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Take an Awesome Video (& Requirements)

August 03, 2017
Here are the requirements for your MOJO video submissions and blog posts to accompany them.

Technical Requirements

  • 2-4 minutes in length
    • for special projects (interviews and collaborations with your on-site staff, ambassadors), videos can be longer, please get approval first
  • Royalty-free music
What is Royalty-free music? In a nutshell Royalty Free Music refers to a type of music licensing that allows the purchaser to pay for the music license only once and to use the music for as long as desired. However, as a MOJO, you are not required to pay for the music you use (use YouTube's free audio library, FMA or Bensound for songs and sound effects), just be careful when using an unknown song. Do not use music provided by iMovie.
  • Can be narrated by you, feature you, etc.
  • Please do not create a video only featuring you talking at the camera (no more than 20% if you are talking to the camera). Be creative!
  • Videos must contain over 51% video footage (i.e. not a photo slideshow)
  • Have fun!

Submitting Videos & Creating Video Blog Posts

When you are done with your video post, you will upload your final file (in .mov or .mp4) to our shared Sharepoint folder, just like you do with your photos. That's it! I will then upload to CEA's YouTube. Please do not put them on your own YouTube or Vimeo profile Then you will create a blog post in Sitefinity to accompany the video, set-up the same way as you create your other blog posts. 3-5 sentences as an introduction to your video. I will then embed your video into your post and publish it!
  • Content CANNOT include: Swearing, disrespectful language, dangerous activities (e.g., skydiving, hitchhiking, running with the bulls, parties, non-cultural alcohol events, etc.), nudity (exception for art), alcohol (exception for CEA events). Please also see CEA’s online community guidelines.
  • All submitted work is your own, is NOT featured anywhere else (including personal or university blogs) and becomes CEA’s property.

Need some tips on how to take a web-worthy video?

Chances are, you don't have a drone while you're taking the bus to the alps or riding a camel in Morocco, but you can still take some amazing video that captures your passion for the country, culture and people, and looks and sounds amazing! Here are a few tips to make your CEA videos worth the rewind. Here's a quick list of things to keep in mind when composing your videos:
  • Storyboard and learn some tips before you film so that you are prepared for the process
  • Good audio and music helps to convey the theme or story of the video
  • Camera angles are very crucial
    • Make sure you line up the shot to include the subjects you want in the frame
    • Be sure to shoot all the of the video in landscape 
  • Lighting: use natural light (window lighting) as much as possible when filming students, staff or anyone else.
  • Motion & Camera Angles: be sure to move the camera around so we don’t end up with static shots (use the ninja walk to make sure the movement is stable). And think about camera angles and set set-up when filming.
  • Ambient Noise: when filming B-Roll, be sure to capture the ambient noise (kids playing, card driving by, street music, etc) and try not to talk through it.
  • Time of Day: early mornings/evenings have great light for when you’re filming B-Roll of the city. You will probably need to film during the day to capture the culture too.
  • Variety: make sure you get a wide variety of shots. You can never shoot too much! Ahem, B-Roll!

Take Your Time

Find time to edit your videos to give them that edge, get to your filming location early to grab a few more minutes of b-reel. Are you interviewing someone? Make sure they're 100% okay with their clips (it might take a few takes). Here are 7 Useful Tips to Help You Make a Totally Awesome Travel Video. One of the best video journalism tips? Variety.

Use Your Resources

There are plenty of quick-editing apps and filters you can use. Check out this Travel & Leisure article. And use the editing tools already on your computer. iMovie & Windows Movie Maker Not a cinema savant? Find apps like 1SE (one second everyday) to capture your everyday while overseas. And make sure you keep in mind these five easy and mostly free tips to make better videos. Actually, everything from this guy, Peter McKinnin is great.


Stick to One Goal: Tell One Story

There's probably a thousand stories you want to tell, but remember that you only have 2-3 minutes. Stick to your central theme and make sure your video tells your story.

“The best video steps away from traditional storytelling techniques to create video that is both captivating and captures the subject. When shooting and editing your video, consider how other elements such as audio and various framing techniques can be used to enhance the story or send a message to the viewer.” Check out this post about creating a video that actually tells a story and this example of a short film about Beijing and a Matador Network video from Morocco.

Want to master the documentary-style video? Here's a quick video tutorial that covers everything from mastering b-roll to lighting ans how to ask questions. Here's Jason Mamoa's Carhartt ad, I know it's not exactly a travel video, but talk about telling a story.

Awesome CEA Videos

Gaby's Introspective & Inspirational Clip

Ethan's CEA/University of Utah Promo Reel


What travel video inspires you?

Read more about our CEA MOJO Bloggers & Photographers.
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