361MC: – Little Rag Doll Shoot Day #2

As this particular day was to be focussed on filming the band performing the song numerous times in Quad Studios, my preparation and research beforehand had to shift from narrative filming from the previous day to music performance filming. Once again, this was my first time filming a music video and music performance in general, and so my mind during the filming process  was centred entirely on forward-thinking as to how it would be pieced together in the eventual editing process. We had the studios booked for 3 hours (including set up time) so this once again posed a very fast deadline to get all of the band footage concluded before that time.

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In terms of kit, we introduced a new piece of kit for this day’s filming; the glide track, which is something I had never used before. We only filmed one run-through of the song with the track, in order to get sweeping shots of the front of the band to make it a little more visually interesting and more steady than attempting a shot such as that with a shoulder-mounted camera. We still had a 3 camera set up which was handy considering that Six Broken Sticks are a 3-piece band. We set up cameras for each member of the band and rotated the cameras around in order to offer alternative shots and make the future video more visually interesting.

Unlike the previous day, I didn’t feel the need to use a shot plan for the band segments of the video. I trusted all of our judgment to think and offer shots on the fly and felt that this was the best way to allow my team to work, rather than shackle them to my own ideas for shots. Sarah and Guy (my camera team) had both worked on music video shoots before so I knew that they knew what would make good cinematic shots and the ability to use their own initiative. It was also a very reactive process of filming. The ability to capture great shots relied entirely on how the band performed each run through of the song and what quirky actions they did. One thing I learnt from this music video filming is that no take is identical to the first and it keeps you on your toes as a camera operator as you offer shots throughout the entirety of the song and then have to think of an alternative way to capture the same again the next time. I believe that this has greatly improved my skill as a camera operator and has made me a lot more self-reliant and confident in my own ability to think of shots myself. We ran through the song around 10 times and managed to finish around the time we had the studio booked out to. We had managed to entirely fill all of the cameras with footage which would prove a mammoth task when it would come to post-production.

Overall, today’s filming went much more smoothly than the filming the day before. Where as Day 1’s filming had a lot of starting and stopping as we ran through each scene on the shot plan and had to convey this to the actors, as well as moving lights into a new position for each shot in a very ‘trial and error’ fashion, Day 2’s shoot had the lights mostly in one fixed position throughout the entire shoot, and moving cameras around in between shots proved to be incredibly easy. It was a very rewarding experience to film my first band in a studio and has given me a lot of skills and technical development that I know I can build on and learn from for when it comes to filming my final two music videos. With a shot plan on hand and a good sense of what I wanted the final product to look like, it was time for the long process of moving over all of the footage and beginning the editing process.

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