Tag Archive: video editing


Taking Time With My New Videos

NEW A.P.T. MUSIC VIDEO FOR “OOH, I’M A MODEL!” DROPPING SEPTEMBER 21, 2010!

As you can see, I’ve been spacing out my videos much more than I used to.  Back when I was doing my “One-Song-a-Week” project I had no choice but to think of a video to film, edit, and post on YouTube every Sunday.

Since that project I’ve put out a few more videos, all with ranging popularity.  Ironically, I have found that the less amount of time I spend putting the video together, the more hits I’ve gotten.  Examples include: “O-bama O-bama,” “Imma Let U Finish,” “Kate Gosselin is a B*tch” and “The Betty White Song.”

At the same time, those videos weren’t really all that impressive.  Granted, they worked in terms of gaining lots of views on YouTube… but when it comes to making videos, that’s not the only thing I have to think about.

Now that I’m in L.A., there are artists everyday that are looking to hire out people to make music videos for them.  Most of these artists want a video that’s flashy, has good editing, and is something they can present to a TV network for potential national exposure.

With the majority of the videos I had been making, some of them were good plot-wise but not camera-wise, and most of them were definitely NOT flashy.  It’s only been with the last few videos I’ve put together for myself (“No U Ain’t,” “C U Next Tuesday”) as well as Non Juan (“Erectile Dysfunction,” “Tongue Tied”) where I felt like I could have someone else hire me out based upon my own finished products.

Recently, I’ve been getting into better circles in terms of dealing with people who can actually afford to PAY me for directing/editing videos… but of course, those people want to see examples of what I’m able to do before they use my services.  So, by default, all the videos I make for myself now have to have  a certain quality to them in order to be both effective enough for me to gain YouTube views AND stylistic enough to make people want to hire me.

I’ll probably still do a few low-budget looking videos every once in a while, but the goal is for most of my new stuff to be impressive as heck.  I got access to good cameras and good editing software, so why the heck not??

-A.P.T.

Hey everybody!

Another week, another video up on YouTube. 

Making videos is fun, but this whole project in general is a learning process – and boy oh boy, have I been learning a LOT.  Since my thoughts are better explained when I do list, allow me to make one of some of the things I’ve learned so far:

1. EDITING VIDEOS TAKES A LOT OF TIME.  I’ve said it before so I won’t spend long talking about it, but it’s taking me anywhere between 3 to 8 hours to edit these videos.  Every time I see a video on BET or MTV now I have GREAT respect for what they do.  Even a video as low-key as my “The N!@@er Song”, where I don’t cut away a whole lot from myself, took me 3 hours!!  I wonder how long that one-shot De’Angelo video, “How Does It Feel,” took them to edit…

2. WHEN POSTING UP VIDEOS, BE PREPARED FOR FEEDBACK, BOTH GOOD AND BAD.  This is the biggest lesson I’ve learned from posting the “Obama Obama” video so far – as I type this it is at over 126,000 views, and I’ve received many comments about the video, the majority of which have been positive.

However, there have been quite a few people who expressed concern over the part of the song where I talk about Michelle Obama – specifically, the part where I indicate that she’s so hot, “I’d hit” (for those not up on slang, that means that if Barack wasn’t attached to her, I’d consider making love to her).

In hood vernacular, this is often how guys express if one of their homeboy’s girls is good-looking – “man, your girl is fine!  Betta watch out, ’cause I’d DEFINITELY hit that!”  And, given that the artist I was parodying was Lil’ Wayne, I had no problem saying these things as I wasn’t taking the song too seriously.  However, not all people are me, and some people thought that I was using the song as a serious statement about Obama, and that my comments about Michelle were disrespectful and should be edited out the song.

But hey, everyone’s entitled to their opinion, right?  I understand where they’re coming from; at the same time, though, I can’t let every criticism I’ll get about my songs cause me to try and change it just to please people. 

I had one person write and tell me that I could pitch this to Obama’s camp to use in their campaign, if I just took the part out about Michelle, and the part where I mention the Clintons, and the part where I mention McCain possibly dying.  THAT’S HALF THE SONG, PEOPLE!! But it’s definitely interesting to get feedback from all angles.

3. I NOW UNDERSTAND THE TERM “OVERNIGHT CELEBRITY.”  I used to think this was a bogus term, especially since I’m aware of how much behind-the-scenes legwork a person has to do before they are finally recognized by people outside their immediate circle.

But lo and behold: once you create something that other people whom you don’t know can grab a hold of and relate to, it can spread like wild fire.  Next thing you know, you go from being known by a small group, to being “known” by several thousand or more.  I say the second “known” in quotations because they really only know a small part of you, i.e. the part you chose to send out.

Which reminds me:

4. MAKING EDITED VERSIONS OF SONGS IS A WISE IDEA IF YOU’RE NOT ALREADY FAMOUS.  Especially in the Internet age where you can send a song to radio and they might actually play it – but not if the song is full of curse words.

