Category Archives: Case Studies

Sandisk 128GB Product Launch Video

SanDisk launched 128GB microSD card March of last year for any device that accepts cards of that size. Please watch the video to find out what it means to have a higher capacity of storage in your mobile devices. This video was distributed to other SanDisk branches around the world and to SanDisk customers.

The production set up involved an FS700 with an 18-300 lens and a boom pole shotgun mic. The subjects were lit with a large softbox as the main and an LED as the kicker. Audio backup is a wireless lav which is miked to an audio recorder. It turned out that the first two interviews needed that backup as the background noise of the environment is noisy. The lav was placed closer to the subjects voice than the boom mic.

SanDisk 128GB Project Launch Video

Remember the Ice Bucket Challenge? SanDisk CEO Sanjay Mehrotra Took ALS Ice Bucket Challenge, Challenged Tech leaders to do the same

Unless you have been living in a cave, or maybe a prolonged backpacking trip away from society or something, you will have heard of the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge. What started as simple videos of people daring other people to pour freezing cold water over their heads to promote awareness for Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) aka Lou Gehrig’s Disease, ballooned into a huge viral phenomenon. It even garnered the attention of everyone, from average joes like us, to politicians, to A-list celebrities like Matt Damon, Justin Timberlake, Amy Adams and Henry Cavill. Yes, even Superman has decided to promote truth and justice for ALS patients by dousing himself with ice water.

In our own Silicon Valley backyard, tech CEOs took to the California summer weather to join in the good will. C-Sharp was fortunate enough to film the ice bucket challengefor SanDisk CEO Sanjay Mehrota. Surrounded by his company’s SanDisk Cares crew, Mehrota
describes the company’s history of support for important community causes before proudly declaring his commitment to the challenge and his donation. He then proceeded to challenge fellow tech leaders Mark Durcan and Stephen Luzco, CEOs of Micron and Seagate,
respectively. And then Mehrota’s Cares crew made it rain. We at C-Sharp were proud to have filmed this moment of selflessness for Mr. Mehrota. The video was fairly simple to produce, requiring very few camera positions ,lights, and edits to achieve what it needed. It was an act selflessness and charity to those who need it. With CSharp’s commitment to empower and help people, SanDisk’s efforts to care for the community, and the high level of awareness that these ice bucket challenges are bringing to the public, there would have been no cooler way for this challenge to have been presented to the world.

SANDISK PRODUCT SHOWCASE: SanDisk’s 128GB MocroSD Product Showcase: A Videographer’s Breakdown

As a partner for video solutions with SanDisk, C Sharp is proud to  provide its talents to showcase their newest technology. In the case of this video, SanDisk is introducing something pretty incredible: a MicroSD memory card that holds 128GB of data. That’s roughly 16 hours of HD video, 7,500 songs, and 3,200 photos. All on a single MicroSD about the size of your pinky’s fingernail. (these numbers come from a press release page here. http://www.sandisk.com/aboutsandisk/press-room/press-releases/2014/sandisk-introduces-worlds-highest-capacitymicrosdxc-memory-card-at-128gb/)
The video clearly demonstrates what the product is capable of (and that’s a heck of a lotby the way), but as a videographer, I find myself asking, what did it take to make that video? The workflow needed to make the product showcase is fairly simple really, and it is a basic workflow that applies to almost any video shoot. Firstly, the interviews. In this video, they provide informative dialogue on many aspects of the product, such as its memory capacity, how it helps people, how it’s made, what innovations are associated with it, etc. Typically, cameras are stationary for interviews and audio is recorded, and synced with the video to make sure that we as the audience are hearing what we are seeing. Many cameras used for video typically come with a built-in microphone to record this, but ideally, separate audio recorders and discrete wireless mics callded lavaliers are
pinned to the interviewee to eliminate background noise and get only what we want, which is whatever the interviewee is saying.
Secondly, there are what videographers call b-roll, or pickup shots. Essentially, these are any video clips that are not interviews. These do not require audio or much interaction with the videographer so they can be picked up rather quickly. These shots can get pretty artistic as well, where the videographer can use some cinematic tricks with focus, movement, specialty rigs, etc. to achieve a professional level of artistry. B-roll can be put over the interview audio to further enhance the meaning of both the shot and the content of the interview. for instance, when interview audio of one of the engineers discussing the manufacture of the SD card was synced to the shots of him at work, machine parts moving during the manufacturing process, etc., we as the audience are compelled to think, “yeah, this is pretty innovative stuff. Look at the equipment they’re using to make this thing!”. This is assuming the audience is the average viewer who know little about engineering MicroSD’s and doesn’t know any better. A couple of things to add about this particular video is the use of stock footage and stills. There are certain bits of footage where we see a family taking phone pictures at the Great Wall, a couple hang gliding off the summit of a mountain, etc. as we are being informed of what the
three major challenges to the consumer are regarding memory storage, While this applies to the concept of b-roll enhancing the meaning behind the interview audio, one should note that the
videographers probably did not have a budget to travel to the Great Wall or the top of that mountain to grab those few seconds of b-roll (that would be awesome though). So in substitute, stock footage, or footage shot previously, was used in tandem with that part of the interview to give the meaning that roughly translates into, “Yeah, I would run into those problems if I were there, having a 128GB card would really help me out!” In conclusion, that’s basically what it takes in a nutshell to have created this product showcase as far as workflow during production goes. It is a fairly basic way of looking at things, but there are so many other aspects that go into this final product, from consent and legal issues before videographers are even allowed to shoot it, as well as possible complications during editing and post-production and even impromptu complications in the production day itself.

