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Our Japan trip in 10 minutes!

June 23, 2011

in Blog,Japan,Travel

Some of you may know that Derek and I went to Japan in November last year. We met wonderful people, ate delicious food, drank every night, saw amazing stuff, visited incredible places, and oh yeah, Derek proposed to me in front of the Laputa robot statue at the Ghibli Museum. It was the most unforgettable two weeks of our life.

On my blog I wrote a post or two for each day of our trip, and I tried to put as many as photos I could. It was more like my journal to remember every moment of my trip. However, we have over 4000 photos, and even though I have them on my flickr, I wanted to have something other than a bunch of sets on my flickr. So I asked Derek, who’s a video editor, to make a slide show, but not a regular slide show. I wanted the slide show to be “flashback of memories.”

I picked the soundtrack from Okami because well, I LOVE Okami. I played Okamiden on the airplane to and from Japan. Also I thought the soundtrack would be easier to edit to the length we needed. That’s pretty much what I did for this video, picking music. So let me have Derek explain something more about how the video was made.

Before our trip to Japan I saw this video on Vimeo called This is Japan! by Eric Testroete which is a photo montage of his trip to Japan with his girlfriend. We both loved the video and thought it was a great idea because great as pictures are, not everyone wants to click through every single photo of someone else’s trip especially if there are thousands and thousands of them.

I started by looking at the original video to get a sense of how long each photo was and then took all of our photos and put them into a Final Cut Pro project so that they’d be the same length. Then I dropped them all into a sequence. I think it was over 12 minutes long (at length of 4 frames each at 24 fps) The other problem was that we have a lot of photos that are vertical, so I had to go through and properly crop them to fit the widescreen window.

A zoomed out view of my timeline. That bar on the top right is six photos.

What I did next was go through the entire sequence and eliminate photos I thought didn’t work either because they were redundant or didn’t read when flashing onto the screen. What I found was it was best to group similar photos together because otherwise your eyes kind of zone out since they can’t focus on anything. So there are very few solitary photos that don’t match something next to them. The exception being faces because humans recognize faces very quickly. Anna had a lot of photos similar to mine so in some cases I used all of them to make it look a little like stop motion animation.

A zoomed in view of the beginning.

A zoomed in view of the beginning.

After I finished going through the photos I went through the Okami soundtrack looking for music that was appropriate to the feel of our trip. The first song “Competition with Idaten” is when Amaterasu is racing Idaten on the beach so it’s very exciting, and then I transitioned to the song that plays when you bloom the Guardian Saplings because the Ghibli Museum deserved a big and epic sounding theme. The rest of the songs have a similar feel which is just a pleasant nature-y feel to them which I thought appropriate to our trip.

So that’s pretty much it, I hope that you enjoy watching the video! (Now back to Anna)

This “flashback” is still pretty long (10 minutes) so it might not be for everyone, but I wanted this to be made for us. I absolutely love the video. Each flash of image reminds me of a tiny detail about the moment the photo was taken and made me even teary remembering it. So I thought I’d share it with you anyway.

For the people who say “This slide show is making me dizzy!”, I have a collection on my flickr for almost all the photos in it. (but not all of them)

Japan 2010: The Most Awesome Trip EVER! collection on my flickr

You can also read blog posts about our most awesome trip ever too!

Japan 2010: Day 00~ 01 (on the airplane and Tokyo)

Japan 2010: Day 02 (Shinjuku, Shibuya, Harajuku)

Japan 2010: Day 03 (Ghibli museum: Got engaged!)

Japan 2010: Day 04 part 1 (Tsukiji fish market)

Japan 2010: Day 04 part 2 (Ghibli museum, Nakano Broadway, Asakusa)

Japan 2010: Day 05 part 1 (The real Totoro cream puffs)

Japan 2010: Day 05 part 2 (Shin Yokohama: Ramen museum)

Japan 2010: Day 06 (from Tokyo to Hakata to Arao)

Japan 2010: Day 07 (Kagoshima)

Japan 2010: Day 08 part 1 (Yakushima)

Japan 2010: Day 08 part 2 (Yakushima)

Japan 2010: Day 09 part 1 (Yakushima)

Japan 2010: Day 09 part 2 (Yakushima)

Japan 2010: Day 09 part 3 (Yakushima)

Japan 2010: Day 10 part 1 (Yakushima)

Japan 2010: Day 10 part 2 (Yakushima)

Japan 2010: Day 11 (Nara)

Japan 2010: Day 12 part 1 (Kyoto: Inari Shrine, Golden Pavilion)

Japan 2010: Day 12 part 2 (Higashi Shizuoka: Gundam)

Japan 2010: Day 13 (Tokyo)

Japan 2010: Day 14 (Leaving Japan)

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{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

AmberNo Gravatar June 23, 2011 at 2:38 pm

The montage was wonderful! Japan looked amazing, the city, the building, the Ghibli museum, the FOOD. I want to go now. :) Thanks for sharing.

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JoelNo Gravatar June 23, 2011 at 6:28 pm

You just made me want to visit Japan so badly again!

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YvaineNo Gravatar July 19, 2011 at 12:51 pm

This is so, so wonderful, you two! I’ve always really liked the stuff on your site but I think this has been one of my most favorite posts so far. Good work on the video to the both of you and thanks for putting in the effort to make such an inspiring image of something unforgettable. Amazing!

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