Friday, February 18, 2011

What Software Do I Have To Work With - PSA Project

Looking over the resources to conjure up the public service ad. Again, I have to keep the my goals in mind:
  • The goal is to let folks know about the AFRO American newspaper archive and direct them to the web site.
  • I don't have a lot of time, it should be something that I can assemble in an afternoon.
  • It can't be complex, I don't have the skills or the design know how and I don't think it needs to be.
So lemme see what I've got in the old kit bag:

Screen Capture:

I use Camtasia SnagIt to capture and customize computer generated images. I love the SnagIt Editor, captioning and resizing is a breeze. For those on the PC side who don't have cash I can recommend the free version of Gadwin PrintScreen.


I would like to have a clip or two from the 1940s and 1950s but finding a public domain or governmental video of African Americans on the screen for more than two seconds is a challenge. I'll give it a go but I have low expectations.

Photo and Text Animation:

I could just do screen captures and let Animoto compose the video. I could, but where is the fun in that?

Microsoft Photo Story 3 which will let me combine photos, music and narration into a movie.

I have a flash animation clone called SwishMax, it allows me to animate photos and text and then export to an .avi video file. Looking at the text animation feature that could be helpful. There are built in animation effects that I can just type and render.

I also have an older program called Momento Express (no longer available for download or it is a spammy copy of the original program.) It is similar to Microsoft Photo Story 3 but it has some nifty features like being able to zoom in on a particular hot spot that you want to focus on in the image.

I have plenty of video editing programs but I want to make sure I just do the basics.


I have Corel VideoStudio Pro X3 which comes with a supply of music. I'll need to go back and look at the terms of service about the music. I don't want to be surprised to find out if it is just for personal or non-commercial use.

I will also check for public domain music. That is gonna be tough because I'm not sure what kind of music would be appropriate; should I go blues, spiritual or thumping bass? It is more of a risk that I will get lost listening to music than working on the project.

There are a number of musicians that do give permission to use their music provided you give attribution or a link back to their site. Places like or the Celestrial Aeon Project.

The point is you don't need a lot of high tech stuff to make a simple PSA video.
Sometimes simple is all you need to make a point or tell the story.
Maybe we have forgotten that and get caught up in the whiz bang of technology.

No comments:

Post a Comment

I love actual comments. Please understand that comments will be held until I get a chance to look them over or wake up, whichever comes first.

Spam and other forms of hate speech are not welcome here. And due to the actions of spam bots and the people that love them moderation is in full effect.