Creating a Video From Start to Finish


Lesson Info

Capturing Room Tone

So let's talk about room tone. You're gonna need it for every location that's being recorded in. Room tone is as important as white balance. Okay, it's nonnegotiable. You will kick yourself time and time again and here's the thing, you can't go back another day and get a room tone, because there's things that may have moved in the room, sound will respond a different way. You won't have all the equipment set up in there in the exact same way, right. There isn't a way to replicate the sound in that room, of that day, of that moment. So you have to get it at that time. So much can change. You know, for all you know, a giant construction thing could be pounding the ground outside of your shoot space, right. You don't know, okay. You don't know when you're gonna be able to get back in the space anyway. So it's nonnegotiable, you have to do it. And I can't tell you have it saved me in this edit. Okay it really did. And then I'm overboard when I say get room tone. Okay two minutes. You end u...

p only ever using a few seconds. Okay you end up using just a smidgen of it. You use the portion that really, really gets you kind of like locked in and dialed in, but then you're just kind of like safe, you're safe. You're just safe, okay. And then that is if you gotta get people out Get em out, get em out. That means like someone fumbling with their shirt. You know like, fidgeting, like get them out. There's no, it's nonnegotiable. Either they quite and don't say anything, don't fidget, stay off their phone , whatever or they get out. Okay, now we did do a little bit of room tone to kinda show you how I did it. So here we go. Before you wrap, before you strike anything, before you move anything, the last most fundamental thing that you're gonna do before you vacate the premise, is to get what's called room tone. Room tone is essential and it's gotta be for at least like a minute 30 seconds, you gotta get a good amount of room tone, cause you don't know what portion of that room tone you're gonna end up using. Now I'll go over what room tone is for later, but generally speaking my rule of thumb is to use the microphone that I recorded the sound from. That way there is no differences in the overall quality of it and then I'ma gonna just let it run. A lot of times what I'll do just to prevent people from messing up the room tone, I'll just start the recording and then I'll walk out with everybody and then we'll go back in. You know so it's just kind of like to be able make sure that we get quality room tone, just for everything that we're going to be doing in the editing room. So again I turn the mic on, put it where your client was, let it record, and then come back a minute later. So you know when we talk about capturing great sound, it's getting the room is really important. So stuff will reflect sound, just like light and it will effect the quality of the sound you are capturing. So in that specific space I was really lucky, cause it was all soft spaces. But if I was in an open room, that was echoey and hard and bouncy, I would have needed to throw down some sound blankets. I would needed to hang up some curtains, so that it would have baffled some of that. Some of the sound reverberation. You wanna get clean, clean audio and if there's an echo in there it's not going to be very pleasing. Okay so remember what I said. Walk into a space and listen to the room. You know a really, really good test. You know, is just gonna do a clap. If you clap if you clap and then it echos, you got a problem. You gotta find a way to cut that down. If you clap and it just kind of trails off like a normal clap would, then that's something you're just in a good space for. Okay and a couple tips for like speaking or getting an interview set up properly is I tend to not like having people speak into a corner, cause what'll end up happening is if they're too close to that corner, it's just gonna bounce back and it's gonna really really effect it. I generally like to have them however, not to have some some baffling on the side, so walls or just something that's gonna help absorb any kind of reverberation. And if you have to set up curtains or whatever it is, typically like on the sides, and in the back, and then as it somewhere behind the camera to kind of capture it as it hits toward and goes forward. You know just common sense type of stuff. You know where, you know if you just listen and you just pay attention, you can really just do a really great job. I also like to put stuff down on the ground. That's gonna help absorb some of the sound waves as well, because in lieu of like hanging stuff from the ceiling it just gives me a nice space to work in that kind of just absorb sound.

"A tumultuous amount of technique and process info given by Victor in this class. Just wonderful. Well done." - Michael UK

Creating a film or video is a decision-making process from beginning to end. From what type of story you want to create, where to film, how to capture audio, editing your story together - the entire process can be overwhelming and confusing. Victor Ha will make this process attainable by laying out the foundation to set yourself up for success in the planning and pre-production phases. Victor will show you how effective planning can make your shoot and edit faster and easier. Understanding this workflow and adding video to your portfolio can increase your business and expand your creative offerings. In this class, Victor will cover:

  • Pre-production techniques like creating shot lists and shoot schedules 
  • How to use your DSLR to capture video 
  • Capturing the right footage for the edit 
  • How to piece together a rough cut in Adobe Premiere Pro CC 
  • Producing multiple pieces from one shoot 
This class will take you step by step from concept to completion so that you can begin creating films with your clients and friends within 48 hours.

