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Old February 5th, 2007, 12:34 AM   #1
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Surf video Trailer

So i put this trailer together for a video I am working on. Let me know what you think about the trailer or thoughts that come to mind after watching it.

Please view in actual size.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a-ZriAgNfgc
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Old February 5th, 2007, 02:08 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Julian Kehaya
So i put this trailer together for a video I am working on. Let me know what you think about the trailer or thoughts that come to mind after watching it.

Please view in actual size.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a-ZriAgNfgc
I don't want to come across as a jerk, but...

As a surfer and someone whose seen a lot of surf videos and before that 16mm surf movies in theaters, this trailer doesn't do much for me. The v/o is passionless and cliched, the waves are not good, the girls weren't that hot, and I didn't see any hook. I can forgive a lot if you give me a hook, ie a new take on surfing.

The water footage wasn't bad though.

If it was me, I'd look for something new about surfing, or surfing from someone's perspective. Something interesting. Showing unknown surfers in mediocre waves doesn't cut it for me. Tell a story.
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Old February 5th, 2007, 02:42 PM   #3
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Brian,

Thank you so much for your honesty. It's really good to hear from a fellow surfer.

I'm especially uncomfortable with my v/o since I graduated with a B.A. in Drama. I'm finding it very difficult to pack in what I want to say in such a short period of time. I think I need to slow down a bit and really think out what I知 going to say and how I say it rather than just letting it flow like I did with the trailer.

The total runtime for this part will be about 10 minutes to accommodate you tube. I don't see this as a project I would put out on DVD or anything like that so I知 trying to tailor this to a specific audience of locals in my area, friends, and family.

I feel as though part of the purpose of the video is that the waves in Wrightsville aren't that good. That's a huge reason why I decided to travel in the first place. It is my hope to convey more the spirit of the place, and the fun of the warm summer waves here. That even though it's a place I love, there is a strong pull for me to see the waves I see when I open up a Surfer's Journal. Hopefully I will accomplish this with my narration.

Glad you liked the water footage. Unfortunately there's not much of it. This is my first video, working alone, and trying to figure it all out has been really tough, especially with no one to turn to for advice. Even while I edit the footage I know I am capable of much better work.

With the exception of the footage I took in Hawaii I would say most of the footage I got was of mediocre surfers. For me, that's also part of my trip. It's about what waves and surfers a person would encounter if they went on a trip like I did. Hopefully this will be interesting, even though it's not something that I would describe as original.

Your criticism has really helped me think more about my project. I hope I didn't come off as defensive. Any other advice you can give would be much appreciated.
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Old February 5th, 2007, 03:19 PM   #4
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I agree the VO is lacking...a couple tips....

1. Less is more.
2. see tip #1.

let the pictures and natural sound tell the story, use the VO to point the viewer in the right direction....
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Old February 5th, 2007, 04:19 PM   #5
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"Let the pictures tell the story"

It seems so obvious, but i guess i missed that since i pretty much point out the obvious with my V/O in the trailer. Good tip Bill. Thanks. I can tell I have a lot to learn. Maybe I should make a new trialer.

-Julian
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Old February 5th, 2007, 05:28 PM   #6
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It seems you're saying the v/o wasn't scripted? writing out you feelings, or as Hemingway would say, "Opening a vein on to the page" is something to consider--then proceed with a recording of the script--giving a performance of the scripted material.

My sense is you're looking for a story. Know your story before you begin piecing together your film.

Here's the thing, do we really need another kelly Slater video surfing perfect 10' pipeline or another goldenboy fest at Tavarua? No we don't. A film on a place with not so great waves and not so great surfers, a place with real people is potentially far more interesting provided you are able to capture the human element. And that's the trick.

You wrote something about the lure of far away places and perfect surf yet the comfort and love you have for the crummy little waves and chubby girls of home. That's a potential story right there. Can you bottle that? That's the challenge.

