Equipment - MacBook with built-in camera or the video function of
Canon PowerShot SD450 camera.
Software - iMove on the Mac or MovieMaker on a PC
1. Come up with a vague idea
2. Record video (not having a cameraman makes this challenging)
3. Download to computer (this can be annoying)
4. Manipulate with software (this takes a long time)
5. Upload to YouTube
So I'm curious, what do you do that makes recording videos easier &
Spend some time preparing, Ideally you'll know exactly the shots you want
before you shoot. At least have a list with you of the things you want to
Get a video camera of some sort.
Generally making/editing videos takes a long time! Not a lot you can do
about this but practice will certainly help.
I only made one serious video yet, but for me it helped indeed to have a
of tricks I wanted to tape. Also a tripod makes quite a good cameraman,
for the more fancy shots with zooming or panning during the juggling you
camera man of course and it goes faster if you have one telling you if the
patterns fits etc.
My process for the latest 4 ball video:
This video was pretty simple to put together, but it might be useful to
Pre Step � Have some sort of concept in mind. What do you want to do?
What sort of video do you want to make? For this case study, I wanted to
make a follow-up to the other 4 ball trick videos and have it include the
reverse fountain trick and a couple others that I enjoy doing that I don�t
get to see all that often.
Step 1 � Make a list of the tricks I want to include in the video (My list
had about 30 tricks, though I knew I wasn't going to use them all)
Step 2 � Divide those tricks into �shot groupings� � Close, Medium, Far
based on distance camera will be from the juggling.
Step 3 � Find location and make sure things a well lit / visible in the
background (I wanted to shoot everything in the same location as the other
videos, so that was pretty easy).
Step 4 � Frame the shot. Do the highest throws from the trick and make
sure they stay in frame (having an extra person is really handy for this,
otherwise you have to set up, film a little, review, and adjust). Framing
can involve lighting, focus, everything else that makes the shot look the
way you want. Look around for background objects too in case there are
extra props you don't want in the shot that are trying to sneak in.
Step 5 � Perform all the tricks in each of the groups marking them off the
list as you go (Depending on the camera type, you might want to note time
codes for ease of locating again on the tape). My new thing is since I
have a Hard Drive Camcorder I just stop the recording after I am happy
with the trick and start it again. That way I just go to the end of the
file to find the best run of the trick :-)
Step 6 � Transfer the footage to the computer (it�s just copying a file,
so really easy for me . . . my previous camera was DV Tape, which was
waaaaaay more of a pain)
Step 7 � Plot out the video. Know what you want to start with, what you
want to end with. By having the various groups of distances, you can make
sure you vary the shots to attempt to keep things entertaining.
Step 8 � Edit the video with your editor. I�m a big fan of generally
using one kind of transition (and for me 99% of the time it�s �dissolve�)
so I try not to go too crazy there, though there are tons and tons of
�effects� you can typically do with the video.
Step 9 � Music, or some sort of soundtrack. Depending on the type of
project, this step might come much earlier in the list. I have lots of
ideas for videos that involve copyrighted music, so I tend to put those on
the shelf. The majority of the music I use for the videos are generated
by the video editing software I have. So, they are rather generic, but
they do seem to work.
Step 10 � Upload to hosting site of your choice. I used to use Google,
but since they are no longer accepting uploads, I�m using YouTube.
Honestly, I have to say I like it better. The video quality looks better,
and the tracking stats and such are pretty fun. There are ways for people
to download your video from YouTube if they really want it.
With this particular process, it took three �sessions� to get the footage
(29 � 4 ball tricks). Each session I had about an hour to get things done
(first session I crossed 17 tricks off the list, a bit less productive
once the �easy� ones were gone :-)
Since I had a rather specific list of tricks and the order I wanted, it
really didn't take long at all to do the editing. Especially since I had
an easy way to "find the trick". So, editing time might have taken a
couple hours at the most.
Other additional steps you might want to consider:
Take the time to plot out a story. Writing a �shooting script� so to
speak. I would think with the joggling, that you could have a lot of fun
coming up with ideas revolving around that. The more detailed your video
outline, the smoother the video process should go.
Scout out locations. Really nice backgrounds are a joy to watch when they
are mixed in with a good juggling video. Just be on the lookout for them
and keep them in mind for various projects (this came in really handy for
the 7 clubs 7 ways videos).
Tripods really are your friend :-) I�m pretty excited as the new camera I
have is small enough that it makes using the gorillapod practical for
Have fun! No point in making the video and putting yourself thorough
everything unless you�re going to enjoy it. Make something that you
yourself will enjoy, then hopefully other people will enjoy it too, but if
not . . . well . . . you still have something you�ll like, right? :-)
Check out a lot of other videos and see what you like / dislike about
them. Collect ideas / techniques from other sources and keep them in mind
when doing your own thing. Up shots and down shots can be a lot of fun.
