I recently got back from a shoot in Prague for Grey Advertising, New York. I'd never been to Prague before so was lucky enough to also be able to spend a few days to look around. The weather was fantastic and Prague's beauty didn't disappoint. (tourist pics at the bottom of this post).
We were there to shoot for two print and online campaigns whilst shadow shooting tv commercials being filmed at the same time. With nearly 70 people on set in a house, being able to get along with the crew and get what you need with minimal disruption to the flow of the day is obviously a key to success. This sort of work takes a skill of its own. Your angle is limited, time is of the essence, you have limitations on being able to direct the talent and you need to be able to work fast and always pull a rabbit out of the hat.
Prior to the shoot we were able to walk through the location house outside of the city, meet the talented director and cinematographer and get a feel for what the shots and sets would be. Funny how a house in the suburbs of Prague can seem like any northern hemisphere neighbourhood!
After capturing the images, one of the most important things on a big shoot is data wrangling and protection. In this case my assistant, Dani would download the cards scene by scene against the storyboards. Ensuring the scene prefixes matched, Dani would then do an edit ensuring white balance was consistent and then rate the files to edit down to a selection of the best. When you're working with 5000 images, workflow and speed are important. A big thank you to Eizo for all their support with their colour monitors.
We backed up to three different sources during the shoot so no data was lost (including a Drobo Mini raid system with SSD drives). Its imperative you have a seamless data wrangling process in place on the shoot. We budgeted two days at the end of the shoot for post production and then one copy was sent via FedEx home, the second copy was carried in our hand luggage and the Producer from Grey carried the third copy to New York in her hand luggage. We weren't taking any chances.
With the pressure of the shoot behind us Dani and I were able to spend a day exploring beautiful Prague and soaking up the culture, dinner on the river banks, a visit to some art galleries and a jazz club etc.