Doctor Who Celebration

Here is a brief look (and listen) to some of the fun activities from this past weekend’s Doctor Who Celebration.

Listen to this mix of the many patrons who had their voices transformed into sounding like a Dalek.

Also, make sure you look at the many “Where in the Universe?” pictures taken using the Studio 300 green screen technology. You can find them at our Flickr account by following this link.

A hearty THANK YOU to all for making this a fantastic day for our patrons and community!

Doctor Who Preview

During this Saturday’s (11/9/2013) Doctor Who celebration, Studio 300DalekEye will be on hand to help make the event more fun and memorable for you.

Get your photo taken against our green screen and you’ll magically appear in a Doctor Who setting at our “Where in the Universe” booth.

Or if you prefer, see yourself as a Dalek would see you in our “Exterminate! Dalek Invasion Photo Shoot” instead. (And don’t worry, Ryan’s OK).

And at another booth, step up to the microphone and you can hear what it’s like to “Sound Like a Dalek” as in this example:

We hope to see you at the celebration on Saturday.

The truth behind the mysterious object in the sky

Last month we posted a blog featuring this picture of a mysterious object in the sky.  Image

Well, truth be told, it was nothing more than a reflection in the window.  The reflection was simply one of the ceiling lights on the third floor of the library.  Photographers and filmmakers have long used reflections for all kinds of effects.   Sometimes you get surprised as we did and end up with a cool picture.  Below are pics of the actual lights that ended up looking like a UFO.

IMG_0405  IMG_0404

Panoramic Pictures

A2400Panoramic pictures are fun and easy to take.  With a little practice, you can get spectacular results.  Best of all, you don’t need any special equipment:  just a camera, tripod, and your imagination.  Here are a few tips on taking panoramic pictures:

  • Use the camera’s panoramic setting (if it has it)
  • Use a tripod
  • Overlap pictures 50% for the best results
  • Try to shoot with the sun behind you
  • Shoot at least 4 to 5 pictures

Once you shoot those 4 to 5 pictures, they will need to be “stitched” together using special software.  Most cameras come with stitching software or it can be downloaded from the manufacturer’s site.  The software is easy to use; just a few clicks and you’re done.

These pictures were created using the Canon A2400, available for 3-day checkout from Studio 300. The second image is the “stitched” together, single panoramic photo.



Behind Fountaindale Library

Panoramic shots are great for indoors too.  Here’s the temporary Studio 300 home with individual pictures followed by the completed panoramic version.



Studio 300

Studio 300 September Programs

recycled-vinyl-record-crafts-1If you didn’t get a chance to take one of our programs during the summer, don’t worry. This fall we are holding a wide variety of digital media instructional programs. Many of our most popular programs are back, too.

To start, we recommend taking an Orientation which grants you access to all the equipment and rooms in the studio. Discover Studio 300 Macs and Software is another great hands-on program that highlights some of the software we have to offer and helps you get acquainted with Mac computers.

Here are additional programs:

On Tuesday, September 17th, transfer those old VHS tapes to DVD or skip the DVD and make it into a movie file that you can save to an external hard drive and view it on your iPad.  If you’re thinking of making family videos of your kids and their school shows or plays, Planning and Producing a Mini-Documentary on Monday, September 30th can help you organize your ideas and show you the proper way to record those special moments.

Thinking of recording something slightly more exciting than your children’s plays, like mountain climbing or wrestling a bear? Well, we have a really tiny camera here at Studio 300 that you can check out, mount on your head and record just about anything.  Go, GoPro, Go on Monday, 9/16 will show you how to use this camera and show you some cool videos shot with this tiny camera, too.

Of course it’s important and fun to edit your videos with titles, music and some fun effects.  Video Editing Made Easy on Thursday, September 19th and Wednesday, September 25th show you just that and then how to share it online using iMovie.

