The Motion Source Video Production Blog

"Either write something worth reading or do something worth writing.”

- Benjamin Franklin

October 05, 2018

The 411 on 4K Footage

By Michelle Maslanka • Producer

You may have heard the term “4K” when doing some research on video production, but do you actually understand what it means? While it is not necessary for your video, it does offer benefits as well as a few drawbacks that are worth considering.

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September 21, 2018

End-of-the-year Video Project Ideas

By Michelle Maslanka • Producer

“End of the year? But it’s ONLY September!” The calendar year clock is ticking down, and soon we will be entering Q4. This IS the time to think about end-of-the-year videos, and we have a few ideas to help you get started!

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September 07, 2018

Passion Project Spotlight: “One Thousand Mornings”

By Michelle Maslanka • Producer

Creating art isn’t just part of our job; it is something that we are passionate about and continue long after the 9am-5pm and far beyond the walls of the office. At our core, we are a team of artists and storytellers, and while video is our go-to medium, it also transcends motion picture. A few Motion Source team members created a webcomic “One Thousand Mornings” that debuted earlier this week. Here’s a “passion project spotlight” on their work!

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August 24, 2018

Industry Insights: Scriptwriting with Lindsay Siegel

By Michelle Maslanka • Producer

Welcome back to our blog series “Industry Insights”, where we interview members of the production world that we have had the opportunity to collaborate with! This week, we are featuring a talented scriptwriter, who we have worked with on several recent projects. Meet Lindsay Siegel!

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August 10, 2018

Camera Comfort: How To Ensure It (To The Best Of Your Ability)

By Craig Bass • Creative Director

In my last blog article I addressed how to prepare yourself for being on camera; or, at the very least to ensure that you don’t entirely freak out. However, a successful on-camera experience, like most ventures in life, is a collaborative effort. It isn’t enough for the person in front of the lens to be as prepared as possible--the people behind the lens need to be equally in-tune with what is going on. This is precisely why I have always considered personality to be 50% of the hiring decision when considering new crew members. It isn’t enough to be talented if you want to be successful within the video production industry; equally important is compassion and strong social skills. You can set up the most exceptionally gorgeous shot in the world, but if you are incapable of making the subject of that shot shine, you are left with a bunch of fashion and no function.

This article is going to focus on how a competent crew can help ensure that their subjects are as comfortable as possible, and by extension, performing at top capacity, when in front of the lens. And, perhaps even more importantly, how that same crew can assuage the subject’s nerves if they are kinda-sorta freaking out.

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July 27, 2018

Camera Comfort: How to Not Freak Out When You’re In Front of the Lens

By Craig Bass • Creative Director

So, the day has finally come. After all of the planning and preparation, the lights have been switched on, you have a microphone looming before you, and the camera is staring you down. Your mind has conveniently gone blank, and you begin to feel your palms go sweaty. You hate public speaking, but you thought being on camera would carry less tension. You were wrong. More than anything, you just want to raise the white flag of surrender and retreat to your office. Why did you even agree to do this?

Hold on there. Slow down. Let’s rewind. As with most things in life, being on camera isn’t nearly as bad as anticipated: doubly so if you practice a few simple tips to help secure success. So, I won’t waste any more time cueing it up. Here are the not-so-secret secrets to being comfortable on camera, or, how not to freak out when you’re in front of the lens.

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July 13, 2018

10 Need-to-Know Production Terms

By Michelle Maslanka • Producer

Have you ever been on set and listened to the crew talk? With lingo like “Grab the sticks” and “Can I get a stinger?” it sounds like they are far from making a video! Filmmakers have a language of their own, so you may be left feeling confused if unfamiliar with their strange expressions. Here are ten production terms that will have you talking the talk in no time.

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June 29, 2018

Tips and Tricks for Outdoor Productions

By Michelle Maslanka • Producer

Summertime lends itself to an increase in opportunity for outdoor productions. While we love the four seasons of Chicago weather, and each provide their own beautiful backdrop for video, summer gives us the longest daylight of the year and typically most consistent warm weather. In any season, however, there are challenges to filming outdoors. Here are some tips and tricks to consider to help your next outdoor shoot go smoothly.

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June 01, 2018

Motion Source Studio Launch Party

By Michelle Maslanka • Producer

Last night, Motion Source held an official launch party of the Motion Source studio located in Brookfield, IL. Guests stopped by to tour the space, enjoy food and drinks, and network with fellow Chicagoland filmmakers!

