Time and Film

I’m still amazed by the response on my last post, and I appreciate every comment and e-mail I’ve received from you guys! I went to the police station with the picture of the perv-guy, so it should all be taken care of shortly.

Yesterday I finished up my 28th session of shooting for the documentary I’m doing.
Just a few months ago I was completely ignorant of how time-consuming this stuff actually is! Gosh, it might sound like all you do is meet up with a person, ask a few questions and then you just paste it together in iMovie before supper… So before any of you get you expectations up, let me explain why it takes time:

Find an idea
– Whose/which story do you wanna tell?
Contact your sources
 – Ask the people you need: “Would you be interested in being a part of my documentary-thing?”
Schedule appointments
– Now this is the hard part… You gotta make sure their schedules fit into yours, and when you have 28 appointments in ten days, it becomes a challenge.
Go out and do the interviews
– During this project I’ve experienced that people forgot about their appointment, or backed out the moment I showed up, I also drove for two hours to meet a person – only to find out my GPS fooled me, and I got completely lost somewhere along a fjord.. But luckily, it turned out well in the end 🙂
Screen Shot 2015-07-02 at 00.55.35
Organize and back up clips
– With hours of footage, you’ll need some kind of system, and you’ll also need backup of the system.. so here you go – an hour extra work for each time you shoot.
Clean up clips
– Even when people are really great speakers and capable of saying the most brilliant things, you’ll have to throw away 70% of it.
Put clips together
– undoubtedly the hardest part. Make sure all the clips you have are leading you towards your goal – telling the story. You need enough detail for it to make sense, but too much will make it boring, so watch out.

Screen Shot 2015-07-02 at 00.57.42

Match the audio
– Since I’m the only person in my crew, and I can’t be both the audio operator and the photographer/journalist/director/producer, I have to use a separate microphone that I attach to the “object”… that means the audio is unattached to the video. So for each clip, I need a separate audio clip that I have to match to the visuals. With three hours of footage comes a three-hour long consecutive mp3 file, so I’ll have to go treasure hunting to find those sentences that I already have in the video clips so that I can match them and make the audio sound decent.
 – The fun stuff! Soundtracks, colorgrading, light correcting and other effects + final adjustments.
– The absolute “funnest” part – Project completed!

I’m not by any means a pro, in fact, this is my first video that is longer than four minutes… so please bear with me. I know this can be done in a much easier way, but as for now, this is the only way I know of.

The reason I even do this, is because I want to learn the craft of filmmaking. There’s no shortcut, and I’m not interested in being “kinda good” at it. Maybe there’s a reason why the great movie directors such as Steven Spielberg, Clint Eastwood, Woody Allen, Martin Scorsese, Robert Zemeckis and James Cameron are all in their 60s or older – it takes time.

If God wants me to become a movie director, I’ve got 40 or more years of learning the craft… so no rushing.

Bless y’all,
Maria Lavelle

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