Tag Archives: production

Thoughts on Post-Production: Editing

Once a project has been filmed and the production process is complete, the film then moves into post-production where the editing process begins.  The craft of editing consists of selecting, combining, and trimming sounds and visual images after they have been recorded.In classical, analog style editing, this was done at the end of the filming process and required a whole separate team. Now in the digital age, editing can be done side by side the film process.

The editing team has a lot of control over each individual clip, and decides whether how each shot if cut or faded, depending on the director and producers vision. This takes a lot of time and skill to edit large amounts of video and audio, especially under a tight deadline.

Like I’ve discussed in previous posts, editors will choose to follow a certain aesthetic that the director has set forth in the filming process. In realism, the editor will do everything in the editing process to make sure it looks as true to real life as possible, whether that means edited from the first person perspective or third person, viewing from afar.

In modernism, the editor will make the editing process evident, rather than trying to hide the edits like in realism. The editor can draw attention to a certain aspect of film by causing a dramatic edit that draws an emotional reaction from the audience. Editors in the modernism aesthetic are given a little more freedom and creativity to showcase their artistic side.

Postmodernism takes the editing process even further by piecing unlike sounds and images together to create dramatic scenes. The audience might even find the collages of video to be disorienting or hard to follow, but it is done on purpose to achieve a specific reaction to the scenes in the film. An example of a dramatic enactment that was staged as a direct cinema interview, was in Mitch Block’s No Lies.

One of my favorite films, Fight Club, definitely varies between realism and modernism editing aesthetics. While the film feels authentic and real in many scenes, there are times the editing process takes a turn toward the modernistic approach and creates dramatic, jarring scenes.






Thoughts on Production: The Producer

A producer is often the only key member of the production team who guides a project through all phases of production, from pre-production planning through post-production editing and distributor. The producer on a project is largely responsible for moving the entire process along, from drafting the proposal and gaining financial support, to assembling a team and overseeing the entire production process.

The role of a producer can be summed up as the middle man or liaison between those who financially support the project and the artists who are working to create the project. This can be a very stressful and hard job to fill, as it requires someone who can not only manage time and money, but also people.

Producers often rely on production strategies to help ensure that a project is successful in hitting each area of their job description. They must organize and come up with a plan to help them obtain necessary funding and reaching an audience. The development of a production strategy involves at least these four steps:

1. Turning a provocative idea into a funded and marketable media package

2. Defining the goals and objectives of the project

3. Researching the topic

4. Assessing the potential audience

Some famous producers have been Jerry Bruckheimer, Steven Spielberg, and Michael Bay. As producers are responsible for organizing their production team, you can always tell the producers style by the artists he or she chooses to help make their movie/television show.



Thoughts on Production: Audio

In Chapter Six, the author explains audio production techniques and the equipment used to record and control high-quality sound.  Whether the audio and visuals in a production can stand alone or are meant to be seen/heard together, high-quality audio is a must for a great media production.  In order to better communicate your message or tell a story, choosing the right equipment and technique is essential.

Like the aesthetics of video and film, audio can be approached from the same three aesthetic perspectives: realism, modernism and postmodernism.  In realism, audio is used to stimulate the illusion of reality being portrayed on screen. Modernist audio creates sounds separately from the visual images, creating a more abstract impression rather than clinging to realist or traditional sounds.  Lastly, postmodernist audio places importance on listener participation within productions in order to emotionally involve the audience as much as possible.

The ability to capture and duplicate quality audio depends on the careful selection of a mic and its position.  A microphone is a type of transducer, which is a device that change one form of energy to another form of energy.  Microphones can convert analog sound wave action into analog fluctuations in electrical voltage.  A digital signal is then created when that analog signal is converted through an analog-to-digital converter.  Microphones are classified by their type of transducer element and can be separated into three categories: dynamic, ribbon, and condenser.

Dynamic microphones are very durable and not extremely susceptible to wind noise.  They’re also fairly inexpensive.  A ribbon mic usually produces a smooth, bass-accentuated sound, and is usually preferred by television and radio announcers for that reason.  It is also ideal for digital recording due to its warm sound that accentuates high frequencies. Ribbon mics are priced at the higher end for professional microphones.  Condenser microphones are more complicated than dynamic or ribbon mics and generally reproduces high-quality sound.

Microphones are chosen for various different reasons.  Pickup Patterns tell the user what the mics directional sensitivity will be, helping a production team choose the right microphone based on where the audio will be coming from.

Impedance is another factor to look at when choosing a microphone. High or low, impedance measures the property of wires and equipment that determines the ability of a signal to pass through that piece of equipment.

Microphones are also chosen based on their use in recording audio either on-camera or off-camera. Depending on the director’s vision for the recorded shot, mics can be hidden on or off camera, or be chosen for a visual effect.

In order to create high-quality sound, it is also important to have an understanding of how to control sound.  Distortion and noise are two things that always want to be avoided.  There are two types of noise: ambient noise and system noise. Ambient noise comes from microphones that pick up sound coming from lights, cameras, or other devices. System noise comes from electrical equipment.

It is important to control the level of noise to the signal sound you are trying to capture, and manage the signal as it passes through cables and operational equipment.


Thoughts on Film: Production & Distribution

In chapter one of our text, the reader is given a deep look into digital production.  Even before a TV show, movie, or commercial is made, producers must take a deep look into their intended audience.  After much analysis, the producer then must decide the method in which medium he/she will be used, which requires a vast understanding of each possibility for production.  Technology has evolved rapidly over the last twenty years, so production of music, movies, and television also had to adapt.

With the rise of digital brought exciting new ideas for production, but also complicated distribution and storage.  Despite some of the negative possibilities in the digital world, if those in production have a good idea of their audience, then they can better utilize the many forms of media production.  Once there is a clear understanding of the intended audience, research analysis should lead the production team to answers surrounding content, advertisers, budget, etc.

Continue reading Thoughts on Film: Production & Distribution