For the typical audience member, editing is something that tends to go unnoticed. But this is exactly what should happen in most cases. Editing is the tool that helps a movie or video move smoothly from one part to the next. If you want the audience to forget they are watching a movie or video, then they should feel immersed. Choppy editing, or editing that doesn’t enhance the flow of the story, can be very distracting, and ultimately degrade the whole experience.

Some of the very basic editing tools can have the best effect. You could use straight cuts for an entire edit and that may be all you need! Nowadays this is a simple process using software in what is called non-linear editing systems. Linear editing is a thing of the past since we have become more digital, but it creates a nice visual for understanding just what editing is. Think of a physical film strip; an editor used to literally cut that to take out parts that didn’t enhance the story. We do the same thing digitally, but it’s much easier, especially since we have an undo button.

The basic cut connects two images or clips to create meaning and to move the story forward. In most videos and movies we see a cut every few seconds. This keeps our attention, since watching the same image for too long can feel boring. But timing between cuts is another very useful tool. A long take is a video clip that is longer than the typical few seconds duration, and keeps our focus on something happening in that clip. This can be used to create tension, or perhaps to make us feel like time is moving very slowly. On the other hand, keeping video clips short, so perhaps cutting every 1-2 seconds, can make a scene feel very fast, or like something very action-based is happening.

If you were editing for the first time, placing cuts and connecting video clips in various ways is a great exercise. Watch what happens when you change the length of the clips, or the amount of cuts in a scene. You can start to get a feel for the different emotions that can be conveyed through editing. Another great tip for first time editors is to use music. Music already creates some sort of feeling, which can enhance the type of edit you want to achieve. If it’s a sad scene, you’re likely to choose slow tempo music, and that tempo is a good baseline for where your cuts should be.

Once an editor has the basic cut down, and an understanding of timing, it can be fun to employ the other tools editing software allows. But at it’s most basic form, editing is all about the cut - so that should be mastered first.

NCTV is offering two free workshops to learn editing skills in the month of May. We will start with Basic Editing on Tuesday, May 2, and then Advanced Editing: Stylistic Cuts and Transitions on Tuesday, May 30. Both workshops begin at 6:30pm and you can sign up here, or just show up the day of!

AuthorJen Jacobs

Norfolk, MA may be a small town but the people have big ideas. Here at NCTV we are constantly amazed by the creativity residents bring to the station. Katy, Andrew, and I have been singing this latest production to ourselves non-stop, so we’re quite excited to share it with the world. We took some time to talk to Marissa Antosh, the talent of this video and Senior Youth Services Librarian of the Norfolk Public Library, to learn more about her and what led her to creating this.

What inspired you to create this video?
“I was captivated by the performance of Alexander Hamilton on the Grammys in February of 2016. I love musicals, especially historical ones (1776, Jesus Christ Superstar) and it was so unique. I did a Hamilton deep dive, watching all the interviews and listening to the soundtrack. I got to see the show in New York in January of 2017 and it lives up to all the hype and more.”

Did you write the lyrics yourself?
“Yes, except for the riff on the chorus is from Hamilton. There are also a few bits thrown in from Will Smith and Kanye West that I changed to fit my theme of being a librarian. I love wordplay and poetry, so it was a lot of fun to fit all the pieces together. I've never written a rap before.”

What do you do at the library (when you aren't rapping)?
“My position is Senior Youth Services Librarian. I keep an eye on all the goings-on related to kids and I primarily focus on elementary through high school students, planning programs, purchasing materials, visiting the schools, etc.”

What's your favorite part of the job?
“My undergrad degree is in English and fine art, so I like being able to put that to use. I get to be creative on a daily basis. I also love finding information for people and connecting them to things they want or need. Finally, connecting with kids and teens and (hopefully) nurturing a love of the library is a plus.”

What was the best part of creating this?
“Coming up with rhymes that fit was so fun. Rhyming ‘librarian’ with ‘Danerys Targaryen’ was a lightbulb moment. After that, I knew I had to see it through. It took a long time but it was a fun creative outlet. I also liked collaborating with one of my teens on some of the production design.”

What was the most challenging part of creating this?
“It was hard to get kids to be in the video. There are so many schedules to juggle and I tried several times to get a big group, but that didn't really work out. The kids we have in it did a great job, though.

