Filmmaking: Preproduction - Save Time, Money and Sanity

Every hour spent in preproduction can end up saving one around two hours in production and three hours in post production time.

Filmmaking: Preproduction - Save Time, Money and Sanity
Among the many apps out there, an app that works to streamline the process of scheduling and timing of shoots to become more efficient is called Shot Lister, by Reel Apps Inc.
Filmmaking: Preproduction - Save Time, Money and Sanity
Among the many apps out there, an app that works to streamline the process of scheduling and timing of shoots to become more efficient is called Shot Lister, by Reel Apps Inc.

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Filmmaking: Preproduction - Save Time, Money and Sanity

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There are several good articles on filmmaking already on the Worship Tech Director website ... among them, just posted over the last couple of weeks:

Filmmaking: Story Is King, but Structure Is How You Tell It, by Nathan Von Minden
Filmmaking: Smartphones Do Have A Place, by Eric Bramlett
Filmmaking for Churches: The How, The Why, The What, by Taylor Shanton

I would like to expand on one of the commonly mentioned aspects of a video project: Planning.

What does this mean… specifically? 

Each phase of production becomes more expensive (time, money and resources) if you need to fix things that you didn’t anticipate before you started.

Once you have your script, interview or concept created in your mind or as a team, a way you can save yourself a lot of time and headaches is to take it to the next phase called Preproduction.

This is where you break down your project into the nuts and bolts of how you will make it happen.

When I started in broadcast television, I heard a colleague speaking with a producer about how every hour they spend in preproduction will save them two hours in production and three hours in post production.

Each phase of production becomes more expensive (time, money and resources) if you need to fix things that you didn’t anticipate before you started. The old saying “fix it in post” is still the most costly place to try to salvage your vision for the final presentation.

You may be thinking, “I’m a one person band! I don’t have time for this!” or if you have a crew, “I can explain it better once we’re on-site.” Then you find yourself running out of time and not capturing all that you wanted.

Let’s refer back to Eric Bramlett’s excellent May 16, 2016 article: Steps Every Video Director Should Take as our outline and add some additional details.

1) Scout the location


Audio: Pay attention to the natural sounds in the environment. One of the most commonly overlooked details is how your audio will be affected by what else is going on in the space, such as: HVAC noise (can it be turned off?) appliances, road and air traffic, old fluorescent fixtures or office background noise.

If you are doing audio yourself, close your eyes and listen for a minute, or if using your phone to capture location sounds as you shoot a 360-degree reference. Better yet, bring your audio person with you, so they can plan on the best way to capture audio or inform you that you will have that noise in the background and there’s not much that can be done about it. This way, if you have other location options, you may want to choose those instead.


More About Jim Sippel
Jim Sippel is a three-time Emmy© Award winning lighting designer. After working full-time with WCFC TV38 Chicago for 10 years, he joined Willow Creek Community Church in 2000, serving as Video Producer/Production Manager/Director of Photography. While at Willow Creek, he helped developed the capabilities of their video production department to tell powerful stories to advance the cause of Christ. Currently he works as an independent contractor, with his experience covering Lighting Design/Consulting, Director of Photography, Production Management, Production Design and many other production roles.
Get in Touch: jimsippel@gmail.com    More by Jim Sippel

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Worship Facilities Magazine, November-December 2017
The November-December 2017 issue of Worship Facilities Magazine offers a review of the 49 New Product Award entries this year, as well as those entries up for Solomon Awards in 2017.


Article Topics

Visual Arts · Filmmaking · Team Management · Budgeting · Team Development · Cameras · Filmmaking · Monitors · Postproduction · Prepordouction · Reel Apps · All Topics

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