I was absent from College on the Monday and Tuesday and so I missed out on filming the interviews, however I was given footage and audio from another group to learn how to sync audio. This however turned to be a problem in itself as I had no idea which recordings of audio went with what video. The only solution to this was to listen out for the scene numbers and clapperboards, however the actors often made mistakes and just kept trying again which makes it very difficult to sync as then there is no clapper board to sync with. The only solution to this was to sync it at the clapperboard and then cut the section out where the mistakes were made and the later section was still synced up.
I did have a problem with my audio sync work, as in one of the shots I was trying to sync up the clapperboard was not in shot. This meant I had to precisely try and find the clapperboard sound from the cameras mic recording and sync that up the best I could. The end result came out looking good, however if the audio had been distorted and the same had happened on a real shoot then it would be very difficult to sync up the audio with the footage by just seeing the mouth moving. Even though I wasn’t actually involved in the production of the video it has reminded me to always make sure that the clapper board is always in shot so that this kind of problem doesn’t occur.
Is there any background noise?
Is there echo in the room?
If outside, is it windy?
Is there the sound of traffic or trains?
Can you turn off or remove any of the unwanted sounds?
If it’s a public place will the general public get in the way of shots?
Is there natural light?
Are there any unwanted items at the location and can you move/remove them?
Are there reflections that could show any of the equipment or crew members?
Is there a power supply to power any equipment that is needed?
Is there sufficient space for all equipment?
Are artificial lights needed?
Here is the professional Location Recce that was provided:
The professional Location Recce that has been provided is so much more detailed than my own. One of the checks is if a permit is needed and who you need to get it from, e.g. Police, Parking and Fire Dept. This is something I didn’t think of when I was putting together my own checklist. Some things I put that are also on the professional location recce are: sources of power, traffic noise, and public interference. I also didn’t think about putting any information on which project it was, the date of it and my name in case I need to do more than one location recce it would get very confusing.
We created Twitter accounts for our film course that we can use to post about the work that we’re doing to do with all of the film projects that we have coming up. We use social media as it is an excellent way to get our films out into the world and for a large amount of people to see it. Basically every single TV show or movie that comes out now uses social media to promote it; usually the actors and directors have accounts that help advertise the movie as well. I setup my Twitter account with the handle (@Bradley_films) as this has my last name in it and has films in it so people roughly know what I will be tweeting about. I am on social media so that I can get more attention on my videos and production processes and get some feedback so that next time I can improve. I thought who I can follow on my account and decided on following some actors and directors, different production companies and some large franchises. I followed Edgar Wright and Evan Goldberg who are famous directors and writers, I also followed Star Wars and Lionsgate. As a class we decided to use the hashtag (#ccfilmsquad) and (#cchalloproject) so that we could all see each others projects. We then made sure to follow each other and retweet each other in order to get maximum reach. So far I have tweeted about setting up my account and have posted my “hello” project with the relevant hashtags. By posting my previous work on the twitter page I have the potential for it to get seen by more people and can then get more feedback on my work.
As I missed the filming and editing time for this task due to illness I used a classmate’s interview footage so that I could still learn the editing skills from the task. I just used one of the questions and answers so that I learnt how to sync up the audio recorded from the shotgun mic and the video footage. To do this I had to set in points at he clapper board on both the video and audio file I was trying to sync; then I went onto AutoSync and set the clips to sync at the in points. The audio was then perfectly in line with the video.
This week I mainly focused on doing research into different social media websites, what they are, what they do, the limitations they have, and if they are right for me. I did detailed research into Twitter and Instagram as they were the first sites that I thought of. I found out that Twitter was mainly used for text based tweets which is fine for some things, but I did want to have some more visual based interactive media too, therefore I made an Instagram account, as I knew that this was only for pictures and videos to be posted. Instagram looks like a good choice for updates on production that are visual based. The practical task that we did this week was quite helpful for my project as I got the opportunity to record some more audio which I felt I was quite weak at. I did get to record a small bit of dialogue which is something that I feel that I need more practice on, but feel a little more confident about now.
The sounds from your practical are largely good, however the nature recording has a lot of wind and background noise so that is something to work on. Perhaps you could have used a windshield or chosen another location for filming. I also didn’t really understand what the creative sound was.
– Declan Baxter
Audio Task: Recording 5 Different Sounds
We recorded sounds for Nature, Technology, Creativity, Rhythm, and Education.
I found that when I set the levels correctly the audio was very clear when recording inside; this can be seen on the technology recording where there was little to no background noise, however if you listen to the nature recording there is a lot of wind and general background noise. I believe this is because I had to turn the gain up due to being far away from the birds and so my audio quality suffered a lot. In retrospect I should have tried to get closer or find another subject to record. I researched into recording audio outside and found this website: http://sound-effects.wonderhowto.com/how-to/record-outdoor-audio-216893/, it had a lot of useful information about recording outside. One element I should consider is using a mic muff/windshield to cancel out the wind and background noise. He also talked about when filming ambient audio for a scene to always film enough to cover the entire scene, instead of just roughly how much you think you’ll need; which was helpful.
Before this task I felt I needed to do more work on recording dialogue, but with this task I did record some dialogue for the education recording so now I feel a little more confident, as that came out with little to no background noise. I would still like to do some more practice with a boom mic however.
I did some further research into recording dialogue and this website came up: http://www.indie-film-making.com/recording-dialogue/ one section says “Lavaliers are the small mics that clip to a tie or shirt and can be either wireless or wired. These are generally suitable for interview-style filmmaking, but you’re not going to want one hanging off your talent while you film action shots or dialogue during a dramatic scene”. This is helpful for me as I would like to have a lot of interviews in my production and so getting some lavaliers would be very useful. I looked into the prices of lavaliers and at http://www.amazon.co.uk/s/ref=nb_sb_noss_2/278-2738274-8127626?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=lavalier you can buy one for under £7 and so if there aren’t any available at college I can buy one for relatively cheap.
