Making the Welcome video

Here’s how the Welcome video was made…

The Girl Scouts who redid this website for their Silver Awards felt strongly that every website deserves a welcome video — so they made one for us!  (You can find and watch it on the Welcome page).  Eleanore took the lead on this part of the project since she has an interest in videography and had made several videos already.

Shooting video
Here’s Eleanore, the Girl Scout who was in charge of the Welcome video

The first step was planning — including a site visit to shoot some trial footage.  First problem:  the roar of the waterfall made the possibility of live audio to accompany the video a doubtful proposition.  Solution:  a two-part one — first, a musical soundtrack, and second, voiceover narration.

Where to get a musical background?  Well, there is lots of “music by the yard” available for purchase, so the girls had that option.  However, Eleanore listened to some of it, decided that there was no reason to buy it when she could make it herself, so she did.  The piano accompaniment for the video is 100% Eleanore’s work.

Filming the members

Helen captures Eleanore capturing some of the Friends of Beckley Furnace talking


Helen, the other Girl Scout, wasn’t idle on this phase.  It’s often useful to have some still photos to intersperse with the video segments, and Helen was in charge of capturing the necessary stills — as well as finding herself the subject of a bit of continuity that appears in the finished video.  Below you see her from a “frame grab” in the finished video (she was using the still camera, so to get a photo of her we had to grab a frame from the video).  She was also pretty much everywhere making sure people were where they were supposed to be for the camera.

Helen frame grab
Helen, the still photographer, also provided continuity

We mentioned earlier that we needed to dub audio tracks.  Well, the musical part was already taken care of, but there was still the voice-over to record.  After some discussion, the girls decided that Eleanore could do this part too.  They worked on the script, and finally it was time for Eleanore to face the microphone and record it.

Voiceover recording
Eleanore recording the voice-over for the Welcome video

Now all the pieces were ready.  The raw video itself was in the can, as they say.  The music was composed and recorded.  The stills to be interspersed in the video were ready to be used.  The voice-over track to match with the video track had been recorded and the best parts selected.

If you’ve ever had any contact with videography, movie-making, or even home movies to show to friends, you know that the hardest work is not holding the camera, or being in front of it.  The hardest part, and the most time-consuming part, is the part spent in what the video pros call “post” — which stands for post-production, which is basically editing the video and making it into a coherent movie.

It tends to be pretty solitary work, except for periodically showing problematic parts around and asking for ideas.  But post was ultimately Eleanore’s responsibility to do.

Welcome video post-processing
Eleanore, seen hard at work in post-processing of the Welcome video

You can see the finished product on our Hello page, and we hope you will take a look at it and recognize all the parts that make it up and appreciate the effort that the girls put into it.

The girls would like to extend special thanks to the adults who appeared in the video and who supported its production, particularly Christian Allyn and Dick Paddock.