Even though it was nothing like today, I’d say that, growing up, Nick and I had a fair amount of tools at our disposal in terms of learning about filmmaking. Handheld video cameras were HUGE and after fooling around with that stuff and deciding that this was what we wanted to do, we had DVDs and the Internet to tide us over. I remember being vividly fascinated by behind the scenes docs and seeing what actually happened behind the camera. Not to discredit books, but there is something to be said about seeing what happens as opposed to reading about it, nevermind the fact that a lot of the early DVD/Laserdisc stuff was EPK garbage.
That said, I can’t even begin to comprehend how much my knowledge would have changed if we’d had Vimeo and their new Video School. Even with their huge growth over the past year, Vimeo still maintains and fosters what Youtube doesn’t; a community. It helps that a lot of indy filmmakers put their stuff up on the site, but the staff do a great job of curating and posting challenges to the community. Their newest addition aims to both help the newbie filmmaker as well as the experienced auteur. In addition to creating their own videos to help people out, they’ve gone into the community and selected over a thousand tutorial videos that were already there and added them into the film school.
It’s a great resource and I’m so ready to become insanely jealous at what comes out of it from some young punks.
EDIT: In an awesome coincidence, Vimeo decided to announce today that they’re upping their individual file size limit to five gigs which means FEATURE-LENGTH MOVIES ON VIMEO!