Thursday, January 30, 2014

LEGO Batman vs Superman + Logitech C920

Hello world,

I just wanted to share some thoughts on my latest vid 'LEGO Batman vs Superman' and my new Logitech C920 webcam.

Since the video was pretty straight forward and didn’t include any special effects there isn't much to say. I did run into some trouble with the black suit Batman minifig; I needed to place the light source lower than usual to shine directly at him. Even with that, it was still pretty dark and the details were kinda faded, so what I did was to play around with the shadow/highlights in After Effects to bring back some of the details in his suit. All in all, it turned out pretty good.

As I've mentioned, I bought a used Logitech C920 webcam and this was the first time I've used it. Having owned the PRO9000, I can honestly say that the newer C920 blows it out of the water. The image is crisper, I find it easier to use and it has a tripod mount, which is awesome. On the other hand though, it has sort of the same limitations. You need to light your set really well and you need to set the exposure and gain just right, because if you don’t, you get some annoying horizontal lines going up and down the screen.

Obviously, I’m not going to use the C920 as my main camera; that’s still gonna be the Canon 1100D, but for shorter videos and a future project I’m working on, it’s perfect.

Now, I’d like to talk about and explain why I was forced to re-upload and rename this video. As some of you may know, I’m currently a Youtube partner so my videos need to go through a review phase in which they’re either approved or rejected for monetization. This particular video was approved in a couple of hours after upload so that was good news. Trouble started after about 10 days when I received an email from Youtube stating that I needed to provide further info about the commercial licenses for the video/audio I used. There are a few things worth mentioning here:       
  • This is the first time I've been asked to provide proof after the video was already accepted for monetization.
  • I use only royalty free files in my videos (machinimasound, incompetech, etc) and reference them accordingly
  • After I provided the licenses, the monetization status of the video changed into ‘monitoring for possible review’

Not sure if everyone knows but, once you reach this phase (monitoring for possible review) it takes forever to get out of it. I’ve read about people who had videos stuck here for months. Imagine my frustration when it dawned on me that there are going to be thousands of views for which I’m not going to receive a penny. Don’t get the wrong idea here, I’m not making a fortune from Youtube, but every little bit helps. Everything I earn goes into my hobby anyway. So I decided to re-upload the video, rename it and take down the other one. Just like the first one, it was monetized in an hour or so without any problems.  Hopefully I won’t have any issues with this one.

That’s pretty much it for now. Next up: LEGO Super Heroes Episode 5!

Catch you later,

Atlas Animationz

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