Dave’s blog: Video backstory

Possibly the first time I made a video was shortly after I began working at Norwich University. There were a couple of Sony Handicams and an iMac with a screen the size of a drive-in movie in the office, dusty and unloved.

This was in 2008, and the employees in our office spoke of the equipment with a hint of derision. Another employee had convinced the university to purchase the gear at a cost of a few thousand dollars, then scarcely touched it.

I began messing around with it, learning to shoot and edit, amazed at how easy it was. The first piece was about a group of kids building and driving go-karts. I kept at it, willing, for maybe the first time in my life, to dig into the copious technical details, and driven to get better. My colleagues encouraged me. I did get better.

Outside of Norwich, I returned to journalism. The Times Argus, at least initially, was excited to have someone doing video. Initially, anyway. Eventually the dearth of employees forced me back into editing.

That experienced helped speed me up, and got me focused on the storytelling aspect in a way I wasn’t before. I’m proud of the reporting I did with a camera, and I’ve posted a number of them on my video page.

I missed video, and developed Capture: Video Storytelling in late summer 2016. I didn’t have much time to work at it, and took projects as they came in, without a whole lot of marketing. Now, the marketing is the monster I’ve got to slay. If you’ve got advice for what’s worked for you, drop me a comment.

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