After seeing all sorts of videos, I think a video of all the ways people
seem to celebrate would be fun to see. Play around, make lots of videos
and you�ll find things that work and don�t work for you.
Good luck, and I really look forward to whatever you come up with!
David Sallee (Now filming in (gx, a(-1))* widescreen :-)
Importing to computer do you go straight into iMovie. Or to the computer
first and then import to iMovie?
As for editing...yeah it's LONG! It happens. Practice helps like Void
said. The first video are usually pretty bad and take a long time. The
later ones will obviously improve (but still take a long time). Another
something I do sometimes is just fool around in FCP (or iMovie for
you...which it seems I don't have, strange) with creating fun transitions,
effects, text funk, whatever.. with some scrap sample clips. Then when it
comes to having filmed everything, you have a better idea of the next
Also think that if a 2 hour movie takes professional hollywooders 2 years
to make. Then a 5 minutes video would take them 1 month...
No process from me but I would suggest thinking about backgrounds. The
of juggling videos out there filmed in squash courts and back gardens is
Surely, there must be something more interesting in everyone's hometown.
the really good juggling videos aren't all about the juggling.
First, you want to figure who you are making the video for - are you
making the video for the enjoyment of the general public? For fellow
jugglers? for a promo video? this determines what type of video you will
make. Only jugglers could possibly be interested by a series of site swap
variations in front of a plain background (and this can even boring to
many jugglers). If you are shooting for the general public make sure you
have some sort of story line, or at least a recurring theme, to tie the
film together. Draw in their interest by doing more than just juggling. I
know it's been said many times before but 'it's not what you do but how
you do it'. For a promo video filming a live performance is best.
But no matter what type of film you do I recommend you do it to
interesting music without lyrics(techno is good for this). Set the high
points in your juggling to the high points in the music. Time it well - it
will add so much to the video. Also, please, vary the backgrounds! I
cannot tell you how boring it is to watch tricks performed in front of the
same, dull background. Make your backgrounds, colorful, intreresting, but
not distracting. Make sure the colors contrast with the balls you use.
Vary your props as well.
You must realize that whenever you are on camera, you are performing.
Smile! Bow! You are trying to appeal to your audience, it doesn't matter
if it's over the internet. Just try to have fun with it. You can always
throw och the shots if you don't like them. Try something interesting and
new, you just might like it.
<snip loads of good stuff>
> But no matter what type of film you do I recommend you do it to
> interesting music without lyrics(techno is good for this). Set the high
> points in your juggling to the high points in the music. Time it well - it
> will add so much to the video.
Some well chosen, well recorded speech adds a lot as well ;-)
While we're here, and while we're recommending people put music in
their videos, I thought I'd remind people that they should think
about sticking two fingers up to the record companies who seek to
pull videos from YouTube for copyright infringement by seeking
out Creative Commons Licenced music for your videos.
There's loads of really good CC music out there, and youtube won't
pull your video for using it.
http://www.jamendo.com/en/ is a good place to start, as is google.
 Someone once said to me, "treat a video camera like an audio
recorder which just happens to take pictures as well" - while that's
not the whole story, it can be a useful way to think of the tool.
Personally i think that the process you've outlined is just about the
worse way to make a good juggling video.
> 1. Come up with a vague idea
> 2. Record video (not having a cameraman makes this challenging)
> 3. Download to computer (this can be annoying)
> 4. Manipulate with software (this takes a long time)
> 5. Upload to YouTube
You need to get the balance right and think like this:
1. Find a Concept.
2. Spend time developing the themes and ideas.
3. Consider the design aspect of the video.
4. Make sure you have the performance right.
5. Shooting, editing, post production and distribution.
I cover this process in depth on this blog post:
But even with one of the simplest juggling videos i made you can see this
process at work:
I find most of my music from jamendo like LP said. I agree with
RNJugglers points as well! Oh, and get yourself a good lightweight camera
and a gorillapod. Check out http://bit.ly/6QDsDL for a start.
> So I'm curious, what do you do that makes recording videos easier &
Oh right, you want to make it easier and faster? Well that's a really
easy one to answer: Just don't care about creativity, skill, design,
performance, filming techniques or editing competence.
Objuggling videos: Look out for a seriously massive juggling video
competition I'm involved in which will be launching soon and get your
juggling video brains into gear now! Fatboyslim? Pah! ;-)