Here’s a full list of our September programs:


  • Mondays at 10:30 a.m.
  • Wednesdays at 7:30 p.m.
  • Fridays at 4:00 p.m.
  • Saturdays at 11:00 a.m.

Discover Studio 300 Macs and Software – Unleash your creativity by learning about our Mac computers and software

  • Monday, 9/9 at 3:00 p.m.
  • Tuesday, 9/24 at 11:00 a.m.

Music & Sound

Making Music – This hands-on session uses GaragaBand and Studio 300’s instruments, microphones and other recording equipment to help you create your own music.

  • Friday, 9/20 at 2:00 p.m.

Create Your Own Ringtone – Personalize your phone by crafting an original tune in this hands-on workshop.

  • Monday, 9/23 at 7:00 p.m.

LP/Cassette to CD/MP3 – Transfer your old recordings to new formats

  • Tuesday, 9/24 at 7:00 p.m.

Voice-Overs and Podcasts – Learn to record and edit spoken word audio projects in this hands-on workshop.

  • Thursday, 9/26 at 7:00 p.m.


Go Go Pro Go – Capture sports action up close.  This tiny video camera can go places no other camera dares.

  • Monday, 9/16 at 2:00 p.m.

VHS to DVD – Convert and share old videos in digital formats.

  • Tuesday, 9/17 at 7:00 p.m.

Video Editing Made Easy – Discover how to arrange videos, add pictures, titles and music then share your project online in this hands-on iMovie session.

  • Thursday, 9/19 at 7:00 p.m.
  • Wednesday, 9/25 at 10:00 a.m.

Television Production – Learn to use our Tricaster production equipment and cameras to make original video programs in Studio 300.

  • Friday, 9/27 at 2:00 p.m.

Planning & Producing a Mini-Documentary – Need to share a story about a person, event, cause, or other aspect from your life?  Learn the basic steps needed to produce a short video.

  • Monday, 9/30 at 7:00 p.m.


Photoshop 101 – Discover Photoshop’s powerful tools and features in this overview session.

  • Tuesday, 9/17 at 11:00 a.m.

Photoshop 102 – Learn how Photoshop repairs scratches, dirt and general image problems.

  • Tuesday, 9/24 at 1:00 p.m.

DSLR Basic – This workshop explains the ins and outs of DSLR photography.

  • Thursday, 9/19 at 4:00 p.m.

Take Better Photos and Video – Learn the secrets of the pros and take your work to the next level.

  • Sunday 9/22 at 2:00 p.m.

Photo/Slide Scanning – Copy existing prints, negatives and slides to digital formats.

  • Monday, 9/23 at 11:30 a.m.


Producing Printed Promotions with Pages – Make stunning flyers, newsletters, brochures, and more with Apple’s powerful publishing software.

  • Wednesday, 9/18 at 11:00 a.m.


Stop Motion Animation – Bring objects to life in this hands-on introductory workshop.

  • Saturday, 9/21 at 2:00 p.m. for Grades 3-5
  • Saturday, 9/28 at 2:00 p.m. for Grades 6-8

Click on any link and it will take you straight to our programs calendar where you can sign up directly or call us at 630-685-4260 and we will sign you up.

Green Screen Vacations

gsvacCheck out all the exciting vacation spots(*) visited by our patrons:

* O.K. they didn’t actually travel beyond the temporary home of Studio 300 in Bolingbrook and our green screen. But they look convincing nonetheless.

Using a green screen background, a still camera, and Adobe Photoshop, it’s a snap to create a picture that appears as if you are in a different place. Do you want to learn how to do this? Ask the Studio 300 staff and we’ll show you the techniques.

Ice Cream Social Green Screen Pictures

9454905126_459d6034e6Were you one of our patrons who stepped up to the Studio 300 green screen and had your picture taken? Now you can download the finished versions from the Studio 300 Flickr account. Go here: and find your picture. Download the photo and share with friends, family, and more.

