Apr 30, 2013

Filming The My Song Award 2013

Hey guys and gals!

I had a very busy weekend this weekend, filming a wedding on Friday night, filming the My Song Award on Saturday night... and editing on Sunday. A bit of a long weekend for me, but nothing a hard working videographer can't handle.

When I was asked to film the My Song Award, I really didn't have much of an idea of the location... or how I would go about covering it. I had a few weeks to figure it out after I agreed to take the job. The concert was to be held inside the St. Brigids hall in Dubbo, a former church. I'd never set foot into this building until Saturday night, and I was quite surprised at how well lit it was.

I started out with a basic plan. A multicamera shoot with seperate audio off the mixer... my usual palate when it comes to live performance videos. When I got there, I unpacked my gear and set up around the stage. I knew I was going to have trouble fitting 6 half hour sets on my 32gb card in my hacked GH2, and I'd bought extra cards in anticipation for the shoot that didn't arrive in time... so I had my girlfriend bring her laptop, and be my data monkey between sets.

I set up my GH2 on my best tripod, with my new slider over to the right of the stage. I attached my 50mm 1.7 lens for a nice close perspective (wasn't as close up as I wanted, but it worked well enough). I also set up my GH1 to the left of the stage with my C-mount 35mm f1.7 for a slightly wider perspective. This camera, as well as my wide center (My LX7/HV30 with Fisheye lens) were to be the static shots, my slider/tripod combo would be the only moving shots.

The gig kicked off, and despite a few small hiccups with sound (I managed to drop my Zoom H1 recorder at the end of one track and the battery fell out. I slammed it back in and had the recorder back up and running before the next song started. Towards the end of the second set, my LX7 decided to die due to a suddenly dead battery (very sudden). Meanwhile my GH2 and GH1 were chugging along happily without any hiccups.

At the end of the second set I pulled out my backup camera, my Canon HV30... chucked a tape in it, and threw on my handy dandy Sony wideangle lens. I'd never used this lens on my HV30 before... and didn't know it would become a fisheye lens. I had that replace my LX7 in the wide center perspective and kept right on rolling.

Note the fisheye wideness of the center-wide shot.

From there onwards, there wasn't a single hiccup until the end of the night. After the last act, I knew my card in my GH2 would be getting pretty close to full. I sat patiently waiting for the judges to make their decision, meanwhile my last 10 minutes of card space slowly filled up. I managed to catch the verdict on the last 4 minutes, and stopped the camera with 19 seconds of space left on the card.

All in all it was a complicated but sucessful shoot. The audio came out better than expected, and with a bit of tweaking in Adobe Audition... I managed to make it sound as good as it was on the night.

Check out the videos, and check out the muso's pages. They are a very talented bunch, it was a pleasure to film them.

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