The Shut Up and Shoot Documentary Guide: A Down & Dirty DV Production / Edition 1

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Overview

To anyone who wants to make a doc but doesn’t have a lot of time, money, or experience, Anthony Artis says: "It’s time to get down and dirty!"—a filmmaking mentality that teaches you how to be creative with your resources and do more with less. Written by a guerrilla filmmaker for guerrilla filmmakers, this all new edition of a bestselling classic doesn’t just tell you, it shows you how to make your projects better, faster, and cheaper and has been updated to include:

  • Fresh coverage of DSLR cameras, new lighting gear, visual storytelling, postproduction techniques, and distribution in an online era.
  • 500+ full color illustration, timesaving tips, and practical input from filmmakers that you can immediately apply to your own projects
  • New sections on fundraising, choosing lenses, shooting internationally, the 4K format, shooting on iPhones, previsualization, wireless microphones, dolly and slider shots, staging remote interviews, transcripts, and more
  • This bonus website (www.focalpress.com/cw/artis) features video and audio tutorials, storyboards, releases, equipment guides, and checklists.

Hustle up a winning documentary crew and choose the right equipment for the job. Learn to shoot more polished, professional-looking footage and interviews on any budget, any camera, any time. Plan through all the obstacles, avoid common filmmaking pitfalls and tighten your lighting, audio, and visual storytelling skills before you hit the streets. The hotly anticipated second edition of The Shut Up and Shoot Documentary Guide will help you do all this and more!

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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
Says Anthony Q. Artis, "This book is for people who are done talking about the films they want to make and who are ready to shut up and shoot." He's perfectly summarized his book's exquisite accomplishment. While focused first and foremost on documentaries, this is an utterly indispensable resource for anyone who wants to get their films made, on any budget.

Save theory for later. Here are "down and dirty, broke-as-a-joke" ways to get great location shots, coax a "film look" from DV footage, feed your crew well. Here's how to shoot handheld, clean lenses, avoid blowing circuits. Here are easy powder makeup techniques for too-shiny faces. Here's how to find good, low-cost crew (and avoid bad crew members). How to do guerrilla production planning and budgeting. Smart, fun, and on your side, Shut Up and Shoot is packed with good stuff you'll otherwise have to learn the hard way. Bill Camarda, from the December 2007 Read Only

From the Publisher
"I would highly recommend this as a handbook to be carried by all students and referred to at every step of the way. Everything the aspiring film maker needs to know about shooting anything at all is contained in these pages." -Wendy Laybourn FBKS, Network Nine News - UK

"If you’re interested in making a documentary, you should absolutely check out The Shut Up and Shoot Documentary Guide. It’s an outstanding plain-language primer written by a man with passion, experience, and the ability to make the more technical aspects of production approachable."

- David Indish, Bricks of the Dead

"I vouch for this book… extremely helpful for the newborn documentary filmmaker."

-Albert Maysles, Grey Gardens, Salesman, Gimme Shelter

"Anthony Artis' book is the best, most informative and entertaining book about making documentaries that I have come across."

-Lloyd Kaufman, President of Troma Entertainment and creator of The Toxic Avenger

"As my teacher, Anthony Artis taught me how to cut production down to the bare essentials to get it done... Without this foundation I would never have been able to keep up at the White House."

-Arun Chaudhary, First Official White House Videographer and author of First Cameraman

"Anthony Artis' The Shut Up and Shoot Documentary Guide is a good primer for the entry-level documentary filmmaker, presented in a breezy, down-to-earth vernacular style."
-Thomas White, Editor of Documentary Magazine, a publication of the International Documentary Association

"A superb addition to the 'how to'subsection of your library, Artis' tome is concise, while containing useful, accessible information on every aspect of documentary filmmaking, all with a doggedly hands-on attitude. Five stars." - Empire Magazine

"The book is a very easy, straightforward read with plenty of graphics to demonstrate proper and improper techniques. It is also extremely user friendly in its layout… It will be helpful to you for many, many years to come." - Microfilmmaker Magazine

"Anthony Artis has consolidated years of practical, professional experience into the quintessential blueprint for documentary filmmakers. I have used the techniques in this book on my documentary and narrative film projects, knowing that budget should never stop a filmmaker from seeing his or her vision through. I highly recommend this book if you want to turn your limitations into assets. Now shut up and shoot!" -Pete Chatmon, Writer/Producer/Director PREMIUM and 761st

"Plain and simple, nuts and bolts on making documentary films. It's told in a conversational manner with no wasted or minced words and, most importantly, no BS! Few books of this type would mention how important it is to take care of your crew and how that can dramatically improve the outcome of your film. Definitely told from an insider’s point of view with useful and practical info that won't go over your head." -Cliff Charles, DP, When the Levees Broke, ThePeoplesDP.com

"The practical approach promised in the title is delivered fully by the text. Artis exposes the pitfalls that can swallow a beginning filmmaker and offers straightforward advice to avoid them." -Jonathan Luskin, Flying Moose Pictures, San Francisco.

