August 27-31, 2018 Almaty, Kazakhstan

Kazakhstan Press Club

(Monday-Friday sessions will run 9 a.m. – 12:30 p.m., and 2 p.m. – 6 p.m.)

Instructor: Steve Rice, Missouri Convergence Journalism Professor



Introductions – assign teams or create a team. A limit of four people please.

Begin to find a story that you will produce this week. You will have class time to work on your project. The finished product is a 2-minute video ready to show your classmates on Friday afternoon. It’s best if each team member assumes a role and stays with that role throughout the process. For example: Team member 1: camera operator, team member 2: audio recording, team member 3: Produce, transcribe and script, team member 4: voice over, storyboard.

We’ll divide the class into four teams. You will be using a separate recorder and will need to sync your sound in Premiere Elements.

Storytelling video recording and production

Telling stories that matter with strong video techniques.  The morning session will focus on major trends, including the rapid growth of video. Effective video is not effective without good audio. I’ll show examples of the effective use of audio and explain how to achieve excellent results even with your smartphone.


What is a micro doc?

Usually made for the web. They are three to 10 minute videos that tell a part of a larger story. You must find an approach that narrows your story and helps the viewer engage in their story. Find a part of the story that tells an engaging situation. I’ll reference many of the videos we see in the morning.

Sequences – They allow your video to condense time and space. We’ll review some examples of successful videos and then you will record a five-shot sequence on your smartphone. Then return to class and edit your work.



Begin getting your two-minute video organized and it will be shown in class Friday afternoon.

How a professional videographer and your team should approach a story:

Write a treatment that explains how you will approach the story. Summary of the documentary you will record.

Develop character motivations.

Include a dramatic event in the narrative – one that involves all the characters.

Create a shot list as it will assure you don’t forget to record a sound bite, camera angle or interview.

Storyboard individual scenes before and after recording.

Prepare a check-list of equipment. Then, make sure you have it all. Remember to look at both technical problems and story problems.

Get ready to shoot it.

Show the finished product to friends.

Type out a script:

Draw out a storyboard, illustrating the shots you plan to use. Don't worry about following the storyboard perfectly.

When starting to make a video outside this class, find people who aren't busy and are willing to work hard with you on your film.

Create a schedule. This will keep you focused on your project. Identify what days you and your crew is available. Jot down priority scenes.

Interviewing: Film interviews early. Plan questions. The easiest way of doing this and keeping focus is to write who, what, why, when, where, how, and when and brainstorm questions around these. Subject must be comfortable around the camera and open and honest. Talk to them before filming, you could talk for half an hour or more to make the subject comfortable around you.

Log footage. Before you proceed to editing your film, watch all your footage through. Write notes on every shot stating if it works, if there are any technical problems. This will save you a lot of time when editing.

Edit your film. Learn how to "cut" pieces of your footage together and put music or interview under your video.

* We’ll share best practices in audio storytelling, including the effective use of interview clips, natural sound and voice over (VO).


Story structure:

Developing a character, they make the best stories. You must understand the difference between stereotypes and archetypes. Think about the organization of your story, most are effective when broken down into a three-act structure.  Use transcribing, storyboards and scripts to really understand your story and tell it well.

Your characters must be believable to your audience and they need to be articulate.

Record a 60-second interview with a classmate on your smartphone. We’ll review in class Wednesday morning.




Review interview video.

Video techniques to strengthen your video

Pacing your video will move it along smoothly for the viewer. We’ll talk about some ways to make your video more interesting and pull the viewer into your story.

Referencing an interview

Rule of three to add continuity

Matched action to shift time and space

Sequences to shorten time

Effective transitions

Editing sound to add realism and pacing

Ways to start and end your videos


Go out and record your story. Do all the reporting before today. Plan accordingly.




Overview of lighting, use of music, voice over and ethical recording of video

Use music to add to the video not make up for bad video. Lighting can come from many sources, but it must be controlled. How to effectively voice your video. And you must have an ethical approach to your story for it to be effective.



Putting together all the video you recorded and making sense of it. Demo in class. Please bring your clips so we can work together.

Work on your two-minute video to be shown in class Friday afternoon.

Revising your scripts. Voicing your stories.

I will be in class to look at your work.




Work on your video in class with feedback from Steve


Final presentations: We’ll review your two-minute videos in class.

Final thoughts and a group picture