Showing My Work #7
Often when we talk about our work, we talk in terms of ‘what’ we did. The Showing My Work series of posts aim to also capture the ‘how’ something was done.
E-Learning Heroes Challenge #42 – Smartphone Video. The brief: This week, your challenge is to record, edit, and publish a training video using your smartphone. Choose a topic that allows you to record multiple videos for your project. The focus on this challenge is as much about editing as it is recording.
I almost didn’t do this challenge because I thought I wouldn’t have time but I did, and it turned out to be one of the most fun challenges I’ve participated in. The first thing I needed to figure out was the subject and I gravitated towards my Nespresso coffee machine and I thought about creating some a ‘how to use’ clips – setting up, using and cleaning. In this demo I was also able to put into practice a couple of tips that I picked up from David Anderson and Tom Kuhlmann.
Filming the videos
As the challenge was about using your smartphone to create the videos, I wasn’t sure how mine would turn out as I was using my trusty old iPhone 3G. I have zero equipment for holding the phone steady so I made this little stand using some post-it-notes and bulldog clips:
I also made supports using different combinations of books to give me different heights and angles:
The whole thing was shot in my kitchen. I just moved things out of the way so only the coffee machine was in the shot:
It was pretty basic but it got the job done (I think so anyway).
The visual layout
How a course or module looks, plays an important role as it creates an atmosphere or a context for the person completing it. Literally, it sets the scene.
Tip #1: Have a look at the company website to get some ideas for the look of your module.
So that’s what I did. Here’s a screen shot of the Nespresso website:
See how it’s quite dark – black is a prominent colour and the text is white. As this was going to be some help videos on how to use the machine, I thought it was appropriate to use similar colouring in the demo so that it fits in with the company look.
When creating a piece of eLearning I like to use ‘Master Slides’ because they ensure consistency and they save lots of time. You can have multiple master slides in your project to use when you need them. So, I started with a black background and found a couple of images from a Google search:
But I had a slight problem. See how the image of the cup of coffee doesn’t go right across the screen. It looks like its floating and I needed to do something with that. In this case, I couldn’t just expand it across the slide because it would give a ‘stretched’ look, like this:
Tip #2: Take a grab of part of the image that won’t be affected by stretching.
So I took a snip of a section of the coffee image and saved it as a picture (see the red box below). I used the Snipping Tool on my PC but something like Snagit would also work. Then I inserted the snip image back into the slide, positioned it on the same place where it came from then pulled it across the screen:
The end result is that it looks like one image and there’s no stretched look:
Now I have a Master Slide that I’ve set up once but can use multiple times.
The demo itself
To create the demo, I made one of the screens a ‘home screen’ which has access to each of the three videos. When you click on an iPad screen, it zooms in and the video starts to play and once it’s finished, it zooms out again. It looks like it’s happening on the one screen but each time you click on an iPad, you are actually going to a separate screen that has the video file in it.
The reason I did it this way was because I wanted people to be able to choose which video they watched based on what they need to do and I couldn’t do this and use the zoom function three times on the one screen.
When you look at the ‘Home’ screen you can see what looks like the videos ready to play but they are actually a screen shot of the first frame of the clip. When you click on it and zoom in, you are actually going to a different slide. When the video ends, you automatically go back to the Home screen.
What I learned
One of the things that I learned from this challenge is that you don’t necessarily need a big, high-end production to create some videos to use as performance support. I mean sure, it can look quite slick if you did but I was able to create this demo in just a few hours and it gets the message across. It also taught me to be resourceful and that you can do more than you think you can!
Here’s the demo, you can click on the image to view it:
Let me know what you think and you can see all of my ELH Challenge entries on My Portfolio page.