This week, I felt more in my comfort zone. YouTube, videos, images, ahhhh, this I can do . . . this I understand. As a thriving DIY’er, amateur landscape photographer, and dabbler in video editing, I have used a lot of YouTube, read many books on photography composition, and have taken some photography classes long ago. I’ve even had the pleasure of using YouTube in the past for making healthy recipes, looking up certain work-out ideas, or . . . might I admit it . . . finding videos on surgeries I haven’t yet performed (during training of course!). But when I looked at YouTube and Pinterest with a bit more critical of an eye, I came to some very clear conclusions.
1. Master photography to improve video quality
It is clear that the techniques that make photography so powerful, work equally as well with cinematography. While both media are not the same, merging techniques of composition help both. Some of these techniques include:
#The horizontal and vertical thirds (i.e. items of import within an image should be placed on either a horizontal or vertical third – or even better at the intersection of those thirds).
#Mastery of foreground, middle ground, and background
#Simplify, simplify, simplify
These are just to name a few. While the pictures I have included in this post are landscapes I have taken which demonstrate some of these principles, I saw the same principles in MD Anderson videos, cooking and workout channels on YouTube, and recipes on Pinterest.
2. It’s all propaganda!
I don’t care if it’s MD Anderson talking about cancer treatment, Becca Kay talking about what she eats in the morning (who is she again??), or poverty porn (am I the only one who hates that name? Not if you read the comments to that post we read! I’m not alone) all these people/orgs are trying to prove their relevance which is propaganda. MD Anderson wants you to be treated there, Becca Kay gets a kick out of you subscribing to her channel and watching what she eats, and relief organizations are definitely fighting for your money.
Yes I know I put this under number 1 as well, but it works on its own. If you look at the MD Anderson videos in particular, they are meant to strike a cord with your heart and soul. These videos usually do not show more than 1 person at a time in the frame, the backgrounds are while, the labels are simple text, and the words they use are clear. EVERYTHING is simple. I noticed similar techniques on channels from regular YouTube users just interested in having more subscribers. It works, it’s clear . . . it’s simple.
4. Touch the human element
This goes back to the propaganda bit . . . touching the human soul keeps the viewer engaged, establishes a strong emotional memory thus creating a favorable FEELING about something. The AIDs videos on Banyan Tree were particularly good at this. Those videos were also very simple, many did not even contain music (I thought it was a pre-requisite for awesomeness until I saw those videos), and yet they touched the soul through the stories that were told and through the pace (slow) with which they were presented.
5. Oh yeah and audio is pretty key
This is probably one of the more difficult things to accomplish as an amateur dabbler in video, but it’s soooo key. If you can’t hear the speaker’s voice clearly, the message is lost. I liken this to the lighting in a picture. The same scene taken under many different lighting conditions will evoke many different moods. A voice that sounds distant and echoy, sounds way less dramatic than one that is clear, slow, and lacking background noise.
While all none of these elements touch on health issues specifically, that’s kind of the point here. What works for Hollywood, also works for us in healthcare. Everyone is so used to seeing things with the professional productions of Hollywood, particularly with easy to use tools at our fingertips, that poor productions are no longer acceptable.
I found YouTube and Pinterest to be great media for searching for healthy lifestyle choices and changes, information about health related topics, while also being very quick and easy to use. The search functions work well (which I did not find in other social media sites like Meetup in past assignments), so it was nice to be back with much more robust search engines. I guess the power of YouTube and Pinterest goes back to the idea presented in Here Comes Everybody – the plethora of people using these sites and providing content gives them their strength and utility.