Friday, May 27, 2011

Beloved B Roll

This has been a good week for the film. There are many reasons for this, but the one I'll write about now is alllllll about the B ROLL.

I've been searching for archival footage for a few years, but haven't been able to find what I need. One reason is because my research hasn't been in-depth. I'd skim, search, and get totally overwhelmed because there are so many aspects to the film running through my mind while doing any one task.

While searching I would think about the big picture: editing, sound, marketing, event planning, and so on. It wasn't hard to break the big project down into smaller pieces, but it was hard to keep those pieces separated while working. Searching for footage was also tough because I was so deep into editing the film. I would think, "This clip might go well here. No, I need to move all of those clips to a different section."

Uh, yeah. It's been a challenge.

So I changed my plan. I decided to wait until the film was almost finished before searching again. Then I'd have (a) the clarity of thought to look again, (b) renewed energy for the search, and (b) a semi-finished film so that I could add the final finesse easily.

A running list of the footage I needed to tell the story (refined from the previous general searches) helped, but I couldn't make any real progress in finding B Roll. Because of copyright issues or lack of funds, the footage I did find wasn't something I could use. For example, the clip of an explosion during the war was exactly what I needed for one segment but it was out of my budget. (I had to make sure I could feed my dog and pay the bills, remember?) Also, I discovered that I needed to be in the right frame of mind to sit down and give this part of the project its due diligence. In other words, I was relearning how to (1) separate the big picture out into smaller pieces and (2) keep those pieces separated so I wasn't distracted while working on the task at hand.

Well, there's some good news (for those still reading). This week Alena Koch (who is supporting our social media engagement efforts) gave me the greatest gift: links to copyright free footage that can be downloaded for free. All week long I have been mentally screaming, "JACK POT!" It is precisely what I need, and I am so grateful to her for finding it.

Now, on to the next steps: downloading, importing to Fincal Cut Pro (FCP), and adding these pieces to the timeline. I've not tried importing to FCP so I hope I don't have file format issues. Adding this B Roll to the timeline will take many hours, but it will be so worthwhile.


Philontilt said...

That's awesome! I'm glad that you we're able to find some archive footage. I find that is great for Public Domain footage. I notice that they even have a 29min film, Big Picture: Operation Montagnard. Here is the link... Perhaps this is the same stuff that you found. I enjoy your blog, and wish you the best in finishing up.

Camden Watts said...

Thanks so much for the link! I've been adding some of that footage to the film all weekend. It's really exciting! Wishing you the best as well. :)

Alena Koch said...

Thank you very much for the shout out Camden! I am so glad you have found the public domain footage helpful! Yay!
Phil you were spot on with the article you mentioned. That indeed was one of the articles found. They are a wealth of information. :)