Research – We had some past students in to do a presentation about what they have been doing since they graduated from UWE and I picked up on the fact that the majority do their own freelance work, but also work for larger, conglomerate media companies. Possibly to maintain their creative needs as a filmmaker while also paying the bills and climbing the career ladder.
Independently and with my group, I began to start researching into the presence of independent media companies in Bristol and got interested in the way they run alongside the dominant, corporate companies more smoothly than where we come from (it seems). I looked a lot through lists of directories listing pages of production companies in Bristol and I also spent some time searching directories of freelances on sites like ‘films at 59’.
I was excited when our group was given James Dalby as an interviewee because I had really enjoyed listening to what he had to contribute when he came in to talk at UWE. I began my personal research by visiting his website and watching his show reel, revealing the broad variety of work he has done while working on The One Show as production, camera and edit assistant.
We wanted to gain an understanding from James of how his degree and the skills he has learnt from his degree have got him where he is today. We already knew that he is currently working for the BBC as an editor’s assistant and we wanted to discover what got him the job, was it due to his degree in filmmaking and creative media, his independent work or a combination of both? Hopefully this is answered in our documentary.
Sweding – The sweding workshops acted well as an icebreaker for our group of nine. We had fun with the time we had, picking out the most iconic quotes and scenes and exaggerating them. Unfortunately, looking back, this is what held our production back.
The sweding exercise made us realise the importance of developing a clear script and structure which forms the backbone of production, with the other elements coming later. Having so little time to create a 4 minute production, it became apparent how we work differently, what our technical abilities are like and how we gel together as a team.
TV studio – I really enjoyed working in the TV studio as it was nothing like I’d ever done before. The group had to work like clockwork to pull the exercise off in such a small time frame which I think gave an accurate simulation of what a real live newsreel would feel like.
I tried something new and decided to be the lighting operator which was a challenge but it was fun and made a change from being behind the camera. My work all had to be done before the cameras started rolling, rather the other way around. Lighting the main talk-show area was relatively easy but it was harder to light the green screened area because a black background had been chosen.