I try my hardest not to cuss in my songs except where I feel the emotional impact of the event makes it necessary.  However, I’m also aware that radio stations hate having to edit content themselves.  When I made the “Obama” song, I recorded it with the thought in mind that it could possibly get radio play.  To that end, I made sure not to say any words that would make them hesitate playing it.

I have to go back and edit a few of my songs now, though, which is a pain in the ass you-know-what because it means having to re-record in certain parts and/or cutting and pasting back lyrics.  At the same time, though, I’d like to think my younger cousins could see my videos or download the songs without restriction, especially since they seem to look up to me and/or want to brag to their friends about my music!

One major roadblock, though: my apartment.  There are a few song ideas I have where it would require me to yell on the chorus and/or parts of the verse, but I live in an apartment with thin walls and neighbors who don’t like hearing noise all the time.  I usually only record once or twice a week (at times when my neighbor isn’t home), but even then I have people living above me or across the hall, so I have to be considerate.

I guess what I’m saying is, I really, REALLY need to get some time to record in a real studio.  But, money’s tight (as usual), so I have to make due.  Oh yeah – if you’d like to donate some money to my recording dreams, click HERE for more info!!

Okay, that’s all for now – I have to prepare for a meeting with my entertainment lawyer this afternoon, as well as a radio interview this evening.  I’ll keep you all posted!

-A.P.T.

E-mail: aptsongs@hotmail.com

First: it’s 3:16 AM in the morning, and I have yet to go to sleep.  I think I’m starting to get used to requiring less and less sleep to function during the day – a good thing, actually, considering the business I’m trying to get into!

Anyway… so, like I’ve said before, having this site has opened up the flood gates in terms of my creativity.  Of course, even I know that, as a person currently doing all this stuff solo, there’s only so far I can go before I’ll want to involve other people.  One of these avenues, of course, is my music videos. 

Some of the songs I write tell stories where I’m interacting with other people.  The problem is, at the moment I’m the only person starring in these videos, and the few people I know here in Atlanta seem to be camera shy (or, at the very least, opposed to appearing on YouTube, lest the whole world see it).  It sucks because I have all these great ideas for videos, but can’t use them at the moment because I don’t know anybody willing to help out…

Well, scratch that – I just found out today that one of the girls I work with actually got her degree in… well, I forget, but it involves casting, and she said she might know some up-and-coming actors looking to build up their resume by starring in my videos.  Which works great for me – I wouldn’t have to pay them (though I probably would so they could put on their resumes that they were “paid” to be in a video), and I could expand my video-making capabilities!

In the meantime… so, I was going to shoot one video, but I really want to use another girl and guy in the video.  I’m going to try my darndest to get them; in the meantime, though, I thought of a GREAT song I could do this week.  It’s a great idea because it involves me re-making one of the hottest beats currently out there, while at the same time talking about certain current events in this country.

I can’t give too much away, but I’m pretty sure this song will end up being as big as “Erectile Dysfuction” is (currently at 11,000 views and counting!).  I know of at least one person who will like the song (I’m talking about YOU, Ms. Goff), which is enough reason for me to make it.  I haven’t written the song yet, and the only thing I have so far is the chorus, but I have off all day Friday to make the song AND record the video.  (Well, that, and I’ll probably catch a movie – can we say “Love Guru” AND “Get Smart” in the same day?!?)

Okay, that’s it from me – I’ll probably write more later this week.  Then again, maybe not.  Either way, definitely check back here Sunday!

-A.P.T.

Before I begin: I just realized that these blogs get imported to Facebook, yet they don’t attach the actual link to my site.  Therefore, whenever I type these from now on, I’ll be leaving the link address under my name – if you’re reading this on facebook, GO TO MY SITE!! You can download my new songs there!

Anyway… so, I did the first record for my new song last night, and have to make the video for it between now and Sunday.  Unfortunately, it just dawned on me that, aside from today and Saturday morning, I will (tentatively) be working full days for the remainder of the week!

In short, that means I have to shoot most of the video today.  I already had plans made for today (most not really important – getting a haircut, cleaning my place up, etc.), but I like having busy days because… well, it’s better than sitting around doing nothing!

The song is so new, I haven’t even memorized it yet.  Luckily, the concept for the video doesn’t require me to mouth the words to the song.  It will consist mostly of… HEY! Wait a minute! I can’t give away TOO much!  Guess you’ll have to wait until Sunday!

Okay, I will say this much – this will the the first video where the majority of it will NOT take place in my apartment.  It’s nice weather outside, and I live right next to the park.  The only thing I have to worry about is the occasional purple lines my camera films when it gets too much sunlight in the shot.  I promise you, once I get a little more money, the first thing I’m doing is upgrading to a REAL digital camera, instead of my current method of using my Kodak picture cam’s video capabilities (which, while good, isn’t as high of a quality as I’d like).

Okay, I’m off to make some breakfast, then map out my filming schedule.  I have plans at 5 PM today, and it’s 8:30 AM right now, which gives me 8-1/2 hours to film something.  It’s a good thing I get up at 6:30 every morning – with no alarm!

-A.P.T.

http://www.aptsongs.wordpress.com