LUTV Blog #2

by davidamelotti

In the past few weeks since my last post, I have re-learned a valuable lesson that I thought I had ingrained in my head before graduating high school. I was re-introduced to the idea of sticking to my gut this past week when I was on location for my first package for LUTV. The Daniel Boone home was having “Pioneer days,” a weekend event that transported visitors back to 1819 when Daniel Boom roamed the earth accomplishing extraordinary feats that contributed to his legend. I had been assigned to get interviews and participate in events and I was excited for four hours of conversing with staff, guests to the site as well as the idea of firing a 19th century musket.

Once arriving on location and we begin shooting, my crew who was not as familiar with the concept starting placing doubt in my mind. I was wearing a polo and shorts and there was concern about if that was appropriate. That conversation is too late at 8:45 A.M., we are 45 minutes away from campus in Defiance, MO and the event and my crew was to be finished at noon. I let the extra commentary get in my head so I removed myself from the shots and we focused on interviews. That was a mistake. I don’t have regrets but I have many disappointments and one is allowing this great opportunity melt in my hands.

Interestingly enough, by discussing this situation I also have to acknowledge the lack of communication I had with my crew. Maybe I could have done a better job sharing my vision for the day. There is no going back to fix the mistakes and failure in execution. From here, I can only move forward knowing the decisions I made and how to avoid those errors on future shoots. The worst feeling of this experience wasn’t the disappointment in not firing the musket, it was Brandon and Peter asking me what happened because I missed the concept entirely. Failure is difficult and when you let others down who believe you are capable is near rock bottom.

As far as the package itself, it really was one of the best experiences I have had in college regarding my education. Interviews are my favorite. They are something I truly take pride in because I get to learn about a particular event but whatever the individual on camera says, I’m partially responsible for. Now by no means am I preparing their answers but I feel I have an ability to place people at ease and when I do so, people open up and show personality. I think of the William Ray interview I did. Ray is a Lindenwood University Volunteer and he was incredibly enthusiastic. We placed him on the front steps of a log cabin, pressed record, and begin asking him questions that he seemed to truly appreciate. He was laughing and joking around and those are the characteristics I want to make visible. It may have been the best interview of the day.

For more information on the site itself, checkout the The Daniel Boone Home for yourself!

Editing. The concept seems fairly simple: lay your audio, take your accumulated clips and lay them over. Keep it around 1:40 and everyone is pleased. As Jill told me on Wednesday, there are two different results among people when they make their first package: one makes theirs too short, the other runs longer than needed. To no surprise of those who know me, I went 23 seconds over the preferred run time. My thinking, I’d rather have too much than not enough. With that said, the entire aspect of writing a script, assembling clips, and editing until completed was a very satisfying experience. It was reassurance that I had done something correct. I had strong interviews, good b-roll, and a variety of shots. For my first package, I’m pleased. There are many things I’d like to do better so knowing where to start for the next one isn’t a problem at all.

In fact, my stress that day didn’t come from finishing my package, it was that I was put on weather for the first time in my life and I had absolutely no idea what I was doing. I wrote a script that I believed to suffice and I practiced in front of the camera for about 45 minutes. There were a few quick prayers before going live. I survived the broadcast and found myself being proud that I didn’t back down.

Another reason why Lindenwood’s television program is so fantastic, providing breaking news to the campus and nearby community. Check this out!