My addiction with anime started in 1999/2000, but it wasn't until early 2001 when I saw my first AMV. My younger brother pointed out to me that there was a Music Video section on a DBZ fansite - I imagined what it would be, thought the idea was totally awesome and immediately downloaded one of them. It was a pretty low-average video, but even so, I was blown away by it. From that point, I started searching the Internet for more and more AMVs and eventually came across some classics like Kevin Caldwells "Engel" and Kusoyaro's "Faith" and found this site as a great resource.
11. September 2001 I got a new computer (boy, what a sameful date for it it was), and noticed that Windows ME had a small program called Windows Movie Maker on it. Needless to say I realized that I could make Music Videos with this - the next day I made my first two, the first being to The Matrix - Blur - Song 2 and the second a DBZ video to Die Ärzte - Yoko ono, a 30 second song, edited together out of other AMVs. Of course they pretty much sucked, but I still showed them around to brothers and friends, just never bothered to release them anywhere on the internet.
Eventually my two brothers and one friend became inspired too and also started making their own AMVs. While both of my brothes trip with this was rather short lived (as was it with anime for them), my friend Robert
was quite interested and we also made a few videos together, one of them has a video entry
here. All we were doing up until then was cutting videos together out of other AMVs with WMM in no more than 2 hours each. We realized it could be so much better if we would have the whole anime as source, so we got TV Capture cards (just didn't think of DVDs then).
Bundled in the package for my card there was a video editing program called MovieXone, which filled me with joy to finally have something better than WMM. I immediately started a test project
, which became much more tedious because I wanted to take advantage of the improved editing options. Still, at that time I was very statisfied with it, so I decided to release it on the internet. At the same time I was looking around a bit on here, and it came kinda across to me that Adobe Premiere was THE program to use. So I got a copy of it and started liking it as the UI in MovieXone was quite similar. Made another few videos with it, none of them taking longer than 3 days of editing.
Around that time, with my first released video, I also got to know some AMV community on the internet, some of them like PX32
(who I didn't actually meet until 2 years later) and Messi
(who I've known longer, but only after 1/2 year realized we're living in the same fricking town) are still best friends now. I also was really suprised that there would be people on here liking my videos by the few opinions I got.
Of course I didn't want to continue just making 3-day-jobs, so there were some attempts at surpassing myself like Endless
. It was the first video I actually used DVDs for, but I ended up not liking it. Somehow even more unstatisfying all my friends were telling me it was awesome. I ended up not releasing it for a good while.
A few months (and 3-day videos later) I found out about a site called moobies.net, which was a small AMV site offering to host videos which were good enough. Out of fun, I tried sending one
and got hosted immediately, as with my following videos. With .org hosting still in far sight, this greatly helped me to get them around more. The site also hosted an online contest lateron, where I won Best Action
in. I was happy as hell about it, and it propably was the final proof for me that my videos weren't just crap compared to others.
One video prior to this
I discovered the genre I wanted to take my videos to (and am still holding now): Dance. In retrospect I was really really statisfied with this one and even years later, hell, even now, I still like it alot. It wasn't until a whole year later that I finally realized and utilized what I liked so much about it and composed that into a new video: Overdrive
I heard about the Connichi AMV Contest earlier that year and was totally looking forward to enter it and attend, since I thought live AMV contests were just a thing of American conventions. I went, saw, and won. I had NO IDEA that they were presenting the winners in a room of about 1000 people, and I was just blown away by that. This weekend and especially this moment were some of the best in my whole life. Meeting quite some other AMV creators like zest
and finally PX32 was kickass, too.
This really made me looking forward to the next conventions, and I also made it my goal to go to AWA sometime, where I won Best Techno in Expo one weekend later.
The online popularity of Overdrive exploded, I got alot of great feedback, my host sent me a 160 Euro bill for overusing traffic. What made me especially proud was that it was the first AMV of Germany, heck, even one of the first of Continental Europe, that had a little impact here on the .org.
In the meanwhile, after participating on the Animix-Project
, I became more and more involved in it, and as things were going bad for it, I was asking if I could help somehow. So, I became Co-coordinator, being the one taking care of answering people's questions and managing submissions. When it was finally done, I was really proud to have been part of it and influenced it in a hopefully good way.
