Video Production Challenges: Tesla

Skillman Video Group, emphasizes grit as part of the company’s core values. This principle informs how they choose to approach every project for their clients.

In SVG’s recent work with Tesla, they proved just that.

boston video production training videoShoot Objectives

Tesla hired Skillman Video Group to produce a video for their solar power division. This project was unlike SVG’s more common work because it was not promotional in its purpose.

The video would serve as a way for the mechanical engineering department within Tesla to see exactly how their solar machinery was being installed.

Unexpected Challenges

When normally filming a video for a shoot, a video production company will have a certain understanding of the set they are working with. In many cases, they will use a studio to make sure all aspects of video production can be controlled.

For the Tesla shoot, SVG didn’t have that luxury.

The production team had very few details of the shooting location. This included not knowing if they would have access to a power source, whether the lighting would be suitable for shooting or if artificial lighting was needed, or even how long the shoot might take.

This meant that everything from battery to lighting to audio equipment had to be meticulously accounted for before the shoot.

In addition, the window for shooting and editing was short. They had a weekend to shoot and then produce a video by the following week.

How SVG Solves Its Problems

SVG understood the goals of the shoot and demonstrated a strong commitment to grit to overcome the challenges of this project.

First, they made sure to hire a crew that could adapt to an unstable work environment.

These members would need to be able to think on their feet and work through unexpected issues. SVG carefully selected crew members who they knew could work efficiently but who also had the correct equipment that was needed for an unpredictable shoot like this one.

When the production crew arrived, they found that the Tesla site lacked certain elements that would lend to an easy video shoot. For example, the power outlets were initially nowhere to be found.

SVG pivoted and looked for them in unconventional places, finally located a power source in the basement.

However, once in the basement, they would find that lighting was sub-optimal and would require artificial lighting. The only problem was that the frame rate of the lights being used would not work alongside the camera’s frame rate. The DP quickly pivoted and changed the camera’s reflex to adjust for the usage of solely artificial lighting.

This example, as well as the entire shoot, is a testament to SVG’s years of experience as a video production company.

This experience is exactly what allowed Skillman to produce a video exactly as Tesla needed in a time-constrained and unpredictable environment.