This week, the crew and I went down to location to figure out just where we were going to place lighting on our set. This visit was one of the most crucial moments of pre-production. The Gaffer, Sound Recordist, Assistant Director, and myself had taken loads of lighting equipment to set during our second visit. This visit definitely gave us some advantages.
The first advantage was that obviously, we were able to figure out how to light each room for every shot in advance. When we go to set on our shooting dates, there will now be no time wasted trying to figure out just how to light our project. We won't be referencing loose diagrams and fixing issues as we go, we will be ready and prepared to set up and get to that first shot in significantly less time.
The second advantage to our visit was that because we have fixed the various issues that come with lighting our particular set space, we will no longer have actors sitting around and waiting to be lit properly. When we can get in the zone and begin grabbing takes sooner, the talent is likely to give a better performance because he or she is not impatient and/or waiting around.
The third advantage to our visit was that we can give our editor something to work with that will get him prepared to handle the actual footage when it comes his way. He can play with various presets to get our footage looking much closer to what we desire when we have finished collecting it.
Finally, because we brought our Sound Recordist, we have some room tone to work with, featuring random creaks in the house, cars passing by, and at some points, rain falling outside and on windows. This will give both her and the editor a sense of what kind of sounds we should prepare to work around in our natural space, since we do not have total control of what's outside the set.
All in all, we came out with some footage that we were happy with, but it is also footage that we can now improve upon when it comes time to actually shoot this thing.