Friday, January 16, 2009

Biting Off More Than I Can Chew

First off, I continue to get the MOST views from a reader in Fullerton. I'm soooo curious to know who you are! Have you already said "HI" and I just didn't know it was you? Email me at if you are the Fullerton reader! Well, heck, email me even if you aren't the reader! I just love emails ;) .... now back to regularly scheduled programming...

Today, I went full steam ahead on a project that I had been preparing for a long time. It's a short documentary film about the parade that I was involved with at Disneyland. It's more of a farewell video now... being made as a way to remember the parade. I'm going to be sharing this film with my fellow cast members and crew members.

Now, I have no real experience in film making. I have not taken any sort of film classes while in school and everything I've learned to do has been self taught. I bought some books on film making, especially documentary film making, and read a few online papers on the subject as well. So I have some idea of what I need to be doing, but now that I've really committed to this, I'm a little scared that I won't be able to actually achieve an end product that I will be proud of.

Today, I went inside Disneyland to do some location scouting for possible interview locations. A few of my friends were with me to help me in this process. And since we had time, I actually conducted some interviews too. It was actually fun. But in reviewing the tape, I found that there were many problems with the footage. The lighting wasn't the best, the audio was a mess (because our cell phones were turned on and I could hear the GSM feedback.. the noise you hear when you put your phone up near a speaker), the camera was shaky (because I didn't want to bring a tripod into Disneyland because I didn't want to draw extra attention to us), and the camera operator just did a poor job keeping the camera steady.

I just want everything to look and sound good, but so far, this first try has been a failure. I just hope that further interviews will be better. I guess I have a list of things that I know I need to change for the next time I go out and film. But I just hope I don't run into further problems.

In addition, I still have to learn how to use the new Video Editing software that I got for my computer: Final Cut Express. The software that was included with my Mac (iMovie) just isn't going to cut it because I'll need more functions in editing the audio and video. But I haven't even figured out how to import the footage into the computer using Final Cut Express yet! I think that is my biggest worry right now... it seems pretty complicated. I have an instructional book on the software, but I just haven't had the patience to sit there and read it. I guess I better do that soon!

Well, wish me luck on this project... I'm going to need it.


Aek said...

Sounds like a major project. Beats sitting around watching TV all day. :P

Have fun working out the kinks! I'm sure you'll figure it all out along the way.

victor said...

ok dude, i was going to post a comment on this, but i've decided to email you. just a head's up.

Anonymous said...

well sometimes i use a proxy in the u.s. to get american tv shows. could it be me? it's not, but you'll be getting lots of visits from me. i've just started following. cheers.

"truci" - nothing witty for that one.

Anonymous said...

I use iMovie on OSX10.4 Tiger. I hear that iMovie on Leopard sucks.

Lighting and Sound are extremely important. I havent had any formal training either, but do a lot of sports documentaries. Mostly just to give althletes their 15 minutes of fame via YouTube. Usually I just put a song soundtrack. When I've done interviews they usually don't come out well: waves, wind, handling of external microphone.

I bought a book @ BN by S-S Dov Simens: From Reel to Deal. He also has a weekend special for $2k that was offered through the local Junior college. Google him. You can find a tickler vid clips to each of his 10 sessions or so.

The local Motion Picture & TV Association had an OJT session and made a PSA. I was tasked as a sound assistant. I learned a lot, but without the proper equipment, it won't help my miniDV documentaries.
I'd like to see a preview of your documentary if you post it to the web.