I found out that there's a pretty huge AMV Community in Finland, and out of fun, I registered there, hopped on their IRC channel and quickly became friends with those guys. It went that far that I took a flight to their Anime-Convention in 2004 and met them in person. To me much more important here, when I saw the (totally different) countryside of Finland out of the plane, was that I went freaking 1500 km from home just because of freaking Anime Music Videos. I was having a good "What have I done?" feeling but in a really good way. The people there were awesome, the con was great, the AMV Contest was even larger than Connichi's and alot better received. It was also the first time I used English as a conversation language, and imo I did quite horrible
I eventually improved over the years, so yep, you could say AMVs helped me ALOT to speak English fluently.
Video-wise, I didn't make anything spectacular in 04 as people were expecting from Overdrive, but I didn't really care that much. It went as far as getting 17th place
at Connichi that year (after winning the previous), which was a huge letdown for the fans as my friends made fun of me
. I had my highlights too, I got part
of the last DDR-Project which is a thing I looked forward to each year, and made TROY
with my friends. I also switched editing programs, from Premiere to Vegas, as I used it in an Original Animation video not worth mentioning.
Upon joining Reflections of Stlye 2, I got to know SnhKnives
and quickly became friends with him. He was kinda my door to become friends with alot more North American editors, and eventually to AWA, especially after he came over to Germany to visit me in 2005.
Since Overdrive, I discovered more and more of the same music called Eurobeat. Making a video to it seemed inventable, and PX32 starting an MEP for it seemed like a good excuse to start EuroFire
. I also started Spirit of the Stage
earlier that year. You can read the back story in the respective video profiles. Those videos were certainly no letdown for expectations anymore as Spirit of the Stage even topped Overdrive's popularity and was also easily my favourite over it.
At the same time voices got louder and louder that I should do something different from dance or action. Even if those weren't there, I would've made Life's Futakoi
. I know some peeps here still favour that one, but I myself liked the dance style more after all
2006 was the right time to finally make my dream of going to AWA come true. I graduated, got enough money, a place to stay while I'm there. Only losing my job could come in my way, which.... happened. As I already ordered the plane tickets, the decsision was up in the air to either I remain unemployed and go there, or get a job and don't. Of course I sent out job applications, but I didn't get accepted anywhere until September, so I might as well fly there, which I did in the end. Of course it was awesome, but in retrospect, being unemployed and REALLY short on money kinda damped the experience of AWA and America overall a bit. I was just not feeling as happy as I should be.
Soon in October after that I got a job again and quickly decided to repeat the same thing next year. No worries on my side this time, I enjoyed AWA 07 alot more.
Started in 06, I finished GitsP
in 2007 for AWA and Connichi (back story in video profile). There was another huge impact for me coming up as the band m.o.v.e was announced for Connichi, the band who made the music for Overdrive, Strike On and Spirit of the Stage. Needless to say I couldn't believe it and was looking forward to it like a child. At their question hour at the con I met them, and to my suprise, they've already seen Overdrive as someone showed it to them on the day before. I had a nice chat with them as they were really interested in what else I have done, exchanged e-mail adresses and such. It was like another dream come true, as their concert lateron, which was wickedly awesome.
There's not much more to say for the time up until today. After finishing GitsP I realized that I don't particularily like that video more than some of my others which I spent far less time on. I came to the conclusion that I won't attempt anything taking so much effort anytime soon and stick to more simple videos much like Pure Love
as this one is pretty much the favourite of my own today. I held this up for 2008 and think I will longer. Sorry to those with high expectations
That's it. There's alot more inbetween those lines I forgot, but that's the most important stuff.
What can I say? I met so many awesome people because of AMVs, have friends all over the world, visited them in Finland, France, Holland, the USA and soon South Africa, met my favourite band and got to know them in person, and have a hobby which products will stay around hopefully forever.
I can't see myself quitting AMVs anytime soon. I'll be frank to say that I'm not as diligent about editing as I used to be. But I still LOVE anime as much as I used to, so there will be always that desire to make a video to it. Even if I won't edit for years, I will stay in contact with those friends I made, forever.