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Social Media
In addition to being my house concert guru, Shannon really inspires me with her social media activities.
Just this year, in the last three months, she has posted about these things:

A new years video - Auld Lang Syne
Additions to her "Songs From Home" series
The very successful "Show Me Yours" campaign - the response was amazing
Reminders of her "personal songs" project for Valentines Day
The recent video project - using video sent in by her community
Video streaming with Meerkat
Song preview from the upcoming album
House concert book video
House concert tour scheduling posts

Plus, all of the random personal posts - about songwriting, late night recording, family, Jamie's doings, etc.

Most of this stuff required the creation of media of various sorts - videos, pictures, audio, etc.

How many of you are going down this road? And, what are your favorite tools for creating media?

I have been using: - This is a website that creates word clouds. The music videos for my recent album are all based on word clouds of the lyrics. I create a word cloud, and then pan around the image (Ken Burns effect). It's a simple way to create a compelling video, and it's fun picking out the words of the song as they go by... - This is my go-to website for photo processing. I use it to add text to photos, and to add overlays and borders. It's very easy to use, and creates good images.

imovie and garageband - These come standard on my Apple computer, and I have been using them for...well, for a very long time. I know that there are more 'professional' tools available. But, I have never needed anything more sophisticated.

One thing is sure - if something is difficult to use, I won't do it.

My biggest hurdle is REMEMBERING to take pictures. A facebook post without a photo is worse than useless...
Your video is really appealing - thank you for sharing! I will check this site out.

For our band I also try to create as many videos as possible, because I think video is THE hot thing right now. It seems to be the easiest way to reach a larger audience.

Sometimes I make videos simply with nature photos along with audio recorded in the studio - I have an interest in photography, so I use a DSLR camera and edit my pics with Photoshop Elements 10. This is not much of an effort because I shoot the pics anyway. Here would be an example:

Another one is with lyrics - also done in Photoshop and put together in Windows Movie Maker. The song is an ode to our horses, so I used pics of them:

A lot of effort went into our latest video. We shot lots of scenes and I tried to make it like a real music video (still using the simple and free Movie Maker). It is OK, but still rather amateur. But then, I have learnt a lot for our next video.

It is a big time commitment because I spent about 20 hours with editing alone, but I love to do it and I think it is worth it in the long run.
I will put together a video featuring our first house concert as well, but I still have not gotten the file from the hosts camera.

Your videos are lovely! I did not find your latest video 'amateurish' at all. It held my interest all the way through, was well edited, and was beautifully filmed. In my experience, the most challenging thing in doing a 'real' video (live action of the musicians) is LIGHTING. Professional videographers often spend more money on lights and portable generators than they do on cameras. I abandoned a video project because of lighting problems - unpredictable weather!
Also, your website is great. Very clear, easy to navigate and understand.

Thanks for telling us that you use Windows Movie Maker. It's good to know that it works fine should I need to abandon my Mac using habits.

It's inspiring to see people creating things for their communities!

- Ron

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