!

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Several years ago, I had the opportunity to work for a start-up news station in Denver.  Everyone on that team was a new employee, which brought one of the most unique situations I have ever experienced.  There was no one to say, “This is the way we do things.”  That meant all ideas were on the table and rather than having a set way, collectively we were able to contribute to a blueprint of operation.  Of course as time passed, we all become comfortable with a system that worked and eventually become leery of change.

Change is good! FCPX.

Change is good! FCPX.

Recently at Fireside Production, we’ve embraced a change of our own.  With the ever-evolving world of technology, one of our favorite editing tools - Final Cut Pro 7 - has come to its conclusion.  We’ve been editing on it for years.  With the bad rap Final Cut Pro X has had since its launch a few years ago, we simply avoided the transition.  Although we’ve been successful in staying put this long, FCP 7 is no longer supported and new plug-ins have been hard to find.  After hearing about game-changing updates to X, we decided to make the switch.

After watching many tutorials and rethinking how I view a timeline, I am having a blast editing again.  I find the updates in X are amazing and extremely forward thinking… taking me no time to catch up.  I can only imagine the courage at Apple to completely rethink an editing platform that many thought was already perfect. 

 No matter how comfortable my comfort zone is, I always need to remind myself that the phrase, “This is the way we do things” is good only until there is a better way.  I would love to hear your thoughts on Final Cut Pro X…  Please share!

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Have you evPhiler watched a scary or suspenseful movie on mute?  How about a cartoon without sound effects or music?  It’s actually quite funny to watch in silence – without the help of music to evoke an emotion or aid in the suspense factor.  Music offers immense versatility and support in a movie or show, dictating the emotion one should feel.

I had the privilege of working and performing with one of the leading orchestras in this country in early May.  One of the programs performed was the “Pixar in Concert” under the baton of film composer and conductor, David Newman. Maestro Newman took a few minutes and explained to the audience the important role music plays in film and video through a technique called “spotting.”

Spotting is when the Composer and Director go through scenes together and decide where to place music and where not to have any music – both equally important.  This description reminded me so much of the post-production work at Fireside Production and the magic that takes place behind the scenes.  Bringing life to the visual components of a video, our editors serve as the Creative Directors of each video – “spotting” from start-to- finish to ensure the right emotion is portrayed at the right moment.

PixarInstrumentalists in solo, chamber or orchestral settings all over the country are collaborating with other mediums to create multisensory performances.  Enhancing video with live music provides a unique experience to the traditional music concert attendee.  One of the most unique performances I’ve seen in this new direction is a visual artist painting live alongside a chamber music performance.  With the painter’s canvas projected on a screen above the chamber group, the audience not only listens to a spectacular performance but also watches the effects it has on another artist, witnessing the painter execute his or her masterpiece to the music.

As a performer, music has been an extension of my own voice and a vehicle of expression.  Hearing the reactions of the audience during the Pixar concerts was both foreign and exhilarating, creating a tremendously rewarding experience.  Although it isn’t the traditional platform to hear sounds of laughter during a classical music performance, I am excited about the new direction live music is taking – with the focus on intertwining various art mediums into one cultural experience.

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Most of us understand that helping others is the right thing to do.  Everyone I know also likes to have a good time socializing with friends or meeting new people.  What about combining the two?

Fireside Production recently held a charity poker night to raise money for our Team Naomi – Man & Woman of the Year - campaign to benefit The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society.  Family, friends and Fireside Clients all bought in.  People chipped in donations of food, drink, silent auction items and prizes.  In just a few hours, we raised nearly four figures for the LLS mission of advancing cancer research and supporting those with blood cancers.

If you’re going to spend time and money on a social event, why not make it a social benefit as well?  We each would have spent at least as much going to a movie, a club or restaurant.  Instead, we reaped the benefits of a social engagement AND potentially enriched the lives of those in need.  Sounds like a royal flush to me.

Check out our poker night video!  And remember, you can donate to the Team Naomi campaign for The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society at:

http://bit.ly/llsteamnaomi.  Special thanks to Trade Wind Statues for hosting!

Posted in Eric's Video Experiences, Fireside Production News, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

photo (1)Going to work with my mom or dad is among my very favorite childhood memories.  At our mother’s office, my brother and I would marvel at all of the cool office supplies.  We’d pretend we were in the magazine distribution business.  At work with our dad, we’d imagine ourselves mapping out routes for the city buses or play pool in the company lounge.  What I cherish most about those memories was seeing my parents in another world… that mysterious other side that meant food on the table and clothes on our backs.  I saw how they interacted with other professionals… how my dad answered the phone, “Dispatch.”  How he seemed so constantly even-keeled in that busy office with so much radio traffic, so many calls and people coming by.  How my mom’s desk was so organized… and her work reached into homes all around the country.

