Today’s the day, when we worked closely with the operation students to produce their first TV show, and to give us all a chance to practice the skills we picked up on the Circus.
Today I was originally just the lighting assistant, but in the end with my previous lighting experience, I took over as the lighting director, coming up with the design, and assisting with the rigging.
This morning we got the bulk of the design rigged with in 40 mins of arrival, but after that, we struggled with a few flown lanterns and dimmer channels. the dimmer channels were a major issue as they didn’t allow me to have lights where I required them.
These little issues pushed us slightly behind schedule, but we’ve learnt from them, and now know faster ways to rig in the studio, and other little niggles that are present.
Avid, Avid, Avid, where do I begin, It’s hard to say I liked it, because I didn’t, and the truth be told I don’t think I will be finding much time to edit using it. It’s handy to know the basics and it’s little quirks with the Rave MAM System. This little bits of knowledge will help me troubleshoot problems with the software if required, at a later date.
Patching was an interesting, yet small session, aim at teaching me on how to route signals around the ravensbourne building. There’s not much more than that i can say about it.
Our second to last Circus session today, and it was defiantly one of the most interesting, Studio Camera’s. Heres what I wrote about it in my Circus Report:
Studio Cameras are in some respects simplified versions of PSC cameras, as they don’t have the ability to record directly or capture sound. Studio Cameras are operated by a single operator in the studio and a secondary racking operator in the gallery. The racking operator is responsible for the exposure, white / black balance and the colours. If each camera operator had these controls, the picture wouldn’t be as consistent as if it was operated remotely by one.
We were trained on the Sony HXC100 HD Camera’s, with four being mounted on Vinten Pedestals and the fifth on a non-pressurised Pedestal. The operation of the zoom and focus has moved from the camera body (PSC) to two wired remotes on the pan and tilt handles of the Pedestal, with the exception of number 5, which is designed to be used as a hand held and its pedestal, is only a place to keep it when not in use.
Camera 5 also has a Wide Angle, which again changes the perspective of the studio for the viewer, with this lens the studio looks larger than, when it is viewed with one of the other 4 camera’s which all have the same narrower lens. Graham Reed2 also went through a great deal on perspective and depth of field and how it can greatly effect an images composition. The great example he used was a line of tree’s and showed how using different focal lengths you could make the trees look closer together (narrow angle) or further apart (wide angle), than they truly were.
Another day, another circus Session this time we were learning about location sound. this is what i wrote about it for my Circus Report:
Locations sound works hand in hand with location camera’s providing additional sound capabilities to the single camera, for example an interview situation that required two personal mic’s could be mixed together before being fed to the camera as stereo or mono line level mix. Location mixers often have 2-4 inputs and can either mix in stereo or dual mono. Location mixers normally have better Microphone pre-amps than Camera’s, which in turn provides better sound quality, as the mixer is outputting at line level (0db) and the camera won’t apply any more amplification to the signal.
Some microphones require batteries or phantom power (+48v) to operate; these mic’s are a form of capacitor mic’s are much more sensitive than standard dynamic mic’s that don’t require power to operate. Most cameras and mixers can supply phantom power to these microphones.
When setting up for a shoot, you can use the tone that the mixer is supplying to the camera to help setup the record levels on the camera. Tone should be set just below the 0db mark as this allows some “head room” before the camera starts to clip the signal should you go above the tone volume.
Another day, Another Operational skill, this time we were learning about Location Camera’s which is also know as Electronic News Gathering (ENG), which is also know as Personal Single Camera (PSC). This type of shooting is completely different to studio work, and requires a different mindset, for example with PSC you have to remember to add 30-seconds of Bars & Tone to the beginning of every tape you shoot with. Another thing before every shoot, is its best to check the back focus and time code is set-up correctly.
Without Time Code, editing the shot footage, is near impossible, especially when you are trying to sync up two different shots of the same pice of action up. For theses sorts of cuts to be smooth, the Time Code also needs to be synced between all the cameras that are recording.
Working with Rolly today has been interesting and light hearted session, we used a simple interview set-up to practice recoding to a Location Camera, for this simple shoot we teamed up with the location Sound Group.