Audio and photo story

The point of this assignment is for you to combine still photos and audio to create an interesting story. A true story, of course.

An audio slideshow is really a lot different from video, and that’s why the requirement is to use stills. The pace is different — the gathering of the assets is different. You can show a lot of variety and evoke a lot of feelings with a slideshow, allowing the viewer to just experience the frozen moment in each image.

However, it’s very important not to leave any image hanging there too long. A rule of thumb is to allow no more than 5 seconds for any one photo. (See more slideshow storytelling tips.)

The readings for weeks 11 and 12 should give you plenty to think about in the story you choose and how you capture it. You’ll see some examples in class.

Requirements for the story:

  1. Use only still photos, and no video footage.
  2. Use audio you have recorded for this story. A combination of interview(s) and nat sound will work best. You may add narration if you feel it’s necessary, but note that narration should total less than half the length of the complete story. (Audiences really don’t want to hear the reporter.)
  3. No added music.
  4. Length: Minimum 1 min. 30 sec.; maximum 2 min. 30 sec.
  5. Software used for editing: If you choose not to use video editing software, you must use Soundslides. If you want to use video editing software, you can use anything.
  6. Captions: If you use Soundslides, include detailed captions for each photo. If you use video instead, you’ll need to make sure that IDs and other necessary information are in the audio. (One of the advantages of Soundslides is the ability to add information in the captions.)
  7. Include a title slide at or near the beginning.
  8. Include a credits slide at the end. The credits slide must include your first and last name, and the month and year.

See an example of title slide and credits slide: Video Training for Reporters. (For Soundslides, you create these as separate JPGs, with Photoshop.)

Submitting the assignment

Video: Upload to Vimeo or YouTube. Embed the video in a post on your own blog.

Soundslides: Upload the entire publish_to_web folder to your Web host. Rename the folder to represent your story (no spaces and no punctuation in the new folder name!). Open the index.html page in your browser, get the URL, and make a link in your blog post. See the link two paragraphs above this one? LIKE THAT. Test your link after you post. If your link is broken, your points are zero.

Soundslides for people who cannot FTP: How to upload a Soundslides to Dropbox

Video or Soundslides: Give your blog post an intelligent headline, and write a few sentences to explain why you chose this story, what makes it special, etc.

Post a LINK to your BLOG POST here, as a reply to this post.

DEADLINE: Tuesday, Nov. 20, at 9 a.m. (Your reply posted here must be submitted before 09:00:00 in order to receive credit.)


About Mindy McAdams
I teach courses about digital journalism at the University of Florida. I love to travel. I ride a Vespa. You can find me on Twitter (@macloo).

19 Responses to Audio and photo story

  1. i just need a little help here…my assignment has been done since Friday, but my index.html link doesn’t work..very frustrating.

  2. I added a help document above — see link at “Soundslides for people who cannot FTP.”

  3. This is the best I could embed, sent you an email with the details.

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