All these years later, I love Take Your Child to Work Day.  I love it because it’s my turn to open that other world to our daughters.  The past two years, our oldest daughter has been a part of making a video and attended meetings with us.  You’d think the girls wouldn’t be interested at all in going to work with us since they’re no strangers to Fireside Production.  And yet, this week our youngest daughter was so enthusiastic about her chance to participate!  Apparently, she’s been anxiously awaiting her turn…

Together, we made a list of the day’s activities.  We started with a coffee shop meeting with a fellow member of my CEO Exchange.  We headed out to the National Renewable Energy Laboratory to rehearse a webinar presentation.  She asked for her “power lunch” to take place at home where she could finish her homework assignment tracking the day’s experiences.  Then, before things got boring for her… it was back to first grade!  Now, if there were only a take your parents to school day – where we could experience our kids as they are in their day-to-day lives as students.  Bliss!

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video & powerpoint 1Are you looking for a great way to make your presentation more engaging for your audience?  Are you looking for new ways to share your videos?  The use of video for content marketing continues to grow, though you could argue that it’s still a somewhat underutilized tool for many companies.  Yes, we have social media sites like Facebook, Twitter and YouTube, but why not share your video in presentations too?  Video will make your presentations even more engaging for your audiences.

PowerPoint 13 provides an opportunity for you to insert a video onto a slide and play it during your presentation.  You can even edit the video within PowerPoint and customize its appearance.  It allows you to trim the video’s length, add a fade in and much more.

PowerPoint allows you to insert video from a file on your desktop or online.

To insert from a file:

From the Insert tab, click the Video drop-down arrow, then select Video from File.  Note that this will take up space on your hard drive.

To add from online:

Some sites – like YouTube – allow you to embed videos into your slides. Anvideo & powerpoint embedded video will still be hosted on its original website, meaning the video itself won’t be added to your file.  Embedding can be a convenient way to reduce the file-size of your presentation, but you’ll also need to be connected to the Internet for the video to play.  From the Insert tab, click on Video drop-down arrow and then, select Video from Website.

How have you used video to extend the reach and impact of your company or brand?  Please share your thoughts!

Posted in Tammie's Video Marketing Tips, Uncategorized | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

By Caitlin Selby, Region Campaign Manager

llsLogo1“We are so proud and honored that Naomi Binkley has stepped forward as a Champion of Hope for The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society to run as a Woman of the Year candidate. Every dollar she raises makes a HUGE impact on the mission and in the lives of patients and their families. We thank her donors for every penny and dollar they are able to contribute to not only help her in the competition, but to help fight blood cancers.” – Caitlin Selby, Region Campaign Director.

What is Man & Woman of the Year?

Each year, in communities across the country, dynamic, passionate candidates engage in a spirited competition to earn The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s “Man & Woman of the Year” titles by raising funds for blood cancer research. The candidates compete in honor of children who are local blood cancer survivors, the Boy & Girl of the Year. Every dollar counts as one vote, and the titles are awarded to the man and woman with the most votes at the end of ten weeks. Man & Woman candidates are goal-oriented and compassionate. Their relentless efforts help us in pursuit of our goal: A world without blood cancer.

The funds raised through Man & Woman of the Year are used in many ways:

  • LLS offers free blood cancer information, education and support.
  • We help patients, survivors, families and healthcare professionals.
  • We touch patients in their communities through our 61 chapters across the U.S. and Canada.
  • We drive policies that accelerate the development and approval of new treatments.
  • We advocate for blood cancer survivors and their families, helping patients navigate their cancer treatments and ensuring they have access to quality, affordable and coordinated care.

Who is The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society?

LLS is the world’s largest voluntary health agency dedicated to blood cancer. LLS funds lifesaving blood cancer research around the world and provides free information and support services.

Our Key Priorities will ensure that: The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society helps blood cancer patients live better, longer lives.

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sharonI am the newest Fireside Production team member and I couldn’t be more thrilled!  I just moved to colorful Colorado at the end of December and joining the Fireside team was the perfect way to start my new adventure here in the Mile High City.  While I don’t have that television news background we talk so much about here at Fireside, I do share the creative gene with the rest of the team.

I am a professional violinist by trade and music has been a part of my life since I was a child.  Music is actually what initially attracted me to Fireside – the perfect music pairings in each video.  I was so drawn to the refined artistry that trickled all the way down to the emotional impact the music offered – I knew instantly that this was a company that I wanted to be involved with!

Coming from The Big Apple, I spent three years working with a cancer treatment company and an affiliated foundation with the sole mission to ensure life-saving treatment was accessible to those battling cancer.  I discovered I wanted to offer more to the community than my skills as a musician, and I couldn’t think of a better way to contribute than to join the fight against cancer.  I’m a girl who believes in signs and when I discovered that Naomi was nominated for the 2014 LLS Man Woman of the Year campaign, it was clear as day that I belonged here.

Being a new Coloradan, I am excited to learn about and experience so much in this awesome city.  I’m so happy that I have already found an amazing home here at Fireside Production and am eager to learn more about this town through the stories we share with all of you!

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