"Love this class! Victor really knows how to break things to simple language so you understand and retain. He also teaches you all the fundamentals before you ever fire up your camera. Victor is Ha-mazing!" - Jerry Suhrstedt



  • m'k? ok? k? right? As others have said victor has lots of energy and lots of good stuff going on - but there are some really irritating ticks in this one making many sections of these vids almost unwatchable: after just about any explanatory statement - especially where it seems Victor is less sure of the technical rationale - he concludes each observation with an "ok?" and then leaps into the next sentence. On waveforms and scopes (vid 8) for example: we start with a discussion of an Atamos monitor " tells me how saturated i am in relation to that center point, ok? These are things that may be so daunting and scary [???] when you look at it, when you talk about it, but again, i didn't know about these three years ago and i was still doing content. I'm only telling you about this now because i think it's important for you to learn about what we call waveforms and scopes, ok? So waveform: confusing. Really really confusing, ok? [!!!?????} But it's a great way to check yourself on set, ok? Because there's things sometimes [hand waving gestures] we just don't know where we're at and we just have to check the overall scene value, as opposed to the exposure of a person, ok? So... And then at the end of the next run through this rather large if unmotivated section he asks "any questions"? here's where John Grengo would run a short exercise to see how folks were processing the information just imparted. It's not inspiring confidence, either, is it, to start by assuming /asserting that a concept is confusing - especially before it's been introduced. It suggests that it's still confusing for the instructor. The rest of this section continues in this way: with the ok's and concept jumps - by the end of the section, somehow the monitor as gear has entirely disappeared and we end up in adobe premier, and da vinci "Bring these values down in production - not in post" though, victor asserts How? with what? Victor doesn't make the connection between how the Atamos makes this "in production" adjustment possible (does it? i'm guessing) - or what the tradeoff is IN doing this adjustment in post - with the tools premier or davinci has with its various scopes. "Did you guys understand the concept there? i see some heads nodding. I love teaching: this is great." Actually, no, it's not clear that people really get this: so how about a scenario to test what to do to see if people get it? But really how about finishing the discussion about the monitor? We then get into vectorscopses (Victor doesn't distinguish between vectorscope as the tool and the chart generated by the scope - or why "vectors" vs any other kind of representation) we're then presented with a chart from the scope -but not the image from which the graph is generated - so we have no visual reference for an image that is "hue shifted, ok?" vs. not hue shifted. "the further the colors are away from center the more SATURATION you have. How cool is this tool" - how about showing an example of such an image? Still looking at this chart we learn: "You can immediately tell that your blues are oversaturated and shifted in hue, right?" - Again, seeing the image to map to this chart would have helped understand what was being asserted. "you show the chart, BOOM, perfect white balance" - YOu show the chart to what? when? "everything is on vector except the green that is slightly shifted" On vector? What is that? "Use this target in post" - Now we're talking post again. What happened to do this in production? So if post can do this and Davinci 12.5 is "free" - why buy the monitor? What we still don't know: the role/value of the monitor that has a vectorscope - where "vectorcsope wil save you" - which one? monitor or post? Kind of a big hole when that's a piece of kit well over a grand. How many students are going to go add a 1300 piece of gear to their camera for doing corporate profiles? how crucial is it? Plainly Victor is excited about it, and it may be fantastic. Intriguingly when talking about the monitors - esp the less expensive of the two Atamos models, he doesn't talk about why else one might want one - what the 4:2:2 ratios they offer mean (perhaps head to Ryan Connolly's Guerilla Filmmaking for that) How does this massive section end? Clean your sensors; have a monopod; bring a white card and light meter. What?? I'm sorry there's only a thumbs up or thumbs down for this rather than some kind of scoring. it sounds like i'm slashing this. I'm not. But there are some basics that would make this material even more effective and accessible. - Mr. Ha could watch himself on video to see all the "ok's" and work to kill them - they seem to be a sign of nervousness lack of clarity /confidence as shown in this section. - When going through (for photographer concepts) use more images - he has lots of example vids in his first course - same thing needed here. - use example scenarios a la grengo (and good teachers everywhere) to test a concept rather than saying "any quesitons?" and feeling validated from head nodding. - complete the circle: if talking about gear - talk about the gear before skipping into a new concept. I still have no sense from this of whether or not these monitors have real value - should be on the list ahead of a new camera body or glass - or are just treats if you have everything else. Again, lots of useful material; the course is worth it for the grounded progressions through the cycle of video crafting, but if you can only afford one vid course in the Victor Ha set, the HDSLR basics is a better organised, illustrated and presented course.
  • Victor is an incredible instructor, clearly passionate about teaching videography to photographers. His teaching style is engaging and energetic, and the content is interesting and useful. I was very fortunate to be part of the audience for this course.
  • Victor is a wonderful, knowledgeable and enthusiastic teacher - I learned so much. Thank you.