"The book is comprehensive and detailed. Indeed the most comprehensive practical (I do hate the word 'guerrilla', a filmmaker is surely at the end of the day just a filmmaker!) guide to documentary filmmaking I have ever come across! ... It has three principle outstanding qualities that you seldom find individually let alone together in the same book. The first is how comprehensive it is; the second is how intensely practical it is; and the third is how clear it is... But remember that this book will not tell you how to make a great film or indeed a good film. Or indeed even pretend to. But it will give you clear and practical guidance on how to make your film. And without such guidance it is hard to even get started. This book will help you do so much more than that!
-Nik Powell, Director of the National Film and Television School in London

"While focused first and foremost on documentaries, this is an utterly indispensable resource for anyone who wants to get their films made, on any budget... Smart, fun, and on your side, Shut Up and Shoot is packed with good stuff you'll otherwise have to learn the hard way."
-Bill Camarda, from the December 2007 Barnes and Noble Newsletter

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780240809359
  • Publisher: Taylor & Francis
  • Publication date: 9/14/2007
  • Edition description: Book and DVD
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 296
  • Sales rank: 321,634
  • Product dimensions: 7.34 (w) x 10.16 (h) x 0.65 (d)

Meet the Author

Anthony Q. Artis is a 20-year veteran of the film and TV industry whose features and TV shows have screened at the Tribeca Film Festival, the IFP Market, Slamdance, and Cinequest, as well as on MTV and the Independent Film Channel. He has worked professionally in positions as diverse as producer, gaffer, and cinematographer, and survived more low-budget shoots than he cares to admit. He remains an active filmmaker, Adjunct Professor of film and TV at NYU and is the author of the bestselling Shut Up and Shoot Documentary Guide (2007), The Shut Up and Shoot Freelance Video Guide (2010) and numerous filmmaking courses on Lynda.com.

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Table of Contents

CRAZY MAD THANX
PREFACE
INTRODUCTION
1-PREPRODUCTION
GETTING STARTED
. Learning the Filmmaking Process
Film Books
DVD Extras
Podcasts
Workshops
Cable TV
Instructional DVDs
Web Sites
Crewing
Doing
. Been There, Done That: Why Make a Documentary?-Albert Maysles
. Doc Preproduction
Introduction
Documentary Goal

GETTING THE IDEA
. Brainstorming Your Idea
. The Importance of Research
. Been There, Done That: Research and Fact Checking-Safi ya Mcclinton
. Interview Subjects
. Approach and Storytelling
. Been There, Done That: Concept and Storytelling-Sam Pollard
. The Production Plan
GETTING THE MONEY
. Been There, Done That: How to Raise Money-Michelle Coe
. Budgeting Your Doc
Budgeting Forms
Budgeting Software
Estimating Costs
. Hot Tip: 4 Common Budgeting Mistakes
. Been There, Done That: Raising the M-O-N-E-Y-Rose Rosenblatt & Marion Lipschutz
. Hot Tip: 10 Ways to Lower Your Budget
. Where to Find Prices
. Budgeting-A Final Word
GETTING THE GEAR
. Choosing an Equipment Package
. Been There, Done That: Using and Learning the Tools of the Trade-Susan Buice and Arin Crumley
. Video Formats 101
What's Up with High Def?
. A Quick Lesson in Tech Video
What Are Pixels?
What Is Resolution?
Progressive vs. Interlaced
HDV Image Size and Resolution
. Hot Tip: What to Look for in a Camera
. The Guide to the Camera Guide
. Camera Guide Key
Canon 3-Chip Mini-DV Camera Guide
JVC and Panasonic 3-Chip Mini-DV Camera Guide
Sony 3-Chip Mini-DV Camera Guide
. Buying vs. Renting
. Hot Tip: Educational Equipment Access
. Doc Equipment Packages
. Hot Tip: 5 Tips for Traveling with Equipment
. Before You Shoot
Be Practical
GETTING THE CREW
. The Doc Crew
. Good Crew, Bad Crew
Introduction
Good Crew Members
Bad Crew Members
. Been There, Done That: The Producer-Director Relationship-Christina Dehaven
. Assembling a Crew
. The Crew Meeting
. Feeding the Crew
. Hot Tip: 5 Down and Dirty Food Ideas

