The time is currently 8:16pm. Trust me, this will be relevant at the end of this entry.
I guess the title might be a little misleading because vlogging probably wouldn’t be a consistent effort. If anything, I’d probably do it less frequently than writing here on my regular blog. Which could mean “almost never” for the time being. I could do it once in a while for practice’s sake, but I wouldn’t do it with any consistency until October. Why October? Because that’s the next time I’ll be taking an extended vacation.
Looking back at other ventures (like my trip to Norway four years ago), my writing blog entries only lasted for the first few days out of the trip because, well, it was taking too long. I can be long-winded when I’m speaking in person, but when I’m writing a story, it can take several pages to cover just one day. A lot of stuff would have to happen to make an entry worthy of that length, but it can (and would) happen. Writing several pages per day when I’m supposed to be enjoying going outside and experiencing what a completely different culture has to offer… it’s not worth the time and effort, so I inevitably fell off the proverbial wagon.
I’m trying to avoid that this time around. My mother got a new laptop, I bought a new webcam (that’s another story that can wait until later) and I’m hoping to put them both to good use. My initial plan was to write “e-postcards”: send people emails with a short video and possibly a digital photo attached. Cheaper than a postcard, I can say more than what I could write in a tiny space… I found some compression software that reduces the resolution of a video and thus reduces the size so a 30-second video might be 3MB instead of some huge amount of space that’s too large to attach to an email. BRILLIANT! (If you don’t think so, well, I’m not gonna send you an e-postcard! Pptbptpbptptpbtp!!!)
That was my initial plan: use the webcam to send people messages. Then after spending hours upon hours of surfing through YouTube, it occurred to me that perhaps I could talk about the trip on video instead. It wouldn’t be as detailed and I wouldn’t be able to constantly edit and reedit the whole time I was recording, but that might be a good thing in the long run. If I try to give a general outline of the day’s happenings in five or ten minutes, that’s a lot less time than it’d take to write a blog entry every day or two. (Time check: 8:33pm.)
I could come home and do a better job providing details, make the videos look more interesting and entertaining… stuff that requires more time and effort, which I would have upon getting back to the States.
So at this point, I’m looking at it as a time-saver more than anything. Record a short video at the end of the day and post them when I have internet access, which should be pretty frequently: we’re taking a scheduled 12-day tour for the latter part of the trip that’s supposed to be using primarily four- and five-star hotels. Good stuff. There might not be an available connection on the night when our room will actually be floating on a river, but aside from that, I might be able to upload videos pretty consistently while we’re there.
I’m pretty sure I haven’t mentioned where the trip is heading yet, but I might as well say where we’re going now instead of trying to hide the details for some future blog entry: Mom and I will be traveling to Thailand.
Writing this last paragraph, I’m already going back and forth about some details and word choices, which is pretty much the issue I always have to deal with when I’m writing blog entries and something I could avoid by recording myself with a webcam and posting that online instead. It might not look amazing—it might all be just one camera angle with no cuts or anything like that while I’m there—but hopefully, the amazing details spoken aloud will cover up that deficiency. If not, well, I’m really doing this mostly for myself anyway, so ptpbptptppbtptpbpt!!!
That’s my current plan: save myself a lot of time and effort by just recording videos talking about each day’s goings-on and that should suffice instead of trying to write a couple pages worth of material on any given day. I might do a little bit of editing, cutting and pasting and what not, but for the most part, I might be able to just go straight through for a couple minutes. If I’m lucky. And if I’m not lucky, it’ll still probably take less time than it takes to write and edit a blog entry.
Note that this has included very few details of things that have happened in the past. Not much in the way of stories, mostly just talking about plans for the future. I may have neglected to mention that the trip will last from October 23rd to November 13th, so I’ve got plenty of time between now and then to change said plans or to practice recording and editing video if that’s what I decide to do.
As a side note, it just struck me as funny that when you’re on TV or in movies, they always tell you not to look directly into the camera and you will get in trouble if it screws up a shot. (I was once an extra in a movie and the director got mad at me. The problem? The people he wanted me to look at were directly between me and the camera, so I was also staring straight into the lens. Oops…) Conversely, vlogging entails looking at the camera and directly at your audience. It’s contrary to everything I’ve ever been told doing work with video before, so it just feels a little odd.
But I digress. The point I’ve been making over many, many paragraphs is that if I record videos, I might delete one and record another if the first one sucks, but it shouldn’t take too long if I try to make them short. Blog entries? It’s currently 9:03, which means I’ve spent 47 minutes writing many, many paragraphs and not actually making a decision about anything. The question still remains: To vlog or not to vlog?
(Final time check after writing, editing, rewriting and reediting: 9:17. Sheesh…)