Planning and ResearchAs ever the internet proves the ultimate 21st century digital technology and the search engine Google proved to be my gateway into its many hidden wonders.Youtube proved an important tool in researching the conventions of alternative/indie music videos. Specifically the Vevo channel which has the rights to hundreds of videos by many of the biggest artists. As a format Youtube was also very straightforward in embedding video onto my blog when I needed to document my findings to Blogger (the online blogging site). The website itself is easy to navigate and I found I was able to absorb from the media available, a range of filmmaking techniques (such as how to make a dolly track) as well as taking inspiration from other music video’s use of lighting, concept, camera work, editing and general mise en scene.I also used Vimeo which had its advantages over Youtube in that the vast majority of the videos on the site are by professional filmmakers and therefore the overall standard is much higher.The website Pitchfork offered great support in researching the conventions of the band imaging that surrounds the alternative genre particularly when creating my auxiliary tasks as its focus is very much on the hipster side of music. Therefore research could be more focused.I used google earth, Streetview and maps when researching locations and these were a massive advantage as I was able to do virtual rechies. Saving myself wasting time by driving back and from locations.I used the camera on my ipod touch to film in christchurch when I did a rechie and also to record dairy entries on shoots.I also used Prezzi as a tool to present research as well as PowerPoint.In researching Font ideas for my poster and digipack I frequently used DaFont.com due to its wide range of fonts and the ability to type out your wanted text and see the result.
Production Canon SLR EOS 600D Using this camera was a massive step up from last year when we simply had point and shoot consumer cameras whereas this technology allowed for far more creative freedom. Being able to manually focus ultimately meant shots could be much crisper and I also employed blurring shots into focus as an effect. Adjustments to the camera’s ISO and exposure where also helpful when creating a specific look. For me this was useful when achieving the cold early morning look at the beginning of my video. I although I attempted to use a lens with wider aperture we generally used the stock canon lens which had zoom capabilities. The Canon takes SD cards and this proved a far more reliable and easier format to work with than DV tapes as its method of collating footage suited the editing stage with each take being stored as its own file. However because footage was being recorded in HD the file size was very large and I often made sure to carry a 16gb card as well as a 32gb on shoots. On locations I used my iPod and an AudioVibe device which made a Tupperware box into a speaker. For recording sound, I initially used the in camera microphone but when I needed to re-record it I used a Rode dynamic microphone with a windshield and the audio quality was vastly improved. Adobe Photoshop from Creative Suite 5.5 was used when creating both the poster and digipack, I struggled with the interface throughout the process however because of the complexity of what I wanted to do other technologies such as Picnik were not usable.
Post Production I used the editing software Adobe Premier Pro Creative Suite 5.5 when editing my video. Its ability to have multiple video tracks proved extremely useful as I was often working with several strands of footage that within a first draft would be overlapping. I not only used the programme to cut shots together but also to colour grade the footage. I main video effects I used where brightness and contrast as well as RGB curves which allowed me to subtly introduce more warmth to the video and combat over exposed shots. I tried using Magic Bullet Looks, a more complex colour grading software however I found it difficult to achieve the subtle look I wanted.