Cisco video shoot

Here are a few shots from a recent video shoot I was on for Cisco. This was a pretty simple production with just one guy talking straight to the camera in front of a green screen. For those of you who don’t know, a green screen lets you add pretty much any sort of visuals or graphics you want after filming. In this case, we’re going to put the actor in a simple environment that’s mostly white, with photos and videos floating around him in individual windows. Sometimes he reaches out and “grabs” one of these windows and moves it around. The motion graphics artists time the movement of whatever they add on screen to the movement of his hand. They also resize the windows so sometimes one will get bigger and fill the entire screen when the on-screen host “taps” it. When it all comes together, it looks really good, even though in real life, as you can see here, it’s nothing but video equipment, wires, cables, clunky lights and fluorescent green backdrops that can really feel like an assault on your eyes after eight hours.

We’re producing eight brand training modules for Cisco to use worldwide. I wrote the scripts, chose the cast, and sat in on the shoot as my friend, David Creech, directed the talent. This was one of those rare projects that came out even better than one thinks it will. Our talent was so good at his job that we finished early on the second day of shooting. Now comes the “easy” part of editing and developing the motion graphics. I say easy because all I have to do is provide feedback on the cut and approve it or ask for revisions. Whoo¬†hoo!

The top shot shows Jason, our host, on the monitor. You can see him from the side just to the left of the monitor. He’s facing the camera, which is behind the big black curtain.

The middle shot is even more “behind the scenes,” showing the table where the clients are sitting, watching how things look on the monitor. They’re able to provide feedback for each take as we film.

The bottom photo is Jenny, our producer, who put the entire shoot together. Even though this was a relatively small shoot, it’s a big undertaking to coordinate everything and everyone: director, DP, lighting, grip, PA, craft services, studio, equipment, hair/makeup, wardrobe, teleprompter, talent, client, agency, and more. It’s always a huge relief when it’s over and everyone’s happy!

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