Video Production Tips With a Humorous Flair: The Shirtless Apprentice

This blog has been too consumed with YouTube and Nalts lately, and I want to get back to WillVideoForFood’s roots. Finding ways to improve the production of online video, marketing via online video, and learning tips to promote amateur and promotional content.

shirtless.jpgYesterday I spoke with Paul Kontonis of For Your Imagination. I thought I was an expert in online-video marketing, but I was humbled by Paul’s knowledge of how to get views beyond YouTube. “For Your Imagination” produces a series of fairly high-quality serialized content (some of which has developed into television series). So it doesn’t all apply to us amateurs. But he’s partnered with sites like and identified ways to distribute via iTunes and other outlets and still retain advertising revenue. I’m planning on doing a more indepth interview with him soon.

Paul has business partners and funding, and employees a team of production people as well as viral junkees (some freelance) that help promote and distribute the programs they produce. If there’s another business model like it, I haven’t seen it.

Check out this show to learn production while getting bits of humor. It’s “The Shirtless Apprentice.” The poor guy wears a lav stuck to his chest with gaffer tape, and there’s some comedy mixed with solid video-production tips. Personally, I’d love even more humor, but it certainly beats the majority of talking heads out there. I’m adding it to my RSS, and there are already more than 2-dozen episodes on these important topics:

  • Audio for Sit Down Interviews
  • Continuity
  • Sun Guns
  • White Balance
  • Shooting Tips – B-Roll
  • Keying in Final Cut Pro
  • Capturing Video
  • Post Production Equipment
  • Frame Rates for Online Video
  • Three Point Lighting
  • Basic Battery Info and Tips
  • Audio for Internet Video
  • Lighting a Green Screen
  • Selecting a Video Camera

30 Replies to “Video Production Tips With a Humorous Flair: The Shirtless Apprentice”

  1. That was cool, although the guy talks too fast. I think you should consider using one of the lav mics for your spencer videos since it is sometimes hard to hear what he is saying.

  2. You know, there’s another aspect of this “comment addiction” disorder that you failed to recognize. It’s called “comment whoring”, and it’s when you needlessly waste time trying to come up with just the right comment, one that is funny enough to get a nalts reply but not so funny that people will rate you a thumbs down. (My funniest comments are also usually offensive.)

    Your attempt to cure your comment addiction is seriously interfering with mine. Don’t screw me over like that, unless you have some heroin I can score.

  3. hey marquis wanna job? 😉

    sukatra: I never look at those thumbs up/down ratings, never liked the idea, thought they got in the way of the text, just more needless information. Was hoping youtube would have eliminated them by now.

    Same with negative comments. I just delete them unless, someone is actually engaging in a conversation. I figure, “This Video Sucks!” is not an invitation and my typical response is usually, “Back at cha,!” click (Remove). But, I don’t let people who step in crap walk in my house with their shoes either. I guess when you’re popular you have to try and keep up with the flies or learn to ignore them. I want everyone to like me/my stuff, but knowing that aint gonna happen I’ve had to develop You Tube antibodies. Maybe it’s a self-defense mechanism or genetic?

    Justification: That doesn’t mean I’m not looking for constructive criticisms, but I know, most of the time, when I put something up if it’s up to par or not, and I think I can gage what does and doesn’t suck by what a few regular viewers say, for whom I am eternally grateful! 🙂

    Youtube and online video is one big lab experiment, but I know that just making stuff helps you get better at it, least til you find your nitch or sweet spot. Making money at this thing is a whole other world. That’s business, and you need a mind for it or someone that has one.

  4. Youtube should have a finger up or finger down rating system,lol……,i just turned 40 years old,youd think i would have matured a little by now ?……………NEVER!!!

  5. Youtube is overrated. Click on my screenname on this post to see my last week’s Tubemogul stats (if I linked this right). It clearly shows Youtube to be running a distant 3rd place in viewership to my hits on Revver and MySpace. This is no anomaly. My Youtube views always run second or third place out of the 7 places I upload my videos to ….YET, I have to spend 90 percent of my “online video maintenance” time answering or ignoring all those YT comments. The work involved to get views on Youtube is WAAAAAAY disproportional to my efforts at the other hosting sites. WAAAAAY disproportional. Something’s out of whack here.

  6. Oh, I enjoy many of the Youtube comments, sukatra, and recently learned about the technique of “time posturing” from a YT comment, but I have to wade through a sea of inanity to get to the pearls. I think that Dr Metropolis says is best in the video I have linked to my post here (scroll over to about 1:52 and start there).

  7. Don’t fret over the Metropolis comment about the same-o same-o video contents of Nalts in the video I linked to above. Really. Pay it no mind. Kevin has a plan and he knows how media works. He’s working the program. That doesn’t work for Metropolis (or me) because we have different goals. Kevin has alluded to different goals in a couple of his videos and blog posts, so please don’t freak out over it, Nalts fans. I’m a Nalts fan, too.

    Now, if you want to see how to do it absolutely wrong…how to insure that your video income will never amount to a pittance, click on the link to THIS post. I dare you to watch it all the way through.

    By the way, Revver could host this video while Youtube could not.

  8. MDJ – interesting comment abot YouTube and the views to maintenance ratio. As with all the sites, you never quite can tell which video will do well and which won’t and no matter what you need to manage the posts, friends, comments, etc. It is a lot of work especially when you syndicate your content across many networks.

