UWOL #7 An Otter Adventure by Warren Cook - Page 2 at DVinfo.net
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Old February 28th, 2008, 04:20 PM   #16
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Location: Kent UK
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Hi Warren

Difficult subject you picked there fella. In the UK an inland Otter is about as hard as it gets! I could see you struggling with the range and with zero cover and a iced lake theres not much to do about that one. I think you should have edited out some of your zooms and rocky footage and the footage seemed quite washed out initially but then a lot of that is down to the conditions and light. Your money shot was lovely and the range was much better as was the light and the exposure.

Thanks for bringing your Otters to uwol, always fun and a pleasure to watch however far away they might be :-) ! Well done
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Old February 28th, 2008, 07:22 PM   #17
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HAAAAAAAA What fun, I mean true fun watching your video. Man, I can just feel what you felt turning around ans seeig them there. Isn't this what it is all about. Just being out there waiting for the unexpected. A great video and welcome to the UWOL Challenge. Bob
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Old February 28th, 2008, 08:01 PM   #18
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Nice work Warren. First time I saw an otter in the wild was during this challenge. Mine was floating. Kept wondering what they'd look like on land.. Thanks for answering that question. Playful little fella's right?

Nice work I enjoyed your film.
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Old March 3rd, 2008, 08:56 AM   #19
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Thanks to every one for your kind comments about my video. And thank you for the suggestions that you made.

I have a lot to learn and I feel there is no better place to learn on the internet or maybe anywhere else than right here.

I believe some of the best nature and wildlife videographer talent in the world is right here at dvinfo.net.

Otters are one of the most fascinating animals in the world to watch and I plan to spend more time looking for them and see if I can get better quality video of them in the future.
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Old March 4th, 2008, 06:56 AM   #20
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“Otter Adventure” is a charming video Warren. You have a good, light-hearted story accompanied by some really rewarding shots of those otters in and out of the frozen lake. I did not realize just how playful they are until I saw this.

I thought that otters were only rare round these parts but judging by the comments they are rare in most parts. That makes your video all the more special.

I would have taken out the zoom and pans round 1:03 as you were adjusting your camera position. Your other pans tracking the otters were smooth and on target. Wind noise was a bit distracting in parts and didn’t add to the story.

I liked your font - it was clear and readable, yet not over-bearing or loud. I was intrigued by the fact that it was white on white with just a drop shadow for emphasis. Really nice.
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Old March 10th, 2008, 10:59 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by Warren Cook View Post
Thank you Meryem for the kind words. I wish I could have given better quality video. Any other time I would not have used this quality of video. All the times I’ve been in the woods and around ponds and lakes I’ve only seen glimpses these animals, they are so elusive.

I felt privileged to have had the opportunity to sit there and watch and film these creatures.

So even though the quality is not great I felt that some would enjoy watching them also.
Warren, sometimes we have little control over the quality of what video we get. You had cold, distance, lack of lighting clarity and lack of some proximity to the otters working against you.

But as Meryem said, there was a bit of magic in the feel of some of what you got and there are a few things you might do to work better with what you got.

One is the wind noise, sometimes even with a windmuff we can't get rid of it, but since the audio on that part was not critical you can simply drop the volume on the audio track down to zero for that part of it and substitute music (keep the audio where you were "crunching" through the snow. That adds to the visual). And while we're on that perhaps a more "playful" track of music rather than classical may have set a mood more suited to the fun those critters were having.

The second would be the use of voiceover rather than subtitles. The real advantage being you could kind of alternate narration with music and would then have audio that supplemented and even underscored what was going on in the video.

What I often suggest to some when they ask for help on still photos is that they try redoing the project with an eye towards incorporating things pointed out and see for themselves what if any difference it makes.

So you might re-edit what you've done with eye towards tightening up the "flow" of what's going on, try some more lighthearted, playful music, and substitute voiceover for the subtitles remembering to not let the music and voice compete.

I offer these ideas, not to be critical, for you literally had to freeze your tail off for a few days to get what you did, but to help you to see that maybe you did better than what you thought.
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Old March 11th, 2008, 08:33 AM   #22
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Thank you for your feedback. I was thinking about doing a voice over but I do not think my voice is good enough for that, but I may try it on UWOL #8.
I agree I should have paid for attention to the wind sound.
I do appreciate your comments, it's one of the many reasons way dvinfo.net is about the best site for this kind of videography.

Thanks again to you and to all who have given me suggestions and feedback.
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Old April 1st, 2008, 04:06 AM   #23
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Hi Warren,
Really nice shots of those otters you captured! I loved the fact that you went out in search of these critters, never really believing you would find your quarry, but in the end came home with the goods! For me some of the shots were a little out of focus & others were a bit of the same. Maybe you could have replaced some of those shots with shots of the otters habitat? Well done on this one. You went out with an idea & brought home the goods.

There's never enough hours in the day!
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