Q. Describe the most common types of jobs you do for your clients.
A. Over the past few years I have done mostly public events like lectures, stage dramas, memorials, and concerts. But in the past I have done numerous outdoor portraits of families and indoor shots of large groups. I also like doing classes for people wanting to improve their home video skills.
Q. Describe three recent jobs you've completed.
A. We have most recently done a wedding at Grand Canyon, a Memorial Service, and a Video Survey Record for a divorce case.
Q. What advice do you have for a customer looking to hire a provider like you?
A. If you have a parent or older relative who's life story is remarkable in any way, look into doing a video life story ASAP before that person loses the ability to recall and talk about the "old days" and all the important events that made them who they are now.
Q. Why does your work stand out from others who do what you do?
A. While others offer Life Story productions, I am especially well prepared to elicit very interesting stories from older clients due to my own age and the fact that I'm a Licensed Professional Counselor who has worked many years with children, couples, and older folks who might not trust just anyone with their personal stories.
Q. What do you like most about your job?
A. Working creatively with people of any age from infancy to old age. See below: a Life Story I did for a 97 year old woman.
Q. Do you have a favorite story from your work?
A. I videoed an outing of a close friend, her daughter and two grand kids. We went to an animal park, and I got several very touching sequences of her relating to her grand children. She died a few months later, and that video captures the last time the daughter and grand children saw her. It's a very moving tribute and memorial of my friend. Fifty years from now the grand kids will have a precious memory to relive.
Q. What do you wish customers knew about you or your profession?
A. I like doing unusual photo-video jobs such as an upcoming job videoing a repeated-vows wedding ceremony in the Red Rocks of Sedona, AZ. I especially love adding music to my videos--something I have a real, feel for.
Q. How did you decide to get in your line of work?
A. I have had several careers, I worked overseas three times as an English teacher, then as a commercial photographer, a child & family therapist, and I now combine two careers--as counselor and videographer at the local county jail, working part time. I just love working creatively with people of all ages.
Q. Tell us about a recent job you did that you are particularly proud of.
A. I recently finished a Life Story on a woman who turned 97. She was so energetic and happy that it was really fun to video her talking about her life as a dancer, a mother and store manager. She still volunteers every day at a local high school and I videoed her at work. She is a joy to just relate to and that made the work of editing in all her childhood pictures, music she danced to, and family snapshots--so much easier.
Q. Do you do any sort of continuing education to stay up on the latest developments in your field?
A. I subscribe to Videomaker which keeps me informed on all the latest developments in video and photo work. A few years back I received a certificate in documentary video making at Zaki Gordon Film Institute in Sedona, AZ.
Q. What are the latest developments in your field? Are there any exciting things coming in the next few years or decade that will change your line of business?
A. The most notable changes in the field of video and photography is increasing high-definition and the use of a 35mm camera for video work. I've already started using a Nikon 35mm camera for combining video and still portraits of families and children.
Q. Describe your most recent project, what it involved, how much it cost, and how long it took.
A. I last did a memorial at a local funeral home. I did still shots of personal articles of the deceased and added music, titles, etc., that made the production quite moving. The widow ordered a number of extra copies to send to her friends and relations. I ran $150 and took two days to deliver. The extra DVD's ran $7.50 each and were ready in one day.
Q. If you have a complicated pricing system for your service, please give all the details here.
A. I am semi-retired and don't have to depend upon my photo-video work for a living. I thus have very, very reasonable pricing and do some pro bono work for non-profits. My hourly charge usually runs about $50.
Q. What is your greatest strength?
A. Making people feel comfortable, drawing them out, and laughing with them.
Q. What are you currently working on improving?
A. My portable equipment, sound recording, and editing.