I also found on the video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gs9eBX-61ts that “A shotgun mic is the standard device used to grab audio on film and television production sets.” I then researched some more into microphones and found that the shotgun microphone is probably best for recording dialogue for my production when not an interview scene.
 Indie. (2011). Recording Dialogue. Available: http://www.indie-film-making.com/recording-dialogue/. Last accessed 19/01/2016.
 Videomaker. (2008). Videomaker – Outdoor Audio 2. Available at:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gs9eBX-61ts. Last accessed 19/01/2016
In earlier weeks I played around with the idea of using Twitter as my main social network for my project. I made my own Twitter account and checked the type of limitations and features that the site has. An obvious one is that a single post can only contain 140 characters; this is clearly a limiting factor, however I don’t think it would effect me much as I would only be posting about when I’m filming and sharing around the finished project. I tried a recording on Twitter and found out that there is a 30 second limit; this means that I couldn’t upload my finished project to the site as it will surely be longer than this. A solution to this however is to post a link from another site onto the twitter page. Another problem is that Twitter is mainly used for words, and other social media sites like Instagram are more suited for posting photos, therefore I have decided to create an Instagram account for research too.
I used the same username for both Instagram and Twitter so that the accounts integrate with each other and I can put the links to each profile on the other social network if I wanted to so I get maximum reach.
The Instagram account would be mainly for posting pictures of the production process, as this is what people mainly use Instagram for. On the days I am filming/editing or anything else in the production process I can post pictures of what I am doing to keep people up to date on what is going on. A big problem however is that the videos on there have a limit of 15 seconds. There is also a fixed aspect ratio of 4:3 for videos. This means I would not be able to post my final project on here; so instead I’m thinking about uploading my film to YouTube.
This can then be shared to other social networks through a link. I uploaded my previous project to YouTube, as seen below, without any problems so I am thinking about doing that again. An alternative to YouTube is Vimeo; which is quite similar to YouTube in that you have a channel and upload videos, a potential problem with Vimeo is there is a limit of 1gb of data per week for basic users; so I may not be able to upload multiple videos. For instance if I released a trailer and then tried to upload the final product I may reach the data limit. The solution to this would be to purchase a pro account but this does cost $17 per month. According to this website: http://sproutsocial.com/insights/youtube-vs-vimeo-business/ YouTube gets around 1 billion monthly viewers compared to the 100 million Vimeo monthly viewers; so uploading to YouTube may give my film more of an opportunity for views.
I’d like my footage to be free hand as for the current idea I’m roughly pursuing; it’d need to look spontaneous and so having it on a tripod would look out of place and fake, however this means the camera footage will more than likely be shaky. To counteract this I thought about using a steadicam to still give the effect of free hand recording without all of the shakiness. I researched into potential steadicams on the internet and found: http://www.hireacamera.com/en-gb/products/HAC00-02231-gibbon-gn1-gimbal-system/ which is a handheld steadicam that would cost about £45 to hire for 3 days. This isn’t too expensive and if I managed to condense the scenes I needed the steadicam for into a 3 day period and film the other scenes on other days then this could be potentially viable, however I also heard the media department does have a steadicam so I could check that out and see if that is what I am looking for.
One problem I was having with audio is not knowing the kinds of mics that are good for interviews; I did some research and found this blog post: http://stillmotionblog.com/howtorecordaudioforaninterview/ they recommend using a shotgun mic on a boom pole above the person for the interview, and having a lavalier mic on the interviewee as a backup in case the subject moves and so the sound isn’t picked up or if one recording is lost there is always a backup. If the equipment is available and if I choose to use interviews in my project then this is the kind of setup I will try and use.
From looking at your video I can tell you put a lot of effort into framing the shots, the background is clear and looks really good. The fact you have put subtitles on the clip helps to understand what’s being said. I would advise though to add a soundtrack or music of some type into the background to make it more interesting and to help block out the background noise. You could have also had a few more things in the backdrop to make it a little more interesting.
– Lewis Watkins
Good, well thought idea, but make sure to be open about plot lines and explore multiple routes.
Reflections on this week:
This week I wanted to focus on researching into the style of existing mockumentaries and documentaries so that I could mirror some of the shot types and zooming that they use. The interview work that we did was very helpful for this project, as I want to have some interview scenes in my finished film, and this taught me things about how to set up an interview and what kind of things need to be in the background and how much movement/people there needs to be.
3 things that I feel I have learnt well and am confident on using in my future projects are White balance, 3 point lighting, and using Avid. We did a lot of work and practical on white balance and so I think that I have got the hang of using it to make my shots either look normal based on the lighting or make it look more warm or cool depending on the tone I am trying to set. We were shown how to set up a 3 point lighting rig and the effects that each different light had on the lighting of the object, therefore I think if I needed to set one up for my project or any future project I would be able to do that. I have used multiple different editing software’s before including Adobe Premiere Pro and Sony Vegas Pro; so learning Avid wasn’t too difficult and I feel like I now can use it basically enough to create films.
Something I believe I could use some more practice on is recording dialogue. We haven’t really done any practice on this at college and when I have the audio quality has often been quite poor. My current project idea includes a lot of dialogue so I will need to do some practice before I start on the production process.
On the “Hello” project on one of the days of filming we plugged in an external mic to the camera, however we forgot to turn the mic on and this resulted in us not having any audio recorded for that day. To solve this we made a list of all the sounds we needed and recreated them in the dead room; once we added music it turned out fine, however for future projects I need to make sure all equipment is on and working before we start filming.