Sunday, 16 February 2014

Don't Edit Stuff

The Videographers Guide Ep. 1 - The Music Video from Hypebeast on Vimeo.

This is a nice article on lack of money for music videos. People bang on about how cheap and easy it is to make films these days: Everyone's got a 5D or a phone that shoots 4K, but that's not the problem. Post production is the problem. You may be able to shoot a film in a day but you can get stuck in weeks and weeks of costly post production.

You'll start being a perfectionist, then the client will want changes, then you'll come up with a new idea for some graphics, then you'll decide you want to spend longer grading. Suddenly your simple one day shoot for one thousand bucks is taking a month.

One of the best things you can do is think of an idea that doesn't require any editing:

Or, how about preparing? How about doing a script or a storyboard? How about working out what you are going to do in advance.

My recent short film was such a joy to edit because it was so well storyboarded that everything just slotted together where it should.

A Most Annoying Ghost from Damien Sung on Vimeo.

Think about your post during your pre. That's what pre is for. Remember boring things like the fact that if you're not using FCPX you may need to spend a whole day converting footage to a usable format before you can even start doing any editing.

If you know what you're shooting it also makes your shoot a more pleasant experience. I once shot a music video in a huge derelict shop on Oxford Street. Each set up was on a different floor and there were no working lifts or escalators and it was very easy to get lost in the maze of rooms and corridors. So, what did I do? I went to the location a day before the shoot and did a location rehearsal with the DOP and the 1st AD. We timed how long it takes to get to each set up and orientated the crew so we knew our way around the place. This enabled us to create a realistic shot list with timings we could keep to so we didn't overrun and we were all in the pub before closing.

There's really no excuse for not preparing. Prior to a documentary shoot a few years ago I asked to see the script. I was laughed at. 'It's a documentary, there is no script', I was told. 'OK, how about a shooting schedule?'. Again, laughter, 'do you not understand? It's a documentary, we don't know what's going to happen'. You can imagine what the shoot was like. Chaos. And the post? Fuck me. A nightmare.

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