Friday, May 29, 2015

10 Tips For Shooting POV

Shooting POV (point of view) videos is something kind of new to me. I have used them before, but basically just clipped them on. Since receiving my MeCam, I have been paying more attention to what I am doing so that I get a better shot. While I do have a GoPro, it is mostly for evidence collection and it is aimed a certain direction. My MeCam is geared towards documenting my investigations and getting some behind the scenes videos. Today, I'm going to share with you some tips I have found for getting the most out of using your POV camera.

1. Get To Know Your Camera

Different cameras have different strengths and weaknesses, they also have different settings. Getting the most out of your POV shooting experience depends a lot on getting to know your camera. 

2. If Needed, Have The Appropriate Mounts

One thing I love about the MeCam is that it pins on (like a lapel pin) and can also be worn on a lanyard. That makes mounting simple. However, many other POV cameras require mounts. I have several for my GoPro, and use them for different reasons. If there is going to be a certain thing you mount your camera to a lot, make sure to invest in a good mount for that. For instance, my backpack mount is my favorite. I can clip it to my backpack strap or my hat. 

3. Keep It Short

No one wants to watch 30 minutes of you skiing down a mountain or walking through an abandoned house. I mean, I don't even want to watch myself doing that. Keep your video to just a few minutes of footage- keep the good stuff, of course!

4. Do Something Exciting

Walking around your house is generally not youtube worthy (although there are exceptions). Make sure you catch the excitement in your life. 

5. Try Different Mounts

Although I have my preference, I have tried out many different mounts. One that you didn't think would work may shock you- the head mount shocked me! 

6. Try Different Angles

The angle can make all the difference in your video. I have tried walks through the woods with mine pointing up and even behind me. The views are breathtaking- we usually don't look at things this way. The same goes for other activities as well. 

7. Narrate

Tell your audience what is going on- pretty simple. 

8. Use A Pole

Can't get the right angle? Enlist the help of a pole attached to your mount, or even a selfie stick and you can control what shot you get. 

9. Check Your Shot

Make sure your angle is right- it would be horrible to get that perfect experience only to find that your camera didn't catch it. Also, try your camera out before you are depending on it. 

10. Have Fun

Your audience knows if you aren't having fun- show them some fun! 

Thursday, May 28, 2015

10 Ways To Use A Digital Voice Recorder

I know I've been talking a lot lately about Uqique and their digital voice recorders. I'm sure you also may think that either you don't need one or that one is plenty, well you may be wrong. There are so many uses for these handy little devices that you may need more than one. Even better- with Uqique's prices, you can afford it too!

1. Record Thoughts or Notes

Sometimes we think better doing our normal daily activities, not while sitting in front of our computers or notepads. Keep a digital voice recorder with you and when a thought or idea comes to mind, record it!

2. Record Lectures

Oh how I wish I'd had a digital voice recorder in college. Those lectures wouldn't have lost to the dark recesses of my mind after I got back to my dorm room. I can't count how many times I looked over my notes and wondered what something was about. 

3. Record Interviews

Whether you are recording for a show, a client for an investigation or a client for a job- having a voice recorder could make things so much simpler. You can go back and listen many times and make sure the client will be happy and your research correct. 

4. Have An Audio Sequence of Events

Using a digital voice recorder during set up could be amazing. You can record all of your initial readings, where and why your equipment is in certain places, and even not special things about the location. You wouldn't have to worry about remembering to write it all down. 

5. Stick With A Camera

We all know that the audio on cameras isn't all that great. If you have a hot spot of activity and want to make sure you catch everything, stick a digital voice recorder next to the camera so you are sure to capture great audio and video. 

6. Leave With A Trigger Object

Is there an area where you are investigating that has evidence of a child spirit? Use toys as a trigger object and place a digital voice recorder nearby- don't forget an emf detector. You never know what you might catch. 

7. Have It Always Running

Keep a digital voice recorder with you during an investigation. Keep it running the whole time- in addition to the one you use for EVP sessions. Sometimes EVPs can be caught by one recorder, but not another. In addition to that, if something happens, you can just voice it and have a record of the night. 

8. Keep It At Command Central

Keep a voice recorder by command central and use it for those monitoring the cameras. Also, it will catch when the team discusses events of the night. Also, use this for team members to document any experiences they have right away.

9. Record Night Time Forest Activity

We hang voice recorders in our research over night when there has been a lot of activity. You would be surprised at what you'll catch when no one is around. Just be sure to protect them from the weather. 

10. Record Moments To Remember

Whether you are recording first words, school moments, weddings, or any other milestone of life, having an audio account of that moment can be amazing. You can also record elderly members of the family so your children can always hear their voices. 

