help with ammature doccumntary

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    • #38979
      Avatardment2
      Participant

      please i need some help
      i am 15 years old and i would like to make a documentary of my local police and mabey fire services.
      what do i neewd to prepare in advance?
      should i go in person or send a letter about my idea.
      any advice or suggestions are needed

    • #169134
      AvatarEndeavor
      Participant

      That’s a pretty broad question but here’s my advice:

      Do as much as you can before hand. The worst thing in the world is showing up to shoot a video and not knowing exactly what you want. A documentary cannot always be entirely scripted so write down ideas you want to inbclude. Get a basic outline down on paper. Write down any shots that you want to get. Otherwise, when it comes time to shoot, you will forget alot of things you wanted to do.

      Call or visit the police/fire dept and let them know what you are doing. I’m sure they will be happy to help and will probably have some ideas for things to include! Schedule times to go shoot the video. Get other people involved too! No doubt there are others your age who would love to help and might have something good to contribute. Just make sure you stick with the vision YOU have. Sometimes when others are involved, they want to make it their video. While they might have some good ideas, it’s your video so don’t lose your direction.

      Make sure you have the equipment you need all ready to go. I assume you have some equipment but make sure you use an external microphone for interviews etc. even if it’s a cheap one. If you need equipment, your school may have stuff they can let you use. Theres alot of equipment you can make on your own too! I’ve made a track dolly, a microphone boom, and I’m considering building a teleprompter too! (I don’t use this stuff for weddings because it’s pretty ugly but it is very functional).

      Any specific questions you have just ask!

    • #169135
      AvatarEndeavor
      Participant

      I think that’s generally true but I know several police officers personally (no I don’t get pulled over all the time) and I think most of them would be happy to help get a video made for you. I may be wrong but I’d be curious to find out what they say!

    • #169136
      AvatarAnonymous
      Inactive

      My dad is a retired police officer, and I’m sure that he would have done what he could to encourage this type of project, same goes for the police that I know.

      You would, of course need to work around their schedule. Being willing to do that would go a long way toward their working with you.

      Please keep us posted on the progress of your project/documentary.

    • #169137
      Avatarphillips719
      Participant

      I’m a Correctional Officer in California, and I would be happy to help out any kid for a school/ or personal project and explain some of the highlights of my career for a documentary. The presumption that people in Law enforcemant are uptight and cold is genarally wrong as some of my closest friends are cops on the street and Correctional Officers.
      I agree that you need to set up some type of appointment with them, write down the questions you want to ask, and be efficient. Be sure to let them know ahead of time how long you expect this interview to be and stick to it, and if you need to go over that time, be sure ask if it’s ok because they may have other priorities.

    • #169138
      Avatardment2
      Participant

      You guys seem to have got me wrong.
      I was thinking something like “cops”, actualy following them around on their patrols.
      it is a small town in england, so i dont think that safety will be an issue.
      Any more advice in light of that

    • #169139
      AvatarEndeavor
      Participant

      I understood you fine.

    • #169140
      Avatarphillips719
      Participant

      Dment2, you will nee to check about that ride along idea, as they may have restrictions about taking a minor in the patrol car. At the very least they will most likely require a parent or gaurdian to be with you if they allow a minor (under18) on a ride along at all. It really all depends on the departments policy. Remeber, that officer is “on duty” and he will be obligated to respond to emergencies and possible dangerous situations.

    • #169141
      AvatarAnonymous
      Inactive

      Yes, I second tornado’s observations.

      On your first post you asked whether you should write or go in person. I don’t think that it really matters. However, an advantage to going in person is that they would be able to see your sincerity and preparedness, and that could address any hesitancies they might have if all they got was a letter. Just my opinion.

    • #169142
      Avatardment2
      Participant

      thanks guys.

      the project is going to be during that christmas holidays (I just thought, would that be a problem?).
      i also heard that i would need release forms if i didnt want to blur faces.
      does anyone know how these should be structured? i.e. the release forms

    • #169143
      AvatarEndeavor
      Participant

      Here ya go!:

      http://www.videomaker.com/scripts/article.cfm?id=12473

    • #169144
      Avatardment2
      Participant

      I cant see it because I don’t have a password or live in America.

    • #169145
      AvatarAnonymous
      Inactive

      Try this link. It’s a comprehensive discussion on the laws that help you discern whether you need to get a signed release or not. Hope it helps.http://www.danheller.com/model-release.html#7.10

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