My Mother’s memory is fading. Will that be an issue?
Very few of us remember everything but, often, when the right questions asked, memories can resurface. For that reason most of my questions are open ended and designed to bring a person back to a specific time and place i.e. “describe your neighborhood growing up”. While I may not necessarily be looking for a description of the neighborhood, the process of remembering often triggers stories from their childhood that may otherwise have been lost.
My grandson dabbles in video. Why should I use you?
Having a family member capture your story is ideal but few are able to commit the time needed to actually complete the project, which can run anywhere from 50 to 150 hours. They may also lack the equipment, technical knowledge and/or interview skills needed to produce a quality documentary.
What should I wear for my interview?
Something comfortable. Just avoid tops that have busy patterns or are all white. I typically frame the film from the waist up so feel free to wear your craziest socks if you desire.
Can I be in the room when my father is interviewed?
Absolutely – although I generally recommend against it as I find people are more reserved and their stories more canned when they know a family member is listening. Often, a family member sits in a room nearby where they can still hear the conversation but aren’t visually present. Or they run errands and check in every so often if they feel the need.
What questions do you ask?
While I do have a list a questions, most are open ended so there are many follow-up questions based solely on a person’s response. I also encourage families to let me know if there are specific questions they would like asked, topics I should focus on or even areas I should avoid.
Do you do genealogy research?
No. But I can usually give you names of genealogists in your area.
How long does it take?
It all depends on the complexity of the project, my workload at the time and your availability to review. A fully edited Video Biography generally takes 6 to 8 weeks and involves about 100 hours of editing. A Family History Video, depending on the number of people to be interviewed and other factors mentioned, closer to 8-10 weeks. Rush orders are possible.
Are you narrating throughout the movie?
No. I edit in a way where a loved one seems to be talking directly to the family. Stories and timelines flow smoothly by using a variety of editing techniques along with the addition of titles, photos and special effects. I feel removing my voice creates a much more personal viewing experience for the family.
Our family has a few ‘skeletons’ in our closet that we would prefer stay there. How do you handle those if they come out in an interview?
Every family has a few skeletons and while some don’t mind them being part of family lore, others do. Once I start the editing process, you will be able to view the movie online and provide feedback. I’ll simply edit out any information you would like to keep private.
My grandfather is in Iowa and you are in Chicago. Do you travel?
Yes, but I always encourage families to look for a Family Documentary producer in their area first as travel expenses are additional.
Do you have a question? Contact me!
Family Line Video, LLC
Family Documentary Production