We've written a few times lately about QR codes getting all mixed up with online video, and the possibilities raised by that sort of thing. Even though QR codes are still below the radar of most of the population, that will very likely change. And it's exciting to think about the ways they can be used to create a more interactive, more engaging video experience for the viewer.
Shin-B is a Korean female MC from Los Angeles. For her latest music video, Get Up And Go, she enlisted the help of DuNo Tran, who sought to push the interactive envelope using QR codes. Each code spread throughout the music video is scannable and leads to something different and new to support or enhance the experience.
Check it out:
An Interview With the Creator, DuNo Tran
I was fortunate enough to get a chance to interview DuNo Tran about the video:
Tell us a little bit about yourself, your company (if you have one), and the artist, Shin-B... how did you two meet?
I'm an aspiring independent filmmaker out in Los Angeles. I graduated 2009 with a bachelor degree in Journalism/Electronic Media at The University of Tennessee. Midway through school I took a interest/career survey in one of my class that said I should go into film. So upon about 5 days after graduation I immediately took off to LA to see what I can do in film. And it turns out that I want to be a film director. I met the artist Shin-B out somewhere in LA. She told me she's a female rapper; and that's what she is.
Where did the concept come from? Who came up with the QR code idea?
One day I saw a QR code used in a business card and I thought it would be cool to put it in a music video.
Did Shin-B take any convincing or was she on board with the concept from the beginning?
The idea came to me on the same day when Shin-B texted me about doing a music video after she came back from a few months of making music in Korea. I texted back, "let's meet."
Have you worked with QR codes before in video, or was this a first for you?
This is my first time using QR codes in a video.
How many total unique QR codes are there in the video, and what kinds of content did people find when scanning them?
I'm not really sure how many codes I made but you should scan them and see. When we start announcing that a few of the codes might have winning prizes, then maybe it's worth scanning them all.
I'd be curious to know what you are finding in terms of which codes were the most scanned... the ones early in the video, middle, late?
I didn't set up where I can track to see which codes are the most scanned, but I should have...
What's been the feedback you've received from fans of the artist or viewers of the video? Did they enjoy the use of QR codes? Did they find that it enhanced the experience of watching the video?
From most of the feedback, viewers seem to like the concept. There are people who don't like the codes, but it's all good. At least you know about the codes and maybe it's potential.
We're still very early in the lifespan of QR codes. I'm curious if you have any guesses on ways we might see QR codes and video working together more over the next few years?
I would say people might have a stationary code at the bottom of a video to take someone to a website/landing page for more info, lyrics to a song, transcription of an interview, or whatever links you want to take them. So we just want to show that this might be the first interactive online music video using QR codes (you can prove me wrong).
Did you do anything special to promote the video through social media or other outlets?
So far I'm very grateful that the music video got aired on MYX TV: http://myx.tv/ [MYX TV is currently in 5+ million households in the U.S.]. It's my first video that got on aired on TV before TV dies. So that is amazing and a dream come true. But we are still trying to push it out there to all media outlets, blogs and etc. And whoever can help promote it, we would be very appreciative.
I always like to ask about gear: what kind of gear do you favor for shooting and editing video like this?
I shot it all on a Canon 7D and with a few cheap lights. You might be surprise how I did it when I release the behind-the-scenes footage. And it did take me a lot of work, mistakes, experience, patience and passion to create this video.
QR codes may be trendy. But they are one very promising way that video can become more interactive. We all want more-engaged viewers, and letting them play with the video... impact it... interact with it... is a great way to do that.
Many thanks to DuNo Tran for taking the time to talk to me about this cool project. Keep an eye out for the behind-the-scenes video he mentions if you're interested in seeing how he did it.