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things I’ve learned about filming

So, today was our second day of filming for WinkyFace. It was my turn in front of the camera, and yes, I was nervous. I thought I would be most nervous about the acting (and I was pretty nervous about that; I’m type-A and self-conscious to boot!).

But as the process continued, I realized that the part that freaked me out even more than being on camera was not having control over what was happening. I couldn’t see the shots through the camera view finder. I didn’t know if things were level, framed properly, conforming to “my vision.” (Yes, I know what you’re thinking. I am a control freak. Yes. Yes, I am.) It was hard to cede control of the situation to Laurie, Brig & Mac. But, I learned a couple of valuable lessons in the process.

1) I need to be learn to be more trusting of my partners. They can handle things.

2) It’s OK to be a little un-trusting, too. It means your head is in the game and that you’re thinking about all that’s happening around you in a critical way.

3) We all needed to be a little more prepared. Day 1 we were really on top of things. Day 2 got a little lax, it seemed. I didn’t have key props ready. There was a LOT happening in my small office space. And, there were too many distractions (people, phones, equipment, etc.)

I spent the last few nights looking back over the footage we’ve accumulated so far. We’ve done some really neat, creative things. But, it’s clear that we’re novices at this. That’s OK. This is a learning process, and I honestly can’t believe how much I’ve already learned in such a short time. There’s stuff we’ll need to re-do, re-think, re-imagine. But, that’s where the good #learningcurving happens. I’m excited about Day 3.

Until then, I’ll leave you with some of the outtakes of our first two days of filming. If nothing else, we had some fun.

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So, yesterday, Laurie and I decided to do a little bit of experimentation with cameras, tripods, and acting abilities. We knew we weren’t quite ready to make our first official WinkyFace video, but we get that practice is essential to success.

We met in my office at about 9 a.m. We set up our tripods (that was pretty easy), powered up the cameras (also manageable), and began “rehearsing” (another story!) with the cameras rolling.

If having fun = success, we hit it out of the park. We had a great time, and we laughed … a lot. But we also learned a lot, too. Here’s a short list of some of the things we learned while practicing.

1. We need to practice.

2. Our camera skills could use some work.

3. We probably need an assistant (or two).

4. We’ve got to find a way to improve the quality of our videos (lighting, sound, etc.).

5. We’ve got to have a more solid plan for filming so as not to waste precious time.

So, we’re going to work on all of those things. We’ve already conned (OK, they agreed willingly) two awesome students into being our production assistants in the spring, so we can check #3 off the list.

I had so much fun working on editing this video. I didn’t realize how much I would enjoy the process.  I stayed up until 2 a.m. last night working. Then, I dreamt about video editing in the short five hours of sleep I did get. And, I even woke up before my alarm wondering if my video had finished exporting! I’m a nut. But, I’m a storyteller at heart. Web video is just another cool medium for telling stories, and I’m excited to experiment more with it.

Until then, check out our video and let us know what you think by either commenting here or on YouTube. We’re not gonna lie. We’re a bit anxious about how this and any other videos we produce will be received and about the types of comments we’ll get. Laurie’s working on a post with more on that, so stay tuned.

😉 Linds

Feeling thankful

It’s Thanksgiving!

So, in lieu of a very serious and thought-provoking post (yeah, like I’m capable of those!), I’m just going to share why I’m thankful for WinkyFace. (BTW, I am thankful for many other blessings in my life, but here I’m just going to focus on WF, and really, since WF is me + Laurie, I’ll just tell you why I’m thankful that we’re friends!)

1) Laurie can always make me laugh.

Laurie: Are we good to meet and start filming next Thursday?

Me: Well, next Thursday is Thanksgiving.

Laurie: What, you mean you’re going to be busy?

2) She can laugh at herself.

Laurie laughing out loud, in the library, after we just finished reading aloud one of our WF video scripts: I love how we crack ourselves up!

3) She’s game for just about anything, like when a couple of years ago I said, “Hey, why don’t you come to Ireland with me on a Study Abroad trip?” (While riding those horses in Ireland, we had the wackiest conversation–about what life would be like in 2012 if we didn’t have cars and had to use horses to commute. You would not longer need gas stations, only apple stations. And where would you charge your iPhone or plug in your GPS?)

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4) She’s rarely embarrassed to be goofy. (Yes, that’s her wearing a sandwich board … in Ireland.)

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5) She’s always willing to help. Here she is being interviewed for my COMM 418: Electronic Storytelling and Documentary Production class’s major project on Marywood’s Centennial.

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6) She’s never afraid (or at least she doesn’t show it when she is) to stand up for what she believes in. That’s inspiring. I want to be just like Laurie when I “grow up.”

I could go on. I’m thankful to work with Laurie and to count her as a friend. And, I’m thankful to be collaborating with her to bring you, our readers and viewers, WinkyFace. I’m thankful for all she does to help make WinkyFace a success.

I hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving filled with blessings and love. In the comments below, let us know what you’re thankful for!

😉 Lindsey

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