Audio is the devil!

I learned so much from last night's shoot. Too bad it was the hard way!

I learned that my Rode mic get's really 'hissy' and quiet when the battery is low, and that if you continue to shoot like this you better hope your shooting a silent film.
I learned that lavaliere mics are really hard to stick to people to get good quality movie audio.
I learned that having back up audio is a really good thing, and that it might not save you!
I learned that cell phones can be tricky to record your audio on.
I learned why you break your film down into defined scenes and takes, so that audio and video are easy to keep track of when your shooting on separate devices. They are also easie to sync to your video after. (I did know this already, but was being stupid and trying to shoot fast and all 'guerilla filmmaker' style!)
And I learned that syncing audio up to the video afterward can be really painful, esp if one of your audio sources fail, and that it seems brutally impossible to sync to something when there is no audio reference other than video of lips moving.

I learned that shooting and setting up each shot is a sloooooooooooooooow process, and that dealing with the constant start and stop of audio recording makes it even slower.

So in summation, I pretty much learned, that film audio, or even filmmaking in general, is really damn hard, especially without professional gear and loads of practice to work out the kinks.

Even though I knew, I really confirmed last night that I have a great cast, and great crew; and that they don't mind pulling double-duty as both sometimes to get the job done. Adrienne, your a Valkyrie! She did makeup, helped with lighting, set-design and a bunch of other things.

Sal, your my rock woman!; I'm so glad you came out and I really appreciate the things you helped with. Just so you know, you did as good a job with the mics as I would have, so I don't feel bad at all for the audio issues. I need to do more tests when it comes to audio before the next shoot. It was totally my fault things are a little muffled and noisy, as I didn't realize how different being out on location would be towards audio recording.

Every shoot we are learning new things. I don't know how this is all going to turn out in the end, but I'm still optimistic that even if the end result sucks, we will still have had fun trying, and at least we'll have created something.

The two of our actors Charmaine Elanik & Janna MacKay that had scenes last night, did an awesome job. It was our first scenes shot with dialogue, and I know they are still getting comfortable, but they are getting there really fast, and it shows on camera. Oh, I also confirmed that letting them run loose with the script and improvise dialogue yields far better results than them trying to wrangle their vocal cords around my chicken scratch dialogue.

I've spent years learning every aspect of filmmaking from a purely research and testing perspective, but I can't stress enough that getting out there and actually filming real scenes is the only way to truly learn how to make movies. It's becoming clear, fast, that there are a million things about it that are too complex for someone to teach you or even put into words, you just have to do. The first steps are filled with many  'arg' moments of hair-pulling frustration, but just as many 'aha' moments of joyous discovery. If you like problem solving, filmmaking might be for you. It's also apparent to me already that it is never stops throwing new curve balls at you.

Next shoot is scheduled for Sunday, it's supposed to get really warm this weekend (lol, -10c) so we are going to attempt to do some outdoor scenes again. This time I'm going to keep my mic batteries warm. Rest assured, I'll make a post about the aftermath.



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