Anything else you'd like to mention?
“Libraries are so much more than just buildings full of books, and everyone who works in a library brings something unique to the community. We have so much going on, so I encourage everyone to check out not only what we offer on the shelves, but digitally and our programming. Libraries need community support, so to quote my own song, ‘help us out, donate to your local libraries.’”

If you’re interested in creating your own videos, NCTV is here for you. As an NCTV member you can even borrow equipment (for free). We offer workshops for groups and individuals, and we’re always happy to help make your audio-visual projects a reality. Contact us, check out upcoming workshops, or stop by and say hello sometime.

A special thanks to Marissa the Librarian and everyone at the Norfolk Public Library - read more about the library and the services offered by visiting their website.

AuthorJen Jacobs

During one of the school’s half days this past week, NCTV took a trip to visit the School Age Child Care (SACC) program at the Freeman-Kennedy School! 

We started out with a short presentation about what NCTV is and what kind of stuff we offer to our community such as the opportunity for neighbors to share what is important to them as well as workshops and trainings. Almost all of the kids had heard of NCTV before which got us off to a great start! The talented skater in our favorite GIF even recognized herself on one of our slides which was a cool coincidence! 

After the short slideshow, we hooked up our camera to the big projector screen in the gym so everyone could see through the lens. Jen graciously acted as our test subject and directed us through some good and bad examples of framing up a shot. The kids did a great job pointing out what was wrong and helped us fix it for the best results. 

When our demo came to an end, the kids all got a chance (if they wanted to) to see themselves on the big screen and talk about the awesome SACC program, which Jen later turned into a sweet promo for the program! They all had wonderful things to say about SACC and the two most common responses were that SACC is a great place to meet new friends and how wonderful and caring the staff members are. What a fitting tribute to an awesome program!

We had such a great time with the kids and staff at SACC and can’t thank them enough for giving us the opportunity to share our passion with them! 

Take a look at the brand new video about SACC that this awesome group helped create: 

Click HERE for more information about SACC.

AuthorKaty Woodhams

Storytelling is an important part of all cultures. From early on humanity has been interested in documenting different aspects of life, using pictures, words, and in more recent history; photos, videos, and sound. We tell stories to share with others, to express a feeling, and sometimes just for pure entertainment. We enjoy traveling with a character through their experience, and we all tend to resonate with the character battling conflict, whether that conflict is a monster or the character’s own mind. Following a story in a narrative structure allows us to interpret and easily follow what we’re seeing.

To craft your own narrative film, you first must decide what story you want to tell. One thing to keep in mind while writing, is to write within the parameters and capabilities you will have for your film (e.g. your budget). You can write a scene about a monster attacking the city and destroying buildings, but perhaps you’ll want to consider how that is going to translate into visuals. While it can be fun to dream up extravagant action shots, sometimes it’s best to focus on a simpler story. A common structure to try that many writers use can be boiled down into a few points:

  • We meet the main character in their regular life.

  • The main character experiences a crisis.

  • The main character confronts the conflict (this is the climax of the story).

  • The main character finds a way to overcome/escape the conflict.

  • The main character returns to their regular life changed by the newfound experience/knowledge (resolution of the story).

Once the story is complete it’s time to transform that story into images. The most common approach to doing this is creating a storyboard. You can plan out the different shots using pictures that will correspond to the dialogue and action in your script/story. When you are planning your shots remember whatever the camera is seeing is what the audience will be focusing on. By framing different people and items you can tell the audience what is important in your shot. As an example: if your characters are discussing an object, you may want to show a close up of that object instead of just watching the characters talk about it, with video you have the ability to show and tell. As you become more aware of your story and framing your shots, you can find ways to enhance your story through subtle visual elements.

After the story is mapped out, and corresponding images are decided upon, you can get into the more specific elements. The lighting, coloring, and sound/music can all change the mood and feeling of your film. When something is happy, we usually have bright lighting, and when something is sad or scary we tend to go towards dark and shadowy lighting. The lighting can help indicate what the main character is feeling and give the audience insight.

