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Hillman Curtis on Creating Short Films for the Web

4.4 out of 5 stars 14 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0321278913
ISBN-10: 0321278917
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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Hillman Curtis is the principal and chief creative officer of hillmancurtis inc., an all-medium digital design firm in New York. An award-winning designer and a former art director at Macromedia, Hillman has been hugely influential in expanding the boundaries of Web and motion graphic design. He is also the author of the best-selling Flash Web Design and MTIV.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 232 pages
  • Publisher: New Riders (September 10, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0321278917
  • ISBN-13: 978-0321278913
  • Product Dimensions: 7.5 x 0.5 x 9.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,589,519 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Not so much as a "How to do" book, but more of a collection of a great designer's struggles with how to follow your heart and chase after your destiny.

Acclaimed Web Designer Hillman Curtis book provides us access to his frustrations within his successful career and how he is re-inventing himself as a digital video director/producer.

As all of us in the creative fields have reached a plateau where we feel we are simply re-creating and not creating... Hillman gives an honest and refreshing account of how he hit his plateau and how he has branched into a new design field, re-energizing his career and more importantly... his life.

Giving exact specifications on which camera, editing software, lighting rigs, etc... Hillman provides a great start for us beginners venturing into the digital video realm for the first time.

Unlike his previous Flash books which provide detail, step by step accounts on how to do various projects (all of which are now outdated - admitted by Hillman), this book is more of an inspiration on why to stretch yourself when you are creatively stagnant.

Inspired enough to write this review... inspired enough to grab a DV camera, shoot some film and see what happens.

If inspiring you into action isn't the benchmark of a great book... i don't know what is.

Thanks Hillman.
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Format: Paperback
For anyone wanting to create a short film, web or otherwise, this book is a great starting point. Curtis takes you through some of his works and offers insights into projects - success and not so successful. The candid approach to the work runs more like a one man show of dialogue. Do not expect a How To format. Curtis is all about letting you in on his experiences.

Curtis these days is trying to re-invent himself from a designer to a digital video producer from a web designer (an a darn good one at that). Being one who is starting to dabble in video after I picked up my dvd palmcam last year - I appreciated being shown the path by one who has been there before.
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Format: Paperback
turns out to be way more valuable than any how to book. This book doesn't help me dial in final cut pro settings, but it does help me focus on ways to capture the essence of my subject so that I want to dial in final cut pro settings. In a way this book is sort of old fashioned in that it focuses on the human need to communicate and not the steps nessisary to make a computer work.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
OPINE:

This is an insightful book in many regards. If you are looking for step by step instructions or ideas on how to set up Flash Video it says it all in about 1/6 of the back of the book. It tell not so much as how but why. Some may be surprised that he reads the Bible and lives in Grass Valley CA. part time.

I love the books interviews, insights, mistakes, and success stories. Very candid.

IN SUM:

Great! You will see how simple the process is as well as learn why you should bother. You video guys heads up this is the way to go. Get Flash 8 Pro!

!
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This is a very lightweight read regarding the process of production. It's more of a personal journal, blog-style account than anything substantial a reader can learn from. However, it does have merit in that respect. So, if you're a newbie and want to get your feet wet, this may be a book you'd like to read to get yourself into those baby steps.

It's a bit refreshing to read a guy's perspective when it's not full of posturing and bravado. The author has a more self-nurturing tone and approaches the work with humility, which again isn't bad for a newbie.

The bottom line is: don't expect anything that is going to turn you into a video producer overnight. Admittedly, it's a hard profession, technical, requiring time, money and connections, and is very competitive. This is not a strong technical manual.

I have a BA in Film/Video and make educational videos/multimedia for a living, so my perspective is a bit skewed.
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Format: Paperback
This is a very good book. I didn't think too highly of Hillman before this book, and was under the impression that he was sort of a hack, and happened to be in the right place at the right time for much of his design career.

But I bought this book because I wanted to give him a chance, and I am glad I did. He is able to point out his successes as well as his mistakes, and graciously tries to offer his own humble insights to his process. It is a valuable book for designers, and will look into more of his work.
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This book helped me to understand better how to stage interviews and setup lighting for different types of videos. It's great for the web, or any other mini-documentary or minor film. The outline of what types of cameras, lighting, settings, and extras needed to make it work are just what I was looking for, and his tips got me thinking on ways to make my filming look its best. I would highly recommend if you're a new, or are fairly new at filming.
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