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Critiquing Your Own Stuff – The Solo Project

I know it’s been a while since I’ve posted. Things have been nuts. I went on two weeks of vacation for the holidays with family which was incredible but hit the ground running the first of this week. Here’s the schedule: 

Jan. 21 – Lighting Test for Leadership Module (hereby referred to as LM)

Jan. 29-30 – Gear Gathering and Setup for LM

Feb. 2 – Setup and test shots for LM

Feb. 3-6 – Production Shoot of LM

Feb. 9 – Strike LM set

Feb. 11-Mar. 2 – SE Asia Production Trip

When I get back, I have two weeks to edit and post part of the Asia Project as well as full steam ahead on the LM edit and post. This project is going to be huge. More on that later. 

Because I’ve hit the ground running, I’ve not had a time to read any of the very important blogs I subscribe to so I hit a couple this morning. Shane Ross at Little Frog in High Def. posted his frustrations as an editor about cameramen and their work. He went a step further and gave some pointers to camera guys from the perspective of an editor: 

“DPs and camera operators talk with me and we discuss what sort of stuff I would like to have in post. How should they shoot things, why kind of b-roll might I look for. Or more technical questions like what frame rates we will be working with and they provide test footage in order for me to figure this stuff out. So much of the collaboration I have with camera people is good. But there are some bumpy spots. So I’d like to express a few issues I see regularly with camera operators in hopes that they can correct them.”

This is a great read. Especially if you do all of your own work. In this world, we don’t always have the luxury of a second or third set of professional eyes when filming, editing and post. This is a blessing and a curse. It’s a blessing because you know what you want and what you’re going after and you know what you have in edit. It’s a curse because  you could have nothing but garbage. 

I was recently working on editing some of my own stuff and was just hating it. I couldn’t figure out why until I realized I was breaking rule number one on Shane’s list. I didn’t hold anything! I was yelling at myself, “HOLD STILL!”

I was critiquing my own work. This is not an easy task but if something bothers you about what you’re doing ask yourself why, in this case, I asked myself about the shot’s movement, steadiness, framing, composition, etc. I realized and didn’t let it sit enough. I made a note to myself to hold shots for much longer. 

Along comes Shane saying “HOLD IT FOR 10 SECONDS [before and after].” Good stuff. Plus many other tips. My final thought? If you work solo, grab a hold of professional resources like this and other blogs and trade magazines. Use it to critique your own work. My reading is invaluable to the work I do. I never want to stagnate. If you need a start on reading, hit up my blog roll on the right.


©2019 by Jay Friesen.

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