All posts for “ourwork”
Sachi came into the room where I draw and saw this piece of paper and nearly died from laughter. It's true - I'm sorry to say, I had a problem coloring a checkered flag. Such things are all too common in my world.
What a year. I can say with ultimate confidence that we never would have guessed, one year ago, that 2007 would be so transformative for Common Craft. Here are some things we learned: OUR WORK Video works. Text, graphics, audio, they all have a place. But video is a different animal. Nothing engages people like the dynamics of a video. Ever read about a car chase? It's not as fun. Simple is better. Approach an explanation by removing information instead of adding it. Remember Occam's... Continue Reading
I always wanted to be independent - I never, not once in my life, had the goal of working for someone else. It's not in my genes. In 2003 I founded Common Craft and in January of 2007 Sachi joined the company. Since then, Sachi has been the real force driving our goal of having a truly independent lifestyle.And it is ALL about lifestyle. As I've written before, we make our lifestyle a huge priority. Why choose to be independent if you can't create a job and schedule that works for you? We... Continue Reading
Like our videos, the tools we use to make them are quite simple. Below is a quick tour of some of the non-electronic elements of our productions... The photo below represents a near-complete selection of the tools we use almost everyday to create illustrations and videos. You can view the photo below with "notes" on Flickr.com. Because neither of us brought video production/scripting/storyboarding experience to the table, we've tinkered our way through and created a couple of resources that... Continue Reading
Last night we shot the video for the next Common Craft Show and, as usual, we came out of the experience completely exhausted. I've always been fascinated that it takes so much out of me. In thinking about why (other than the 500 watt lights), it has become clear that it may be the same thing that makes our videos work: iteration. Everything we do on video is rehashed, rewritten, repositioned and edited all the way to the point the camera rolls (and sometimes again after). All these changes... Continue Reading
When asked what sort of videos we make it's a bit hard to explain in normal terms. They're not really instructional or how-to, they have elements of marketing and promotion and some say they are entertaining. Here's a few options - maybe you have more? Infodocutainmercials? Explanatainment? Docuinfotainment? Explanapromomercials? Explanadocuinfotainmercials? or maybe just... explainment? By the way, don't expect to see any of this on the Common Craft business cards - just for fun. Any... Continue Reading
Boy, did we learn something about our videos. You like the booos and yeahs, eh? I think that's pretty clear. It's funny.Â Did you know that the first time we did it for the RSS video it was completely spur-of-the-moment?Â The booo just seemed to fit in that moment of production - we had no inkling that it would be a trademark. I'll take the blame for it not appearing in this video.Â I felt like it started to get a bit trite - I thought people might be getting tired of it. I was wrong. I... Continue Reading
Looking back over my posts recently, I might call the theme "Off-topic and Rant-y". This being the case, I'll continue the theme for one more post. In listening to my friends who have Macs, I was under the impression that they heal the sick, feed the poor, turn water to wine and help you get laid all at once. The truth is I tire so quickly of all the Apple adoration. I love their designs, I want an iPhone, I own a Mac, love Final Cut, I respect Steve Jobs and know that OS X is better than... Continue Reading
The other day I was getting a haircut. Making small talk (it was a $15 haircut) she asks... Barber: So are you going back to work after this? Me: Sort of. I work from home. Barber: Oh, that's cool. What do you do? Me: Me and my wife make videos, in our basement. Well, I should say that we get paid to make videos. Barber: Me: We have a little studio at home and we make short videos for businesses. Barber: Oh, THAT kind of videos. I hear ya. Me: No, no, no. Not THAT kind I swear. Our... Continue Reading
Since our first couple of videos came out, I've been talking to a lot of people about what makes the Paperworks format work. Aside from the content/message, I often say that a set of constraints is what makes the format a great fit for our goals. In this case, a "constraint" is a rule that we have decided not to break in making our videos. Examples: We only use certain materials (paper, whiteboard, markers, string), we won't make a video over 4 minutes long, we only use our hands to tell... Continue Reading
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