Keeping Corporate America Informed

DV Post of Santa Ana, California, is helping the employees of local corporations stay informed.

Case in point - the Quarterly Update Meetings conducted by the Irvine office of Kyocera Tycom, a manufacturer of carbide cutting tools for the circuit board industry.

The meetings are videotaped in the company’s cafeteria, and are distributed on DVD to other locations. CEO Scott Yardley, who is very entertaining speaker, will talk to a PowerPoint of charts and graphs and give the audience a lot of details about the state of the company’s performance and profits.

Scott Yardley, CEO, Kyocera Tycom (from frame of video)

As most presenters do, Scott and the others who take part in the meeting will point at things on the screen. DV Post’s job is then to convert the PowerPoint presentation into high quality photo files and insert them into the video of the hour-long presentation. The end result is much like a baseball game - it doesn’t have the excitement of being there in person, but the point of view is sure a lot better. In the lunchroom the screen is only about 4 feet wide and I’m sure that anyone more than 25 feet away would have a hard time reading the fine print. But in the video the fine print is easily read. As much as possible I will animate an arrow that will do the same kind of finger pointing that was done for the audience. This is fairly simple as I am simply covering up the live shot with the same chart. It’s a matter of looking at where the speaker is pointing and then animating an arrow over the slide. Final Cut Pro makes this process really easy. I have experimented with the conversion of PowerPoints into photo files, and have discovered that you can change the page size in PowerPoint before exporting the slides to PNG files. In some cases I have used a setting of 40x30 inches where there was a tremendous amount of detail in the chart. After making this huge file, I will shrink it to 720x540 in Photoshop. The results are beautiful. It takes about a day to edit a presentation like this, which will have between 30 and 50 PowerPoint Slides.

Chart with added animated arrow

My Panasonic DVC-200 camera works great in low light. The only light in the lunchroom is from a couple of florescent light fixtures. I have the lens at 2.8, on the standard gain setting. The video looks a bit dismal, but in Final Cut I will make the picture a little snappier looking using Final Cut’s built-in 3-way color corrector filter. In the video, the screen is unreadable of course, as it is so much brighter than the speaker. But whenever the speaker is pointing to something on the screen we cut away to the slide.

John Primm at Final Cut Pro Editing Station

Final Cut Pro Editing Screen

 

After the edit is finished, a pre-produced head and tail title sequence is added, and the presentation is crunched into an MPEG 2 file, ready for DVD Studio Pro. It takes only a few minutes in DVD Studio Pro to author the DVD. After the first DVD is made, I take it to the PC side of my office and run off 10 copies. The DVDs are then distributed to the company’s various locations.

All in all - shooting and editing meetings is a pretty mundane kind of video project, but it’s of high interest to the employees, and a great method of preserving the “record.”

DV Post owner, John Primm

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