I have been religiously visiting the site Man’s Guide To Love since a resourceful acquaintance, Breanna Hughes, Tweeted about it. First, it was quite shocking to see such a steadily increasing documentation of love advice given by men. Men of all ages, backgrounds and sexual orientation are offering their advice on how to nurture and reproduce love. The MGL team are asking men all over the U.S.A. “If If you had one piece of advice that you’d give another man about love, what would it be?” There are countless self-help books, films, and advice columns on love; the fact that MGL are seeking answers to their universal question through the format of viral video is extremely revealing of the innate qualities that video possess –it is both personal and accessible. These two aspects of video help to create the project’s eidetic quality; the men are generally framed through a tight close-up – visually creating an intimacy – and are speaking directly into the camera, which also creates an intimacy between the speaker and the viewer. What’s a better format to talk about something as intimate as “Love” than video? Not to mention, the videos are quiet brief and act as video snacks; consequently, viewers can view as many as they’d like.
There are a lot of videos (like this one) that are extremely sincere and insightful:
And then there are some that are a tad off putting –but to each his own right?
Although the content and the idea behind MGL is a vital part to its success (in my opinion), the way a video is shot and the tool(s) that are used is just as important. It is apparent that the MGL advice snippets are shot with a Digital SLR*, it has a glossy look and its shallow focus allows the individuals to come to the foreground, creating the intimacy and physical presence previously discussed. Today, there was a lot of buzz created about the Canon 5D Mark II; the Prime Time TV show [H]ouse (the finale) was filmed entirely using this DSLR. The producing director, Greg Yaitanes, justified this decision to use the DSLR because it gave him “ease of use in tight spaces” (PetaPixel.com). According to Greg Yaitenes, cameras such as the Canon 5D Mark II are the way of the future in production because of their superior usability without having to forfeit HD picture quality.
Is video the way of the future? Are we going to see an increase in viral video as opposed to the written word? Most importantly, what does this mean for future film and TV productions?
*MGL has confirmed that their footage is shot mainly on Canon 5D and Canon 7D.
Flickr Image courtesy of Luna Park.