2-LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION
MANAGING LOCATIONS
. Shooting on Location
Managing Arrangements with Your Subjects
Interview Locations
. Location Management 101
Introduction
. Sensitive Location Overview
. PR Reps and Media Liaisons
LOCATION LOGISTICS
. Hot Tip: How Not to Get Your Camera Jacked
Dealing with PR Reps and Other Media Liaisons
Doc Location Ethics
The Exception to the Rule
. Been There, Done That: Being Prepared for Remote Locations-Alrick Brown and Micah Schaffer
. Transportation Considerations
. Hot Tip: Stealth Shooting Tactics 101
OTHER LOCATION ISSUES
. Location Releases and Insurance
Location Releases
Location Insurance
. Insurance Issues
Do You Really Need Insurance?
Shooting Without Insurance
. Hot Tip: Shooting in Da 'Hood

3-IMAGE CONTROL AND CAMERA WORK
IMAGE BASICS
. Basics of Image Control
Introduction
. Focus
Hallmark of the Pros
Common Focus Hazards
. Exposure
Light Is Good
Aperture and F-Stops
. Zebra Stripes and Gain
Your Friend the Zebra Stripes
Using Gain to Boost Exposure
. Color Temperature
Color Temperature Basics (Very Basic)
. White Balance
When to White Balance
White Balance Special Effects
Mixed Sun and Indoor Lighting
. Shutter Speed Basics
Motion and Shutter Speed
. Shutter Speed and Movement
BEYOND THE BASICS
. Hot Tip: Creating a "Film Look”
. Manual vs. Auto Functions
Use Manual Controls
. When to Use Auto Functions
Auto Zoom vs. Manual Zoom
Surprises and Panics
Run-and-Gun Shooting
. Been There, Done That: Capturing Truth-Albert Maysles
. Using the Zoom Control
Adjusting Your Shot
Using the "Digital Zoom” Function
. Handheld Secrets of the Pros
Forget the Tripod and Go Handheld
Handheld Editing Considerations
Motivation and Style
. Handheld Camera Positions
OTHER CAMERA CONSIDERATIONS
. Using Tripods
Introduction
General Tripod Tips
. Pre-Roll and End-Roll
Pre-Roll and End-Roll for Each Shot
. Set Recording Protocol
. Color Bars
Why You Should Use Color Bars
How to Adjust NTSC Color Bars
. Labeling Tapes
Pre-Labeling Blank Tapes
Record Tabs
. Hot Tip: Cleaning Your Lens

4-LIGHTING
SAFETY AND TOOLS
. Electricity and Safety
Electricity Considerations
Safety Considerations
. Lighting Safety Tip Sheet
. How Not to Blow A Circuit
. Lighting Tools of the Trade
3- AND 4-POINT LIGHTING
. Interview Lighting Setups
Introduction
Learning and Mastering the Craft
. The Key Light Light
Setting Up Your Key Light
. Hair Light and Backlight
Hair Light
Background Light
The Cookie Effect
. The Fill Light
Fill Light Alternatives
. Controlling Light Intensity
. Down and Dirty DV Gel Guide
. Anatomy of an Interview Kit
. Hot Tip: 3 Tips for Shooting in Low Light
. Miscellaneous Lighting Tips
. Setting Up Lights in 5 Easy Steps
. Lighting Cookbook
Practical Lighting Setup
4-Point Lighting Setup
Simple Lighting Setup
Window Lighting Setup
Anonymous Lighting Setup
2-Subject Light Setup
Blacklight Setup

5-SOUND RECORDING
SOUND TOOLS OF THE TRADE
. Basic Sound Package
. Intermediate Sound Package
. Microphones-Boom Mics
Introduction
Boom Mics
. 8 Quick Tips aor Better Booming
. Good Boom, Bad Boom
. Booming Technique
. Microphones-Lavs and Handhelds
Lavalier Mics
Handheld Mics
Wireless Mics
. Mounting a Lav Mic
Handling Subjects
RECORDING TECHNIQUES
. Hot Tip: 2 Subjects, but only 1 Lav Mic
. The Right Mic for the Job
. Recording Sound Levels
Riding Levels
Where Should Your Needle Peak?
Beware of Prosumer Camera Audio Meters
. Why Use a Mixer?
. Using a Field Mixer
. Other Mixer Features
Limiter
Lo-Cut Filter
Pan Knob
Monitor In
Tone Generator
Slate
. 5 Sound Rules to Live By
. Location Sound Recording
Don't Just Look, Listen to Your Location
. Location Sound Hazards
OTHER SOUND TYPE STUFF
. Down and Dirty DV Cable Guide
. Miscellaneous Sound Tips
Breakaway Cables
Coiling Cables
Hiding Mics
. How to Use Sound Blankets
Shooting in Rooms with Echo
How to Eggroll a Sound Blanket

