24 Hours

We thought it would be fun to take our readers on a short 24 Hour trip from Dominica to Grenada. It’s our last overnight passage of the sailing season. To document this last trip, we fired up both video cameras, and created a short documentary.

It's not as exciting as the TV series 24, but it was a lot of fun!

One item I’ve been asked about, but never discussed on this blog is ‘how’ we create our videos. It’s safe to say they’ve evolved over the past 18 months. We’ve created over 23 videos. Some good, some average. It’s fun, but a lot of hard work.

Generally, we use two video cameras (GoPro 3 & Canon HF G10 with boom mic) and a M-Audio Producer mic for voice-over work. Video is 50% visual and 50% audio. It’s CRITICAL to have better than average audio components. If you have average audio, your final video will be average – no matter how good your visual composure.

For editing I use Final Cut Pro X (FCPX). There is nothing better in my opinion. I’ve used Final Cut Pro for over 10 years, and Adobe Premier. I believe Apple’s editing suite is the best.

Final Cut Pro X
For visual effects, including titles, lower thirds, animations, etc. I use Apple’s Motion. This product is excellent. It’s not easy to learn.
Audio editing is done in FCPX, and then exported and 'sweetened' in Soundtrack Pro. There are better audio editing products on the market. I use Apple’s version because I already had a license with the Final Cut Pro suite.
Static graphics – like maps and photos – are first edited in Adobe Photoshop before I use them in ether Motion or FCPX.

In total, from shooting the video to final product it can take me from 8 – 40 hours of work – depending on the complexity of the topic.

The 24 Hour video below took me about 40 hours. The complex pieces were the animation visuals. For this, I had to photograph my paper charts, edit and stitch together in Photoshop, and then add transparency and water effects for the final product.

The new splash screen for video titles took me a while to engineer. I wanted the same theme and feel as the Field Trip Intro. I also wanted to add a ‘sketched’ Field Trip logo with some different items. All of this was done in Motion, including tracing the standard logo within the application and adding some hand drawn effects to make it look like a pencil sketch for a clean finished look.
Sketch of logo done in Motion
New video title screen with sketch logo applied
We’ve started to use Sarah for voice over as I prefer her voice (grin). To make this work, I actually type out a script for her to read, and then record the audio. From here I add the voice-over with proper timing to the video itself.

The final critical ingredient to the video is a fast internet connection. It’s impossible at best to upload video files that are 500MB – 1.3GB on a slow connection. Fast connections are not common in the Caribbean, so I’ve found myself waiting - sometimes weeks - before I can upload a video that was finished weeks prior. That is the case with the 24 Hour video below. It’s been finished for almost three weeks, but I’ve had to ‘sit’ on it until we moved our boat from Hog Island to St. Georges.


  1. Excellent Video and thanks for a peak into the passage. While in St. Georges did you happen upon Windtraveler? Scott, Brittany and Isla are there. Enjoy your new destination!

  2. Awesome video!! Thank you so much for a peek in your day!

  3. Excellent video! Loved the tutorial, fantastic graphics and amazing wahoo! Y'all were moving along pretty good when you hauled that one in. Should have had Sarah film ya while fixing the main. That would have been fun to see. A perfect video from a perfectionist! Can't wait to see ya in a few months.

  4. Hummmm ... I guess I have to write the message again :-)
    I just said you go through an enormous amount of effort to make the videos, and they are much appreciated.
    Best to you and the Family,
    George & Kathleen 4455


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