Thursday, 10 April 2014

How my documentary shoot went - with photos.

In my last post I mentioned that I'd been asked to do a mini documentary, and earlier in the week (Tuesday) the crew arrived at my home to begin shooting. The short film forms part of a series which focusses on author success stories for Amazon KDP, which is where my publishing story began in 2011.

It was an early start with people turning up from 06:30 as they wanted to catch my daily routine, which begins when I take my wife to the train station - and what a lot of people! I didn't really know what to expect, perhaps three or four, but there were around ten in total, covering the filming, lighting, sound, stills photography, there was also the interviewer (of course) and several other people doing things I mostly became oblivious to as I was directed to do this and that. There was even someone there for hair and makeup, which for obvious reasons (see profile pic) put a smile on my face. I do hope she wasn't on half pay for only being able to do half the job!

It was pretty cold at around seven degrees Celsius while we were shooting at my home, so if you can see my knees knocking in the film when it comes out, it was as much from the chilly weather as it was from being nervous - honest! I enjoyed what they call the B-roll sections most of all, where I was asked to do things without being mic'd up - walking here and there, or sitting at my desk typing. I found the interview sections quite tough, but I'm assured the crew were very happy with the day and that everything's going to be great. 'Of course it is,' he added, swallowing dryly.

I met a really great bunch of people and took a few photos of some of them while they were setting up. After that, from the time I put my own camera away, to the time the director called 'It's a wrap', which was in London at about 17:00, it all seems to have passed in a blur. It really was great fun, and although I usually shy away from anything like this, I'm glad I said yes. It's left me with some wonderful memories. In the film You'll have a tour of my writer's cabin and my garden, which although not at it's best until June is looking very spring-like. You'll get to see my writer's hat and find out why I wear it whenever I'm writing. We'll go for a walk along the river where I've broken through many a plot barrier, and then we'll jump on the train to London and visit St Paul's Cathedral, which is central to the plot of my third Jefferson Tayte mystery The Last Queen of England, and was where I felt the most nervous about being interviewed because it was such a busy area - and there I am sitting on a low wall beside the pavement with a fluffy boom mic dangling above my head as everyone in the world (it seems) passes by, wishing I could melt into the stonework. I think that section of the film could be quite short.

I'm told my mini documentary should be ready for release sometime in May, so stay tuned as they say, and maybe we can watch it together as I'm sure I'm going to need plenty of support and encouragement to click that play button. So, am I glad I did it? Yes, absolutely. Would I do it again? I don't know. You'll have to ask me once I've seen the film!