Author Archive: Adobe Voice

Fun Friday: Free for Dinner?

What are your plans this weekend? If your calendar is open, a Voice video is a great way to round up friends for an adventure! Watch this fun invitation:

As for our weekend plans? We might just see you at Quincy’s – those lobster rolls sound pretty good to us!

Want to get your Voice featured in our Fun Friday series? If you mark your Voice video public and use #toldwithVoice, it might be showcased here or find its way into the Explore feed within the app for others to enjoy!

Storytelling Advice from the Book Doctor

Wondering what your next Voice video should be about? We’ve been refreshing the Explore feed with great stories for inspiration, and there’s a wheel of templates with questions that help you get your story started. We also thought it would be fun to share advice from the experts and hear what they have to say about story.

Meet Michelle Richmond, who has been helping people tell great stories for most of her life. So far, Michelle has authored six books: two short story collections, and four novels. She also offers consulting services to help beginning writers approach their first projects and find success. Here’s Michelle’s Voice video promoting her business, the Book Doctor:

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We’re impressed with your success as an author! Have you always been interested in writing?

Michelle: I knew that I would be a writer from a young age, but wasn’t sure what form it would take. I studied journalism in college, got my MFA and started teaching creative writing and publishing novels and short story collections. I don’t teach at the university anymore, but I still lead small group classes so I can keep in touch with the storytelling process and see the excitement of writers who are just learning their craft.

How did you approach using Voice?

Michelle: For the Book Doctor, I knew what my message was, what I care about, and what I want my audience to know. If someone is writing a book, I can help, and if they’re scared I can help them get past it.

After deciding each point I wanted to make, I added pictures and icons and then moved the various pieces around. That’s actually the way I write a novel and teach creative writing, also – you should begin with a sense of discovery and say what you feel deeply needs to be said. Then treat it as a series of moving parts, and put those parts together to tell your story in the best way possible. With Voice, with the touch of a finger you can move pieces around and create a story as you go.

How can Voice help a new storyteller?

Michelle: Every story needs a beginning, middle, and end. The different templates in Voice allow you to choose what kind of narrative you want to create and choose the best structure. The “Tell What Happened” template, for example, is a very clear, seven-step guide for telling a story. The prompts lead users through who, when and where, what happened, how it ended, and reflection. One of the things I always tell writers is that, after a story’s final action, you should leave the reader with something to think about, give them a moment to reflect. That seven step template is a very effective way to tell a story in a short period of time, and is a terrific place for someone to start.

What are the most important elements of a good story?

Michelle: A good story should build logically, but at the same time take the reader somewhere unexpected – you have to seek honesty, and avoid predictability. A reader can tell if a story feels false somehow, or if it’s trying too hard to convince you of something that isn’t true. There has to be a sense of reason, and yet an inability for the reader to predict where it’s going to go.

What further advice do you have for people trying to tell an engaging story?

Michelle: Play and explore! You do your best work when you’re not thinking too hard. There’s always going to be a point where you have to really think things through carefully – but when you start you should allow yourself a sense of play, until that inspired moment when you start figuring things out.

Interested in reading Michelle’s work? Visit her website. You can sign up for Michelle’s writing classes and one-on-one critique here.

Fun Friday: First Words on the Moon

When we were kids we all learned “that’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind” were the first words Neil Armstrong said after Apollo 11 landed … but we just discovered it might have been something else!

As we approach the 45th anniversary of that historic moon visit, we think it’s time to set the record straight. Curious? Check this out:

First Words on the Moon - Adobe Voice

Luckily, the first person heading to Mars has a few years to think of what to say…

Do you have any fun facts to share using Voice? If you mark your video public and use #toldwithVoice, we might showcase your video here or within the Voice app.

Voice Tips & Tricks: Let Transitions Linger

Interested in making your Voice video more unique? There are a few simple tricks that can add more visual variety to your stories. We’ve heard your questions and feedback — and want to help you discover everything Voice can do — so we’ve created a series of short videos, outlining features in the app.

Voice automatically adjusts how long to show pages in your video based on the length of your voice recordings. So you can make a great video just by talking and picking photos! But what if you have a page with a photo or text you want to linger on? This week, Voice Community Manager Rikk Flohr explains how to increase page duration, allowing you to let your audience take it all in:

We hope this tip helps elevate your Voice! If there are other features you’re curious about don’t hesitate to tweet us @adobevoice, or contact Rikk at getvoice.adobe.com/support. We’re always here to help!

Voice Wins Awards for Educational Impact

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When we set out to build Voice, we hoped it would democratize storytelling for everyone — empowering students to express themselves, and educators to easily create more engaging content in the classroom. Last week we were honored to receive Tech & Learning’s International Society for Technology in Education “Best in Show” award, deeming Voice as one of the most impactful technologies for education. We were also thrilled that teachers around the country included Voice on last month’s MindShift list of “Apps that Rise to the Top.”

While we’re always happy to receive accolades, we’re even more excited to see students and educators using Voice in the classroom.

Watch as one educator, Mr. Lynne, presents future students with his fun approach to teaching. The Chalk theme in Voice animates like a chalkboard, making it great for the classroom:

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And even though tests can be nerve-wracking, outlining the directions in a Voice video can set a more positive tone:

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Do you know any educators who are using Voice in the classroom? We’re always looking for inspiration (#toldwithVoice)!

