I was minding my own business at work last Thursday when the boss called us together. One of the executives called him and his wife’s father had passed away and he was looking for someone to put together a slideshow video.
As computer nerds, we were all qualified but the other guys were not really interested. They decided that the single guy with nothing to do should do it so I accepted. They needed it immediately so the guy brought me 121 old B&W pictures to scan and a flash drive with newer pictures that evening.
It took me about four hours to scan, import and post-process into a nice slideshow in both Flash drive .mov file requested by the funeral home and DVD format requested by the church. Fortunately I have a lot of experience editing and transcoding video so it was basically a snap. I even made a nice cover for the DVD box.
Back in the day you would have to do it the hard way using something like Adobe Premiere but with the free Microsoft Movie Maker it was even snappier. He picked up the media at work the next day and gave me $220. Later he and his wife called to tell me how much everyone enjoyed the video. That felt really good. He wanted another flash drive copy and five more DVDs so I made those that night and he picked them up the next day and gave me another $100.
I had considered going into a business like this during my sabbatical but there’s a lot of competition between the funeral home services and everyone on Craigslist who has Microsoft Movie Maker so I didn’t pursue it. There’s not a very good health plan in it either.