Wednesday, November 25, 2009

<<< 2009 - An Up-Down Year !! >>>

So as we approach the final month of 2009, it is time to look back over the past year and take stock of what has occurred. From a personal perspective, my life has been fair to middling. I have been quite busy with my work. I feel a little disappointed that I did not achieve all of my goal this year. I had intended to make more video lessons, sadly due to the fact that I make these lessons all by myself, this task is not an easy one. In the early days I could film and edit a lesson in a week, but these days, because of the very nature of the videos and the techniques I use to make them, they now take much longer to produce. There are various reasons for this. As I said just, the filming is much more complicated and due to the fact that they are made in my house means that there is a great deal of setting up involved before any filming can start. Filming can take up to five days to complete and sometimes there is a break between shoots, of up to a week. I also find these days that I'm more willing to re-shoot parts of a lesson I'm unhappy with. This happened during the making of lessons 51 and 52. In fact I was so unhappy with how lesson 52 was going that I actually thought seriously of scrapping the whole project. Something I have never done before.

My plan this year was to find a place to film my lessons in. My first thought was to use a small office space. I thought that there would be somewhere I could rent and set up my studio permanently. However the costs involved here would have been sky-high. My new option is to move into a proper studio, which will give me more space to move in and will also allow me to have a permanent base from which to work. So I have replaced the office idea with the purpose built property proposal. This will mean that I will have to structure my work more carefully and try to make a real living out of my work. It is strange how my teaching work and my interest in video making has combined is this way. What I need to do now it make it pay.

As you all know my video lessons are posted for free and this will continue in the future. My aim is to keep this going, as I want as many people as possible, in as many countries as possible to have the chance to practice their English....for free!

So how to make something for free and make a living? This is a tough question and not one I have a definite answer to. So I'm hoping that by expanding what I do, I can earn enough to run a studio, with all the facilities needed to carry on making the lessons, and make them more interesting and vivid. I have already taken on private video making work and this was a good experience for me as it gave me the chance to expand my skills and earn a little cash. I was lucky enough to be asked to film a couple of amateur stage performances, which were both warmly commented on by those who watched them on DVD.

Many people have asked if there are any DVD's available of my lessons. At this time the answer is no. But in the future, if there is a demand for it, I may issue a Misterduncan DVD. We will see what happens. So as you can see, my aims are high, but the same problems exist as before. How to pay for it? I'm not the sort of person who desires wealth or riches. My one and only concern is to be able to do what I do well enough to help others, while being able to keep my belly full for a day!

So my resolution and plan for 2010? Of course I will be making more video lessons, plus I will be launching a new channel in January. This will still be aimed at those who are learning English, but there will be something extra special added to it. I will reveal more as the time draws nearer. I should be doing some more private video work next year too. One project is already in its early stages. Also hopefully next year I can find a suitable home for Hat For Rent Productions, which will allow me to produce more videos at a steady rate. We will see what happens.

My next project will be to replace lesson 6, which will be done in December. Right now I'm planning my Christmas message video. This should take a couple of weeks to make.

Before I finish today...I would like to say a special hello to all my new followers here at Blogger. I'm amazed that so many people are interested in my ramblings, but I do appreciate your joining me here....very much!

Till next time... Ta-ta for now!




buscalia7777 said...

Wow!!! What a look to the year.

Mr. Duncan, I think that goals are well done. But for a watcher-student as I, perhaps is more important the lessons'content than its film quality.

Your personality, interpreting, and screenplay fill completly the time.

I don't see your videos for more video and/or dubbing effects or super stereo quality. That's good, of course, but not the main.

At home, we saw, see and will see your lessons for your ability for teach.

If the new film technics are so hard that are requiring too much effort for each espisode, then you can put less technical requirements and compensate with more content.

On the other hand, the economic goals are absolutely necessary in order to live as person and keep up the project. Therefore, perhaps were a good idea to sell some value add (as the DVD) or merchandising (;-D). I'm sure that this would have a very well received by us, and help to expand the channel.

A dedicated studio is the perfect solution, but the question would be "If I can't afford both, What's more important, content or quality?"

Impatience corrodes me to watch the next year channel and enjoy it.

But no matter what you decide and whatever happens... Remember, you has made a great job since today.

Good luck for the new year and cheers, Mr. Duncan

PD: Made it easy and powerful for you.

sera_end2009 said...

thanks Mr duncan, your videos help so much people in the word

David Bailey said...

Great Work Duncan! I am learning how to make videos too...but they aren't as good as yours. ;)

nosilentlamb said...

Hi, MR Duncan, you must hear of an saying like: one is likely to feel desolate if he is outstanding or in a straight way to say that it is extremely cold at higher altitudes.
However, you should feel happy and gratified to possess so many faithful
fans, like me:), who are supporting what you are doing and what you will be doing. I am so happy to hear your next new plan in the next year. Best wishes and luck to you from China!

cesar said...

Thank you Misterduncan for your lessons, but I have to make a little criticism.
The question about the hen and the egg, is not a paradox!(lesson thirty three, questions and answers)
The dinosaurs were born from eggs a lot of time before the first hen, so the secuence was:
First:The predecessor hen put a egg.
Second:The first hen is born!!!

Greetins from Buckler´s hard in the new forest, I´m a Spanish among horses!!

Thank you a lot again !!!!!

Saving Schools said...

Dear MisterDuncan, I wish you well in financing your lessons, with grants, dvd sales, etc.

One of my friends suggested that you might experiment with your INTROS. Have you considered shortening the OK/Happy questions, maybe just post them on the screen, rather than speak them?

Also, I noticed on one early lesson that you added questions at the end. Have you considered adding questions to new lessons?
Just a thought. BestWishes/Harry in Rochester NY

Cristina said...

Hi Misterduncan!
I have watched all your lessons, most for the second time, and I wondered: is it possible for you adding a button or something, so that one can choose the different options "subtitles" or "no subtitles"?
It would be useful in order to improve listening comprehension.
Anyway, good luck for your plans!

Rodrigo (From Chile) said...

"I'm not the sort of person who desires wealth or riches. My one and only concern is to be able to do what I do well enough to help others, while being able to keep my belly full for a day!" I think the same. I also think that what you're doing it's simply awesome.

A future teacher.

Ruben said...

Your videos are better every day in quality and effects ; but if this is a problem i think most of viewers prefer the content: I dont care if the videos are more simple in the future as long as your teaching techniques are as good as they are now.

Congrats from Spain and thanks for your videos!!