Video Production Advice – finding a great location June 23, 2015
“Location recce” is another one one of those terms that may show up as part of your pre-production invoice. It’s a term widely used in the industry that just means visiting a location before the shoot to determine how suitable it is for shooting.
We’ve put together some video production advice – a brief checklist what you may want to look out for when doing a location recce.
Video Production Advice – Health and safety
Whatever you’re doing at the location, everyone has to be safe doing it. You’ll need to identify hazards and problems that could arise if the area was full of people and bulky equipment.
How much room is there to work in? Do you have enough space to keep everything? Is there somewhere to load and unload? The answers to these questions may affect how much equipment you bring and how many crew members, as well as when you organise the equipment to arrive.
If you’re filming outside, you leave yourself exposed to the elements, which have the power to cancel the entire shoot. It’s therefore critical that you identify whether or not the shoot can go ahead in a variety of weather conditions and what you can do in each situation. A good piece of video production advice is to check what the weather will be like on the shoot day and continue monitoring it.
Film lighting needs a lot of power, sometimes more than the standard wall sockets will allow, so you may need to bring in extra power for this. Another bit of great video production advice is make sure you know the specs of the power outlets there so you don’t overload the system, and check what the location charges for electricity.
You’ll also need to consider how much natural light will be in the shooting area at the time of day you’ll be there, as well as blocking or diffusing windows if there is too much light.
Locations may be messy or they may be empty. Either way, they’re rarely in the state you’d like them to be in for shooting, so consider what you want to keep and what you want to add to your location.
No-one has a greater reputation for consumption of food on the job than film crews, and you shouldn’t expect to have any teabags left after the shoot either. If you’re on a large shoot see if you’re able to get food delivered to your location to save the time and trouble of sending people out to find it.
Know what’s happening around you
Our final piece of video production advice is you need to know what’s going on close by. Locked away in your location for hours, you can forget that the world is moving around you. We once shot in a location underneath Heathrow’s main flight path with a noisy building site next door, which made sound recording more difficult. On another occasion we turned up at a shoot only to find the Army on an explosive training exercise!
This video production advice is by no means comprehensive, but it functions as a basic list of things to watch out for when you’re doing a location recce. Make sure you take lots of photos for reference as well.0