Tuesday, July 30, 2013

This Month in My Scrap Room | July 2013

This Month in My Scrap Room is based a regular series of posts by Sue Althouse, who graciously allowed me to use her idea on my own blog. Each month you'll find me documenting the little (and big) things that I'm working on to make my scrapbooking space more efficient so I can spend less time looking for things and more time playing with paper!

Most of the changes in my scrap room this month are thanks to Darren, who installed and built some custom pieces to make it easier for me to shoot videos. And while I know that filming videos isn't exactly related to the scrapbooking process itself, it's something I have to do on a semi-regular basis, so these changes make it faster for me to get through the video setup part and on to the actual scrapping.

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First, my lighting softboxes got ceiling mounted! This was a big deal for me since they were previously on tripods that I was continually tripping over. It turned out that the perfect place to set them up for shooting was also directly in my walking path in two areas of my scrap space, and having them in the way made me cranky. Cranky + trying to shoot videos is not a pretty combination, so I'm happy to have them overhead now!

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The mounts were built using about $10 worth of plumbing supplies from Home Depot and a little solder to hold it all together. The cords kind of hang down randomly in the middle of the room right now, but Darren has something in mind to fix that down the road. For now, it's awesome!

The second change to my video setup is the camera + mount.

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Previously I'd been filming on my iPhone using quickly thrown together mount that Darren built for me last fall, but then my iPhone's memory started to get filled up with apps and music. I had a choice between continually pausing shooting to clear off the iPhone memory (a pain), upgrading to a new iPhone with larger storage (or buying an iPod Touch to film on), or using a different type of video camera altogether. I wavered back and forth between those last two options for a couple of months before finding a factory refurbished Nikon D5100 for a steal at Cameta Camera, and I decided that a DSLR capable of HD video for the same price as an iPod Touch was a great buy and went that route. It's taken a little getting used to since the D5100 works a little differently than my iPhone in terms of setting the exposure and the autofocus system, but we've finally come to an understanding, and it's been a great little camera to use!

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The camera mount is quite the piece of engineering, and Darren did a great job on it! We'll be making one change to it before too long, though (and I'll probably paint it at some point, too). Right now the camera is attached to the center pole of my tripod, but I'd like to reassemble my tripod soon so I'll be using a monopod in the mount instead. It's here in the scrap room and ready to use, but I was waiting for Darren to get back from his trip to South Africa last week to install it.

Oh, and one other fun addition to the video setup? A new microphone!

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When I switched away from using my iPhone, I also switched over from using the iPhone's headphones + mic for filming to a Blue Yeti microphone, and I love everything about it. The sound is awesome, and I think it looks pretty cool, too.

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One last thing I did in my scrap room this month was to put about 40 layouts into albums! These had been laying in a pile on the copy stand, and I had to move them every time I needed to photograph a new page. I finally sat down one day, sorted them all out by year (I don't scrap chronologically, but I do file my layouts that way), and then slipped them into the proper places in their albums. It's nice to have that job done, and I'm going to try to not let them pile up like that again.

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That's it for the changes in my scrap room this month! The next few weeks are busy scrapping-wise, and I'd much rather scrap than organize, so August's changes may be a bit light. We'll see how it goes, though- if something in my current storage system starts to really bug me I might just have to stop and fix it!

Note: I've drawn a winner for last week's Two Peas giveaway! Congrats to Kelly O! Please check this post for details on getting in touch with me to claim your prize.