I was between takes on set, and was approached by a crew member who I haven't seen since we took production classes in high school, together.
He was great fun, and always game to create. In high school, he helped me film some of my sketches. I figured: Let's see if we can't make something even cooler now that we're capable professionals in the field!
We got to talking, and decided to make a short project to beef up our reels. The conception was interesting, because the story/narrative will be the last thing injected. It's all being built by a list of shots, techniques, and special effects we want to experiment with. Once we look at the list, we then see if a story can tie it all together.
I know I'd like to work on:
1. Replacing the sky in a wide shot to look like an alien planet's world 2. Adding motion tracked effect like a HUD or helmet to a character 3. Include 3D models in a verité shot. This would likely be a ground turret, or a landing space ship. 4. Storyboarding
The first thing you do is PRACTICE. Do everything raw, and smooth out your obstacles ahead of time, because the shoot day will throw things at you no matter what.
I'm new to storyboarding. It's hard to not do too much, too soon - I find I draw too many useless details in my panels, so I found a great resource with some fantastic tips from this website.
Every project I do needs to offer me something new I want to try. With your art, it's important to make choices and decisions, otherwise everything you're doing is empty masturbation.
My last projects were about how to shoot, choreograph, and edit an effective action movie. I regarded the subject movement, and the camera movement, to be one single choreography (like a dance move). I wanted to know how to pace and cut it, how to score it, and how to build a an emotional moment.
When you enjoy a genre, emulating it can help you better understand it, and discover new things! Here's a look at the practice for that short film. It's called Dead Drop and were pleased to have won two separate awards in a shorts festival for it.
Shoots always have problems, always run longer than you think, and often give you a good curveball. Expecting and preparing is the best we can do - and part of that preparation is practicing everything you can ahead of time.