This week I started off just a little bit shaky; I had to source several things in the morning, mainly two cameras from the AV store – which were essential for the afternoon run – and the time lapse footage. Unfortunately the footage was taking a long time to extract from the internet and the AV store wouldn’t release the cameras until after 12, so I made the decision to work from home in the morning and pull all the resources together before coming in; I thought it made sense not to come in half-prepared.
I’ve never used this service until now. Surprisingly useful.
I found some clips from youtube that would fit what Murray was looking for, then downloaded the MP4s from Youtube using Keepvid. I then used the ever-trusty Windows Movie Maker and copy-pasted all of the videos into one longer video, so that all of the videos were on the one file and nothing would get lost on the transfer. While I was editing I was uploading the footage into Youtube as Unlisted videos (So nobody could see them without the link) and sent the link to Murray so that while I was working he could inform me on what he thought needed changed or added to the project.
The handiest software for an amateur filmmaker. Easy and free.
I made sure to email again asking if anything else was needed so that I could pick it up on the way to the school; as a result I grabbed some name tags for the final sequence before I picked up the cameras and tripod.
It’s quite handy this performance happened in December, otherwise these may have been harder to find.
I got to the school in time to set everything up for the afternoon runthrough. I hooked up all of the phono cables and couplers – at this point I had three phono cables connected with couplers as well as the RCA cable that came with the AV store’s camera. We checked the length of the cable with all of the extra cables and it was finally at a length we could work with. I then had to get the remote for the projector so we could check if the connection would work. Once I got the remote I made sure it was connected to the video input and waited for it to find the source.
It wasn’t working.
At this point I only had a hunch that this method would work. It was the only one that I could think of, and I didn’t have the time or knowledge to think of something else – at this point I had five minutes until the runthrough would start. I started frantically searching for a fault in the cables, checking all of the connectors and making sure they were all fully attached. Then I looked at the camera.
I’d connected the wrong part of the RCA to the cable.
You see, a standard RCA has red, white and yellow connections; yellow carries the video output, whereas white and red are for audio. What I was doing was a bit like trying to plug headphones into a DVD player; you can see why you might think that’d work, but it won’t.
Slowly becoming the bane of my existence.
Once I’d connected the yellow output to the rest of the connectors, the camera finally worked. Relieved was not the word. We did a rough runthrough, in which I was worried about the camera cables coming loose or being trampled mid-walkthrough, but thankfully this didn’t happen. The only errors were in placement of the camera with the pupils; in future runs we’ll be tilting the viewfinder on the camera so the pupils can see if they’re in shot or not.
Thankfully it looks like my sourcing days are finished; while I was glad to be sourcing things it was really time-consuming, and it can be hard to find very specific items in such a short stretch of time. I left all of my tech in the school to save hauling it back to my flat and then again to the school – and to make sure it is all in the building for the performances. I have given Zac Scott one of the RCS cameras so he can document and work on his promo video for the project, so he is taking that home every day to rip footage. I’m really excited to be finally working on the show – though my role has been a bit ambiguous; I’ve been told I’m either doing projections and cameras or I’m on lights. I need to speak to Zac about it tomorrow. Either way I hope it all goes well!