These past few weeks I have been getting used to the new way of learning: at home distance learning. At first it was very difficult and hard to adjust to my new schedule and school online in general. For broadcast tech, I was planning on continuing to work on my Belize documentary and turn that in for my first distance learning project. However, my plans were changed because I was asked to make a promotional video. One of my dads friends owns a restaurant in the area and wanted to get the word out that they were still open for business during the COVID-19 pandemic. I was glad to help him, and he told me what he was looking for. I used what he said he wanted in the video to start creating my idea then did a mental storyboard of all the shots and sequences I would use. At first, I had a lot more shots planned out in my head, but after shooting and editing I realized that I did not have enough time for all of them. I ended up having to cut a lot out. Overall, this was a great experience for me not only to get more experience working with other people, but also to help out during this pandemic!
This semester, in Broadcast Tech III, my primary focus is going to be continuing to make and finish my documentary. I realized that the best way to approach the over 800 pieces of footage that I have is to make small news packages of each character, and then piece them all together. So, this month that is exactly what I did! I choose one of my really good interviews that had a lot of b-roll opportunities, and I made a news package using a teacher from Ladue and a teacher from Belize. This was a big stride in the process for me because I was able to sort through a lot of the b-roll which will help me a lot when I begin editing the other interviews. In addition, this month I learned a lot more about editing with imovie and Final Cut Pro. These new tricks helped me fix some of the problems I had with sound quality. Overall, I think the process will be a very long, but rewarding one! Click here to see this news package, and the trailer for my documentary!
In the last two months, my broadcast class was able to produce two additions of our news show, Ladue View. For Novembers edition, I had the chance to be the director. At first, I was not very comfortable doing it because there was a pretty big learning curve. However, we did a lot of practicing and as I continued to practice I grew more comfortable and learned what to do and how to do it. One of the most important parts is making sure that everyone is doing their job correctly, so that the timing can be perfect. To get the timing right is very challenging because the director needs to be completely in sync with the person running the aja, the floor director, and the tech board director. This is something that is very challenging, but once we were able to get into a good rhythm, it got easier. My favorite part about being director was how I was able to do so many different jobs at once. Overall, I really liked being the director, and I definitely want to do it again!
This month, my main focus was working on a trailer for my documentary, but I also helped film Ladue's first ever home football game. The new stadium was finished this year, so it was a very big deal to have Friday night lights for the first time ever. I worked alongside May and Ava and together the three of us tried to capture not only the highlights of the game from that night, but from all the events that occurred. We got footage of the tunnel that was formed in the beginning, the chants put on from the student section, and the different aspects of the new stadium like concessions and the plaza. In addition, we also filmed the half time shows with performances from Ladue's dance teams, The Laduettes and Ladue Sparkling Rams. Through filming this historic night, I learned that during sports filming, it is important to get footage other than the actual game that is going on, and sometimes those shots are better than the ones on the field.
For this months project, my main focus was working on my Belize Documentary. I had a lot of interviews and b-roll to sort through, so I made picking out quality sound bites my main priority. I knew that there was no way I could finish the entire documentary by the end of the deadline, so I decided to put the good soundbites and b-roll that I found into a short trailer. At first, I was having a really hard time figuring out how everything was supposed to go together, so I decided that I needed to pick out the music first before I put any of the footage together. It took me more time to pick out the music than expected because I was looking for something very specific. I knew that I wanted something that started off slow, picked up speed in the middle, and ended with a big finish. After looking through many files, I finally found an instrumental pice that I really liked. I added the music onto my time line, then I found the three soundbites that best represented the documentary as a whole. Once I added those to the beginning, middle, and end, I was able to add corresponding b-roll. This trailer was super helpful to me because not only does it give a preview as to what the documentary is going to be, but it helped me identify what my main focus and theme is going to be. I am hoping that I will be able to edit and finish the documentary by the middle of winter.
For the first project of the new school year, me and two classmates decided to do a news package on one of the biggest food crazes of the year-bubble tea! For this news package we decided to investigate what it was, and figure out which place in St.Louis would be the best to go to. First, we interviewed different student at Ladue to get their opinion on the different flavors, places, and kinds of bubble tea. We also researched what is what and where it comes from. After narrowing down are research to two places in Saint Louis, and two different kinds of drinks we picked two students to be our reviewers. At each place, the reviewers tried a flavor of bubble tea, and gave their opinion and a rating, at the end they decided which place is best!
