Download Zoom: Go to https://zoom.us and search for your device’s installation steps.
Update your Zoom: There are certain functions (e.g., sending reader sides in the Chat box during class) that don’t seem to work unless you have the most updated version of Zoom. Open Zoom and click your username/icon in the upper right corner. In the dropdown, click on “Check for Updates.”
Get Basics: Read and implement the basics of self-taping from my blog post Art of the Self Tape.
Dropbox: To receive and view your class clips, you must create a new Dropbox folder for this class. (Yes, past students need to create a new Dropbox for this class.) Here are directions for creating your Dropbox folder to receive class videos:
— Sign into Dropbox.
— Click New shared folder.
— Choose Create a new folder.
— Name your shared folder. Please label as follows: GENRE – YOUR FIRST NAME AND LAST NAME (Examples: “GENRE – VIN DIESEL,” or “GENRE – AMERICA FERRARA”)
— In the “To:” field, add: firstname.lastname@example.org
— Leave capability as “Can edit.”
— Click Share.
ADDITIONAL DROPBOX NOTES
1. Files are available to you for an unlimited time in your own account. If something happens to your account, let me know quickly: I’m only able to keep class files for 2 months before I delete to clear out space.
2. You can view and download your files onto your computer, tablet, or phone.
3. You can share your files or folders with anyone you choose
We will be filming your scenes in class! I will handle recording. After class, Zoom converts the clips, and then I deliver them to your private Dropbox folder.
SELECTING YOUR CAMERA
For class participation, please plan to use a laptop (or iPad). You will need to have ability to view everyone on the screen at the same time (Gallery View), and this is not possible on a phone.
For filming your scene, please use this guideline: Which of your devices has the best camera?
Here’s the deal. It’s best to participate in the class on a laptop. But if you want to get the best quality possible for filming, it might be best to film on your cell phone if it’s a better camera. That’s your choice.
If you want to swap to your phone, then do this: when it’s your turn to film, log out on your laptop and then log back on via your cell phone.
Please prepare your set-up before class.
The laptop cameras will generally do solid filming too, so don’t hesitate to use that for both participation and filming ease.
NOTE: Do not plan to use an independent camera set-up. Meaning, don’t use a DSLR or video camera for class filming that is not connected to Zoom. We can’t see what that independent camera sees.
PREPARING YOUR SPACE
Generally, give yourself plenty of time to set up before class. Don’t lose precious class time doing your set-up!
— Camera height: Prepare the camera height for either a sitting or standing scene, per the description of the scene.
— Tripod: Use a makeshift pile of books, a tripod stand, yoga block, or any combination to be able to raise the camera or lower it. Have books handy for adjustments to get great eye lines. (I’ll tweak it!)
— Props: Bring any props that you might want to incorporate into the scene.
— To minimize sound bounce or echo, place on the floor around your filming area any yoga mats, pillows, towels, area rugs, etc.
— If standing, have a book handy to use as a foot marker once we set your standing position. Use it like we use a sandbag on sets.
— If sitting, use a simple chair (non-rolling, unless it’s a character choice).
— If sitting, you might be able to incorporate a table if it’s part of the scene.
Again: Read my blog post Art of the Self Tape for examples!
I’m looking forward to working together soon!