A Personal History Video

Give a gift to your family this year that will be cherished for generations to come... A professional video interview with an elder of your family. Perhaps the most loving gift you could give to your family and future generations. A Legacy is about life, about the times we lived in, and the people and events that helped shape us. You can create a legacy that will be treasured by future generations. Give a gift of love and hope... A professionally produced DVD that documents favorite stories, traditions, happiness, personality, loved ones, accomplishments, beliefs, wisdom and advice. It will be a treasure that will be passed on to generation after generation. Consider it "Regret Insurance" against loosing a loved family elder without the sound of their voice or the stories they tell recorded. DVD is the perfect media to insure future generations will enjoy it as much as you will today. There is an old African saying that applies very well here: "When a family elder passes away, it's as if an entire library burns down"

In 1927 the ability to put recorded sound track with film was invented. What if your great grandparents had hired a film company to record their story and feelings about their history and lives at that time in the "Great Depression"? Think about what a treasure that film would be to your family today. Unfortunately few could afford the film making cost in 1927 and fewer still were far sighted enough to realize the true value of it. Today most everyone can afford it. It just takes one call or e-mail to put in motion the saving of everything you hold dear in your family elders. It's not just their stories and recollections, but the sound of their voice, their laugh, their caring tone that we preserve. This is why it is so important to hire a Personal Video Historian who not only has the skills to produce a wonderful production, but great quality equipment to insure your loved one looks and sounds their best.

  Watch this 4 minute sample of personal history we shot in Cape Cod, Ma.


A typical setup of 3 lights and camera for an interview.

We believe that everyone should record the Personal History of their family elders no matter what economic situation they are presently in. The important thing is that it gets done. Below you will see that we can produce a custom DVD for you that involves just a couple hours of our time all the way to a big production that takes several hundred hours to produce.

Nothing this worthwhile is ever easy. We work as a team to get it accomplished and there is great satisfaction when we have documented the stories and wisdom's of a person's life. Feel free to give us a call any time and we will be glad to talk you through the steps to create a treasure for your family.

Same Day Special - Our low budget way to accomplish the goal of getting an interview on DVD. We set an appointment to film with a portable DVD burner so at the end of the interview we hand you a finished DVD. The cost is $175 minimum for the first hour of recording, $100 an hour after that charged in increments of 6 minutes. There is no editing other than stopping and restarting the recorder so it's as raw as it gets. Pictures can be added by shooting them live. We use the same great camera, soft lights and microphones so the quality is great.

Personal History Edited Interview DVD- Our "Entry level" edited production for those who want to capture the personality and life stories of their family elders. This product consists of 5 steps.
1. Preparation (Phone or face to face meeting to discuss the plan and familiarize all involved with the process)
2. You gather the best of the old photos and materials and deliver to us at the interview.
3. "On camera" interview all in one morning with breaks as needed. Multiple day interviews are optional.
4. Editing to insert the media you supplied into the interview.
5. Proof approvals and final version produced and all your materials are returned.

The budget for this type of production is usually in the $600 to $2,000 range. More information

Life Story Premium DVD - A professionally recorded interview that is edited and illustrated, creating a beautiful story of your life. The production can benefit greatly by us investing some planning and organization time before the interview as well as getting to know the subject beforehand helps us identify and bring out the best of their personality, strengths and accomplishments.
We meet with the subject(s) and discuss the process, learning about each other and making an outline of the subjects and stories to be filmed. We suggest which subjects will benefit from a second or third location for the interview. We review all the pertinent materials to be included in the production and make our recommendations as to what to use. We help organize the materials and produce an outline for the interviews which may occur on multiple days and locations. As we get to know a person and their life history it is usually especially meaningful to the production to film some of their interview in a location that means something to the story they are telling or just who they are. If your budget allows this flexibility the final production becomes much more meaningful and befitting to honor the subject. The budget for this type of production is usually in the $1,000 to $4,000 range. More information

Legacy Biography DVD - The Legacy Biography is for those discerning clients who want a production that tells a story of a person's life with the production value that rivals a network TV special. At your option we can offer the services of a professional interviewer/producer who will elevate the quality of the production significantly. Giving us full creative control to add elements that we know will tell the story in the best way possible creates the best possible environment to produce a masterpiece that truly paints the portrait of one's personality as well as documents the times of their life.
It is a critical part of any Personal History to include live interviews with the subject. However, the humble aspect of human nature keeps most people from adequately describing their life's accomplishments and positive attributes. To properly represent all that is wonderful about a person and bring out their true character, we interview friends, family and even business associates and use their comments and stories to paint a picture of our subject in the most flattering light. We organize all the media assets which usually includes historical archive footage to illustrate the production. Adding professional voice narration can be beneficial in telling parts of the story and adding music can help create a mood and add emotion to parts of the production. Other elements can be added such as a piece on the spouse or family genealogy , a special segment on the subject's favorite hobby, activity or place. For one client we even filmed a reenactment of the couples chance meeting in 1922 on a train. When completed, the Legacy Biography DVD will be a treasure to the family for generations to come. It will give younger family members an increased feeling of pride and family loyalty that alone will justify the investment in this level of service. The budget for this type of production is usually in the $3,000 to $10,000 range. More information

Memorial Tribute DVD- A video produced to memorialize a loved one who has passed on. This can be anything from a short montage of old pictures put to music to a full production that tells the life story of someone dear to you. Because so much of a person's character is captured in our interviews, we encourage you to produce "Life stories" for those who are still alive. It is more difficult to produce a piece that truly captures the soul of the person once they have passed on. The best results are obtained by interviewing friends, family and acquaintances and use their remembrances to create a representation of who the person was, then mixing the audio of those interviews with old pictures and movies of the subject. Because there is no "interview" to form as the backbone of the production, it usually involves more hours on our part and the resulting budgets are usually in the $800 to $5,000 range depending on the complexity and methods to acquire the audio stories of the person's life. Consider asking each of the benefactors including the charitable ones to donate a small percentage of their bequeathment to produce a Memorial Tribute DVD. More information

Optional elements of your production. From scanning your old pictures to offering a professional interviewer/producer these are some of the added services we offer that will enhance your experience with us and of course your final product. More information

The saddest feeling you may ever have might be loosing a loved one after having discovered our service and seriously thought about producing a Personal History but never getting it started. Knowing that you could have preserved so much of what you loved about them but the opportunity is gone. The time to do a Personal History is when the subject is healthy, vibrant and full of life. When a person is terminally ill it becomes difficult to find the spark in them that they once had. Still we strive to make the production a celebration of the life they led. More often than not the subject will find a new inner peace as a result of knowing their most important thoughts and recollections will live on and be enjoyed by future generations.

A note on cost: I have a lot of experience doing these types of productions and I can usually control the overall length of the interview based on your desired budget. Given this you can specify what you want your budget to be and I will do my best to shape the interview process and quantity of media to give you the best value for that price point.

Call today and set an appointment for us to meet and discuss your project and I will show you samples of other projects I have done. Even if you need a month or two to investigate what family archival media is available, go ahead and make an appointment or just ask us to follow up with you at a later date.

(513) 886-2062 Rich or send us an e-mail at wfovideo@aol.com

For more information on doing a Personal History see our Frequently Asked Questions and for ideas on preparation for your project, see the Tips page.

We are members of the Association of Personal Historians and as such are committed to advance the profession of helping people preserve their life stories and memories.

To order give us a call or E-mail below.