This week was mainly about preparing for the practical side of our project which is the 2 minute video production. We did this by brushing up on the different shot types we’ve previously learned as well as learning a couple of new shot which are all focus shots. This meant changing the focus on an item to a background or the other way in one shot. This was in order to add some more creativity and life to an ordinary-looking shot. We managed to achieve this by using the professional film cameras which had a focus change feature on the lens where we could change the focus on the shot whilst filming at the same time. This task came along with some problem-solving skills as well because we had no tripods to support the camera on. This was when we had improvise with various items around the college such as chairs, stair banisters and even kneeling down and balancing the cameras on our knees. Not only did this help us work better as a team but it also prepared us for when it came to the actual filming for when we come across problems.
Also, we revisited our vox pop interview skills by practicing how to take these shots with the same cameras- and still no tripods. We had to remember how these shots appeared on a TV report so that we could re-create that to make our look of the same professional standard. Some of the things we had to remember included: never having the head cut off the top of the shot and cutting off just below the chest; having their gaze off-camera at all times; and having the camera at a suitable height in order to achieve all the requirements for this.
However, this came with problems too; because one piece of sound equipment didn’t work, we had to re-film all our shots afterwards. But this turned out to be a positive in a way because we did it with members of our class, since they knew about our topics and we were all willing to help each other out more; we could also arrange the shot angles and the positioning of the interviewee more easily. We did come out with some impressive results with this round of vox pop shots in the end along with some pretty good answers to my interview question.
Considering the fact that we have now found out our project partners and the topic we’d be basing it on, my to-do list this week will be a couple of things: firstly, to start the official planning of our project of: what we will be investigating for it; where we will be shooting; what types of research we need to carry out and who we will need to talk to as part of this. I will be able to do this in my own time because I will have plenty of time to thoroughly think about these factors and to gather my final research findings. I will be able to present all these to my project partner (who will be Carris) and we can share each other’s ideas and combine them into one final idea. This will be the first week I have conducted a to-do list for my second final project and I can transcribe it into a physical list and, as a result, it will keep me and my partner more organised.
Another part of our pre-production work this week was identifying all our pre-production paperwork which would help us for when we went out filming the shots for our video. These were: the proposal which is basically outlining our topic, our aims and objectives, what we want to include in the video, questions for interviewees and even what the beginning, middle and end would include. Another was the shooting schedule which we created to help us gain the correct type and duration of each shot for the video. The next was the shooting script, which we used to ensure that we got the right content for each shot along with the dialogue that would appear in it- This, alongside the shooting schedule are both going to be essential for the video because they will help us to keep within the 2 minute limit and avoid not getting enough or the incorrect footage. The final one was the recee, which is where we considered the locations in which we would be filming our shots in. This would be crucial for us when it comes to carrying out our shots because it would help us plan ahead and come up with a plan B is something goes wrong. It also made us consider our own safety and prevention of damage to the equipment if a location didn’t turn out to be safe or ideal.
Using these pieces of paperwork, I also started to create my project proposal- which had all the elements listed above in it but entirely based around my topic of the Red Squirrel endangerment.