Shooting Assignments

How to submit shooting assignments for grading:

You will bring your tape to class and capture what's needed for editing. Then you will give me your tape. I will grade what's on the tape. Make sure YOUR NAME is written on your tape and on your tape case!

Shooting 1

You will shoot a simple sequence that shows one person performing a repetitive action.

The person should be doing something that has both complexity and variation, e.g,, NOT writing in a notebook (yawn!). Examples are a car mechanic fixing an engine, a hairdresser or barber working on someone's head, a manicurist painting very fancy nails, a fisherman with a rod and reel, a watchmaker repairing a wristwatch, an art student working with clay on a pottery wheel. What do these have in common? Interesting HAND shots. I want you to learn how to get that camera in very close to the working hands.

BAD CHOICES: Canoeing (no detailed hand activity); bicycling (too fast); cooking by amateurs (too mundane); carpentry with power tools (too risky).

NO BICYCLE REPAIR. Too much of that last semester. I'm tired of it.

DO NOT ask an amateur to perform these tasks for you. You must capture someone who really does this, at a time when they are doing it for real. The more expert the person is at the task, the easier it will be for him or her to ignore you while you are shooting.

MAKE SURE to stop recording at the end of each shot. Hold each shot for at least 10 seconds. Do not move the camera. Avoid long shots (longer than 20 seconds).

Use the "Five Shot Method"! I want to see the close-ups and the various angles.


Total: 5 points

Shooting 2

This exercise has three objectives:

  1. Conduct a video interview with an interesting person
  2. Learn to shoot with a tripod
  3. Learn how to shoot B-roll

Ideally, you will have an interesting story idea to start with. You will research the background necessary to understand your story. You will find a good contact person who is an expert on your subject matter.

Make sure the story has interesting visuals. This is REQUIRED.

  1. Go to the site and observe the scene and the activities that tell your story -- without shooting. Spend about 30 minutes doing this.
  2. Imagine the story as a series of events or activities. What are they? Can you think of four or five of these events?
  3. Now shoot these events or activities as sequences (use the "Five Shot Method" for EACH sequence). One event may consist of SEVERAL sequences.
  4. Then -- and only then -- conduct the interview with your expert. Use the images in your head (from your shooting) to frame your questions!

You MUST use the tripod to shoot the interview. MAKE SURE to use the manual focus for the interview.

The interview should be brief, about 2 to 5 min.

Make sure to capture nat SOT on the scene. Don't chatter while you are shooting -- you will ruin your audio track!

NOTE: It is absolutely ESSENTIAL that you shoot the visuals FIRST and do the interview AFTER. Of course you can talk to your expert in advance. But DO NOT shoot the interview until after you have shot your events.


Total: 10 points