Why Create a Video Biography? Some Reasons for Reluctant Family members

It’s too much work. I don’t look good on camera. I don’t have much to say. I already have lots of photo pictures — why must i make a video?

If you’ve tried to encourage a reticent parent or grandparent to sit for a video biography interview, you might have heard excuses like these. Than again, maybe you’re betforward ادرس جدید the parent or grandparent offering in the excuses. So just why is a video biography an excellent addition to any genealogy and family history effort? And how can you overcome resistance to such a project, either from other family members or yourself? Here are some answers to those excuses.

It’s too much work. No doubt about it — a video biography requires organization, planning, passion and some technical savvy. But that doesn’t mean the project needs to be overwhelming. If your family is creating the video, the key to success is breaking the process into steps. If you’re hiring a video biography company to produce the video for you, make sure you find a company that will clearly explain and usher you and your family through each stage of the production — and let you know what role you need to play and what elements you need to provide.

If you’re the one pushing for the video, offer your subject lots of support. Tell him or her you’ll help sort and organize photos, films and collectibles. Schedule regular visits or phone calls in order to delve into genealogy and family history and life stories. Tell him/her that you’re going to keep all the notes and write the questions; all he/she will have to do is sit down in front of a camera and talk to you. Offer any and all help needed to relieve your subject’s burden (or perceived burden).

I don’t look good on camera. Let’s face it: A lot of people just don’t like cameras. But a lot of people do like television. And this is a opportunity to tell his/her life story on TV. It’ll be fun, it’ll be exciting, it’ll be an opportunity to observe how television programs are made. And, for your subject, it’ll be easy. Offer to videotape in your subject’s home, or in another location in which he/she is comfortable. Let your subject know that he/she is a revered family figure and you’re creating this video for posterity. Of course you’ll use professional lighting and sound techniques to make him/her look and sound great.

I don’t have much to say. Well, we know this is not true. Your parents, grandparents (or you, if you’re the subject) have lived very full and interesting lives. Let your subjects know how important their stories and memories are to you and how much they’ll be treasured by future generations. If they’re focused on freezing up during the interview, reassure them that you are there with them and that the experience will be less of an interview than the usual conversation between the both of you, or regarding the subject and a caring and interested professional job interviewer. In short, they’ll be in a very safe environment, encased by people who care what they have to say and will do their full capacity to make them comfortable saying it. In the end, your parents or grandparents (or you) will probably be surprised at how much they did have to say.

I already have lots of photo pictures — why must i make a video? Photo pictures, especially those packed with vintage family photos, are wonderful souvenirs and genealogy and family history resources. But, photos don’t talk. And to enjoy the photos you’ll want the album in your hands. Video biographies lend new life to old photos. Combine them with your parents’ and grandparents’ memories, start being active . music and movement, and those vintage photos get a dramatic new rent on life. And its easy to distribute multiple copies of your video biography on DVD, giving your photos a much greater family audience than they would otherwise have.

Properly produced video biographies can emotionally engage an audience like no other medium, and invite family members for generations to come to share with you the experience of watching and listening to Mom and dad, Grandma and grandpa, or you relate precious life stories. If your subjects formerly written personal histories in book form, a video biography makes an important companion piece.

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