Thursday, February 18, 2021

Some of my Favorites - DIY Common Craft Videos

This week is school vacation week here in Maine. I usually take this week off to go ice fishing on Moosehead Lake. Unfortunately, that's not happening this year. Instead I'll be "staycationing" and working on some projects around home. While on my staycation I'll be sharing some of my personal favorite tools and tips.

Nearly fourteen years ago Common Craft introduced the world to a new style and new way of producing explantory videos. This style uses simple cutouts on a blank white background and a well-scripted voice-over.

Early Common Craft videos like this one about wikis used actual paper cutouts that were moved by a hand that you see in the video. Later ones like this one about podcasting use digital cutouts and you don't see a hand in the video. Both versions are effective in communicating big ideas.

You can make your own Common Craft-style videos by using slides and a screencasting tool. In this video I demonstrate how to use Google Slides and Screencastify to make Common Craft-style videos, but you could accomplish the same thing with PowerPoint and Screencast-o-matic.

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