Yesterday marks the first full month of documentary work, excluding individual research done over winter break, and it has been a wild ride, jam-packed with learning! This week we focused on going over the equipment we would be taking to Paris and Laon, how to film the documentary, and how to set up the interview equipment. First, we went over the Exposure and Lighting triangles, which taught us how to expose our interviews correctly (i.e., making sure the image is correctly lit), as well as what to avoid when filming our interviews, such as windows, the sun, and poor framing. Then this was followed by ensuring that we understood how to white balance the cameras which prevent our videos from looking either too blue or too orange. All of these things are not fixable in post, so making sure that our interviews are not over-exposed or blue is necessary, or else we might not be able to use the footage in the documentary.
Moving on from that, we delved into understanding the equipment that we would be taking on the documentary. We then broke into four groups of five, each one with an appointed group leader. The team leaders will assign us our daily jobs in France so that everyone knows what they are doing; which means that we can operate like a well-oiled machine when the time comes. Together, we learned how to operate the cameras and set up for interviews, working out what we did and did not understand before we left for France. We went over what the equipment is, who is taking care of it and charging the batteries, and ensuring that the packs we have are fully kitted out. We then made sure to block out extra time over the weeks to meet up as a group and run practice interviews to ensure that we knew the equipment forwards and backward.
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