6-COMPOSITION AND COVERAGE
WHAT IT LOOK LIKE?
. Aspect Ratios
Which Aspect Ration Should You Shoot?
Widescreen Options
. Shooting Widescreen DV
. Hot Tip: Down and Dirty Widescreen
. Composition Basics
Introduction
. Composition Tricks
Hiding Undesirable Backgrounds
Cheating Backgrounds
. Lens Focal Length
. Telephoto and Wide-Angle Lenses
. Don't Just Tell 'Em, Show 'Em
The Audience Wants to See Your Story
POV Shots Put the Audience There
. The Visual Language of Docs
Cover Your Scene (and Your Butt)
Establishing Shots
The Establishing Sequence
Wide Shots (WS)
Medium Shots (MS)
Close Ups (CU)
1-Shots
2-Shots
Over the Shoulder Shots
Reaction/Reverse Shots
Dutch Angles
Dolly Shots
The Full Tilt Boogey
Dramatic Zooms
Executing the Move
Cutaways
. Storytelling and Cutaways
How to Shoot Cutaways
MORE VISUAL STORYTELLING TOOLS
. Your B-Roll Is Your "A” Roll
. Been There, Done That: Doc Storytelling with Animation-John Canemaker
. Depth-of-Field Demystified
Racking Focus
. Hot Tip: Shallow Depth-of-Field
. 10 Tips for Shooting Live Events

7-INTERVIEW PREP
BEFORE THE INTERVIEW
. All About Interviews
Introduction
Get Yourself Together
. Final Preparations
Equipment Prep
Travel
. Arriving at Location
Setup Time
Warm 'Em Up
. Choosing Interview Backgrounds
Storytelling Through Framing
Using Props and Cheating Background
Using Depth and Busy Backgrounds
. Hot Tip: Easy Do-It-Yourself Backdrops
MAKING THEM LOOK GOOD
. Positioning and Eyeline
Subject Positioning
Interviewer Positioning and Eyeline
. How Do I Look?
Clothing
. Video Clothing Issues
. Fixing Faces
. Hot Tip: Easy Powder Makeup
WORKING WITH SUBJECTS
. Talent Releases
Get a Signed Talent Release Form
Getting Release from Major Figures
Verbal Releases
. Been There, Done That: Fair Subject Portrayal and Releases-Albert Maysles
. Briefing Your Subject
. Instructing Subjects
. Hot Tip: Keepin' It "Real”
. Been There, Done That: When Subjects Want to Walk-Rose Rosenblatt & Marion Lipschutz

8-CONDUCTING INTERVIEWS
INTERVIEW QUESTIONS
. Asking Questions and Responding
Introduction
. Form of Questions
. Logical Order of Questions
INTERVIEW TECHNIQUES
. Been There, Done That: Interviewing Resistant Subjects-Safi ya McClinton
. Hot Tip: How to Work a Press Conference
. Interview Preparation and Warm Up
Brainstorm and Write Out Your Questions
Warm 'Em Up
. Listening Skills
. Responding to Your Subject
. Been There, Done That: The Thin Line of Exploitation-Sam Pollard
. The Soapbox Question
. Hot Tip: Interviewing Celebrities
. Monitoring Technical Issues
Interrupting Your Interview to Solve Problems
Using a Monitor and Headphones
Other Things to Look Out For
. Interview Hazards
. The Wrap Out
Before You Call a "Wrap”
Thank Everyone.Profusely
Packing Up
9-POST-PRODUCTION
PREPARING TO EDIT
. The Post-Production Process
It's All About Post
. Viewing & Taking Notes
Viewing All Your Footage
. Logging Footage
Why We Log
Organizing Your Shots
The Log Sheet
Technological Advances in Logging
. Hot Tip: "Automatic” Tape Logging . Transcribing Interviews
EDITING ISSUES
. Who Should Edit Your Film?
. Been There, Done That: Working with Editors-Sam Pollard
. Time Code and DV Tapes
A Quick Lesson on DV Tape
Time Code Problems
. Stock Footage and Music
. Been There, Done That: 7 Commandments of Archival Footage-Rick Prelinger
GETTING IT OUT THERE
. Hot Tip: 5 Reasons to Get Down with Podcasting and Video Sharing
. Been There, Done That: Finding an Audience Online-Susan Buice and Arin Crumley
. Film Festival Strategy
. Been There, Done That: Passion, Business & Filmmaking-Adrian Belic
. 7 Ways to Work a Film Festival
. Been There, Done That: How to Hustle at Sundance-Rebekah Sindoris and Christie Pesicka

ANTHONY'S RECOMMENDED READS
GLOSSARY
INDEX

About the Author
Book and DVD Credits

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