[Video Critique] My Two Cents

meetjoebrown.jpgThis starts a new feature for the site I’m calling Two Cents. What it amounts to is me giving a willing participant a video critique of their work.
I often do these for people, one on one, but thought that maybe folks might like to have this go public. So if you would like your work critiqued by an opinionated, self-proclaimed multimedia master with a huge ego, who knows good stuff when he sees it, then I’m your man. Send me an email: richardkocihernandez@gmail.com and I’ll give you my opinion, you know what they say about those….
One a serious note, I like doing these because I learn tons myself and hope that through this process we might learn something as a group. So, please participate by adding your own comments and critiques.
We’ll kick this off with a video by William Srite who produced the piece Meet Joe Brown, which you can find on his website. Below is his video and my Two Cents.



  1. Very cool. It is so great to have another set of eyes to look at these. When I spend so much time with a subject and then lock myself away for days on end during the production process, I sometimes lose the forest for the trees.

    It never ceases to amaze me how a good critique can open you up to a brand new way of seeing a story.

    After I get done with the revisions you suggested and some others, I’ll send you a link.

    Again, I can’t thank you enough for doing this.


  2. I think Richards brings up a lot of good points but for me the most important one is missing. In my opinion this is not a video, it`s a soundslide show. While you video taped the boring part – talking heads – we see the action only in stills. There is nothing wrong with that but the story would work just as well if you only showed a few stills of the parents while they tell their story. There is no point in filming them talking especially not since the interview is really badly light. You might want to check Mindys cheat sheet http://mindymcadams.com/tojou/2008/cheat-sheet-for-multimedia-story-decisions/ and ask youself whether you used the right tools for the right parts of the story. It still can be a great slide show though. Just my 2 cents…

  3. The project’s label is irrelevant. If you’re going to use video for the interview, it needs to closer to the quality level of the still photographs.

    You’ve found a great story. It leaves me wanting to know more about him.

  4. Guys,
    Do you think I should just cut out the video? I like the footage of dad crying, I think it would be a shame to lose it. I’m not married to it though. I know the video quality isn’t great. It became a consideration of content or form.

    My other thought on my recut was to tape Joe in the studio with better lighting. The problem with having joe tell his own story is that he has a speech impediment that not only makes him nearly impossible to understand, but also slows down the rhythm of the story. It takes him about twenty seconds to say “My name is Joe Brown.” I’m not sure I have enough stills or B-Roll to carry the story while he tells it.

    What I’ve discovered about doing stories on disability, this is my second one in 2008, is that it is all about the subtle moment—more so than even most stories. Because Joe is in a chair most of the time it becomes a story of human interaction, rather than one of Joe does “this,” then Joe does “that.” This makes the still camera a more appropriate tool, in my opinion.

    Thanks for the input guys. Hopefully I can make some lemonade out of it.

  5. I think, tears are over-used and over-rated. And you can´t really see them in your video either, just barely recognize. Lose the video, add some nice stills, straighten out the narrative and be happy with a great story.