Last, I'd never approach this with an attitude of "It's just for youtube" or "For friends". Make your video with the idea that you'll be showing it to Speilberg himself. Make it as good as you possibly can. You owe that to yourself, your craft, and to surfing.

Last edited by Brian Luce; February 5th, 2007 at 10:26 PM.
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Old February 5th, 2007, 11:40 PM   #7
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I do intend to do the best job I can with the footage I have. Is the story all there? I don't really think so anymore. It's not that I知 second-guessing myself it's just that I know the footage. I know what I captured back in 05' and 06' and already realize its limitations. Much of the footage I have lacks intimacy something I intend to correct on my next project.

Having watched the footage over and over I see the story because I was there. In my mind I know what happened and that's what solidifies it for ME. I'm starting to feel like an outsider would only see what I致e captured as random moments from a random person's travel video.

"Know your story before you begin piecing together your film. "
Now I realize exactly how I got to this point. When I embarked on this trip back in 05' I never really had a plan for the video. I only had a plan to surf. I think certain surf videos that were just a mashup of waves and pro riders with no real point put me on the wrong track for the idea I had when I started this whole thing.


"My sense is that you're looking for a story"
In a way I guess I am. Even though I know the story, I知 trying to force it onto the footage and that's probably a wrong thing to do at this point. I think I just need to let it be what it is, to tell what it can.

"You owe that to yourself, your craft, and to surfing."
That is definitely a huge weight I feel on my shoulders and a lot to live up to. For one I think I need more education. Do you know any good books I can read? The more I learn about this craft the more I love it. I'm also thinking about going back to school.

Anyway, I知 going to get back to work since I don't want to leave what I have started unfinished. I think I値l look at plane tickets tomorrow and see what it would cost to get out on the road again... no wait... I think I値l work on the story first.
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Old February 6th, 2007, 09:17 AM   #8
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Hey Julian, if you dont mind, I'd like to throw in my 2 cents.

First of all, you do have an eye for composition. It might be rather undeveloped, but your shooting and editing skills arent half bad. The problem here, IMHO, is content. Secondly, you have to decide what you want your video to be primarily.

Do you want the surfing to take a back seat to the story, or the story take a back seat to the surfing?

If you want the surfing to be the main focus, then it has to be good footage. Brian mentioned that we dont need another "Slater" video, which is true, but nobody wants to watch a video of mediocre surfers (unless of course this is just for family and friends) I kjnow a guy in Cali who has shot boogey videos for the past 15 years, and he once told me "To come up with a half-hour surf video, you need at least 50 hours of footage." Essentially, this is true. I sent one of my guys to shoot 4 local bodyboarders in Puerto Escondido. He came back with about ten hours of footage. I knocked that down to about 3 minutes of useable footage!! The point is, if your showcasing surfing, people want to see good surfing, and it takes a lot of camera and water time to get that.

Now if your story is to be the main focus, then that changes things up quite a bit. You havent mentioned what your story is really supposed to be, but if its a typical "fly here, surf/nightlife/explore culture, fly there, surf/nightlife/explore culture, rinse and repeat" then thats really hard to do with just yourself. You would need a cameraman to film you(and friends??) doing all of this stuff, you know. Have him follow you to check out the places you visit. Also film alot of stuff around wilmington! Ive been there and have friends there. That place is a blast, and there are tons of hot girls! Get a clear, concise story in your head, then shoot, shoot, shoot. Shoot everything. DV tapes are cheap.

Finally, you already know your voiceover is extremely lacking. It sounds like you dont care if people watch your video or not. If it sounds like you dont care, then other people won't care either. Once again, you do have a natural eye for composition and editing. If you had a mountain of interesting footage, I think you could do good things with it!