One of my biggest projects that will be working on this year is a documentary about a two week volunteer trip that I went over the summer. My mom and my aunt started an organization called Teachers For A Better Belize otherwise known as TFABB. Through this organization they bring teachers from aroundt he country to the southern region of Belize and put on workshops for the schools to help equip the Belizean teachers with better teaching strategies. In addition, they donate many books and supplies to the different schools. This past summer I was lucky enough to be able to go to Belize with them as a student volunteer!I filmed the many different aspects of what we did so that I could make a documentary about TFABB! Stay tuned throughout the year for more updates and the final project!
Our final assignment for the year was to create a complete news package about whatever story we wanted. I chose to interview my grandma, Nancy Lang about how she has been working on her geology for the last twenty five years. The entire process taught me a lot of things. First of all, in the beginning, I was a little shy about getting the b-roll I wanted. I let grandma do her thing and I just went with it.When I went back to edit, I realized I didn't have nearly enough, and the shots weren't as good as they could have been. I had to go and reshoot the b-roll, which in the end turned out to be a very good thing. This time, I directed my grandma, while still getting shots that were authentic. This made the story make a lot more sense. In addition, I became a lot better at interviewing with this project. I had to interview two people, my grandma and my grandpa so I had to learn how to get the information I wanted, with out going to far off track. In addition, I became better at coming up with good follow up questions based on the answers I was given. Lastly, this project taught me what to do when things go wrong. When I was doing my interviews, my camera died, so I had to use my phone for the camera and hold it steady while I was conducting the interviews. Overall, this project helped me advance my skills in all areas of Broadcast Technology, and tied the entire semester, everything that we have learned together.
Commitment. Passion. Motivation. Achieve Your Dreams, these six words are the words that I came up with for my six word story, a project that we recently finished in class. For this project we were assigned to create a story using only six words, then film a different shot for each word. What gave me the idea for using these words was all the different dreams and goals that I have set for myself. I also thought that this was a topic that many people my age could relate to, we all have goals for ourselves that we work hard to accomplish. That is how I came up with the second half, "Achieve Your Dreams." With the first three words I wanted to convey what goes into achieving these dreams that we have, and for me in particular it is getting into Stanford University. Thats how I got, "Commitment. Passion. Motivation." Together these words formed my six word story. The shots I used for these six words went in this order, extreme close up, medium (low angle), wide (high angle), medium (in mailbox), extreme close up, close up (low angle). I used these angles and shots to best describe the struggle and effort that comes with achieving your dreams. I used the different angles to highlight the action that was most prominent for that shot. For example, when I put the camera in the mailbox and filmed receiving a letter that way it showed the importance of the letter. In addition, when I did a high angle for the word "motivation", it symbolized the effort that is put into my dream, and how motivation plays a big role. What I really liked about this project was how it forced us to be creative with our word choices, and tell an entire story using only six words. This really pushed me to think and the product was super cool! Overall I really loved this project!
To watch my video click here!!!
In class we recently started a new unit, six-word stories. This unit was inspired by Earnest Hemingway, an American author from the 20s. He is most famous for his controversial six word story, "For sale: Baby shoes, Never worn." This six word story is controversial in the way that it was created. Hemingway was at lunch with his friends when he told his friends that he could write a novel in six words. They did not believe him so they made a ten dollar bet. Hemingway proceeded to write these famous words on a napkin, earning his ten dollars. After becoming famous people realized that Earnest Hemingway had worked for the newspaper and that there had been a bunch of different versions of the six word story in years past. For example one that came out in 1906 was, "For sale, baby carriage, never used," this among others were in a news paper edits so it is very possible that he saw these and used them. Although it is controversial, no one will never be known how Hemingway came up with this infamous story, whether it was stolen or not. These 6 small words led to a trend of many famous six word stories. With a broad range of meanings, some of these include, "I asked. You answered with silence," "Found true love. Married someone else," and "It cost too much, staying human."
To view the websites I used click here and here