Looking Up –  SolidLine Winter Internship Week 2: Tires, Transcriptions, and Packers, Oh My!
By Sam Sher, SolidLine Media Winter Intern

Last week began week two of my SolidLine Winter Production Internship, and with a new week came a new week’s worth of tasks.  From transcribing footage to lighting a green screen to breakfast at the Westin, I got a taste of some more new areas and I was freezing cold during it all.

My first task of the week was to take a half hour of interview footage from SolidLine’s Transparent Health Documentary and transcribe the interviewee’s answers verbatim.  This took me a while to get into a pattern for, between listening, checking timecode, and typing, but eventually I found a flow that worked and got the whole thing typed up.  As always, coffee helped.

We shot a series of videos this week for Continental Tire.  The filming involved a speaker in front of a green screen, which will be incorporated into online training modules.  I heard that we were getting to shoot on a green screen stage, which excited me because although I’ve done green screen shooting in the past, I’ve never shot on an actual real deal soundstage.  Unfortunately there had been a problem with the way the paint in the green room had dried, and we ended up having to use our own green paper roll anyway.  Using the paper meant that we had to change the entire lighting scenario with our start time quickly approaching, but it was worth it to not risk the chroma-keying not working correctly.

Another issue with this shoot was a night shoot, that started at 4pm.  I thought that this meant we would be there until very late, but the talent knew the lines and did a great job working through script pages without too many issues.  This was a relief after some sets I’ve been on.  The next day was more of the same style subject on green screen, and thanks in part to prepared talent we were done in the mid afternoon.  I learned a lot during these two days about how to handle issues as they crop up during a production, as well as working with a green screen.

The next two days were spent finishing my transcribing project from Monday, and preparing for a big weekend shoot.  The weekend shoot was for ASUG, the largest users group of the business software SAP.  Our job was to shoot the keynote speech and the opening session on Saturday morning, and then to shoot testimonial videos in our interview room throughout both Saturday and Sunday.

Friday afternoon I met Ed at the Westin Hotel on Michigan Ave. to unload equipment, lots of equipment.  We unloaded his car, then drove it back to pick up the SolidLine Tahoe at the SolidLine Condo.  We unloaded the Tahoe, took the equipment to the Huron room, and set up for another green screen shoot.  We didn’t set up the cameras because we’d be using them first downstairs for the morning session.

On Saturday morning I was picked up at 6am to head to the hotel.  Ed and I were dropped off to start setting up in the large hall where the speeches will take place, while Mike went to pick up Greg and some more gear. I assisted Ed in shooting the opening session and afterwards we moved the cameras upstairs to begin shooting the testimonial videos.

At one point during the day we heard sirens going off and looked out the window to see a slew of busses pulling up to the hotel with a multiple police escort.  We had been told that this was the same hotel the Packers would be staying in for their game against the Bears.  We watched the Packers come into the hotel, and realized that their dining room would be right across the hall from the room we were shooting in.  I sure hoped they didn’t disrupt our shooting, because I didn’t want to be the guy to tell NFL players they had to be quiet! And for some reason I don’t think they would have listened anyways…

Saturday was a great day of shooting testimonials for ASUG, we got a lot of great stuff.  We wrapped up around 5 and headed out.  Sunday we met in the room at around 7:30am and had some breakfast, then got ready to shoot some more testimonials.  We also put up a white backdrop (instead of the green) and shot two hosts talking about their new ASUG News website.  We wrapped early afternoon (surprisingly just in time for Greg and Michael to go watch the game), and called it a week…

All in all it was another good week for me with SolidLine, as I got to see more production (which is what I love) as well as experience new tasks in the office that helped me better understand the overall process of what being a video production company means.  Next week will be slower, I think, as Mike and Greg are going to LA for location scouting, but I am still excited to see what’s in store for me on week 3!  Stay tuned…

If anyone edits me into any fun places and sends them to me at sam@solidlinemedia.com I’ll post my favorites on next week’s blog.  Until next week, this was Looking up!

ss

Copyright 2011 SolidLine Media, a division of KV Media Group, Inc.

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