What Is a Motion JPEG (MJPEG or M-JPEG)?

Motion JPEG (MJPEG or M-JPEG) is a video compression format in which each video frame or interlaced field of a digital video sequence (including video and metadata such as subtitles and closed captioning) is compressed separately as a JPEG image. Originally developed for multimedia PC applications, MJPEG is now used by video-capture devices such as digital cameras, IP cameras, webcams, and by nonlinear video editing systems. It is supported by the QuickTime Player, the PlayStation console and browsers such as Safari, Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox. MJPEG was first used by the QuickTime Player in the mid-1990s.

MJPEG is an intra-frame-only compression scheme. Because frames are compressed independently of one another, MJPEG imposes lower processing and memory requirements on hardware devices. As such, the image-quality of MJPEG is directly a function of each video frame’s spatial complexity. Frames with large smooth-transitions or monotone surfaces compress well and are more likely to hold their original detail with few visible compression artifacts. Frames exhibiting complex textures, fine curves and lines are prone to exhibit DCT artifacts such a ringing, smudging and macroblocking. This gives MJPEG an advantage over interframe compression schemes, which do not accommodate rapid motion between frames and require more hardware to meet the memory demands of interframe compression.

MJPEG is frequently used in non-linear video editing systems. Desktop CPUs are powerful enough to work with high-definition video so no special hardware is required and they in turn offer native random-access to a frame. MJPEG support is also widespread in video capture and editing equipment, allowing for easy file-sharing for uses such as archiving and transcription.

Prior to the recent rise in MPEG-4 encoding in consumer devices, a progressive scan form of MJPEG saw widespread use in the movie modes of digital still cameras, allowing video encoding and playback through the integrated JPEG compression hardware with only software modification. The AMV video format is a modified version of MJPEG.

Many network-enabled cameras provide MJPEG streams that network clients can connect to. Mozilla and Webkit-based browsers have native support for viewing MJPEG streams. Some network-enabled cameras provide their own MJPEG interfaces as part of the normal feature set. For cameras that don’t provide this feature natively, a server can be used to transcode the camera pictures into an MJPEG stream and then provide that stream to other network clients.

The MJPEG standard emerged from a market-adoption process rather than a standards body and thus enjoys broad client support. Most major web browsers and video players provide native support and plug-ins are available for the rest.

The Closed Captioning Project LLC is a 501c3 non-profit dedicated to the improvement and accessibility of closed captioning and closed captioned media.

Made up of visual artists, musicians, technicians and engineers we are attempting to view the captioning process through new and numerous lenses while seeking to research and experiment with the closed captioning process through a multidisciplinary approach.

How a Motion Infographics Video Helps in Developing Brand Relationships

Motion Infographic Videos refers to the graphical representation of information in a video format. They are a perfect blend of visual as well as auditory appeal, which makes them an ideal tool for advertisement or for the dissemination of any information to an audience. The graphics may be in 2D or 3D format and generally contains elements like stop-motion animation, digital video, film footage, pictures or different visual forms necessary to tell the story.

Not only do motion infographic videos have a longer lasting impact but also quicker dissemination of the intended information can be done in a more effective manner. A 3 minutes animated video can convey more information than an entire brochure as they are easily comprehensible. Many companies use these videos in their YouTube channels and other media sharing websites to reach out to their customers more effectively.

Here are some ways in which these infographic videos help in developing brand relationships.

Much better publicity
With the advent of video sharing websites, videos have become the most favoured means of publicizing products/brands. Videos being the most shared material online have the potential of becoming a powerful SEO tool. Frequent liking and sharing of these short films are a norm and are bound to make one’s product popular within days. Moreover, any complicated data can be broken down into easily comprehensible formats.

