Step 5. Acquire Media
Acquiring media is a challenge. Copyright law prevent use of just any song or image. While free is nice I tend to look for low cost. This is a collection of free and low cost sources I have found. Be careful on the web. If an image has a watermark behind it that is not a free image. Someone just downloaded and placed it in a library. Having your trailer pulled from YouTube for copyright violation is not fun. It can also be a pain in the pocket.
Creative Commons (CC) license
A Creative Commons (CC) license is a popular public copyright licenses that defines the free distribution of a copyrighted work. With CC the author can define how a work can be used and under what conditions.
For creating book trailers the most useful are the first two, public domain and attribution. Attribution means you have to publicly create creator of the work. This is done after the directive, at the end of the trailer. Be careful of non-commercial. A book trailer is a promotional video which is promoting your book, thus you’re using it for a commercial advantage and could not use a work with a NonCommercial restriction. When in doubt, just ask the licensor. Creative Commons has a page explaining NonCommercial use: https://wiki.creativecommons.org/NonCommercial_interpretation
The various licenses available and their meaning. (Table from Creative Commons website http://creativecommons.org/licenses/)
NonCommercial Europe may use while Japan may use
For details visit: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/
Once you use a work you need to attribute it in the trailer. Credits are usually at the very end after the directive. You need to list:
- Title - Name of the work such as song title.
- Author - Name of the person who created the work.
- Source - Where can the work be found? Usually the URL of the site where the music came from.
- License - Such as CC BY for a work that requires attribution.
- "Got Funk" Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)
- Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0
Creative Commons Resources
- creativecommons.org - official website
- Wiki article - Creative Commons license
- Best practices for attribution - Creative Commons
If you are purchasing images, video or music you often do not have to credit the work. Look at the terms and conditions when you are looking at using a piece of media.
- Large library of music. For a book trailer credit Kevin and there is no cost. CC BY
- McCoy Productions has a superb page with many sources and details.
- Discovered dig.ccmixter while researching the Bookmans Does Book Dominoes (Bookstore) trailer.
- 300 Monks $35 per song for a web video.
- Archive.org - Audio Archive
- Legal Music for Videos - List of music for videos licensed under the Creative Commons license
- NASA Sounds - large public domain collection of space sounds like a rocket taking off
- NASA Audio Collection - larger still public domain collection
- Fiverr: The marketplace for creative & professional services - popular site voice overs, music, animation and other creative services starting at $5 per gig.
- Lee Fitzsimmons has a number of audio songs for free use in book trailers.
- Tips from the Pros:
- CanStock Photo www.canstockphoto.com Low cost Photos and Graphics
- Wikimedia Commons
- Creative Commons US
- Wellcome Images
- Library of Congress
- The Best Copyright-Free Photo Libraries (good list of government image resources)
- NOAA Ocean Images
- WikiMedia Free images, sound video
- Beach Front B-Roll NEW
- Archive.org - Stock footage
- Hongkiat (good list of sites for free stock footage and animated backgrounds)
Equipment to Create Your Own Media
Smartphones are convenient as you carry them. To quote Mike Helms "The best equipment is what you have with you." In other words, you may have a better camera, tripod, mic… at home, but if you don’t have it with you, it is not the best for the job. This is why I find myself moving to smaller and smaller equipment that is easier to carry.
The Financial Post (Oct 5, 2013) did an article on the decline of cameras - "Point, shoot, collapse: Why big camera companies are the next BlackBerry."
The challenge is smartphones are engineered to make phone calls, not to shoot video. Joby has a line of tiny tripods for holding a smartphone.
I have many microphones, each with a purpose in mind based on the design. In the past few years there has been a growth in the USB microphone. These are mics designed to be plugged into the USB port of a computer. I use a Samson C01U USB Studio Mic. It was one of the first.
The challenge is monitoring. Digital mics take time to process the signal and send to the computer. Plug headphones into the computer and you head the sound as you record slightly delayed. It is horrible to use for monitoring.
Next came mics with a headphone jack. Now you can plug the headphone into the mic and head realtime. C01U Pro
The latest is the G-Track mic with a headphone jack as well as an instrument line in.
Smartphones have a limited microphone. Companies like Rode and Belkin make mics that can be plugged into a smartphone to give superior sound.
Using the same microphone technology that audio professionals use, the LiveAction Mic attaches to your smartphone’s audio jack to instantly elevate your sound-recording capabilities. Select the Directional setting to capture the multi-layered sound typical of concerts and live events, and the Super-Directional setting to record lectures and memos with optimal clarity. Simply pick your setting, point and start recording professional-quality audio.
The smartLav is a professional-grade wearable microphone designed for use in a wide range of film, television and broadcast scenarios, or wherever professional quality audio is required in a discreet, portable format without the complication and expense of additional wireless equipment. With the smartLav the user simply mounts the microphone on the talent, connects it to a smartphone or tablet headset jack and records via the RØDE Rec app for iOS, or any other audio app of their choice.
GoPro is a popular class of action cameras designed to be worn or connected to equipment. This presents a popular first person perspective to the video.
One of my hobbies is skatebikes. A GoPro mounted on the downtube gives a reference element to a video.