Looking Through The Lens of Video Productions


Photo by Samantha Martinez

Jasmine Iskades films and directs actor Haley Reay

Samantha Martinez

Lights, Camera, Action! The process of creating a short film, a comical video, or even a high production movie takes skill, it also takes hard work. The students of video productions are familiar with this process. 

The class contains three levels: beginning, intermediate, and advanced. During the first year of video, one is expected to learn the different types of angles to capture a desire moment while also acquiring the knowledge of basic editing and how to use a camera. The class operates with varying roles: editors, actors, directors etc. One can learn all about the procedure in Sultana’s very own video productions. 

Video productions is taught by Mr. Brown, who has been teaching the class for 24 years, but 15 at Sultana. Brown states, “video productions, for me, started out as teaching to gifted kids when I taught sixth grade. I really enjoyed it; I loved the creativity of it. I went to several tapings down in Hollywood Friends and Home Improvement being among them. What I noticed is that everyone who was on set was happy. You kind of got the feeling that they would have done it for free.  They just enjoyed the process and it was during one of those moments at the tapings and working with gifted kids that I said I want to do that full time.”  And the rest is history.

Under Mr. Brown’s guidance, students learn various skills such as editing, pre-production, production, sound design, and color. Students will also acquire the knowledge of different shot types and video illusions. In the upper divisions of video productions, students will learn how to shoot a music video while also partaking in visual effects. The visual effects include how to do advanced composition for the green screen.

However, according to Mr. Brown the number one skill learned in video productions is not what you think.  Brown states that the skill is “time management. I think that’s the biggest. I think everything success or failure ultimately comes down to how you manage your time.”

As a student progresses to intermediate, they will begin to have an increase in creative freedom, but also be introduced to animation with an enhancement of editing skills techniques.

When students decide to move onto advanced video, they will utilize the knowledge one has accumulated over the years and begin to have access to high-end equipment, but also intensify the creative freedom aspect of the class. Senior Coby Hatfield said, “So, it’s always a difficult task managing time while also trying to be an artist with your projects and stuff, but learning to mend your creative talents with physical limitations is a great way to practice you know any life skill really.”

Every year, the district holds the Ican film festival which is K-12 and staff. The festival has four categories which are music videos, commercials, instructional videos, and short films which can be chosen from. According to Junior Haley Reay, she expressed, “The Ican film fest is a real challenge. It’s fun to attempt and work on but, when things don’t work out the way you want it to, it can be very stressful.”

If one is an upperclassman one probably has heard of the wake-up which video productions used to do. The wake-up consisted of little short clips, informational clips, and interviews from people, anything about the school. However, discrepancies started to transpire like having a broken wire that used to broadcast the video across campus, Phillips stressed, “The wake-up, it’s really sad what happened to the wake-up because it would still be a thing if people actually watched it. What was happening is teachers weren’t playing the video and then kids they don’t check their emails really that much and so the amount of watches and views we were getting on the wake-up, it wasn’t worth our time.”

However, Hatfield expressed some ideas about the wake-up, “So we are thinking about branching out to podcasts, maybe an app like Tik Tok, and youtube.”

Video Production is made up of students that have expressed that the class is “rewarding and worth it.” Their work can be seen on their youtube channel, Sultana High School Video Productions. Video can be a start if you are curious about the industry, want to create videos for personal use, or if orchestrating videos provides an ecstatic feeling.