If you are looking for a new digital voice recorder, check out Uqique. Their prices and quality will amaze you. 

Monday, May 25, 2015

10 Tips For Getting The Most Out Of Your Voice Recorder

We all know that I basically have a voice recorder attached to me. Over the years, I have learned a few things about recording with these handy devices, and I'm always looking for ways to get a better quality recording. I think you guys will benefit from my research as well.

1. When possible, use an external microphone. This will help cut down on any mechanical noise the recorder might make. 

2. Lay the recorder on a steady surface instead of keeping it in your hand (when possible). This will help keep down on static noise caused by your hand. 

3. When speaking, speak clear and precise.

4. When paranormal investigating, be sure to tag any noise you make or that you can identify at the time. You can simply state "that was me bumping into the table"

5. In addition to this, it's a good idea to time stamp if something is strange. This helps when going back to watch video as well. Plus, when you are going over the investigation, other team members might have the answer to the strange happenings. 

6. Get a good audio editor for your computer. This will save you a lot of time and allow you to cut out sections of audio to send on or for evidence presentation. I recommend Audacity and it's free. I actually use this to edit podcasts. 

7. Add a brief introduction each time you start to record. Include the date, time, people present, case information, and any other pertinent information. 

8. When recording interviews and similar, make sure to know the laws in your area. For example, in South Carolina, only one person has to consent to be recorded. I ask anyway though, just so they know what is going on. 

9. Get to know your recorder before using it for the first time. You want to be familiar with it before it counts. Run a few practice sessions with it. 

10. When shopping for a digital voice recorder, be sure that you find one you are comfortable using. If you are not tech savvy, don't worry about all the extra features. After all, you don't want to be fumbling at the last minute. 

This is part of a content series as a courtesy to Uqique because I love their recorder so much. All opinions are my own. 

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

5 Uses For A POV Camera

This is part of a content series for MeCam. All opinions are my own.

I'm sure you've guessed that one of my favorite gadgets is a POV camera, more specifically, my MeCam. I'm sure that you've also wondered how you would use a POV camera.

1. Paranormal Investigations

As you've guessed, we use POV cameras on our paranormal and cryptid investigations. The uses inside these circumstances vary. We can use them during setup to take initial readings with equipment. We can use them during an EVP session in case there is something odd going on visually. We can also use them on ourselves to catch a different angle. For instance, if something keeps happening just out of our peripheral vision, we can situate a POV camera to point that direction and hopefully catch it. We actually are always coming up with different uses. 

2. Mom/ Dad Shots

Are you dying to get that perfect shot of your little one walking or crawling? Just pin a MeCam on your shot and get your little one to come to you. You'll get that perfect eye level shot. Do your kids say adorable things but never when a camera is pointed their direction? Well, this should solve that problem. Want to get a shot from your kids' angles? Just pin a MeCam to their shirts and then watch the world from their view. 

3. Track Your Dog's Behavior

Wondering how your dog keeps getting muddy or stinky? Well, MeCam can solve that mystery. Pin it to their collar and watch the mystery unfold. It would also be cool to get shots from their angles and post to social media. Most people are intrigued by how the animals see the world. 

4. Legal Reasons

Holding a sensitive interview? Got stopped by the police? Participating in a protest? Serving papers? MeCam can come in handy with so many different legal issues. Cover yourself and get video of the situation. Just make sure that you live in a state that is single party consent for recording. South Carolina is, in case you are wondering. 

5. Nanny Cam

Do you have a new babysitter or Nanny? Do you wonder if everything is going smoothly? Do you have a feeling that something is just not right? Well, pin a MeCam somewhere and then see for yourself. You can do the same thing at your child's daycare or school. 

There are so many different uses for a POV camera that it's one of those things everyone could use in their arsenal. My favorite is MeCam- Quality, Cost Effective, and Cute!

I Must Be Hallucinating & A Special Discount

MedumIMBHLogoDid you guys know that I'm a columnist for I Must Be Hallucinating? Well, I am and I enjoy writing about all the weird stuff that catches my attention and draws me in. There are articles about cryptids, zombies, vampires, werewolves, aliens, and more. There are so many interesting articles, and the other authors are so interesting that I'm sure you can get lost in the site for days, just like I do.

My first article featured a "cryptid" that I investigated, along with the journey of getting to the bottom of it. You can find more here:
Things Are Not What They Appear: Do Your Research Before a Wild Duck Hunt
I Must Be hallucinating even has a shop with some pretty cool items that I'm sure will draw you in. Guess what?! You can get a 10% discount, if you enter PARASASS at the checkout!