This is planning stage of documentary. We have named it as PRESHOOT phase. This is the compulsory homework, one must complete, before going out on field.
Here we go….
- Most confusing task- Decide the Subject for Documentary. Commit on its length and decide ‘theme or form‘ of documentary. Example: Our subject was Rain, length about 10 mins and theme was Poetic.
Main Theme or Forms of Documentary:
- Linear Narrative Form which is also known as Classical Hollywood Storytelling.
- Discussive Narrative Form which gives priority to Information, Facts and Logic.
- Episodic Narrative Form which (I haven’t understand yet!).
- Poetic Narrative Form which is built up around the Visual-Poetic Association.
- Refer some similar or helpful documentary of some standard value, such as on Discovery channel.
- Make the expected Shot list including specific details expected in each shot. Example: Shot is ‘Wet Dog‘ or ‘young kid with umbrella‘ or ‘water ponds‘.
- Shot list must contain too many shots. For 10 min long documentary, we had managed to brainstorm about 35 to 40 shots.
- Comment about the duration of shots and their availability. Also, note the specific time if it is need of some shot. Example: Fog shooting must be done in early morning and Sunset in evening.
- Make a Generalized shot list sequence by which shoot will precede, including details about time.
- I think, this much homework is OK for PRESHOOT phase. But this is not perfect list, so it may grow further.
(Here are the article links for easy access:)
Making of Documentary-Part 1 (this Article)