A custom video is a perfect way to celebrate a-year-in-the-life! You worked hard to capture the special times on film. But it is truly rewarding for the recipient to see their lives on the screen, filled with their favorite memories and accomplishments from the past yea.
While this gift takes some planning, it is also a rewarding experience for the 'planner'! Going through the past year - you will be amazed at everything you did, everything that has happened, some of which you probably have forgotten already! It's like capturing life in a time capsule. Well, video. And a yearly video also helps you organize your photos. Going through them and organizing them yearly is WAY more efficient then waiting 5 years and 1500 photos later to tackle that mountain.
Any type of video package would be appropriate for a birthday milestone. What is important is to keep this video in mind all year long when shooting photos and videos. What should you be capturing throughout the year? Besides the main events like holidays, trips, celebrations...here is a list of ideas to include in your video;
Of course you want to include photos of events, special moments, holidays, vacations...all of the big moments, but while you have your camera out, take some still shots of;
- School work & art projects
- 1st day; bus stop
- Favorite clothes and pajamas, hats
- Favorite toys of the year
In addition to photos, capture some short videos of;
- Laughter, giggling
- Reactions to gifts and surprises
- If they play sports, a clip of the beginning of the season and a clip at the end
- If they play an instrument, a clip of them practicing at the start of the year and then at the end of the year.
Be sure to document the movies they watched, books they read, favorite food and restaurants, favorite hobbies, quotes and a summary of the popular Christmas gifts. All of this information can be incorporated into a video and will really ignite some chuckles for years to come!
Music and sound can really stir emotion in any video. You can include sounds and songs that reflect the past year. Do they have a favorite song or artist they listened to? Did you catch a recording of their voice?
If you have the fortunate opportunity to plan this at the start of the year, I suggest trying for a theme. Is there an overriding theme for your recipient? Perhaps a favorite sport? Or music? Or movie? For example, my son was obsessed with superheroes! They. were. everywhere! So I made sure I had plenty of superhero pictures - whether he was playing with action figures, watching them on TV or wearing a special outfit. I took snapshots of his books and beloved Batman slippers (shown above). It was a superhero theme! (Not to mention birthday party!). Or, this year, now that my son is a bit older and growing out of toys (tissue, please), I am taking close-ups (like lip-hair-close!) photos of him munching into his favorite foods; ice cream, tacos, pizza. I'm also trying to get the environment into the shot - if the ice cream was taken at the beach, I try to incorporate that into the picture as well.
Above all else - make sure you include family members into the pictures and videos. It's nice to have the recipient showcased, but family members and friends are an important part of this person's life. Get them in while you have the opportunity!
Enjoy the gathering, the watching and the reminiscing.