Proximity with the audience
The audience watches films which they feel close to and can relate to the experience being shown in the story. A short infographic video that strikes a chord with the audience is bound to trigger an emotional response and hence, a sense of attachment. A content rich video is easily comprehensible by the majority of the population. People associate more with companies providing their introduction in such a brief and apt manner. For instance, businesses spend hours filtering information about what they actually do, what they can deliver, and their market target. Distilling all that abstract information down to a couple of sentences helps create a ‘unique selling proposition’.

Variety of platforms
Ensuring prolonged exposure to the products is the key to increasing a company’s consumer base. Since these videos can be played on a variety of media platforms, they can reach a larger audience base for the promotion of the product. They can be published on TV or the company’s website, or other media sharing sites such as Facebook, blogs, YouTube, Vimeo and Daily Motion to convey the message to more people. Businesses can also use these videos in trade shows, share them through DVDs and pen drives or utilize them for any marketing and sales strategies.

Builds trust
Using storyboard development and possible voice-over sound allows a company to convey its message in a more clear and interesting manner. User-friendly infographic videos develop a sense of entitlement in the viewers towards the company. The viewer gets to know the business and feels the urge to know as much as possible. Instilling this feeling builds a sense of trust and confidence in the customer about the company. The viewer is more likely to use the services provided by the company and recommend it to others once this sense of trust is instilled in him.

One cannot dispute the impact of motion graphics in visual representation. Infographic videos are becoming the most effective promotion techniques in the digital marketplace. A need to engage the audience at a deeper level has resulted in the adoption of various innovative techniques for conveying the information. Most businesses have opted for hiring professional services to make effective infographic videos. In addition to these customized films being more engaging than regular live shoots, the low-cost aspect is helping firms realize the potential of this medium as a must-use tool for their marketing and sales and for sharing any other information.

Home Road Films is a video production company based in New Delhi. They offer a multitude of services related to films like Explainer videos, Training Videos, Corporate films, Graphic Identities, Product Videos, Motion Advertisement, etc.

How to Light For the Green Screen Video Effect

The green screen video effect is amazing. You stand in front of a green backdrop and hit record on the video camera. Then, you drop the footage into your video editing software, select a new background, apply the chromakey filter and you are instantly transported to a new location. You can be in a shiny new office, standing in a hightech virtual set, on the beach, or even on the moon. At least, that is how you imagine things will work.

All to often, the first attempt you make at the green screen effect produces disappointing results. When you try to remove the green background in your editing software, you do not get all of the color to disappear. You play around with the settings to get more of the green to go away and suddenly the middle of your shirt disappears. You make more and more adjustments until things look better. You have lost all of the fine details around the edges, but the green is gone. But, when you hit play, the edges of your footage dance around like lighting bolts. You go back and blur the edges until they turn to mush.

After hours of tweaking and fine-tuning, you have created bad green screen video.

Creating Bad Green Screen Video is Easy

The secret that most people selling the tools and software for the green screen video effect do not tell you is that it is really easy to create bad results. YouTube is littered with examples of horrible chromakey video. But, there is another secret. It is not much harder to produce fantastic chromakey video.

You do not have to spend thousands of dollars or hundreds of hours of effort to create videos you are proud to share with the world. One major key to success is how you light your screen.

The Big Screen Lighting Myth

There is a big misconception about shooting green screen video that comes from the companies selling screen and lighting kits. Search online and you will see an endless list of options for purchasing a kit that includes everything you need to shoot green screen video. The list of included items is always the same. You get a green muslin screen, a support stand to hold up the screen, and three lights. You always get three lights, and that is the problem.

To get the best results from the process, you need to light the screen separately from the subject. An ideal green screen lighting kit includes five lights. Two lights are dedicated exclusively to lighting the screen itself. The other three lights are used to light your subject.

The Best Lights for Your Green Screen

Flat even lighting is the goal when lighting a green screen. Any variation in brightness will make it harder for your editing software to remove the background while preserving edge details. In a home office video studio, space is usually at a premium, so you can afford to use big soft boxes or place lights far away from the screen. The easiest way to get good results is to use fluorescent or LED bank lights.

