Sunday, May 11, 2014

Google Map Video - Address Is Approximate

You know how you have an idea that you would like to try? It comes to you and then for some reason you don’t get around to fully testing it out?

I tried recording Google Maps for a poetry video but I never finished it. I will, but I was looking around for some inspiration and I found this animated video on Vimeo. This is a video from 2011 from The Theory.

It is so cool. It is a blending of traditional animation and the uses of the mapping site to create a story. One of the things that I like about it is that it finds ways of working with the limitations in order to make it seem like a real road trip.

You can screencast Google Maps with most screencasting software like Camtasia, CamStudio, Screenr, and on the Mac side you have Screenflow and Screencast-O-Matic.

Behind the Curtain and Recording Concerns

One of the neat things the creator did was place the car in a position where you can’t see the Google maps navigation arrows. They appear on the lower portion of the screen. By placing the car on top of the directional arrows right on top you don’t see it or become distracted by it.
There is also the tricky business of when you do move forward there are parts of the screen that will go out of focus. It takes a lot of editing to make it look like a smooth journey.

An additional problem that I had was trying to keep people out of the recording. You also have to be careful of business logos, corporate signage and trademarks. There are a lot of under worked corporate attorneys that would love to nab you for using the company logo in your video.

Yes, even if it is a logo on a trash bag in the street and you had nothing to do with it being there.

In urban areas that is really tough. You wind up blurring the logo or signage or overlaying your own message. But with some effort you can create with Google Maps a storytelling video.

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