Recently, Skillman Video Group had the pleasure of working with MIT for the 2016 Doctoral Research Forum, which was held at one of MIT’s campuses overlooking the Boston harbor. This wasn’t the first time SVG has worked with MIT. Over the years, we have developed a relationship with the college. Throughout the years, we’ve filmed numerous presentations and projects beneath the school’s golden dome. We’ve formed this succesful relationship by bringing our industry-standard video production process to every project that we work on with MIT.
Call time for video production was 8:30 A.M., which gave our videographer and audio crew plenty of time to set up for the presentations beginning at 10:00 A.M. For this particular shoot it was important to bring in audio professionals, for each presenter needed to be hooked up with a wireless lavaliere that way their dialogue would relay into the audio board and then into our video cameras. It sounds complicated but all that really means is the audio from the presenters would be picked up by the video cameras. Having the audio crew at the video shoot made the transitioning from one presenter to the next easier, for we had a more than 3 wireless lavalieres so there wouldn’t have to be an exchange between each presenter once one was done. Audio was incredibly important to capture, and without it there would be no use for the film. Besides the wireless lavalieres, our audio crew also set up wireless microphones, one at the podium and one at the judge’s table to pick up their questions to the presenters.
Besides running audio for the day, our professional videographer had the duty of setting up two video cameras. When shooting presentations such as this one, it is difficult to track where the presenters might walk. In order to ensure each shot, we put tape on the floor so he or she would know where they could stand and where they couldn’t. We set-up one video camera in the back of the room to capture the presenter as well as the projection screen, and added another closer to the front of the room to focus solely on the presenter. A third camera was set up on a table at the front of the room only to record the projection screen, so the presenters slides would be accurately incorporated into the video during post-production. Although we had the back camera shooting the entire presentation, it was vital that we shoot the slides to know exactly where each one would go during the video editing process.
The entire day went by quickly and with minimal problems. One thing we made sure to tackle early on was the lighting situation. A lot of natural lighting flowed into the room, which can cause shadows and affect white balance settings on our cameras. In order to avoid this, we set-up two LED lights at the front of the room to offset the shadows. We also white balanced the cameras to match the indoor lighting temperatures.
Normally during a video production shoot, SVG is the one who is in charge of timing, but the MIT staff had the entire presentations on a timer. There were about 8 presenters in total and each had 10 minutes to discuss their research with an extra 10 minutes given to the judges for questions. Overall, the presentations flowed quickly and with rarely any lag time between each presenter, which made our job easier and allowed us to completely concentrate on filming.
Being hired by MIT over the years shows our commitment as a corporate video production company in Boston as well as our ability to produce a video that exceeds our client’s expectations. Shooting a live presentation can have its difficulties, but with our professional videographer and audio crew the outcome won’t be anything less than great.