Project Video Now Live at Vimeo and UMW Media Hub
May 9th, 2014 by Andrew Kraus

Finished the video yesterday.

You can see it here…

or on Vimeo here:


or the UMW Media Hub here:


Introducing Yours Truly and My Project
Mar 13th, 2014 by Andrew Kraus


In the video just above this text, I introduce myself and explain my role in the project to showcase the capabilities of the soon to be opening Convergence Center at the University of Mary Washington.  Rather than retell the same story in print here, I invite you to take three minutes to watch it so I can move to the next part of my assignment for this first part of the project: telling you how I made the video.


"Tech" that I use in teaching piano

“Tech” that I use in teaching piano

Old and New

Old and New

The Making of the Video in this Post

In this section I’ll describe the process I used as well as the tools.

I used Andy Rush’s video as a model for my own.  (I’m a bit jealous, because…) he had a lot better equipment to use than I do at the moment, but that’s where the Convergence Center enters the frame). I found his “Behind the Scenes” post and video to be extremely helpful.

After preparing a script based primarily on the text of my 250 word grant submission, I readied myself and my equipment. Since I don’t have a makeup person, I prepped myself by brushing my teeth and running a brush through my hair ;-=)  Once that was done, I brought my equipment – my laptop with its built-in camera and microphone – to the kitchen table, gave my dog a treat so he wouldn’t bug me while I was recording, and began the process of recording the video.

Why did I go with the webcam on my pc as the camera of choice?

I own a good, older video camera, but it doesn’t do HD.
I’ve got a good enough HD camera on my cellphone, but I don’t have any way to mount the phone on a tripod to stabilize it for the video.

The next problem to solve was how to store video from the pc webcam.

That’s where a Google search and YouTube came to the rescue.
Click HERE to view that solution.

Once all that was in place, I took my script and placed it where I could see it while staring into the webcam and recorded the video, then re-recorded the video, and re-recorded it once more for good measure.  Despite my best efforts, there is still one word clipped from the beginning, but I’m leaving it that way for the sake of authenticity…

The video is currently “unlisted” on YouTube, but I had the URL and used the YouTube “Embed” feature to grab the iframe code to insert the video here into my WordPress blog.  That took a wee bit of fiddling, because I first pasted it into the “Visual” view of the WP editor, but when I previewed the post and found myself looking at HTML code, I knew I had to paste it into the “Text” view of the post.

Finally – since I already own a video editor (Sony Vegas Platinum) for my work as a freelance pianist and recording person, I downloaded the MP4 of the video from YouTube to my desktop machine, clipped out a frame here and there, did a little “pan and crop” and finished by rendering the video as a flash video and uploading it to YouTube.


University of Mary Washington Digital Media Commons Initiative
Mar 11th, 2014 by Andrew Kraus

This is where I’ll be blogging about my experience with the University of Mary Washington Digital Media Commons Initiative. I am one of sixteen faculty and staff members awarded a grant to participate in developing a project to help showcase our new UMW “Convergence Center”.

Here is the text of my proposal…

“Develop a (perhaps interactive) video that shows how I, as a pianist and piano teacher,  use  (and by extension, other music teachers and students CAN use), technology in the teaching and practice of making music. Some examples: ability to peruse composer manuscripts with students from the (web based) Petrucci Library, increased availability of historic performances through YouTube and other web video streaming sites, teaching lessons to students off site with Skype, ability to record and upload performances to share and critique, use of tools like Canvas to facilitate group discussions.  Another area I’ve been exploring is making recordings with self-created subliminal affirmations for improvement, something relatively easy to do with what are today commonly available components at a fraction of past costs. Finished products could include a video, a blog and/or a website with a focus on the use of technology in teaching and performing music.”

Much, much, more to come!

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