Ideas for the Content of the Tanzania Video

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The Tanzania shoot was meant to be about the activities which the school I go to is involved in in Tanzania. It aimed at showing the different projects and how they progressed over time, from the beginning and how it was before the school was involved. It showed the different stages of the work from beginning to end

While shooting I got a variety of shots, from airport shots with the baggage check in to shots of the board showing the flight, group image as people are getting to leave, then shots as we pass the passport control in Kilimandjaro airport, showing the bus which was to take us to ISM and people getting off. The next morning I woke up early so I got some shots of the place where we were staying.

During the first day that we were there I got shots of the different projects which we were going to be working on. The next day when projects started taking place I began shooting each project individually so as to show how the work progressed. This continued on for a few days so I got quite a lot of footage of that. When two students were giving a lesson in one of the classes where there were eighty children I got shots of the students giving the lessons, then the people asking for the student to answer. I also got other shots such as showing how full the class was.

Losing your shot

When I was at Korongoni school I saw that some children were playing a game so I started shooting them playing a game. This game consisted of throwing a ball to someone and this person had to jump to catch it. The part which made it interesting is that another child was crouching so that the person would have to jump to grab the ball and would fall, maybe to train catching the ball for a football match. What messed up the shot is that children started playing in front of the camera blocking off the shot which I wanted to get.

The safari

The safari was a shoot in which I could not recharge my batteries and was running out of tape. I had enough battery to last me for three hours of shooting over five days and I used up most of my tape on the goat being slaughtered and prepared for eating by the Masai. After that most of the shots are interesting because of the fact that I took them although after watching many National geographic documentaries my shots didn't seem so good, shaking all the time because of the car's motor etc. Among the animals I got were rhinos, hippos, giraffes, lions, eyland, Thomson gazelle and ostriches.

The edit

I spent eleven hours on the edit, I had 8 hrs of material.

I proceeded in editing by copying all the video of projects onto one tape so that all the shots were grouped, I then went about viewing the footage and creating a list of shots which were useful and I worked on a rough cut which was around 50 minutes long. The rough cut was mainly consisting of shots which I found were good, showing the different projects, what we did during our free time as well as the safari. I showed it to one of the teachers which had been with us on the trip and she told me that she wanted it to be shortened.

I shortened the video in several ways, firstly getting rid of shots which did not contribute to the story, then seeing which shots were better and keeping those and discarding the others and for the safari I shortened it a lot. I decided that I would only use shots which were not shuddering because of the car's engine and this is when I brought in a second viewing monitor. I normally use the DHR 1000 editing deck and assemble the edits to have the shots I wanted. The problem was that the window for viewing the footage is fairly small making it harder to see the image. I then added the second monitor and this one took direct input from the camera (Sony PC7) thereby allowing me to get a better impression of what was good.

Through all this editing I got it down to 38 minutes and from that I brought it down to 28 minutes because that was the length wanted and by the time I had done that I had spent eleven hours on it and started to feel that I could have done it better because of the footage I knew I had but did not use. I suppose that after spending that much time on it I got bored and lost confidence and the night of the first projection I was fairly nervous about people's reactions to the video as I had done so much work.

The projection

The night I projected it was really good since I heard people laughing in certain parts of the room, laughing at parts which involved them, then at other moments hearing other in the room laughing and the most beautiful was hearing the whole room laugh and hearing people's comments saying that it was good. What I liked is that usually when you see a movie you hear some people saying what they thought of it and when I heard a few people say that they thought it was good that made me feel that I'd achieved my goal.

What I learned from the edit

Shooting something like that is interesting because it's such a large project, thought of it as shooting a documentary about the activities of my school n Tanzania and because of that I tried to show all the different stages and have to much footage, and I had all the footage I thought I needed, apart from shots of Moshi. I've recently found those shots although I haven't included them.

I've learnt not to use the zoom on the camera unless it was needed, I framed the shot and then started to record and because I had done that I felt the advantage when I was editing, not having to hunt for a few usable minutes but actually having choice of shots which I wanted to use.

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