Couldn’t get away this summer? Don’t forget our Green Screen Vacations program this Saturday, August 10 from 2:00pm to 4:00pm. Dress in vacation clothing and we’ll snap your picture and put your face anywhere in the world. Registration not necessary, just drop in.

Your comic life

Looking for a unique way to deliver information? How about using comics? Comic Life is easy-to-use software that is now available in Studio 300. You can, of course, use it to make comics and comic books. However, it’s real power is using the comic format to tell other stories.

You can even create flyers, scrapbook pages, how-to instructions, and so much more. The software includes a lot of tools to help you get the look you want and deliver your message effectively.

Whether you want to promote something, share some pictures, explain a complicated subject, or just have some fun, you might want to consider this fresh approach. Here are some additional inspirational ideas for using comics.

Check out these examples:


This fall Studio 300 will offer classes for both teens and adults on using comics to tell your own stories.

July Studio 300 Programs

DigitalTransfersSummer is in full swing at Studio 300.  Patrons continue to take advantage of all the creative technology we have available in the lab.  We’ve helped patrons build websites, make short videos, record music, and more.  Photo scanning and VHS to DVD conversion continue to be quite popular.  There are a lot of memories being preserved and shared thanks to Studio 3oo.

Interested in learning more about the technology available to you in Studio 300? Sign-up for one of our free July programs:


All patrons wanting to take full advantage of the equipment and spaces available in Studio 300 need to attend our orientation session for an overview of Studio 300 procedures.  Limit 10 per class.

  • Mondays and Saturdays 10:30am-11:00am
  • Wednesdays 6:00pm-6:30pm
  • Fridays 4:30pm-5:00pm

Digital Archiving

VHS to DVD: convert and share old videos in digital formats.  Limit 6 per class

  • Thursday 7/11 at 2:00pm

LP/Cassette to CD/MP3: Transfer your old recording to new formats.  Limit 6 per class

  • Thursday 7/25 at 2:00pm

Photo/Slide Scanning: Copy existing prints, negatives and slides to digital formats.  Limit 6 per class

  • Thursday 7/9 at 7:00pm

Voice-overs and podcasts

Learn to record and edit spoken word audio projects in this hands-on workshop.  Limit 6 per class.

  • Thursday 7/25 at 7:00pm

Basic Photo Restoration

Learn how Photoshop helps eliminate scratches, dirt and general image problems along with its other repair tricks in this hands-on session.  Limit 6 per class.

  • Wednesday 7/24 at 1:00pm

Video Editing Made Easy

Discover how to arrange videos, add pictures, titles and music then share your project online in this hands-on iMovie session.   Limit 6 per class.

  • Wednesday 7/24 at 1:00pm

Discover Studio 300 Macs and Software

Learn about our Mac computers and what you can create with all the software available in Studio 300.  Limit 6 per class.

  • Monday 7/1 at 3:00pm
  • Wednesday 7/10 at 7:00pm
  • Monday 7/15 at 3:00pm
  • Wednesday 7/24 at 7:00pm
  • Monday 7/29 at 3:00pm

Planning & Producing a mini-documentary

Need to share a story about a person, event, cause or other aspect from your life? Learn the basic steps needed to produce a short video.  Limit 8 per class.

  • Tuesday 7/16 at 7:00pm

Take Better Vacation Photos and Videos

Follow these photography tips to better document your journey.  Limit 10 per class.

  • Tuesday 7/2 at 7:00pm

Making Music in Studio 300

This hands-on session uses Garageband and Studio 300’s instruments, microphones and recording equipment to help you create your own music.  Limit 6 per class.

  • Monday 7/8 at 7:00pm

Build your Vacation Photo Scrapbook

What to do with all those pictures and souvenirs?  Craft a digital scrapbook and share it with friends and family.  Limit 5 per class.

  • Friday 7/12 at 11:00am

Remember you can sign-up for any program up to 21 days in advance.