In my opinion, standing up for what you believe in is pretty heroic – however big or small your act may be. I decided to collaborate with a local group I can personally identify with: Extinction Rebellion Guildford (XRG). The idea of the shot was to show how easily you can contribute towards looking after our planet.
I contacted XRG to see if I could get any genuine activists that weren’t camera shy. This turned out to be more efficient than employing an actor – we were provided with XR props.
Sam (in his late 20’s) volunteered to take part. At this stage it was important to take into account that we were going to be working with someone that isn’t used to being in front of a camera. A congratulations acknowledgement is due here, as he did also manage to eat 5 apples in an hour.
Speaking of apples… it symbolises a few different things:
Knowledge (of global warming in this case)
Veganism (as it is considered the best diet to decelerate climate change)
The original sin (the sin of disobedience – which directly links to rebellion).
I have to say, for me, the hardest part started in post. The shot starts with a blue-ish tint in the highlights to mislead the audience into thinking that the colour reflects his personality. This changes after the character disposes of the can where the highlights become much warmer, to give the character a more positive light.
The music helps to reveal the character too of course. The initial track create anticipation that something important will happen at the climax.
For the second part, I was finding it really hard to find the perfect angelic vocal. It probably took me a good 6 hours before I realised that the solution was right in front of me all along… In another edit. At the time, I was also editing the ‘Ave Maria’ video. Those girls are basically angels, so it worked out pretty nicely.
Technical aspects and reasons for my decisions
– White 4300K: as our light source was the sun on a clear day in the morning. 5600K would be too blue and 3200K too orange.
– 1920×1080: I didn’t feel it was necessary to film in 4K. It was to be released on facebook so no point wasting extra space and rendering time.
– 25 fps
– SR-Lite 422 rec format.
– 320 EI gain
– ND 0.9: it was quite a bright day so we used an ND filter to expose the shot properly.
– 1/50 shutter speed: because we were shooting at 25 fps, it makes the maths nicer.
– Shooting mode CineEI
– Main operation YPbPr
Colour space SGamu3.cine/SLog3: for maximum colour control!
Talent: Sam (he preferred his surname to remain anonymous)
Director of photography and producer: Emily Cooney
Sound recordist: Giovanni Morescalchi
Camera op: Fraser Collier