  9. I’m going to dance around a few issues here… if I’m not making much sense I blame the fact that I haven’t had my coffee yet.

    Though I thought some of Dr. M’s stuff was interesting and of course his homunculo was very cute and clever, for Metropolis to say no one tried to engage him in conversation is crazy talk. “Thanks for your comment, your friend Dr. M.”

    In his youtube comments or through messages he seemed only interested in his side of things; he’d give you the short answer or none at all. As far as I could tell he wasn’t interested in conversation, so I stopped responding to his videos with anything other than a haha, hoho, that’s cute, good one! He also seems to have this bug up his butt about nalts and he never really explained why, just left it dangling and kept making rye comments about him. For a while I thought it was a plan to get Kevin to respond so he would get more subscribers. Anyway, if he’s bored of youtube and his viewers what can one say other than good luck!

    Another thing on the Kevin front… at his own expense Kevin set this blog up long before the 200 subscriber and now the forum; which many topics and ideas have been put together to share and support other online video makers, you guys. For all his efforts to try and make money in something he likes doing the ragging that Kevin has taken lately verses the good he has done for the online “community” doesn’t seem justified to me, but I have noticed that the more popular you get, the more ragging you get, so with popularity comes the risk of not being liked by some. Oh, the price of fame! I’m not even going to touch the little karma effect happening here (chuckle…)

    As I have stated from time to time, imo, this popularity thing is for the birds, but that doesn’t mean I’m not ambitious or that I wouldn’t enjoy making a few bucks off my videos. mdj count your blessings, you really have the best of both worlds, you’re making money and I’ve never seen the words, “You Suck!” in your youtube comments. I know I couldn’t handle the crap Kevin has delt with and frankly, I like the distance and I’m not all that interested in engaging the public at large, in mass, because let’s face it, they’re nuts! You guys are cool though 😉

    As far as youtube maintenance or even making money, mdj are you sharing the wealth and supporting others by linking your revver site to other youtuber revver sites? I know there’s a way to do this and I think this would make a great, “how to” topic in the forum, extending this small community, perhaps a viral video ring?

    For all this talk on youtube about “community,” people seem to forget that community takes real effort and support (off the wall side comment: Renetto, you’re such a tool!), what little community there actually is on youtube is fleeting, and what I have seen happening most in these so called, “youtube communities” is bashing, one upping, or riding coat tails; few tubers actually support each other. I think Youtube is just too big for that, especially now and with all these new Google commercial ventures, what’s left of the original “youtube communities” are a couple of gems living in old neighborhoods under the Gootube mega super highway.

    Coffee’s ready, anyone want a cup? 🙂
    Hey, where’s the edit button here?

  10. My friend Isabel said something to me today about Nalts that shocked me. She just recently—within a month or so—started watching Youtube (about the same time we first met) and today at dinner in Shreveport she said, “You’re a little hard on that Nalts guy, aren’t you?”

    Wow. Am I? Not to my knowledge. But maybe so. Maybe I (and Dr Metropolis) are a bit jealous of his Youtube success. It’s that damned divisive Youtube Partners setup. I wasn’t TOO jealous of his Revver successes because I had an opportunity to share in them through Revver’s affiliation program AND I had the OPPORTUNITY at Revver to make my own successes.

    Youtube’s Partners Program sucks. And it’s divisively competitive whereas Revver’s program is more cooperative. But I’ve said all this before.

    So, Kevin, I apologize. If I’ve been commenting like a mean old bitter bastard it’s only because I AM a mean old bitter bastard. I loved the Revverberation blog and I appreciate the WVFF blog (the parts that aren’t focused on Youtube{insert smiley face here})

    If someone has been making rye comments instead of wry comments, it’s probably because they’ve been drinking.

    I get “You Suck” comments. I block the user, remove the comment and erase both from my mind.

    I embed other users Youtube and Revver videos in my blogs all the time. I don’t support the communities anywhere near as much as Kevin does, but that’s why we have Kevin.

    I want to be loved and adored by the unwashed masses as much as anyone else (well, maybe not as much as Renetto or SxEPhil) but I’ve got other things going on, too. I started this whole GDmed thing to draw attention to my writing and had to stop writing to do it! How stupid is that!?

  11. marquis 1st I was talking about bread before morning coffee 😉
    (not really)

    2nd I don’t think you’re hard on nalts, you guys have been like this before he hit the “big time.” I thought it was always just a matter of trust.

    I don’t know why Dr. M is pissed at Nalts or why he should be jealous, he’s more esoteric, that always requires a small audience. That 17th century thing he came up with was way out there. No kids, no puppies, no scantily dressed women.

    And this youtube stuff is more infuriating, I wish someone would pony up and say exactly what these partners are making and put this thing to rest. I don’t understand why it has to be such a big secret and why youtube/google require their partners to be so secretive about it. Those kinds of secrets send up red flags that something their doing is underhanded and leads to all kinds of speculation like, is Renetto making 100 times more than the other partners and if they found out would some partners leave youtube for better digs? This doesn’t allow the creative content developer to strike potential deals with other outlets like Revver or Blip, or etc… Wha gives?! Google doesn’t have enough of everything yet?

    I’m really surprised they’ve been able to keep it quiet this long. Who is running Google, Dick Cheney? Wait, no, that can’t be right Google has better control over internal secrets then the white house.

    I have to get a grip on this whole marketing thing, but that means doing less of something else.

    If this is way off topic maybe it should be diverted to the forum 😉

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