How mobile phone video will change the world


With every man and his dog owning a smartphone, the whole world is now able to film and edit HD video right from the palm of their hands. How will this change the professional landscape and more importantly will it change things for the better?
Just over ten years ago I was in college trying to create my first short film. Boy, how things change! At that time, to shoot and edit a short film took a huge broadcast camera and an even larger computer editing system. At the time I was using Avid, and all I remember was thinking how much the suite cost for the college! (It was into the £10,000’s!)
To get a small shoot together was a real hard task, it took a huge heap of creativity to make sure the shot was right every time, and the edit certainly had to be thought out before playing around on the timeline, otherwise a few mistakes could spell countless hours in rendering time.
This leads me to ponder on what the future will hold, when literally anybody can flick out their iPhone and start filming in HD (you can even edit a film together on iMovie on the iPad or iPhone with no rendering!). Is this going to destroy creativity and make for lazy independent films? Will people think more about the next film than the edit process and will easier software dilute the need for expensive editors?
For every one thousand new ‘wannabe’ Spielberg’s uploading movie garbage for the world to see on YouTube, I really think we’re going to see ten or twenty amazing new directors and cameramen come alive. I mean imaging with your own passion for TV, having a full HD camera and edit suite in your hand to play with as a kid! The possibilities are endless.

They say the best camera you have is the one you have on you at the time, and I have to agree. Having access to a video camera 24/7 could mean you might just get that shot of the rare bird you’ve been hunting out on your next documentary, or some shots for a live news piece, when you just ‘happen to be in the right place at the right time.’
I know a lot of editors are worried about cheap editing systems available to all, but I truly believe that due to the mass of creative nightmares being created, the truly original editors will stand out from the crowd and will be able to charge a premium for it too. The same applies to production companies. Anyone can now edit at home, so in theory it should lead (and make) production companies step up their game in TV production, making content which truly stands out.

Let’s hope this new technology can bring back the ‘art’, which has somehow been lost over the last 5-10 years.
I’ll leave you with a quote from Imogen Cunningham; “Which of my photographs is my favourite? The one I’m going to take tomorrow.”
Written by Mark B Brown. Mark is the company director of Editors Keys and the Studio Series brands, which create a range of video editing and recording products used by many of the mainstream television networks throughout the world today.

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