Monthly Archives: August 2014

One Person Shoot and Edit

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Shooting And Editing

Sometimes, we get a call for us to send one person on a client’s job that requires shooting and editing.  In this post, we’ll discuss the best practices and tricks/techniques to help it go smoother.

What to Take on a Video Shoot and Edit:

For a recent job that required the Shooter/Editor to be on a tour bus with the client, our shooter took five cameras, a MacBookPro and several USB powered harddrives.  In addition to support equipment like tripod, etc, he also took a drone for aerial footage.  The cameras were a C100 for main recording, a 5D mark 3 for additional shots and the ability to shoot stills for the client as needed, and three GoPros.

Drone shot of the Austin 360 Bridge

The biggest hit for the client was the drone– we were able to get those “wow” shots that pulls viewers in.  In addition to that, many timelapse shots were done on location and on the bus.  Special quick mounting devices helped secure the GoPro’s to the exterior of the bus.  These included an aftermarket suction cup and a GoPro goose neck with clamp.

The editing station was a MacBook Pro running a USB 2TB harddrive that was USB powered– this is key, because power receptacles can be at a minimum on the road.  In addition, a UPS (battery backup) made sure nothing lost power.  But this is almost overkill if the only thing you’re plugging in is your laptop.  If power goes out, you would still have your laptop battery to run for a bit.

Tips and Techniques

The key to shooting and editing on the road is to think like a news crew.  In corporate video production, you might shoot as much B-Roll as you can; interview as many people as you can, asking them all sorts of questions, just in case.  But you won’t have time to go through the mountains of footage– so once you’ve got your soundbite, time to move on.  Got just enough B-Roll?  Time to move on.  If there ever was a time to keep it simple, it’s in this environment.  Especially if you’re using 5 cameras.

Keep those batteries charged.  Constantly be switching them through the chargers.

Maybe purchase a belt (like a cinematographers from Film Tools) to keep things on you handy.  Our shooter keep a lens, lens cleaner, wireless mic, and extra batteries on his.

Keep your camera rigged built, ready to go at any moment’s notice.  Also, make sure you gaff down lose cables and things that get snagged easily.

Take an extra harddrive and backup your project file often.  Once I was on a shoot in Africa and my primary harddrive failed.  Fortunately, I lost nothing as I dumped to two drives everytime I offloaded footage.

Vitamins and Airborne or whatever you use to keep whole– you’re going to have very little sleep, so keep yourself healthy.

Don’t fall behind.  Stay aggressive on the editing.  It can bite you in the behind if you fall behind.

You have to do several jobs at once, so an attention deficit person is well acclimated for this challenge.  You have to shoot, while thinking like an editor, and not mess up on the other things– like sound, lighting, and production value.