Startup Event Videography

One of our talented friends who offers event organization services Greg Gioia called us up to film an event for a start up event in San Francisco. He needed one videographer to film one-hour PowerPoint presentation and a speaker on stage, and film the before and after reception and mingling of the 100 or so people attending. This event is for a corporation called Counsyl.

Counsyl is a tech company involved in genetic testing in pregnancy. They develop technologies that make it affordable for anyone. At the company event, they gave a presentation to train or inform other employees and business partners about their newest technology and discoveries.

Before and after the presentation, there was time for networking, fun activities, and raffles. This video footage was used for b-roll for the 3 to 5 minute highlight of the event shown below. The highlight also expresses the overview of what Counsyl with the footage taken at the event, and existing footage provided by Counsyl such as the laboratory machines and lab samples.

Equipment used was a 5D Mark III on a tripod with a Canon 70-200 L lens to capture the presenter. Audio was capture from the mixer by an audio recorder. Sound was recorded separately to be synced at post production. A Rode mic was place on-camera to capture ambient sound. In terms of the lights, it was a difficult situation as we have thought that it was going to be provided by the stage managers, so we used a spotlight provided by the audio guy. We have recently bought an Arri 150watt lamp to light the presenter without obstructing the PowerPoint screen, so this situation would be solve for our future shoots similar to this one.

 

Kickstarter Video Documentary Video Production

Are you in need of a video for your kickstarter campaign? Check out what we were able  to do for Ricochet Wearable Art Fashion.


 

The fashion design studio in San Mateo needed a promotional documentary done for both their website and their kickstarter campaign in March 2013. They wanted a ten minute version of the overview of their studio events to post on their website at richochet.com.

A five minute version of the longer version was later edited to post on their kickstarter campaign. Their goal was to raise enough money to buy more equipment for their internship program.

Due to the low production budget, we gathered all that we could to produce a 5-minute and 10-minute overview documentary video. One videographer filmed the interview portion and filmed environmental shots of the studio while the interns where working all in one day. On top of that, four to five mini interviews of the interns were captured run n gun style. The set up was camera on tripod with wireless lav and a softbox light or LED.

10-Minute Version


5-Minute Version

Promotional Documentary Video for The Academy for Salon Professionals in Santa Clara, CA

The Academy for Salon Professionals called us early 2013 and asked us to produce a promo video. They needed a good video to use to recruit and reach out to more students to the program. Interviewing the recent top five students is the most appealing way to show potential students to see how effective their program is, all of which work at high-end salons: Head to Toe in San Jose, James Craig Color in Los Gatos, Capricious Skin Care, W’s Salon in Santana Row, and V Jones Salon.

We had a simple set up for this promotional video that kept costs down. The set up was a wireless lav connected to a Canon HDSLR with a softbox. The number of locations and interviews needed to be covered evened out the budget. The client gave me five names to reach to schedule the shoots at each of the five different locations on five different days.

Editing was quite interesting because we approached it documentary style. The editor at that time had more creative freedom on what to do with the material from selecting sound bites from the interviews and using the b-roll to illustrate what was being send.

Overall, this video demonstrates our strength is our style of shooting and editing.

What we could have done differently is to implement other rigs like steady cams and a crane for the life shots of the stylists and establishing shots, respectively.

We picked Sharp Video because the work on their website was exactly the type of work we were looking for. They had worked with similar companies before and the work was very professional and artistic. We were not disappointed! Our commercial is better than we had imagined when we planned the project! Christine has a sense for exactly what is going to work. She took my skeleton of an idea and fleshed it out into a brilliant commercial. She was extremely easy to work with and met all the deadlines we needed her to make. She was completely professional and everyone enjoyed working with her. We will hire her company to do any work we have in the future and highly recommend them to anyone beginning the ad process. – James C. Stanley, Co-founder, CEO of Academy for Salon Professionals

Academy for Salon Professionals Video Promo

Training Videos SSD Swap and Installation

The production was simple: one camera on tripod at MOS. A large softbox at frame left and a small LED at frame right for fill was set up for lighting. The the products were placed on a white table. The models sat at the side of the camera off frame to demonstrate the product. The production length was a short hour and a half long. It was a very easy shoot. The SanDisk team was great to work with.

I think what I would do differently during the shoot is use a spotlight, and add more b-roll of people using laptops to demonstrate real life application.

Training videos are useful to demonstrate a skill to a technical team in an efficient way. This video went external for consumer who buy SSDs to install themselves.

Editing wise: This video included a script illustrated with captions and After Effects text graphics.

SSD Hard Drive Installation Training http://youtu.be/8evtdYxfzIU