That Movie Making Experience

I must say this week’s blog entry is really interesting. We’re given the task of doing a video on Microsoft Movie Maker and uploading it to video-sharing website, YouTube. Being the “rebel” I usually am, I decided to do things differently. I made my video via iMovie and uploaded it to Vimeo. 

This movie is not my first movie. Though I must say my experience in filming is really limited. The first time I did my own home movie was in October 2003. It was my Aunty’s 70th Birthday and she was back in Singapore to celebrate it. So I decided to make use of this opportunity to get myself a video cam and filmed the event. 

Being a photography person, does not necessarily mean you’ll be good in cinematography. But needless to say, each photographer has that experience of flirting with the idea of filming moving pictures. However, the filming experience for me didn’t last for long. I gave up filming in 2004 and moved back to photography, as I found my calling not in the former. 

Honestly, I’ve not used Microsoft Movie Maker for any of my movies… OK… I did briefly… But the experience was bad… I know this is going to sound biased (from a mac lover) but iMovie is really much easier to use than Movie Maker. 

Firstly, the interface is more idiot-proof. Secondly, there are more functions on iMovie. Thirdly… Everything just looks better when done on the mac. Ok… That was a biased reason. But really, a good reason why iMovie trumps Movie Maker and other is that Apple updates its programs yearly with better functions. While Movie Maker on the other hand, despite updating its interface with the upgrade from Windows XP to Vista, the video effects and transitions are still pretty much generic.

Perhaps this is an unfair comparison between iMovie and Movie Maker since the former is produced by a company known for it’s professional video editing software, Final Cut Pro. Which is currently used by 49% of the digital editing field. Yes… It’s the desired editing program of blockbuster Hollywood movies. This is one expertise clearly lacking in Microsoft. 

Recently under the coaxing of a schoolmate, I upgraded my Mac with the latest iLife suite (think Mac’s lifestyle answer to Microsoft Office). I originally wanted to tap into the new functions available on iPhoto, but curiosity got the better of me. I decided to check out the spiffy new functions on iMovie. Not too long ago I was using iMovie ’08 for the editing of a movie I did for one of my Communication modules. I wished there were more special effects on the program. 

My wish was answered in iMovie 09. Now I can generate animated maps of the places I’ve travelled to in my holiday videos (part of Apple’s immersion of the geotagging trend in photography). Not only that, I can also use snazzy “themes” to present my videos (see video for better illustration). 

The only hitch is that iLife is updated yearly for a not-too-cheap price. iLife 09 costs $138 and contains 4 programs: Garageband (music making), iPhoto (photo editing), iMovie (movie editing) and iWeb (idiot-proof website builder). The fact is I rarely use the other programs, apart from iPhoto and iMovie. Which doesn’t make sense to buy all 4 programs at a go. To make matters worse, iPhoto and iMovie are not sold separately. Which means, like it or not, I have to pay $138 for 2 programs and 2 white elephants. 

Guess using a Mac doesn’t come cheap. But its end products are really aesthetically delicious! 🙂



Note: The video is a compilation of photos and video clips from my vacation in Esperance, Western Australia.


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