A bank light is nothing more than a large flat (usually rectangular) light fixture. Professional versions just look like fancy fluorescent shop lights turned sideways. In fact, you can make your own from inexpensive parts purchased at your local home center. There are a few things to watch out for when making your own. But once you know what to buy, it is easy to do.

LED bank lights are more expensive to purchase, but they last forever, have no glass tube to break, and can usually be dimmed to dial-in the perfect amount of light.

Placing The Lights

Lighting your screen with bank lights is easy. You place one light on each side of the screen. The lights should be oriented vertically so that the light shines out evenly from top to bottom. Adjust the angle and distance from the screen until the entire surface of your green screen is lit at an even level of brightness.

Once your screen is properly lit, you can use the other three lights that came with your kit to light your subject. Make a few critical tweaks to your camera settings and you will quickly be shooting amazing green screen video to share with the world.

The Benefit of LinkedIn for Actors and Other Industry Professionals

There is no doubt the importance of a well put together social media profile for professionals in today’s world. Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Google+ are some of the more popular social media platforms anyone with an internet connection can create. They are also the most thought about in terms of presence. But what about LinkedIn? I remember when LinkedIn first came out. I didn’t think anything of it but set up a profile anyways. Today, LinkedIn has over 477 million profiles ranging from individuals, businesses, and groups. It is the number one professional networking platform existing today. If the number of users isn’t impressive enough, the number of profile views for the first quarter of 2016 was 45 billion!

WHY SHOULD AN ACTOR CONSIDER USING LINKEDIN?

Why not? Seriously, in all actuality, what harm is there to spend the time to set up your professional profile? Outside my rhetorical question, let’s look at the practicality of what LinkedIn really is. Your LinkedIn profile serves as a digital resume. The features of LinkedIn help you organize your professional career and helps keep track of all the projects, experiences, volunteer work and education you get involved with. LinkedIn helps others who may be interested in working with you to get a quick snapshot of who you are – your focus, your character, and your expertise.

Being an actor, you are in one of the most competitive industry. Anyone who has been in the entertainment industry for any length of time knows it is about networking. It is about who you know and the projects you’ve been a part of. Sure, posting videos on YouTube helps, having a Facebook Fan Page helps, and possibly even your own web page. Social Media profiles like Twitter, Snap Chat, Instagram, and others help to engage with your audience and fans along with increasing your marketability. But what about your professional image? Fan’s are great, however, you are in “show business”. The most important part of that term is “BUSINESS”. If you are not developing your professional and business side, it doesn’t really matter what fans you have because fans won’t have anything to admire if you are not getting work!

HOW CAN YOU UTILIZE LINKEDIN?

The best aspects of LinkedIn is the ability to showcase projects, write articles, get endorsed by peers, and receive recommendations from those you have worked with. Casting Directors, Producers, and filmmakers are always in ready supply of talent. Same with Agents and Managers. Like it or not, you must show them, why you are worth their time. You may be able to act or sing, hit your marks or deliver on a dime. But, you are not the only one. More importantly, if you can’t show up to work on time, cause problems or have an attitude, it doesn’t matter how much talent you possess, your personality will overshadow all of that. We all want to work with professionals. They want to know who YOU are. This is where LinkedIn can serve you the most.

EXPERIENCE SECTION – The best part about this section is the ability to highlight the experience you have. Are you with an Agent or a Management Company? What work have you done in the past that relates to the Industry or otherwise? What did you do? How did you do it? What did you learn? What skills did you acquire? This information is great to know for someone looking to work with you.

PROJECT SECTION – Like a resume attached to the back of a Headshot, projects can be showcased on LinkedIn under the experience it coordinates with. For example, you work with ABC Talent Agency. While there, you were cast for project 1,2,3. You worked with XYZ actor/director/casting director. You have the ability to describe the character you played and other details more fully than what you could do on the back of your resume.

