We already share pictures with friends over the internet and upload instantly from our electronic devices. Why not do the same with your home movies?
The ability to bring cinema into the home for personal story telling changed us as a culture and continues to impact us today. These aren’t just “some old home movies” to watch on an old projector at Thanksgiving! They are the stories of our lives that can provide insight, enjoyment and humor to our families all year long. Technology has given us the ability to share our legacy in a way never before possible. Here are some ideas to get you started:
1) Upload your home movies to cloud via YouTube or Vimeo: Since being found in 2005,YouTube is the world’s most popular online video community, allowing millions of people to discover, watch and share originally created videos, and bring personal stories out of the living room and onto the worldwide web. It is free and easy to set up a YouTube or Vimeo site dedicated to your home movies. It is a simple as signing up with your email address, and start uploading! You will get a dedicated web page (i.e.:www.youtube.com/VigeantHomeMovies) that you can cut and paste virtually anywhere. Home movie clips can be set as private or public, with password protection if you only want certain family members to have access to them. If you are looking to share publicly, you can “tag” names, places, dates and events in the clip. These key words will come up in the Google search. Bonus! When a video clip lives on “the cloud,” it makes a great back up of your home movie files in case of a catastrophe. Floods, Fires, Hard Drive crashes; you name it, it has happened! By storing your files on the World Wide Web in the cloud they are protected even if a disaster occurs.
2) Burn Them to Disc- Blu-Ray with WiFi: Since 2008, the cost of Blu-ray players has come down significantly, even for a very high quality player. The manufactures have added new features that make the players more universal. A new Sony BDP-S390, (is around $100) plays: BD-R (Recordable Blu-Ray) in perfect FULL HD 1080p at amazing quality, regular DVD, and has Wi-Fi capabilities with applications such as NetFlix, YouTube, Pandora and more built directly into the player! (This is another great way to watch that YouTube channel you just created on your television instead of the computer! J) Many of the newer players also have a USB 2.0 universal flash drive component, allowing you to play virtually any media such as music, photos and films, through your Blu-Ray player. If you are thinking about putting your home movies on Blu-Ray to share with the family, a new Blu-Ray player is essential to making these components run smoothly.
3) G-connect- Wireless storage for your iPad: It may not be feasible to carry your new Blu-Ray player around wherever you go, but if you have an iPad, you already know that the portability of this device is one of its greatest assets. In order to play your home movies on an iPad, they have to be recorded in an Apple TV (.m4v) file format. You then have to upload the file to your computer from your hard drive, connect the iPad, and down load the file. But at-last! G-Technology has just come out with a portable, wireless storage device for your iPad or iPhone. It is designed for “on-the-go” access to your content, by streaming it directly into your iPad using WiFi, without ever downloading the files to your computer or the iPad itself. Upload your home movies to the G-connect device (instead of a hard drive) and you are ready to go. Very cool! You will knock the socks off grandma with this one! http://www.g-technology.com/products/g-connect.cfm
4) Edit: Imagine yourself as head of your own studio, editing your home movies to tell a specific story. Just like in the studios, the editor has the power to bring a story together in a creative and emotional way. With all the tools readily available on your home computer, it is easy to repurpose your original films into edited story telling.
A Story….Last Christmas one of my family members made me a 5 minute montage of all the family Christmas, starting with my grandparents in the 1950’s through my own adulthood. Edited to ‘Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas,’ I saw 3 generations- my grandparents, my parents, and myself as children opening our gifts and playing with our new toys on Christmas morning. It was so fun to see how the traditions of our family Christmas have stayed true through so many years.
Today all Mac computers come with a program called iMovie, which allows you to cut clips and put your films to music. PC’s also typically come with some type of editing software such as Windows Movie Maker. For the more ambitious or experienced editor, you can purchase an editing software program such as Adobe Premier (PC editing) or Final Cut Pro X (Mac editing.) These have many more options for creating special effects that punch up your editing.
Creating your own short story or music video can be amazingly fun, easy, and a great way to re-purpose original content into funny, serious, or loving stories to share with your family. Gift it to family members for birthdays or holidays. On a more serious note, edited clips of an individual could also been used devotedly to portray ones life and help families heal through hard times when a loved one passes. A montage clip of the person’s life can play at a wake or funeral, giving friends and family comfort through the moving images and happy times of a person’s life.
5) Funding: Technology has given us the ability to share our legacy in a way never before possible, and there couldn’t be a more exciting time. Many families are overwhelmed by the expense of treating their home movies like the studios would, even though in their hearts, they know that is what they would like to do. There are now several options to get funding for your home movie transfer!
Crowd Funding: There are now several websites where you create a fundraising campaign, called‘crowdfunding,’ to raise money for personal projects. Someone in your family may want to propose that everyone in the family makes a donation, which could be used to digitize everyone’s material, and then everyone in the family could get the entire library on a hard drive and edit their own story. Project goals might include organizing the entire library on a hard drive, iPad, Blu-Ray or uploaded to the cloud. Some examples of Crowd Funding platforms include Kickstarter.com, GoFundMe.com, IndieGoGo.com,ChipIn.com
Stock Footage: Could your family home movies be worth money? You bet they can! A single clip of 8mm film sold on Getty Images for over $5,000! How is that possible you may ask? Filmmakers are often looking for authentic 8mm clips that capture specific events, people, time periods and so much more so that they don’t have to go to the added expense of re-creating them. These clips are called Stock Footage, and are made available to the public by posting short clips onto the web. When transferred professionally, there is greater likelihood that your clips could be purchased and downloaded to be re-purposed in documentaries, films, television shows, and more. As long as the films are your original material, your home movies could be the most valuable asset in your attic! Stock Footage platforms include GettyImages.com, Pond5.com, istockphoto.comand many more!
Thanks for reading 5 NEW Cool Things you can (and should!) do with your Home Movies!! As you may have figured out, this is just a short list among hundreds of applications for watching, editing, playing and funding your home movie project. So what are you waiting for!
Have a home movie idea you would like to share? Post it here or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to share your idea in our next newsletter!
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