On location with the lynda.com Creative Inspirations team

Published by | Wednesday, September 8th, 2010

Our Creative Inspirations team focuses on bringing behind-the-scenes, inspirational stories to the Online Training Library®. Here’s a peek at our Creative Inspirations team on location putting together one of our latest documentaries, Second Story, Interactive Design Studio.


Staff director/cinematographer Jacob Cunningham lines up a shot for one of our on camera interviews. We were fortunate that Second Story had great natural light that we supplemented with daylight balanced lights. lynda.com primarily uses energy efficient Kino-flo lights which use special low-power fluorescent tubes. Note in the background the Canon 7D which we also use for video production in addition to our Panasonic P2 HD cameras that shoot on ultra-high quality flash memory cards.

Jacob helps one of Second Story's producers prepare for her interview by placing her wireless microphone.


Staff director/cinematographer Scott Erickson checks focus settings on two of the three cameras we'll roll during our interview. We typically shoot a wide and closeup shot from one angle (pictured here) and a third shot from a different angle. One camera will record the audio for the interview and back at the studio, digital production lead Ben Nilsson will sync all of the material in Final Cut Pro.


Ben lines up two of our Panasonic P2 cameras for our next interview. We shoot on 32 and 64 gigabyte P2 cards and then offload to FireWire drives for transport to our edit servers in Ventura, California.


Scott does a final check on the video and audio gear before we roll on our next shot. Scott has directed all of the Creative Inspirations series and works closely with staff editor Tracy Clarke to put the finishing touches on each installment.

Here I am in the foreground, preparing to interview one of Second Story's designers talking about an exhibit he's working on in Google SketchUp.

A view from the camera at one of Second Story's technical wizards before his interview. For Creative Inspirations, the interviewer is never seen nor heard on camera—only our subject.

David and Scott

Dueling MacBook Pros. I'm preparing for the next interview (and checking e-mail) while Scott offloads the P2 media (our camera footage) on to portable FireWire drives.

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4 Responses to “On location with the lynda.com Creative Inspirations team”

  1. Roy W says:

    I find these documentaries fascinating and inspiring. Great to see this behind the scenes look at how they are made. I’d really like to see a behind the scenes video.

  2. Joe Larger says:

    I really look forward to watching these pieces. They are well shot and well paced. The diverse subjects allow me to learn something while getting a boost of creativity. To all of your staff, from an old dog…..thanks for the new tricks!

  3. Thanks to everyone for their feedback. I’m making sure to take my camera to all of our locations to share the fun and hard work that goes into the Creative Inspirations series. I’m proud (and inspired) to be part of this dynamic team. -d

  4. Mark E says:

    The Creative Inspirations videos are my favorite part of lynda.com. They do just as their name implies — inspire me. Please keep them coming!

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