Blog The Week – 09/06/17

I have now finished filming the entirety of my short film. The final scene I had to shoot was on consecrated ground, so I had to be quick, quiet and respectful when filming. However, I do not believe this limited me. The quiet surroundings with occasional bird tweets added to the atmosphere of the film. The location itself was unusually colourful for a graveyard and this juxtaposition made for an interesting final scene in my short film.

From here onwards, I need to focus my time into editing. For example, I need to manually colour grade every shot using the ‘lumetri colour’ effect, as shown below in a screenshot of me working on my short film in Adobe Premiere Pro.

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One thing I have found quite difficult in editing so far, is keeping the fluidity of the film from being interrupted. To solve this, I have kept referring back to my original storyboard and notes to help me visualise the progression of the film whilst editing it.

Shooting Scene Two

Today I filmed the second scene of my short film. Unfortunately, I am unsatisfied with the footage I managed to acquire. Due to the time of day I filmed and the weather, my shots were inconsistent and of poor quality. One problem I encountered was the wind, rendering the audio useless. Although scene two does not strictly need audio, only music, I believe if I add audio in addition to the music, it may create more of an atmospheric scene.18742541_1985138958381434_8005986_o

Another problem I faced was the time of day I decided to film at. Scene one was filmed around midday, but scene two was filmed early evening. I thought as both times I shot were sunny, it wouldn’t affect the consistency all that much after colour grading the footage. It turns out that I was wrong and the lighting was very inconsistent between scene one and scene two.

Luckily there were some positives to this film shoot. For one, I now have a further idea of realistically how my short film is going to progress and ultimately what it will look like when it is finished. I intend on reshooting scene two on a sunny day during the same time of day as scene one. Hopefully the reshoot will be a lot more consistent and a lot better in general than todays shoot.

I have uploaded a clip of scene one and two edited together. Unfortunately there is an absence of audio in some parts and you will notice the inconsistent lighting and shot transitions.

Shooting Scene One

As predicted, today’s weather was blue skies and sun all round. This meant lots of people were about and unfortunately a couple charity events were taking place where I intended to film. I overcame this by finding an entirely new location to reshoot the introductory scene of my short film.

I am very pleased with the drastic increase in quality between yesterday’s test shots and today’s shoot. The lighting, colour and framing have all improved, however a couple of the shots are slightly shaky and I’m not sure how much I’m able to stabilise them. From here on, I will film every other scene necessary to complete my film and towards the end, I will decide which shots, if any that I would like to reshoot.

Beginning production – Test Footage

Today marked the first step in production. Unfortunately, the weather was horrendous and not what I had in mind for my shoot at all. Everyone I was working with said it would be a better idea to film the following day, as it’s forecast better weather. I made the executive decision to film on both days, today being a practice shoot and then tomorrow being the final take.

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The main problem I encountered was the weather. It was very grey and cloudy which made the majority of my shots look dull and overexposed. I managed to colour correct them slightly in post production, however it’s always easier to make a clip brighter rather than trying to fix overexposure.

The shots from today were filmed from the back of a van using a Canon 70D and a Sigma 18-35mm f/1.8 lens. I was not able to achieve some shots I had in mind, as I forgot to bring my 75-300mm lens, which would have helped me to produce a few close up shots. Tomorrow, I will make sure I bring all my equipment to prepare for every eventuality.

In one of the shots, you could see the flickering orange lights of the van on the protagonists shirt. In tomorrow’s shoot, I will avoid this by having him further away from the van but by using a longer lens, I can achieve the same shot but without the flickering lights.

I firmly believe that having a practice shoot today was worth my time. It has given me a lot more confidence in my work and I’ve had a chance to reflect on how to make the shoot tomorrow better than the one today.

Below I have linked a 20 second edited piece of test footage. This footage will most likely not be used in the final film, however if things do not go to plan in my second shoot, it can always serve as backup footage.