Jack-Of-All "Pen" Trades

Art requires dedication, and love. These are three qualities that Anuvab Pal possesses. Pal is an internationally renowned author, playwright, screenwriter, and stand-up comedian. He can claim over 250 original works to his name; not to mention movies and plays he has turned into books, and vice versa. He is a respected member of the Bollywood film industry, and has created many classic films. How can one person possibly create so much?

Anuvab Pal spends his days dedicated to his works. A morning for Pal consists of working on a play that he is writing. Being a novelist fills up his afternoons and by evening he puts on his screenwriters hat. At any given moment Pal can have three different stories going on, created in three different mediums, and he is a respected master of all three.

When asked about why he chooses to use all three of these mediums he replied: "The first and foremost thing is the story. Depending on what the medium allows me to do, I chose. Each medium has its own limitations and scope. What theatre doesn't give me, films do. And some stories can be retold through a book."

On top of all of that, a couple times a month, Pal spends time in Mumbai, India performing stand-up comedy. Many of Pals works are comedies or satires. In a 2008 film, entitled the "President is Coming," six Indians compete for a chance to shake hands with President George W. Bush when he visits India. This movie set the Bollywood film industry a buzz with the comedic talent and wittiness provided by the young Pal.

At every turn Pal's contributions to the film, literary, and theatre community are welcomed with open arms. Many of his works are becoming classic films in the Bollywood circle. Pal's works also help breach cultural boundaries, allowing Americans to gain more experience with foreign film.

Pal's dedication to story-telling is exemplar in our society. There are many different mediums that people can choose when looking for entertainment. Pal realizes this and uses it all to his advantage. If you want to reach people, sometimes it is best to do it on all fronts. Since he is so young, this is really only the beginning for Pal. Keep and eye out for his name, because he will continue to keep producing classic Bollywood films and works of art for the world, as long as people are around to enjoy them.

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7 Easy Steps to Shooting Great Videos

Many people are so intimidated by their video camera that they rarely use it! With just a few steps, you too can be a great shooter of your family films.

1. Know Your Camera
While you don't need to know every last feature of your camera, you should know the basics of how to use it. Some cameras now offer an "Easy Button" where everything is automatic. This can be wonderful for many filming situations. For times when you don't want your camera's focus to constantly change during an interview, for example, do a few test runs before using the manual focus button.

2. Know Why You're Filming
Before you turn your camera on, think about what you're about to film. What is it that you want people to take away from your shots? What do you want them to remember? Is it the actions in the shot? Or what someone is thinking or feeling at the time? If it's a long action shot (say a school play), consider investing in a tripod for a steady long shot (and a thankful right arm!) If it's a personal interview, consider investing in a better microphone.

3. Establish Yourself
Once you've figured out your main objective of the shoot, you want to take a hint from the pro's and make sure you get an establishing shot, ideally at the start of filming. An establishing shot simply establishes where the filming is taking place or identifies without words what you are filming. This could mean a wide shot including as much or all of the action in the shot as possible. For the school play example, it could be a shot of the entire stage. Or perhaps a quick shot of the front of the school or a sign naming the play. Once you've established for your audience "where" you are, you can then vary your shots with closer-in shots (called medium and close-up shots.)

4. Let The Action Tell The Story
Too often, people think they have to do more with their camera to make their home movies interesting. This often means that pesky zoom button is in constant use! Not only does this lower your production value, it leaves your audience feeling a bit seasick. Instead, try to use your zoom button only to change shots (from say establishing to close-up) and then let what's happening in the shot play out. Your audience will definitely thank you!

5. It's All About the Lighting
Have you ever noticed how your home movies shot outdoors look beautiful and the ones inside look noisy or grainy? This is because natural light (sunlight) is much stronger than tungsten (indoor light) and most consumer video cameras require a great deal of light to make a beautiful picture. Therefore, when indoors, these cameras will do something called auto gain which creates additional "artificial" light but also adds grain to your picture. So remember--when shooting indoors, use as much available light as possible, and make sure that available sunlight is in the right place--to the front or side of your subject to light up their face--not behind them where they will be in silhouette.

6. Sound Is A Beautiful Thing
Hearing someone's voice is equally as important, and sometimes more so, than seeing their face. So know your camera and its microphone capabilities. If you are sitting in the back row of the school play and are just using an internal microphone on your camera, don't expect to hear your daughter's lines clearly. Do some tests ahead of time to evaluate if your filming situation requires a different or additional kind of microphone.

7. Be Prepared
The most important thing you can do is make sure you have lots of blank tape (or drive space) and several charged batteries! Without them, all of the above is meaningless. So take the time to be prepared for your shoot.

DMB Pictures is a boutique video production company specializing in producing broadcast-quality personal stories for families, non-profits and small businesses. The company opened its doors in January 2006 led by Debbie Mintz Brodsky, a three-time Emmy Award-winning television producer with more than 20 years of experience.

Visit us at http://www.dmbpictures.com/

Original article

How to Shoot Your Own Hip Hop Documentary

Today there are lots of films on the market pertaining to hip hop, but there a few that stand out from others. Documentaries that really hit home are the ones about Tupac or the films I've seen about old school rap or southern hip hop. These films are very relevant to what is going on in music today. Music is changing so much, not just in the way we buy it but also the way we hear it. Some people thought hip hop was a fad that would be short lived, but today it's still thriving in the midst of a slowed economy.

What's needed for many musicians is to make your music more personal. A lot of artist still don't realize how powerful video can be to maximize your music sales. Video provides your prospect with a visual that cannot be removed from the customer's mind. Once they have an experience with you as the artist they'll never forget you. What better way to brand yourself as an artist and make more money from your product than your very own documentary.

Think of the possibilities. When you watch a great video, you probably don't forget it for a very long time and it's only 3 to 5 minutes long. What would happen if you made your own documentary about your music? People would be able to connect with you because your film provides not only a visual but things about your personal life. Once you have the things in your personal life come together with you music. It makes it more personal.

It's really not that expensive to make your own documentary and people love to get involved in film because it showcases them also. People love documentaries because they love to be a part of someone's story. All you need is a great digital video camera, a few lapel mics, some lighting and some type of written direction that focuses your story. Find someone that can film it for you, if you really want to make it easy on yourself just ask a friend to join in on being a camera man. I made my documentary for a very small budget under 10,000 and it's quality work that people love and buy all the time. I always look at things like, you can only do the best that you can do so be yourself and don't be afraid to fail.

Filming your own documentary can be hard work but if you truly want to make an impact on the culture you're gonna need film to push everything through.

The author Trete Lo is the author of Street literature books and also writes for many websites. Plus check out his documentary http://www.amazon.com/True-Hip-Hop-Experience-Real/dp/B0050YLKGY
Trete Lo's website http://www.theauthortretelo.com/

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