-burk
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Old February 6th, 2007, 12:37 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Jason Burkhimer
but nobody wants to watch a video of mediocre surfers
-burk
At the risk of starting a range war, I'll take exception to this. The most successful surf movie of all time is "Endless Summer". Ever check out the level of surfing? Not that great. But the film was novel, had a human element, and most importantly IMHOP had a compelling tone. I have a feeling, with the project you're developing, you just might to be able to hit an engaging tone for your film. The best way to come up with tone is pour your heart in to it. It's about emotion, not backside 360's.
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Old February 6th, 2007, 01:09 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by Brian Luce
At the risk of starting a range war, I'll take exception to this. The most successful surf movie of all time is "Endless Summer". Ever check out the level of surfing? Not that great. But the film was novel, had a human element, and most importantly IMHOP had a compelling tone. I have a feeling, with the project you're developing, you just might to be able to hit an engaging tone for your film. The best way to come up with tone is pour your heart in to it. It's about emotion, not backside 360's.

I hear what your saying Brian, and I agree with some of it. As far as Endless Summer goes, how are you judging "success"? Money wise, recent theatrical releases such as Riding Giants and Step Into Liquid have pulled in more overall money. The Endless Summer has the most notoriety amongst casual surfers and "weekend warriors", but in the hardcore surfing community its not as popular. Endless Summer for its time was cool becaues it showcased unseen locales and for the time, pretty decent surfing. And that falls into the category I mentioned of "story heavy, surfing secondary" But now, almost every surf spot in the world has been documented extensively and surfing has progressed by leaps and bounds. I've seen hundreds of surf videos, and the ones where the surfing is mediocre, I never watched again.

But really, your post really bolsters my point. It depends on who you want to watch this video. Either the story really needs to be fleshed out and have something that people want to see and hear, or the surfing better be damn good!

In my opinion, its about emotion AND backside 360's!

-burk
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Old February 6th, 2007, 01:20 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by Jason Burkhimer
I hear what your saying Brian, and I agree with some of it. As far as Endless Summer goes, how are you judging "success"? Money wise, recent theatrical releases such as Riding Giants and Step Into Liquid have pulled in more overall money. T

But really, your post really bolsters my point. It depends on who you want to watch this video. Either the story really needs to be fleshed out and have something that people want to see and hear, or the surfing better be damn good!

In my opinion, its about emotion AND backside 360's!

-burk
Question, did Riding Giants take in more money than Endless Summer after adjusting for 40 years of inflation? Endless Summer was a sensation in landlocked places like Iowa and was a cultural phenomena.

The other thing, I think it's like you said, whose your audience? surfers (niche) or everyone else?
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Old February 6th, 2007, 04:17 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by Brian Luce
Question, did Riding Giants take in more money than Endless Summer after adjusting for 40 years of inflation?
No probably not, but if you want to defend Endless Summer up and and down, I won't fight you on it anymore. The fact is, neither myself nor anybody I surf with, watch this movie. While other good surf vids get plenty of play time.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian Luce
Endless Summer was a sensation in landlocked places like Iowa and was a cultural phenomena.
This was exactly my point when I mentioned "casual surfers and weekend warriors"


Well, Im over it. Julian, just try and get as much good footage to try to tell the best story possible and showcase some sick waves. let me know when its done!

-burk
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Old February 6th, 2007, 06:38 PM   #13
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No probably not, but if you want to defend Endless Summer up and and down,

-burk
I'm not defending it because it doesn't need defending. The fact is, it remains a seminal event in surfing culture and unlikely to ever end up with Taylor Steele in the 99 cent bargain bin.
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Old February 6th, 2007, 06:40 PM   #14
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i'll be sure to post here again when i'm finished. You guys have been a really big help
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Old February 11th, 2007, 12:16 AM   #15
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Wow, I feel so drained. Editing this really took a lot of work. I really wish i could post it in full resolution. I have to say it was a lot more fun that I had expected. Hopefully the few short commings remain in this part will be sorted out in the next one. Thank you so much for all your advice guys and please give me some comments on the video.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ffEV1-X3D8w

-Julian
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