The Women’s 2014 “Final Four” basketball tournament was shot in Music City by GTT’s Nashville Crew for Turner Sports. All four teams were shot for interviews, locker-room-drama, and of course the ultimate victory by the University of Connecticut (whose Men’s team had just won as well)! The shoot was done on the Panasonic HDX900 DVCPro camera shooting to the Convergent Design nanoFlash recorder, along with a MYT camera slider. The tournament was held from April 6–8.
For this shoot, our hero adventured to Jackson Mississippi for a couple days to shoot some green screen and b-roll. Prior to this, he had never done anything other than travel through the Magnolia State. Rolling into Jackson, he noticed there weren’t many people in habitant the metro area, but it consisted of a handful of people there for events and business, much like himself. He was weary from his travel and called it a night.
The next morning he awoke and realized something amazing had happened the week before. Whoever booked his hotel had put him in the very same one the interviews were to take place! Pushing the cart down to the room, he greeted his audio op and began to set up. Things were going well, the green screen was even delivered in a potato chip box. That was a minor setback, but it was overcome. Lighting – check, waveform – check, sound – check. Just like that, interviews began. The stories told depicted the Civil Rights movement and provided very moving sentiments to a difficult era. Lots of history was captured within the cards.
Before he left the metropolis, Atlanta, our hero had acquired a new piece of gear – The Odyssey recorder. Previously unusable for his line of work, the firmware had been upgraded to support the popular and ever versatile, ProRes 422 recording format. With 1TB of memory locked and loaded, the Odyssey was put through its paces in a 2 day shoot.
After retiring for the night and eating much sushi, our hero left his post and headed to his quarters. Our hero rose with the sun, anticipating the days shoot. He was fortunate enough to be able to leave his lights set in a secure room so the build for the day was simple. He brought his trusty, F3 down, plugged in, and started to roll on more interviews.
Later in the day, after a delicious BBQ chicken quesidilla, the adventure left the hotel and hit the streets. B-roll of the town was captured along with a few walk and talks. Shooting was finished just in time for the sky to open and let down what seemed like an entire lake within one minute. With that, the shoot was a wrap and our hero ventured home, knowing what he shot was a part of history.
The Odyssey view
“Nothing says rookie more than that,” laughs Gonzalez. In addition, has three more excellent pieces of advice for any kind of on-camera delivery:
1. Pacing. Gonzalez sums this up in two words — slow down! “Get a tattoo if you have to, but remember this,” says Gonzalez. “Cut your speed in half.” As he points out, you might as well have stayed at home if your reading is so rushed that no one understands it.
2. Emphasize important words. Call this interpretation — Gonzalez says you should take a highlighter and identify at least one word in every sentence that should be emphasized for meaning. “You also want to build in pauses to sound conversational,” says Gonzalez. He recommends marking your scripts to remind yourself where a pause makes sense.
3. Vary your delivery. “Not all stories should be treated the same,” says Gonzalez. “You need to change your inflection or tone to match the topic.”
Gonzalez also says it’s critical that you understand the material you’re reading and that it’s essential to rehearse out loud.
Command central gave the green light, DC launch is a GO. #GTTDC is official. I am humbled and very excited to launch another market under the wings of GTT. After the great success of the Chicago launch, certainly going to miss the relationships and great clients I worked with in Chicago, the DC launch has already exceeded expectations with only a few weeks in. MTV, Steve Harvey, A. Smith, Fox Sports and Nickelodeon have already gotten their hands on some high-quality GTTDC footage. I must say, the District of Columbia is going to make shooting scenics a breeze.
Shooting compelling solo stand-ups is a challenge — especially if you are new to TV news. Joshua Davidsburg is a TV reporter himself, now teaching broadcast journalism at the University of Maryland.
He created a unique online video module with best practices for shooting stands-ups on your own. It takes less than 8 minutes to watch, but gives you great advice for how to deliver content directly to the camera.
Davidsburg is using wiremax.com — a video tagging tool that allows you to embed text, links and other multimedia into a video. He says he finds it much more flexible than YouTube Annotations.
Right now it appears that few news organizations are using the tool, but it could be a an interesting way to produce some explanatory journalism projects and it looks like a great teaching tool.
…the stories you go on “just in case”…
Routine almost to the point of boring. Hop on over to Amanda Emily’s The Dope Sheet and check it out.
Addendum April 13, 2014. Just noticed how many folks are clicking through on the link above and think I’d better explain a bit. A lot of times news crews are given routine assignments that may or may not end with something on air/published. The intent is more to be present just in case something happens. There are crews routinely assigned to follow and travel with the President and other world dignitaries. Some days the images captured never go anywhere…but the crews are still there. Just in case. Think of past attempts to take down the President…those are the times having a crew on scene paid off. Think about the Hindenburg…crews on scene captured that tragedy. It’s a bet…a gamble…one you don’t even want to come true. But. Crews are there.