ENDORSEMENTS – We all have skills. Some skills fit directly with our field of work, others outside our field of work. Different experiences and projects cause us to utilize different sets of skills we possess. The Endorsement section showcases your most prominent set of skills. Further, this section allows for friends, peers, and network to endorse those skills. There is nothing more powerful than others who say… yes, he/she has these skills and they are developed to the point I am willing to endorse and recommend them for it.

RECOMMENDATIONS – Imagine working with an Actor such as Leonardo DeCaprio or a Director like Stephen Spielberg and they give you a recommendation because of your work ethic or your performance on set! That kind of endorsement would do wonders for your marketability. People like working with likable people. The best way to show you are such a person is through recommendations. This section highlights who you are beyond your performance. It shines a light on your character, your behavior, and work ethic. My advice is to build up your recommendation as much as possible. It only benefits you in the long run.

VOLUNTEER SECTION – Do you like charities? Are you involved with Non-profits? Why are you involved and what do you do with them? LinkedIn gives you the ability to talk about the charities you work with. Can you imagine what this does to your likeability factor? Can you imagine how this will help you stand out above the rest and the opportunities that can come from this one section alone!

CONCLUSION

Different social media platforms serve different purposes. Most focus on gaining followers, sharing your thoughts or moments in time. Others are about showcasing your professional experience. LinkedIn has become the platform for showcasing your professional side. The best part about LinkedIn is it continues to grow. You have the ability to link your profile to other website and social media platforms (IMDB, Website, Fan page, etc), you have the ability to take the time to develop a quality digital resume that will be accessible to those interested in working with you while building a track record of endorsements, recommendations, articles, and experiences. Don’t do what I did and wait to develop your profile. Get started today!

TIPS AND TRICKS

Remember, this is about promoting your professional side. To throw up some information in a half-hearted manner just to have it up is not going to work well in the long run. An old saying in the restaurant business is this… “The presentation is everything”; meaning, you may have the best tasting food, but if the presentation is bad, the food isn’t going to taste as good. This is because we eat with our eyes first. This is no different with your resume or your profile. You want it to stand out and you want it to be as professional as possible. So here are some tips to help you out.

1.PHOTO – If you don’t have a photo, you don’t have a profile. As an Actor, getting a professional photo (headshot) is part of the business. Especially if you are a junior talent, each time you update your Headshot, you need to get in the habit of updating your photo on LinkedIn with the new Headshot.

2. BACKGROUND IMAGE – The new layout for LinkedIn allows for a background image. Use this feature! It adds a unique touch to your profile and allows you to express yourself. Just be sure to keep it professional.

3. ARTICLES – LinkedIn allows you the ability to write articles. This is a great way to express yourself and your experience. Writing updates when you get off a project talking about your experiences can help tremendously. Writing about things that matter to you will also help others to learn more about you and the types of projects that will really help you shine. Plus, every time you post an article, your connections automatically get a notification. This builds up your presence in your industry.

NOTE: Be sure not to post restricted or Non-Disclosure information about any project you are working on… If you have any doubts, contact your agent, manager, or legal professional first. It is better to be safe than sorry.

4. ENDORSE OTHERS – Help your fellow actors out! They are struggling just as much as you are. If you work with someone who you feel does a great job or has a great character, let others know! Believe me, they will think very highly of you and I can guarantee, they will be just as willing to give you an endorsement and recommendation in return.

5. STAY PROFESSIONAL – Whatever you do, keep professionalism in the forefront of your mind for LinkedIn. This is not about harassing casting directors or filmmakers to be in their next film. This is not about posting what you did over the weekend or talking bad about others. Believe me, social media, in general, is a double-edged sword. You should not be doing this on any of your platforms, however, LinkedIn is the last place you want to do this. You will be Blacklisted quicker than you think!

This is only a brief summary of the benefits of a LinkedIn Profile. There is so much more to be learned about LinkedIn and structure so that your profile continues to Rank for page views among your peers and engagement of potential offers from agents, casting directors and other industry professionals.