Storytelling captured in moving pictures.
Professional production requires quality scriptwriting, strategic location and talent scouting, value-add props, professional directing, proper lighting, clear audio recording, compelling image capture (moving or still) and editing that adds to the story without becoming the story. It also requires a balance of creative pursuit and financial investment.
Creative storytelling in film and photographs is as much science as it is art. You need to be able to plan, capture and edit the story in a manner that makes the technical aspects of production disappear allowing the storyline to rise to the surface. Professional production requires quality scriptwriting, strategic location and talent scouting, value-add props, professional directing, proper lighting, clear audio recording, compelling image capture (moving or still) and editing that adds to the story without becoming the story. This requires more than a point and click video camera and onboard microphones. The editing is more than simple cuts between takes. Creatively lives in the science of filming, recording audio, creating motion graphics and editing it into one seamless creation.
Once you know you have a professional approach to the mechanics of filming and editing you then need to figure out the story and how best to tell it. As a team we need to understand the message you want to share and the audience you want to inform and influence. Sometimes the story is serious demands an approach built around a formal structure of sights, sounds, music and emotion. Other times the approach can be playful and filled with humor. One size does not fit all.
Over the years we have worked on commercials that were tightly scripted and corporate videos that included unplanned moments during interviews that provided the golden nuggets taking the story to a better place than anybody could have guessed prior at the start.
On more complex projects we find it desirable to create a short written description of the goal of the story which we reflect back on as we move forward to make sure what we capture supports this goal. Writing a script and even a shot list is also important if the project is large allowing the team to more in a single success directed direction.
In the end the film, video or collection of photographs we create are designed to promote your brand or product, advance your message or cause and generate more customers fans and ultimately more business or influence. Our continued success depends on how compelling the story we tell is and the professional craftsmanship we bring to the table.
Depending on the scale of the project the actual time spend capturing still and motion pictures can be measured in a few hours or appear labored and long and run into days. Some productions are time bound by the length of a live event or a single segment of a presentation while many other "shoot days" can go from dawn to dusk and beyond.
Many projects only require a one to three person crew to handle the lighting, camera operator role, audio engineering and directing. We have produced/directed dozens of videos in all corners of the globe using a small footprint team resulting in first-class productions.
We have also worked on 30 and 60 second commercials that required large specialized crews that used more than one 10 hour day to capture the shots necessary for a successful story.
If you don't capture all the possible shots and angles it's impossible to give the editor the options they will need to create a seamless final piece.
If the video consists completely of motion graphics and animation the need for a location or set and physical props, backdrops, lights and cameras may be unnecessary but their virtual equivalents will come into play.
Once you have shoot your footage it's time to edit the creation into a final piece. Editing is more than just putting into the correct order the shots from filming. In fact many times the final order of shots can be in a different order than they were captured. They also can be shortened and replaced with "b-roll" footage.
The first deliverable once we start editing is a rough cut. It can be startling to see this first version in that it might still be missing color correction, music, graphics and it might even still be to long or too short in length.
At this stage of the process if there is a voice-over (narrator) a rough version "scratch track" will be recorded and used as a guide for timing.
Motion Graphics / Animation
Motion Graphics and animation are two tools that can enhance a story. In some instances the entire video is made up of animation. The challenges is to know when to use it and to what extent.
We have experience in cleanly adding graphics to commercials, visually telling a story in the form of whiteboard or chalkboard presentations and have worked at creating animated avatar characters used to convey humor. Retakes and adding lines are a whole lot more manageable when your spokesperson is digital!