Friday, 11 March 2011

The Tripod Arrives - Test-Filming the First Act

The tripod arrived yesterday!
It's big and chunky, really nicely packaged, and it feels like a quality piece of kit. Very strong and sturdy.

The head has a half-ball and socket fitting so you can get some full movement and then can lock it in place. It has metal locking plates for the bottom of the camera. The panning is really smooth once the locks are loosened. For the price, this is a great piece of kit, there's not a flimsy thing about it.

I'm hoping the tripod feet will fit nicely into the tripod wheels I bought a long time ago. This heavier tripod and camera should hopefully be stable in the wheels, which caused vibration in the lighter tripods.
(link to old blog post about the wheels)

Last night I met with the principle cast for our short film, Surviving The Toilet Circuit, in the rehearsal studio where the band meets for practice. I had decided to come down during one of their rehearsals to film a scene where the fictional band will be rehearsing. It was a good opportunity to get used to the new camera. I planned out the shoot as much as possible beforehand and mapped out all the physical actions I wanted the cast to perform. It all went pretty much to plan, and we managed to shoot several different angles of them acting out the entire first act. With each reading everything got better and began to look more realistic and genuine.

I think when we do the final run we'll film it shot by shot, but for this early run it was great to act the whole scene out in one go with minimal references to the script. I think it felt a lot more natural this way, to keep the flow of the dialogue and the actions consistent.

Everything was shot handheld as I couldn't bring my tripod, the car is currently awaiting repair/euthanasia so I had to get public transport and walk from one end of New Cross to the other to get there. Dee came with me on the journey and brought the dog, so we had a big hairy escort to protect our precious cargo. She also made rhubarb kuchen cake for when I arrived home! Thanks Dee! You're the greatest!!

This means I haven't yet used the camera on the tripod yet, although I will soon and I will let you know how it all fits. I really don't think the weight of the camera will be a problem, this tripod is beastly enough to handle it.

I'll get the footage onto the mac this weekend and do an edit to show the guys. I'll also discover what the pitfalls are, and where I need to make improvements with my planning.

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