Behind the Lens: Documenting M.I.T.’s Doctoral Research Forum with Skillman Video Group

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Three Camera setup at the M.I.T. Sloan School of Business Doctoral Research Forum

Skillman Video Group (SVG) recently completed a successful live event shoot at the prestigious M.I.T. Sloan School of Management, documenting the Doctoral Research Forum.

This event featured four distinguished speakers presenting their doctoral theses, and while the shoot seemed straightforward, it demanded meticulous preparation and execution.

Early Morning Setup for a Flawless Shoot

The day began early, with the team arriving at 8:30 a.m. for a 10 o’clock shoot. Director of Photography Michael Brigida and CEO Christina Skillman joined me in the lobby of the Sloan School of Management.

The setup for this three-camera shoot commenced immediately. One camera was dedicated to capturing the projector screen, while the other two focused on the speakers. T

o ensure optimal lighting, three lights were employed: two open-faced lights and one LED fixture. One open-faced light was positioned high at the back of the room to cast a soft light on the subjects, while the other open-faced light and the LED fixture were placed to the right of the speakers to enhance their visibility.

Technical Precision and Preparation

After assisting Michael with blocking and white-balancing the cameras, we were set for the shoot.

The importance of preparation cannot be overstated; in live event production, being ready for any unforeseen issues is crucial. As guests and speakers began to arrive, the team remained vigilant, ensuring everything was in place.

Engaging Presentations and Efficient Filming

The forum kicked off with an attentive audience listening to each presenter, who spoke for approximately twenty minutes. Each presentation was followed by a rigorous Q&A session led by a panel of three judges.

Throughout the event, Michael and Christina expertly operated the cameras, capturing high-quality footage while maintaining the event’s integrity. Their efficient handling of the equipment ensured that every critical moment was documented.

A Smooth Transition from Set-Up to Strike

Following the final presentation and the conclusion of the Q&A session, it was time to strike the set. Breaking down the setup was significantly quicker than assembling it.

A hallmark of a professional production crew is the ability to leave the location as they found it. Disassembling the light stands, folding up the tripods, and packing up the cameras, we ensured the space was left pristine.

Everything was meticulously placed on the cart, marking the end of the shoot. However, the work was far from over.

The Essential Post-Production Phase

Post-production is where the raw footage is transformed into a polished product. The editing process involves reviewing the footage, selecting the best takes, and integrating the PowerPoint slides used during the presentations.

This phase is critical to ensure that the final video accurately reflects the quality and content of the live event. Only after this meticulous process can we confidently say, “It’s a wrap.”

Reflections on a Successful Project

This shoot at M.I.T. was not SVG’s first time filming the Doctoral Research Forum; it was our third. Each experience has reinforced the importance of preparation, technical expertise, and a commitment to excellence.

The relationship between M.I.T. and SVG is built on trust and a shared dedication to producing high-quality video content. Our consistent performance has solidified this partnership, and we look forward to many more successful collaborations in the future.

Final Thoughts

The Doctoral Research Forum at M.I.T. Sloan School of Management was a testament to SVG’s capability to handle live event production with precision and professionalism.

From early morning setups to the complexities of post-production, every step was executed with care and expertise.

This project highlighted the importance of detailed planning and the value of a skilled production team.