Fun Friday: Happy 4th of July!

It’s time for family get-togethers, hot dogs, and fireworks! Whether you’re spending this weekend exploring a new city, socializing at a backyard party, or just hanging out at home, we hope you have a fun and safe 4th of July holiday.

We’ve enjoyed watching your vacation stories throughout the summer. Here’s one of our favorites, a family’s trip to Italy:

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We would love to hear about what you’ve been up to during your time off! If you mark your video public and use #toldwithVoice, we might showcase your vacation story here or within the Voice app.

Fun Friday: Monster Cheese

Have you ever wondered about the origins of Muenster cheese? We haven’t either, but after watching this creative video we wish we had!

Watch as Voice creator Terry shares an entertaining kids bedtime tale about a friendly cheese-loving monster, a little girl, and a village – and gives a Muenster explanation that makes as much sense as any we’ve heard. Enjoy!

monster cheese

Now if only someone could explain where cheddar comes from…

Want to get your Voice featured in our Fun Friday series? If you mark your Voice video public and use #toldwithVoice, it might be showcased here or find its way into the Explore feed within the app for others to enjoy!

Behind the Voice: Trenise Ferreira

If USA jerseys and long lunches are any indication, the Adobe Voice team has World Cup fever! We’re still recovering from Portugal’s last-minute goal on Sunday, though. Major sports events like these give us a lot to talk about!

Even though the first American football game isn’t until August, there’s still plenty of activity in the off-season. It was fun for us to find a Voice video series called, “Sports in 60 Seconds”, by Bleacher Report writer and USC alum Trenise Ferreira. Check out her most recent video, a 2014 roster preview:

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We recently sat down with Trenise to learn more about how she uses Voice to tell her sports stories:

Have you always been a USC fan?

Trenise: I got into football in high school, because my best friend played and I wanted to be able to discuss it with the guys. I watched a lot of the big college teams, and over time I really grew to love USC’s style of play.

Tell us about the Voice videos you’ve made – Sports in 60 Seconds. What inspired you to create this series?

Trenise: When I found Voice, I thought it would be really useful for sports and other journalism reports. Sports is conducive to recaps, whereas other breaking news is live. People have a short attention span, and they want information quickly, so plugging something in a minute can capture the viewer and encourage them to potentially read a longer story.

Why did you choose Voice, as opposed to other media types?

Trenise: Originally I just stumbled onto the app, and was excited about the possibilities. Voice is simple, easy to use and walks you through everything – there’s not a lot of legwork required. And I love that I can edit the credits!

Do you have any advice for people who want to get into sports reporting?

Trenise: Writing has always been my first love, and I’m passionate about sports, so sports journalism was a natural fit for me. It’s an exciting field – it’s about helping people understand more about the players or feel as if they were a part of the game itself. It’s important to be succinct and expressive, and to look for new ways to keep your stories interesting.

Interested in hearing more from Trenise and watching her upcoming Sports in 60 Seconds recaps? Follow her on Twitter: @TreniseFerreira.

Fun Friday: A Surprise Proposal!

Planning a marriage proposal can be nerve-wracking – deciding when, where, and how to pop the question takes a lot of preparation. And of course, as soon as the big moment is over everyone wants to hear all of the details!

Meet Brian, who organized a surprise proposal, codenamed “Thundercats, HO!!!”, for his unsuspecting girlfriend Michelle. With the help of friends it went off without a hitch. Watch how it happened:

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Brian’s Voice recap was great for friends and family who weren’t able to join in on the surprise, and will preserve his engagement story for years to come. We’re sure Brian and Michelle’s wedding will be just as creative and entertaining as their proposal… and if the happy couple happens to need a cat sitter during their honeymoon, we have some advice.

Want to get your Voice featured in our Fun Friday series? If you mark your Voice video public and use #toldwithVoice, it might be showcased here or find its way into the Explore feed within the app for others to enjoy!

Disclosure: Brian also happens to work at Adobe – but we loved his story so much we couldn’t resist sharing.

Adobe Voice & Lightroom Mobile Sync

There’s a story behind every photograph.

Whether it’s the story behind famed National Geographic photographer, Steve McCurry’s image of a girl he took while touring a refugee camp in Afghanistan. Or the stories from young artist Brook Shaden’s ethereal world, created with inventive techniques — shooting photos of herself with an aquarium duct taped to her head! Or the scenic photo from a recent road trip or vacation you just took.

The story of how that image was captured can be just as intriguing.

Since Adobe Voice was launched in May, we’ve seen thousands of personal, professional and educational stories pour in from all over the world. It’s been an exciting time for us. And today, we’re equally excited to announce that you can now access your Lightroom Mobile photo collection right within Voice.

Tom Nguyen, senior product manager for Voice and avid storyteller, loves photography and Lightroom Mobile. Check out his photo story here:

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If you’re like Tom and you enjoy capturing the world in photos, the connection to Lightroom Mobile means you have access to all your amazing images to quickly create an engaging Voice video in minutes.

Or if you’re a photographer with a small business, this means you have another way to connect with your clients. You can showcase your images and personally narrate it to explain the story behind the shoot or your own personal style and inspiration. Voice brings your images to life with unique animation and a beautiful soundtrack.

We want to see your photos and hear more about the story behind them (#toldwithVoice). Share your Voice video link in the comments below and we’ll potentially spotlight it in an upcoming post or in the Explore feed within the app!