Filming out and about on location poses even the most experienced crew certain issues. In fact, it is impossible to ever rely on the working environment being just the way you want it to be…. Here’s our top five camera crew problems from our trips out and around Wales!
- Live broadcasts are always stressful. All news crews know how tough vox pops can be to organise and film. Everyone, it seems, has a very forthright opinion until the camera light comes on. Some people just don’t get what you are doing however, no matter how many times you explain it to them in simple terms. One lady reluctantly agreed to a live soundbite on a prime-time news programme managed to compose herself and give a great performance only to finish the interview by asking when she would be on TV….in front of an audience of millions.
- All of nature is against you, not just the animal kingdom. When setting up a night-time time-lapse camera, you can expect the bad weather but even on a perfectly clear night, lit by a majestic moonlight, a mischievous leaf from a nearby tree will still manage to find a way to lodge itself over the camera lens and ruin a whole evening’s work.
- At least calmness transcends the medical profession. The BBC drama Casualty shows the emotions of personnel in A&E but in real life the doctors are nurses we encounter are always serene and efficient……unless you walk in through the door covered in the realistic fake blood from the packs you have been using in a scene when even the calmest member of staff might drop her guard and scream, at the top of her voice, “OH MY GOD”!
- Trust no-one. The incompetence of the public and their inability to comprehend the filming process is, whilst sometimes frustrating, entirely understandable. However when you ask your own experienced crew member to accomplish a simple task such as asking delegates to be interviewed in front of a green screen, the last thing you would expect is for the first subject to be wearing a green dress so they can be made to simply appear on screen as a bizarre floating head.
- I repeat, trust no-one. When taking a break from filming, it is important to remain vigilant….otherwise you may well find yourself questioning your sanity in the editing suite when unrecognisable scenes appear on screen as a result of colleagues “fun”.