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Documentary Techniques
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Old December 15th, 2006, 08:39 AM   #1
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Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Holsbeek BELGIUM
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Shooting music documentary

Fellow passionate filmmakers,

I'm a first year student at a Belgian film school and I eventually want to become an editor. Our first year is a mixture of all things filmic however and we have been given the assignment to make our own products by the end of the year. I'm the one that has been assigned to make a music documentary. I've found a talented, amateur band that has given their word on full co-operation and I'm very excited to start shooting.

Now I'd like to ask you what you all feel are the biggest elements in a music documentary. Right now I've got a mixture of interviews, cutaways, rehearsals and live-perfomances planned. And of course: music!

I'm very limited with material though: right now I've got a decent tripod, a Canon XM2 (GL2 in NTSC) and that's basically it (I do also have the possibility to have better interview mics and audio through the musicians' materials themselves). Do you have any other tips and tricks on shooting documentary in general?

Kind regards,

Merlin Vandenbossche is offline   Reply With Quote
Old December 16th, 2006, 03:43 PM   #2
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Location: Honolulu, HI
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Interviews need good lighting. All video needs good lighting. Learn about lighting first. You won't always be able to have full control, but even one light that you can control can be a big help. Buy at least one light stand and some sort of light, even just a clamp-on worklight with a screw-in bulb can be helpful. Learn about light temperature balance and how to use gels. Learn about diffusion. Go to Walter Graff's site and follow the tutorials. They are quick and easy. has some nice lighting tutorials on their site. Click the "free photo lessons" button in the upper right corner.
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Old February 23rd, 2007, 02:02 PM   #3
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Take a look at DiG by Ondi Timoner if you can. It covers the experiences of 2 rock bands over the course of 7 years. Amazing film and winner of the Sundance Grand Jury prize in 2004. Its available online and through best-buy (Not sure if they have best-buy in Belgium) Good luck

Evan Shaw is offline   Reply

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