December NPPA Monthly Multimedia Contest results are in…

The cream rose to the top this month. I can tell that a lot time was invested in each of the winning productions. I judged every category, evaluating every one of the videos and slideshows. What I saw was a lot is unevenness in the entries. Some looked like first time attempts at multimedia, while others looked like the producers had really mastered the fundamentals and beyond. That last category was a small number though. Most newspaper videographers still have a long way to go in the level of basic storytelling. Issues like uneven audio, pacing, defining the story early were lacking in many if the entries.

With videos, sequencing still seems to be an issue with many. I think this stems mostly from a lack of formal training. If you are doing a lot of panning and zooming in your videos, then you need to stop (please). Shoot wide, medium and tight shots of everything that you would have included in a pan shot, and then edit those together. Every video workshop I’ve attended has told attendees to zoom with their feet instead of with their finger. Good advise. It is important to understand that you can’t break the rules until you’ve master them.

 My favorites for the month…


1.      Ian’s Place. Many people picked on this newspaper’s attempt to attempt a video storytelling. See this post over at I bow to their prowess now. everything about this story is perfect. This is an example of how newspaper videographers can craft a story that is totally different than anything TV news would attempt.

2.  Raven and Jason. I first met Canadian photojournalist Rafal Gerszak at the Western Canadian Photojournalism Conference last winter. At that time he was just getting interested in doing multimedia. Wow, great job out of the gate Rafal with this mini doc on two drug addicts. What sets this video above so many about this subject is the empathy Rafal builds for his subjects.

3.    Marlboro Man. Another great Media Storm project. This one has a compelling narrative with strong photography. What is missing is a layer of natural sounds weaved between and under the narration.


      Reminder! NPPA members, you can enter your multimedia shows produced in Dec. in the Jan contest. You have until the 15th before the contest transitions into judging mode. At which time you should log back in and help judge.