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Production and Purpose 9/29/09

Production and Purpose™ is dedicated to featuring great examples of well planned and executed video productions that tell the story of God’s transforming love.

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First off, let this post serve as an introduction to two new friends, Peter McKenzie and Jon Muedder from Forest Hill Church in Charlotte, NC. These guys are doing some great work! See for yourself:

The technical details: Shot with a pair of Panasonic HPX-170s and a little steady cam thrown in for smooth tracking shots. Post production done with Final Cut Pro, Magic Bullet, and AfterEffects.

The Story: This is the part of these posts that I have come to enjoy the most! Good story-telling is a combination of good communications (having a good pipe line to people’s stories), combined with detailed planning and production. I asked Jon about their harvesting process:

The first step to building a “Story” as we call them, is receiving a suggestion from a ministry about something we should pursue . This is the only part of the process we do not control. Once we have a person’s name we set up a time to meet to do a pre-interview. We have found from trial and error that people are much more comfortable in front of the cameras and lights if they already have a relationship or at least some familiarity with us.

Good call! Pre-interviews can help answer a number of questions:

  • Is the story worth pursuing?
  • Is the subject comfortable telling their story?
  • What is the best environment or setting for the story?

Jon continued about their pre-production planing:

At this point we begin to script the story. The scripting process is mostly to ensure eloquence and the flow of the video. Tyler had a very extensive story so there were so many  details that went along with his story. The scripting process really “cut the fat” and everything that didn’t move in the direction of how it affected him and HIS relationship with Christ. I sometimes feel very cold saying “cutting the fat” when I am talking about someone’s story. But the pre-production process saves us from sitting behind the computer in post and cutting up people’s sentences in FCP and looking for B-Roll Bandaids to cover up the cuts. We had a vision to do this video primarily with all B-Roll until the middle of the piece.

Tyler played baseball for the high school that we shot at and had a good relationship with the coach so he was able to pull some strings for us for shooting on the field alone at night. For areas that were dark we set up Arri 600’s with CTB gels on them. There is one particular shot when it is dark and Tyler is walking onto the field and his whole back gets lit up with light as he steps onto the field. The video took about 90 man hours but we were very pleased with the result.

Great job, guys… and thanks for the connection!


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