Color can be subjective, but today we see blue and orange as common choices in filmmaking. The two colors are on opposite ends of the color wheel and each tends to represent opposite feelings; orange is bright and inviting, and blue creates a more desaturated look giving it a more bleak feel. These aren’t the only choices of course, the next time you watch a movie pay attention to what colors you see and how that matches the mood of what’s happening. Color theory is a topic that can be covered in great detail, choose your own palette to change the tone and mood of your film.

Sound and music can change the mood and tone as well. With various sounds you can create the feeling people are somewhere you didn’t really film - you could film in front of some trees and then add in rainforest sound effects to build an environment, for example. And most people are already very aware of soundtracks and scores in films; by adding music that conveys a certain emotion you can enhance what the characters are feeling and how that affects the audience’s emotions. Anything can seem sad with the right string instruments playing behind it

There are many other elements you can consider while composing your shots, and the more detailed you get the better your story can be understood. At its most basic, a narrative only needs to follow someone or something from beginning to end, but really exploring how we can use other visual and audial elements can make narrative filmmaking more effective. While there are many guidelines and templates out there, don’t be afraid to take your own approach. Telling stories is a tradition that existed long ago, and will continue long into the future. Stories can open our eyes to alternate perspectives, and allow us to discover more about the world and more about ourselves. So, start filming and share your story too.

AuthorJen Jacobs

It’s that time again! NCTV’s Annual Meeting is coming up on April 10th at 6pm. The meeting will be hosted at our studio at 158 Main Street in Norfolk.

What is the annual meeting?
The annual meeting is a meeting of the NCTV membership that happens every April. At this meeting, members can vote in board members to represent them, changes to the bylaws can be made, volunteer of the year is announced, a wrap-up of the past year is presented, and a look forward to what is soon to come is revealed!

Why should I go to the annual meeting?
NCTV exists as an organization solely for the residents of Norfolk (and now surrounding towns!). Your voice and your vote are important to the organization and its members! 

Who is able to attend the annual meeting?
Anyone is welcome to attend! Members 18 years and older are encouraged to vote and all others are welcome to observe. 

Where can I find an agenda and supporting documents for this meeting?
Right here! This post will be updated as information becomes available. At a minimum, the agenda, secretary’s report, treasurer’s report, and proposed bylaw changes will be available before the meeting and linked in this blog post. In addition, we’ll have printed copies available on the day of the meeting.

UPDATE: Click HERE for the Annual Meeting 2017 Packet! The ED update will be provided at the meeting.

Please contact Katy ( if you have any additional questions. Hope to see you there!

AuthorKaty Woodhams

With the roller-coaster of 2016 coming to a close, we here at NCTV would like to take a moment to reminisce about the changes that have taken place which will hopefully make for a brighter future.  2016 was definitely a year of hard work with payoff that was worth it.  Let's take a look at some of the ways how:

NCTV supported and guided two senior scout projects including: Caitlin Donohue's Healthy Eating Project, which earned her a Girl Scout Gold Award AND Mike Anzivino's Veterans History Project, which earned him his Eagle Scout Rank!

We've covered a series of important and informative community meetings including the Kingsbury Pond Community Discussion, the MBTA Community Meeting, the Boston VS Bullies presentation, the "Understanding Your Dog" canine behavior seminar, the People Over Pipelines March, the Norfolk Pipeline Informational Meeting,

The station added another camp to its Norfolk Recreation Department roster: the NCTV Comedy Skit Program!  If you're interested in signing up here, there's one coveted spot left.

We released a newer and more user-friendly version of our home page navigation bar!

The station had a new Volunteer Of The Year plaque made to create room for future philanthropic stars!  Donna L. Jones was awarded our 2016 Volunteer Of The Year.

On a special episode of Our Town, Production Coordinator Chris Lawn interviewed H. Olive Day teacher (whom Chris had as a teacher at the Freeman-Centennial school 20 years prior!) Mrs. Bonnie O'Connell about her retirement.  NCTV wishes her the absolute best in all her future endeavors!

NCTV covered the results of the May 3, 2016 Norfolk Town Election!

We brought forth musical entertainment over the summer with our coverage of the 2016 Norfolk Town Hill Summer Concert Series with the help of Donna L. Jones, James McGhee, Amelia Schneider, and Emily Magee.

