Things to Consider

Before you start your interview you should have a good sense of what you want to get out of it. Even though the process is one of discovery, you should have a concept for your narrative to come, and you should have a sense of how you will develop the content.

Documentation of subject

  • How do you to get to know your subject? How do you help your subject tell his/her story?
  • Consider the relationships between the subject, the environment and the camera. Can you document from different angles?
  • How much needs to be said in words? How much can just be shown?
  • Always overshoot: for 1 minute of final video, shoot at least 5 minutes of raw footage.
  • Think about composition: framing of the view; on camera cropping; scale. Subject versus setting; whole versus detail.
  • What is the overall noise level of the chosen setting? How will that affect your shoot? Can your subject ‘project’ when speaking (volume and tone of voice)?
  • Can you shoot your footage one time of day, but record the sound at another?

Be sure to collect visual information through still photography too: details of context, artifacts, other qualities of the environment. You are collecting data for both video and map, so think about the big picture, and collect more than you think you will need.

Pre-video shoot plan and preparations

  • What are the spatial, visual and technological considerations when choosing subject and site?
  • Know your equipment. How can you make the most of the equipment you have? Can you anticipate any problems?
  • How does the chosen environment affect the message you are trying to send? Indoors or outdoors? Natural light or other? Which room inside?

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