The App That Revolutionised Video Making

From the studio to your pocket: a brief overview of film making

What’s the first image that comes to your head when I say ‘film making’? Chances are you are imagining a video camera, kind of like this: 🎥 Funnily enough, if you are a smartphone owner (like 2.3 billion other people), you are probably filming things with your phone rather than a video camera.

Why is that?

In less than 7 minutes, I will tell you a captivating story about the evolution of film making. Buckle up…

No colour. No sound. No story

The early motion pictures of the 1800’s consisted of long, static shots. They were not edited in any way because the aim was not really to tell a story. Rather, it was about experimenting a new technology. At the that time, black & white clips of people walking up and down the street was a comparable excitement to today’s hyper-realistic CGI. Even if there wasn’t any colour or sound (live musicians would sometimes make up for it).

Cut’n’paste

The first movie shot in colour appeared much later in 1918, and sound was integrated shortly after. The first edited shots were made possible with the invention of the guillotine tape splicer (a bit like a paper cutter), introduced in the late 1960s. So the job of a film editor was to manually cut and stick pieces of film negatives together, in order to create a story. Now imagine: every cut made was irreversible. No ‘undo’ button.

Cutting and sticking film negatives together… Patience is a virtue for sure!

Home, sweet home

We had to wait for the invention of the computer (another 30 years or so) for softwares like Adobe’s Premiere to show up. Then something fundamental changed: analog film was replaced by digital cinematography (the process of capturing motion pictures as digital images rather than on film). The aesthetics of videos were enhanced dramatically, with the addition of features such as colour filters, slow/fast motion, and the repetition of clips. However, the most fundamental change was that digital cinematography allowed for anyone to produce their own video. There was no longer the need to visit an editing studio; you could do it at home on your computer. In 1999, the video editing software for amateur iMovie came installed in every Apple Mac, likewise for Windows’ Movie Maker.

Phone, sweet phone

Last but not least: the mobile phone. The introduction of camera mobile phones in the 2000s brought film editing to a totally new dimension. We have now instant access to film making. Not just at home, but pretty much everywhere we go. We can film anything, anywhere, anytime. What’s more, mobile phones are continuously on the rise. As a matter of (fun) fact, more people have cell phones than toilets, according to a U.N. study.

The question is, why are people increasingly dropping the camcorder for a mobile phone? Probably because…

  1. Mobile phones are multifunctional, ergonomic and always with you.
  2. The quality of videos on phones is improving by the day.
  3. Phone apps enable you to edit your videos on the spot (i.e. trim, filters).
  4. Mobile phones make it super easy to share your videos.

Those are the reasons why camera phones are currently outselling video cameras 10 to 1. (Obviously, if you are genuinely serious about creating full high definition footage, a camcorder is as indispensable as a Digital SLR is to a photographer.)

From 19th to 21th century — film making has come a long way.

Creating alone VS creating together

I personally have always been fond of making videos. Since a young age I have captured various trips and holiday memories with my video camera. I loved creating compilations on my laptop and then offering them as gifts for birthdays and Christmas. I also used to add slow-motion effects and music from my iTunes library.

Yet, as fun as that sounds, there were a few drawbacks to all this. Firstly, it was a very time-consumming activity. I had to transfer the videos taken with my camcorder onto my computer, which took ages. Secondly, Movie Maker (and later iMovie) would crash from time to time, which meant that I would lose all the progress I had made on a project after the last save. Then, if that didn’t result in me throwing the laptop out of the window, there was one last disadvantage. The completed video showed clips that I had filmed myself only. The whole story was told through my own eyes, with no one else’s output. It was a one-perspective story. I always thought it would be more fun if I could somehow create a video together with other people.

Enter zipstrr, the app that changed everything!

Videos with whoevrr, wherevrr, whenevrr

If you haven’t heard of it yet, zipstrr is the ultimate video app out there. It is, in my opinion, the culmination of video editing. I can hear you think: ‘Of course she’d say that, she works for them!’ But it’s actually the other way round: I wanted to work for zipstrr because I fell in love with the idea. And the idea that zipstrr came up with is unparalleled. Read further...

zipstrr — storytelling through multiple perspectives

Free and available on both iOS and Android, zipstrr allows you to invite your friends, family or whoever you want to participate in a video whose director is you. All you have to do is share the link or QR code of your video project to whom you would like to participate. You set up how many seconds the clip (called zip) should be, pick a title, a briefing and a submission deadline. When all the clips are collected (including yours), you have the option to mix up the order in which they appear, mute them and add cool music. Ultimately, when you’re happy with the result, the app instantly generates your HD video and you’re ready to download or share it with all the participants!

#InFilmUnited

Say you want to record your summer holiday. zipstrr allows you to go a step further and combine your vacation memories with those of your friends who went somewhere else on holiday. As a result, you have get an awesome compilation of you and your friends’ 2017 summer.

Create amazing souvenirs of your travels

What’s your hobby? Do you like cooking? You can share step-by-step recipe videos with cool background music, like the one below:

Make tutorial videos with zipstrr!

You can also surprise your friend who’s birthday is coming soon with a compilation of people wishing happy birthday. Alternatively, if you and your buddies go to a festival together, you can collaborate to create a souvenir video of different perspectives of the event. Still not convinced? If you are studying or working abroad, what’s better than a zipstrr video to stay in touch and share updates with your home friends and family? That’s the power of the app: to bring people together by sharing moments. Moments which zipstrr makes last forever!

Taken by surprise

Yes it is also entertaining to create a video uniquely with your clips, but, by inviting others to take part, you get an irresistible element of surprise: you have no idea what your friends’ clips are going to look like. Every time you receive a zip to add to your project, you get excited because it is something new. To me, it is a bit like receiving a postcard. People can’t be bothered to write postcards, but they love receiving them, right? Plus, the surprise is at its peak when you eventually share the completed zipstrr video to all the participants, who in turn get to discover everyone else’s perspectives.

Conclusion: the video production house in your pocket

Video making has come a long way. From the heavy, cumbersome, sound- and colourless first motion picture camera, to the video app in that handy, all-in-one device in your pocket. Hats off!

If video making underwent a tremendous change, so did the stories we want to convey through video. Indeed, zipstrr, as a concept, revolutionised the way we share our life moments. By introducing the element of collaboration, zipstrr added a value that is inherent to all human beings: the search for community and togetherness.

Nowadays, everyone has the opportunity to be a film director, including you. Start today & create souvenirs that will last forever!

Ready, set, ZIP!


Written by Monica Carvalho, Social Media Manager at zipstrr

zipstrr is your favourite video editing & collaboration app. It is free to download & available on Android + iOS. Give it a go here!

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