Oral History Appointments
By contacting us in advance and making an appointment, it is easier for us to make time for you during your visit. Please note that qualified people to video and edit are in short supply, so you may need to be patient. Please call in at 507-498-5070 between 1 and 5 to check for available times. Because a video in which our staff digitizes your photos and processes your video take a great deal of staff time (typically 1 hour of staff time for every 1 minute of video), please consider a donation of at least $500 to cover a half our video to cover our costs unless funded by an external source.
We have created hundreds of videos, but our most successful oral histories generally follow the same production method.
Step 1. Typically, one or more family members go through photo albums and scrapbooks with the parent(s) or grandparent(s) who wish(es) to share their story. In the process of going through albums the story teller should choose about 15 to 30 photos that best summarize key parts of their life or the life experience they wish to cover. Then those photos should be digitized on a scanner using sufficient resolution so that those images can be used and ideally zoomed in on (“Ken Burns – style”). This typically requires these photos to be scanned so the image has a minimum of 4000 pixels across, but up to 16000 is desired so that these photos will not become pixelated when viewed on a 4K screen. (Hitherto we have not produced movies with higher resolution that 1920×1080 but we hope to eventually increase resolution as resources permit.)
Step 2. Put the photos on a thumb drive with the number 1 in the label. For example 1Myparents, 2mybabypic, 3myfirsttrike, 4mydogme, etc. Take notes as you practice going through your slides.
Step 3. Look up key dates and information ahead of time. Anything that is not clear or inaccurate will be edited out, but it is important to make sure there aren’t big gaps because we have had to edit out confused sections.
Step 4. Get a good night’s sleep and show up showered and looking your best.
Step 5. Put the thumb drive into the computer or television at Giants and get filmed telling your story to your kids or grandkids.
Step 6. Wait for our video editor to edit your video. Currently we do not have a video editor, so there will be a delay in the processing your story.