TAONAW's First Photography Video

There are currently three unfinished drafts in TAONAW’s main org file1. It seems as if the pandemic2 and social-distancing dried out my ideas and ability to express myself. On Tuesday I took a walk into the park and captured some flowers and birds with my camera. As it turned out, the walk outdoors recharged my batteries. I came back home and sat down to finally record my first video about photography. Here are the details about how I did it and why.

TAONAW seeks to use free technologies for content, and broadcasting video is another suck example. I was surprised at how easy it was to set up an account and upload the video to https://video.autizmo.xyz, an instant of PeerTube. While YouTube and Instagram are unavoidable to reach photography enthusiasts, I’m going to use them only as secondary sources3.

I’ve created a channel for TAONAW where I plan to keep uploading photograph-related content. There are additional options and information to add to the channel which I need to revisit. I also need to follow up with a YouTube channel, which will work Like with my content on Medium, presenting older and selective content. Since I’m not bothered by making a profit out of the videos, much of YouTube’s settings do not make a difference to me and I’ll just leave them at default. It’s a headache next to the simplicity on PeerTube.

To create the video, I used my Sony a6000, the camera I’ve been using to take my photos since last October, and AmazonBasics 60-Inch Tripod which I purchased two months ago. Copying the video to Hedwig, my desktop computer, is a breeze thanks to Gwenview which comes with KDE. I Then edited the .mts video file with OpenShot, cutting ambulances' sirens (I live next to a hospital) and added comments in text. FFmpeg has been a tool of choice for a couple of years, and I used it here to compress and brighten up the video since I underestimated how dark my room is for the camera (learning from mistakes is the only way to learn).

The resulting video is not as bad as I feared, but of course, there’s much more to learn. The challenges I’ve encountered were not technical: the biggest one turned out to be finding a spot that doesn’t show the mess in my room; I ended up arranging my photos on my wall. Another was finding what to say: not lack of what to say, but how to say it, how to keep to the point. It is very different than writing a blog post and editing it later.

I’d love to hear comments, suggestions and general questions about the video and the topic itself.

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  1. If you’re curious about how my blog is constructed and written with Emacs, look at the About section or read this post↩︎

  2. I always like to link to Wikipedia articles when possible, but I find myself at awe at the richness of information happening right now when the members of this dedicated community build a whole subsite inside Wikipedia just about COVID-19. If you haven’t yet, please take a look, even if just to see the list of resources and links at the bottom of these articles. So much free and available information. ↩︎

  3. I started my photography journey with Instargram, where I still make connections and followers, but going forward I’m planning on giving Pixelfed the main stage. ↩︎