What if you had an audio recording of an interview that you think could work even better as a video, but you really want something to feature the interviewee beyond just a still image or some b-roll footage? You may want to consider pairing that audio with a 3-dimensional animation. ReelSEO interviewee Fred Spencer did just that, and posted our interview on his own YouTube channel. So is it an effective use of creating video content for business, or more like creepy puppeteering?
Last week I interviewed and Fred and Sharon Spencer for my article, Can Videos that Suck, Work As A YouTube Marketing Strategy? While some people would consider their initial viral video to be accidental rather than intentional, and their production choices to be questionable, I found myself respecting (and even liking) what they do. That's because they're clearly doing what they enjoy, they like to experiment with animation software, and they've stilled managed to maintain an audience (albeit a "super-niche" audience for now.) So I thought it would be interesting to interview them both and hear their story.
Turning An Audio Interview Into a 3D Animation for YouTube
We did our interview via Skype. I gave Fred a copy of my own audio recording, which he used to create an animated piece (featuring myself). After seeing the final piece (which you can view above), I checked out the program Fred used to create the 3d animation studio software – iClone4 from Reallusion.
iClone – "3D Real-time Animation" for "Aspiring and Pro Animators”
Reallusion calls their iClone4 software "a rapid 3D creation program" for both beginners and pros, and can place "real-life actors in 3D environments." They have two versions of their software which carry the following features:
iClone4 Standard version
- Build 3D Actors in minutes
- Easy scene and set design
- Add any video to a 3D scene
- Animate actors with your voice
iClone4 PRO Version
- Real-time animation & video compositing
- In-screen motion editing & facial puppeteering
- Advanced timeline editing with transition curve
- Enhanced visual quality with HDR lighting effects
Pricing for each is $79.95 and $199.95 respectively, which I find to be rather competitive and affordable even for non-tech heads like myself. What I was particularly impressed with iClone 4 was that you could import an audio (.wav) file to a preset avatar, and the avatar's mouth would move somewhat in sync with the vocals. You could also to real-time adjustments to the head movement and expressions, even right down to eye blinks. I also found the iClone YouTube channel