On another special episode of Our Town, host Jill Hindley-Lawrence welcomed guest Detective Michelle Palladini of the Norfolk Police Department who discussed the Leadership Empowerment Awareness Protection Program, an organization she founded which offers a variety of programs aimed at effectively connecting the police, schools, and parents as a pathway to student safety and success.

Bill Crane celebrated his 50th episode of The Bill Crane Report and Liz Davey celebrated her 50th Episode of A Walk in the Garden!  Congratulations guys!

The station hosted two stop-motion animation programs over the summer which resulted and the brilliant and entertaining films "Silver El Fuego" and "The Most Cliché Movie That's Under A Minute."

Norma Shruhan retired as the Director of the Norfolk Senior Center, and Chris Lawn filmed her final episode of Silver Set Gazette with co-host Richard Conors, a Norma's Memory Show edition of Silver Set Gazette, and a video chronicling Norma Shruhan's Last Day.

The staff attended the 2016 Alliance For Community Media National Conference in Boston.

NCTV celebrated Media Literacy Month 2016 in September, and we held our 2nd Annual Public Service Announcement Day, which welcomed the Garden Club Of Norfolk, the Norfolk Public Library, Town Administrator Jack Hathaway, the Happy Feat Fundraiser, the Friends Of The Norfolk Council On Aging, Stony Brook Wildlife Sanctuary, the Good Tymes Banjo Band, and the New England Banjo Orchestra into the studio!

The station welcomed guest host Marie A. Wyman, host of the Northborough Cable Access TV program Close To Home with Marie Wyman, into the studio to film the special Hometown Hero: Kevin Brady, a gripping interview with a local Norfolk Fire Department paramedic and firefighter.

We hosted our 2nd Annual Media Literacy Week, sponsored by NAMLE, and participated in the first ever Annual Community Media Day, created by BRIC!

Member and volunteer Chris Labonte produced a series of delightful music videos, several short thrillers, and his first ever stop-motion animation film

A ceremony unveiling an honorary bench dedicated to the loving memory of former NCTV Board President Jack McFeeley was held in October to pay tribute to this wonderful human being who contributed a lot to the station and the town!

The staff painted the walls of the station our signature purple color and created a fun time-lapse video to commemorate the occasion.

Marissa Antosh colorfully described what she REALLY does at the Norfolk Public Library in her inspiring rap video "Marissa The Librarian"!

Anne Marie Battistone used our new iPad to interactively showcase the beautifully illustrated stories "The Goblins' Christmas," "The Mouse and the Christmas Cake," and "King Winter" on a special Christmas edition of Stories To Explore.

NCTV is officially nixing the beloved "NCTV INSIDE" and "TECH YOURSELF" blog series' in favor of a more updated style(s) of blog(s) which will be presented in 2017!

Production Coordinator Chris Lawn formally announced his end-of-the-year departure from NCTV in the form of a loving goodbye letter to everyone connected to the station.  Stay tuned in the new year to find out who is excellent replacement will be!

AuthorChris Lawn

THIS WEEK AT NCTV is Norfolk Community Television's blog recapping each week and highlighting upcoming workshops, events, premieres, and volunteer opportunities!  Check in every Friday starting at 4 PM for the latest scoop about the station, its members, the schools, and the town.


-NCTV member and volunteer Beef Mazzola began the editing process on The 2016 Norfolk Santa Parade, filmed by member Donna L. Jones.

-Christina Gleason headed to the Freeman-Kennedy School to capture the beautiful music performed at the 2016 Freeman-Kennedy Chorus Winter Concert.

-Executive Director Katy Woodhams showcased the holiday cheer of all the young students at the 2016 H. Olive Day Holiday Sing-A-Long!

-Since today is his last day, NCTV hosted A Farewell Party for Production Coordinator Chris Lawn on Thursday evening before he heads out west into the sunset for a new position and fun adventures!


-NCTV will be closed for the holidays this upcoming week from Monday, December 26, 2016 through Monday, January 2, 2016, and the station will re-open Tuesday, January 3, 2017 at 12 PM to resume normal hours.

-NCTV will be closed on Monday, January 16, 2017 in honor of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day.







AuthorChris Lawn