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May 18, 2018

Welcome to the World of Production: Advice for Recent Graduates

By Michelle Maslanka • Producer

Around this time, many students are graduating and embarking on their first “real world” jobs, hopefully putting that fancy new degree to good use! This can be an exciting, but also nerve-wracking time. And for those entering the production industry, we get it; we were there too! So, we have compiled a few words of wisdom (and throwback photos) for you.

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May 04, 2018

May the Fourth: Star Wars Day

By Michelle Maslanka • Producer

May 4th, or Star Wars Day, as it is known to fans of the franchise, is a day of celebrating all things Star Wars. This global fan-created holiday was originated in 2011, and has been a cherished day of celebration ever since. The date of the holiday was chosen as a reference to the famous Star Wars line "May the Force be with you." I, admittedly, have never seen a Star Wars movie (which is basically a cardinal sin in the film industry), so I turned to a couple of my colleagues for their insights, movie rankings, and personal Star Wars memories and stories!

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April 20, 2018

Motion Source Marketing Initiative: Video Brochures & Postcards

By Michelle Maslanka • Producer

Following the launch of the new Motion Source website, we released our next major marketing initiative: a wave of 150+ custom video brochures! These beautifully designed products were loaded with a :30 reel and delivered to businesses and creative agencies throughout the Chicagoland area. Shortly after, we followed up with a one-two punch of postcards to round out this knockout marketing combination. Learn more about these products, our strategy, and the execution of these projects!

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March 23, 2018

The Making of a Music Video: “Akira” by Hessler

By Michelle Maslanka • Producer

Artists draw inspiration from other artists all the time, especially when working in a different art form as their inspiration. Take the latest Hessler music video for example. The band’s newly-released single, “Akira” was inspired by the Japanese manga of the same name. This manga was also released as an animated film, Akira, in 1988. And now, in 2018, take a behind-the-scenes look at how this story manifested into a music video adaptation!

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March 09, 2018

Motion Source Marketing Initiative: Website

By Michelle Maslanka • Producer

At the end of February, an exciting event occurred: the new Motion Source website went live! Before then, small updates to the site had generally occurred on a monthly basis, but the last time the website was fully overhauled was back in 2014. Over the last four years, we have evolved significantly as a company, and our site no longer felt like an accurate representation of our team, our work, and our capabilities. This project didn’t happen overnight; to be honest, it didn’t even happen over the course of a year either. But it did take a good deal of self-reflection, dedication, and patience to produce a better suited platform and a successsful project.

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February 23, 2018

Simple Tips for a Successful Audition

By Michelle Maslanka • Producer

As a production company, we cast on-screen talent quite often for roles in everything from industrials to commercials to music videos and short films. Holding auditions allows us to meet and connect with actors on a more personal level compared to simply reviewing resumes, reels, and video submissions. Based on my experience coordinating casting calls and sitting in on auditions, I have put together a few tips to keep in mind to give you the best chance of success!

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February 09, 2018

4 Key Elements to an Emotionally Compelling Story

By Michelle Maslanka • Producer

Everyone aspires to tell an engaging story these days. Creating an emotional connection with the audience can be a challenge, but it is going to give you the best possible chance of drawing them in and building a relationship. From a video standpoint, there are key elements to consider. I called on the expertise of Creative Director Craig Bass and Senior Editor and Hunter Kallenbach for their insight into the world of visual storytelling.

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January 26, 2018

The Superhero Sensation: From Comics to Film

By Steve Brown • Project Manager

Chances are if you're going to see a movie this year, it will either be a movie based on a comic book, or you will, at the very least, see a poster or trailer for a movie based on a comic book. A total of nine superhero blockbusters will be released this year, and while that number may seem high, it's certainly not a new trend. 2016 supplied seven movies based on comic books, while 2017 handed out eight; superhero movies are on the rise.

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January 12, 2018

New Year’s Resolutions (For Your 2018 Video)

By Michelle Maslanka • Producer

New year, new New Year’s resolutions to make. But let’s be honest, those don’t typically last very long, right? While we won’t be able to help with your resolutions per se, we can help with your 2018 marketing goals. Let’s take a look at a few of the most popular New Year’s resolutions in terms of video production. Whether or not you follow through with your personal goals, these resolutions can help keep your project goals on track.

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