Limited Crew Size during the Pandemic

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Will limited crew size during the Pandemic hurt your video?

The short answer, NO. Is it difficult? Yes. The Covid Documentary was my own project. The crew was one person, me. Normally the client is the producer. Producing a project of this complexity was extremely difficult. Scheduling 10 interviews took weeks and even a month for one of them. Researching the best locations for B-Roll footage was another challenge. I started on April 16th, three months before final output. I had to get FAA authorization to fly the drone at some locations. There was no script, not even an outline. I have 41 pages of notes, most of which would have been the responsibility of the producer.

Can I work with a limited budget?

Yes. The whole budget for this documentary was only a few hundred dollars thanks to the participants donating their time and knowledge. Then there is my overhead cost for the time spent on this project, more than $7,000.

Can you conduct an interview without an interviewer?

No, you should not but I didn’t have a choice. My wife, Stephanie, is an excellent interviewer but she had her own job to do. I reached out to family and friends for questions for each person and the main topics to discuss. I emailed this list to each contributor days before I was to record them and brought my clipboard to each shoot. I guided each person in this film but I cut out my voice in the edit.

Minimal equipment for in-person interviews recorded in 4K.

Can video production be done without an assistant?

No, I should always have at least one assistant or second cameraman. That being said I didn’t have an assistant for this film because I didn’t use any lighting. That greatly reduced the amount of equipment needed. For the interviews I did a test in my home studio using the equipment shown above; no lavalier mic due to the virus.  No one had to touch or breathe on the mic. The results were very good. More on this in another blog on “Recording interviews”.

Link to the COVID video on this website:  https://www.johntrotto.com/video/arizona-video-production/

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