OK. Right at the end of the production of the SIT Film School promotional profile piece, I'd like to take the time in writing this explanatory piece - as it is well overdue.
Yes, Gillies. You're loving the blog image - I know you like to chill with ya obsolete tech.
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Given the title of this chapter, I'll discuss my thoughts behind the creation of the commercial that I just shot and did an edit for. When thinking about what things would inspire my piece - I thought about the works that 'Patty G' showed myself and Lana. The man's name in particular is Logan Mcmillian.
Detour to Mcmillian first
A "true working independent filmmaker", Mcmillian had produced several commercials and music videos for various clients and I'm impressed by some of the works that he's done. The interactive ads and those that you'd assume were made by himself - a lone filmie - are well-presented through an aesthetic that is pre-determained by the continuous amount of pre-production work that would have taken place (I would think, considering that is the rigorous process that we undergo here).
However, if there is one comment to make about something that he told the first years (guest starring myself, quiet on the back of the class) - it was quite interesting that he informed us that half of the works that he's done (music videos wise) - is music that he didn't like. This intregued me, as I was surprised he didn't say no when the oppertunity was offered to him, if he thought that the song that was presented was god-awful (in his mind).
Then again, I suppose as a freelance, self-employeed person, it would make sense to accept all, if not - then as much, work as you can feasiably do. One has to live afterall.
Pre-production: Yep. Storyboards.
Yes. Back to the pre-production. For the aim of the ad, I wanted to show as much as the film course and the institute as possible - more importantly, the faces behind the institute. The human factor was probably the first most important thing to nail down - equipment was second (as I couldn't get the F55 or F3 [though imagine getting the camera that you're shooting with in-frame; could have used mirrors]).
Also - really neat idea contributed by Gillies was to have himself as the tutor, and two other students (Johanna + Virat) to appeal to those whom are female [I'm sure there aren't that many in NZ Film Industry] and international students.
I broke each different location that I'd want to shoot into the different parts of the storyboard. Note too, that the storyboard (overall) wasn't actually ordered in a logical way of which the piece would be edited. To be honest, I had no idea on how the piece should be introduced - nor had the idea on how to end it; not even the preliminary interviews helped.
One thing to note here is the use of the dolly (no slider, since I have yet to be certified on it to use myself). Patty G had recommended for me to think about the purpose of using camera movement (in general, but in particular: Dollying). I had given thought to the idea of having people walk infront of the camera to add depth between the person walking (being foreground element) and the action taking place (being mid-background/background element layer)
In the end, the order ended up being made within the last five hours of time doing the edit.
Filming: Damn, where is everyone!?
Filming was relatively easy (exaggerated overstatement), though I would imagine that the time in completing the shooting from each day would have gone relatively smoother if I had more people in dedicated roles and could catch-up if people who said that they'd come, then didn't end up making it.
From this, one could then conclude on the next obvious problem. Lack of actors (except for STAR students whom are in the background, en masse, in the student lounge) - thus, familiar faces whom repeatably appear in scene after scene in b-roll material. This neatly links to another problem - one where the interviewee didn't show up due to illness (Virat). Since he didn't show up, I had Don as an alternative - since getting the attention of international students was still important to me.
Editing: Just a short note
There is archival material of Matt Inns during his internship on Two Little Boys that I obtained from an SIT iTunesU video (where the portal itself is rather dead, since links are down - thanks IT!) + an image/creative commons footage of Queenstown.
Next Time: Documentary Ideas
Till then, see ya next week.
Interviewee Screengrabs - GRADED
Quick Gillies! Embed your image for your next EPK! I give you worldwide exclusive rights to do so!