Bob Walters
Digital Media Production and Training

With a Social Conscience

Working with Young People in Digital Media Production

Getting Started - everyone have a go
Establish roles depending on the level of equipment available these can be camera operator the person holding the camera. Sound recordist, the person with the headphones monitoring sound and if a seperate microphone is available the boom operator. The director, who generally organises the shoot and works with camera sound and performers to achieve the desired result. The presenter or interviewer, who either stands in front of camera with a microphone introducing the piece and summarising at the end, interviews the people who are telling the story. The editor digitises the footage into the editing package takes out the best bit of each shot and puts it together in the best order to tell the story. After introducing the roles and the equipment do something simple like practise interviewing each other and rotating roles so that everyone has a go at each role. Discuss strengths and weakness with each individual and rotae again giving everyone a chance to improve and to discovre how important it is for the overall result that each person does everything to the best of their own ability.
Refining Roles - everyone has a chance to get better
The ideas for what the group want to film can progress at the same time as everyone tries to improve their performance. It's improtant that all the footage shot in each session is viewed by the whole production team and suggestion made by everyone as to how it could be improved, shots could be better framed to include more of the subject, comments like 'that was rubbish' don't help anyone. The plan is that as ideas begin to form within the team about what kind of movie we should make drama documentary music depending on the talents and interests with the group. Then our ability to make a better movie are refined, it may be at this stage that a seperate microphone is identified as being useful to improve the quality of the sound, this may be purchased if funds are available or borrowed if not. The important thing is extra kit is used when we can see the need for it, the first project could be made on a mobile phone with a decent video camera and better kit sourced later, when the enthusiasm is there for makeing better movies
Specialising - concentrate on a role you do well
This is a stage that needs constant monitoring and reviewing if anyone is unhappy with the role they have been given, much sure that they still have a chance to try other roles. The important thing is that everyone agrees the the best people are in the right roles. Without teamwork the best result can never be achieved sometimes team members take a second role they are equaly good at for the harmony of the team. The director should now be starting to take control of the production shaping up the story and working with cast and crew.