Not Trek or SF, but my latest music video work

Discussion in 'Fan Productions' started by Maurice, Jul 27, 2012.

  1. Maurice

    Maurice Vice Admiral Admiral

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    "I Must Watch YouTube" is my 6th music video for The Kinsey Sicks, and is a sort of experiment in using viral video to comment on itself.


    To get the viral feel, I asked the singers to film themselves while on tour using their consumer camcorder and webcams, and then created doppelgangers of certain websites. There are scads of YouTube clips throughout, and tons of textual in-jokes.
     
  2. JimTheBuilder

    JimTheBuilder Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    In a van, down by the river in Vermont
    :rofl: What pretty "ladies"...lol. They remind me of The Lamay Sisters up here in Vermont...
     
  3. Maurice

    Maurice Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Heh. The Kinseys have been performing for 19 years, and there are two feature films about them ("I Wanna Be a Republican" and "Almost Infamous"). I've directed/produced a total of six music videos for them and one promo spot they use for bookings. That promo spot got revised and is actually used to open their current touring show.


    It's funny, because I literally went from editing Polaris one day to editing this video the next. It's fun to work on such completely different kinds of projects. In Polaris I'm worried about pacing and emotion and drama and continuity, but on a music video it's about images that enhance the music. I had to change one section because it just didn't work visually with the beats, but I found if I slid the entire section backwards four beats so it started on a measure the thing that didn't work before suddenly was just fine.

    BTW, that video is chock full of gags that you might not see unless you read the "user comments" or read the faux webpages.
     
  4. Solarbaby

    Solarbaby Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Haha that was different from what I was expecting to see on this forum. Thats so excellently edited. I didn't get half of the references but they all made sense. The one I did get were placed perfectly and with great timing. This must have taken forever.

    Bravo
     
  5. Maurice

    Maurice Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Probably not!
    The bulk of it was done in a week, but it was a week of impossibly long days.

    If you watch it again, pay attention to all the texts. There are also some hidden links if you mouse over the correct spots at certain points in the video. ;)
     
  6. M'Sharak

    M'Sharak Definitely Herbert. Maybe. Moderator

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  7. Maurice

    Maurice Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Thanks M'Sharak!

    BTW, I was contracted to make another video for the group right after the YouTube one. This one's much more political and was made—start to finish—in than 5 days! Whew!

    [yt]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BO7dHmNGj9A&cc_load_policy=1[/yt]
    Click to watch!

    [LEFT]If anyone finds themselves offended I suggest seeing a doctor about a possible irony deficiency. ;)
    [/LEFT]
     
  8. Kelso

    Kelso Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Cute!
     
  9. Maurice

    Maurice Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Thanks, Kelso.

    Since this is a fan productions forum, I'll try to make this a useful post by talking about the challenges of a shoot like this.

    PLANNING
    The original plan was to shoot a different song (a parody of "Three Little Maids from School" from The Mikado titled "Eliminate the Schools"), but the group's publicist wanted something more directly applicable to the election, so we abruptly shifted gears and agreed upon this song because it was fast and funny and really sharp. BUT, there were a few problems.

    First, I had to see the show again to see the number so I could figure out how much of the stage choreo I could use (luckily, most of it). Second, was the problem of the song as recorded...

    AUDIO
    Although they are an a capella singing group (technically Dragappella™), I don't have the Kinseys sing live on these shoots because:

    1. you do so many takes you'd wear their voices out right before a show
    2. it's tough to mic four singers shooting in multiple locations and have the sound be consistent
    But in this case, while the song is on their latest album, over months performing it they sped it way up and shortened it. We all wanted the current version, which meant re-recording it. As such, arrangement were made so that right after a show they got out of costume and we bolted over to a recording studio (at 11pm) and they recorded the song.

    [​IMG]
    Studio session at Coast Recorders.
    Left to right: Ben Schatz, Jefferey Manabat, Spencer Brown, Irwin Keller.
    Fortunately, since they've been performing it live all year they aced it and take 3 was basically perfect. The engineer emailed me a rough "bounce" of the song in the wee hours that I could have them lip sync to (with a 1, 2, 3 at the top so they'd know when to start).

    SHOWROOM SHOOT
    Because of severe time pressures I'd decided the best thing to do was shoot at the hotel and showroom where they were performing. That way they could get made up and in costume early, we could shoot, they could freshen up and go directly on stage.

    The showroom was convenient because we could use the stage lights for most of the lighting rather than bringing in other lights, but it meant moving about 20 tables and audio monitors right before a show and then getting everything back in place before they had to let the patrons in.

    For speed, I decided to limit the coverage to:

    1. super wide shot that I could do a matte extension on (the opening shot)
    2. full shot of the entire group
    3. 2-shot of "Trixie" and "Rachel"
    4. 2-shot of "Trampolina" and "Winnie"
    5. worm's-eye view of the leg kicks
    I saved the legs kicking for last because

    • it was the shot I could live without if time ran out
    • we could have our P.A.s and the staff start getting the showroom back together while we got that.
    Kicks aside, from each angle we covered the whole song two or three times, thus ensuring sufficient coverage to get the a video together even if something prevented us from getting more.

    The only things I really needed to change in the choreography were
    have them march in place in the two-shots rather than come towards the camera
    eliminate the bit where they turn around and grab the flags, instead we did a few takes of just the end of the song wherein the performers already the flags in hand and raised them into shot. You have to think about how this stuff will cut, and while a music video rarely needs the kind of continuity needed by a narrative film, it's good to keep in mind how the pieces might fit together or not.

    As efficient as we were, we still ran about 15 minutes long, and even caused the show to be late (the audience lined up outside didn't seem to find once they were told we were shooting a video).

    GREENSCREEN SHOOT
    Now, once we left the showroom we had about an hour til they needed to be on stage, but I'd come prepared for this, and before we shot on the stage I, my DP and a PA had gone to one of the hotel rooms and set up a simple greenscreen (a 4.5' wide roll of chromakey green paper) and illuminated them with four 16" china ball lanterns. Not ideal, but workable for a simple setup.
    [​IMG]
    "Rachel" (Ben Schatz) sings in front of a simple greenscreen illuminated by
    four 16" china balls. The green was much more even from the camera POV.
    The camera is a Canon 5D, operated by Mr. WA. The laptop is playing sound.

    [LEFT]We arrived in the room, switched the lights on, got the camera in position, and were shooting within five minutes. I had each singer do the entire song twice, first sort of serious, the second more nutty. As we finished with each singer, we released them to head back to the dressing room to touch-up so the show could go on.
    [/LEFT]

    [​IMG]
    From this angle you can see the small "beauty" light aimed at the singer's face
    (foreground left). I'm starting audio playback on the laptop.

    While we were shooting, I started dumping the contents of the camera's first memory into my laptop, and did the second immediately upon wrapping, which meant we had a backup (cards and computer) and I could immediately begging log and transfer of the footage after we finished. When we wrapped, I dumped the second card while we broke down the gear.

    And that's it for the shoot. The next four days were wall-to-wall editorial.
     
  10. Maurice

    Maurice Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Walking distance from Starfleet HQ
    Sorry to bump this old thread, but I thought some of you might have some interest in my most recent video work for The Kinsey Sicks. This one is definitely NSFW or for children due the frequent use of the F word. :)

    [yt]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bVBonU2NwtU[/yt]
     

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