Scouting; when one goes out and formulates realistic ideas in their head that will make a shoot spectacular by finding the right location. Going out to the Old Sugar Mill was my first scouting job ever. In fact, before I was sent out I had no idea what scouting was. I thought it was an initiation into boy scouts. So when John sent me out on a scouting mission I presumed I wasn't going into the wilderness to meet-up with Russell from the movie Up. I drove out to middle-of-nowhere, where I only made two U-turns (a new minimal record) and arrived at a magnificent vintage sugar palace. Literally, it was an old sugar mill.
Everything had to move in double-hammer-quick-time; setting up the lights and cameras then take as many shots as quickly as possible only to move on to the next location and finally—hakuna-matata—start the whole thing over again three or four more times. Lighting was the biggest detail. We paid major attention to the HMI lights; these lights had about the power of the sun and the heat of the Mohave Desert. One little bump could cause too harsh of lighting on the talent or too soft. It was extremely imperative to tweak and pinch the lights so that the camera catches the full Hollywood-glow from the talent.
As I was running around I learned the different mindsets of the client, talent, and the camera crew. We, the camera crew, were sprinting from place to place and stationing the lights for the Director and Director of Photography (John and Phil Mohr) so that the client pleased with the outcome. The client, overlooked the Creative Director who looked over the camera crew so that the talent is in the right position as they imagined. When the camera rolls, and the client is pleased, its show-time for the talent. I thought about what it takes to impress the viewer, to get the slightest amount of attention, or even a second glance. It requires more extraneous work than a casual YouTube online-video. We had to stand on c-stands, swat the mosquitos, and gently push the talent to hurry up. A full-day of shooting at night was a learning experience but worth every second.
I had fun and was able to build-up a good rapport amongst the clientele. I also expressed my future desires with everyone in case they had a foot in the door with sports broadcasting or the Olympics. If I pursue my dream I have to learn how to deal with negative energy yet create a positive cover in the process. This was one of my favorite shoots and I hope in my future dream career I can quadruple the amount of fun. Not all interns are able to experience a production from start to finish. A lot can be learned from being a fly-on-the-wall.
[Ariel studies French at the University of Hawaii at Manoa and will be an exchange student in Paris by the end of Summer. She chose to intern with Christensen Media in the mean time to better her skills in media production.]