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What it takes to shoot a music video

May 15, 2012 - Jodelle Greiner
I went on my first-ever video shoot last week.

Makenzie Caine was back in her hometown of Blue Earth to shoot scenes for “Take This Town”, the title track off her first CD, which will be released next month.

One of the coolest things was when Jim Ankeny explained how they sped up the song and the cameras, I think he said 250 percent, to get the special effects they wanted for the people in the background of the video. The thing about it was Makenzie had to lipsync to the song at the faster speed to make it come out right in the finished version of the video.

Imagine knowing how to sing a song at normal speed, then having to get the timing right at a much faster speed. I was blown away watching Makenzie do it right there in her parents’ dining room. I’m not a singer, but that can’t be easy to do.

I learned a lot while tagging along on the shoot.

Makenzie’s makeup artist, Kelly Handevidt, and I followed behind in another vehicle as Makenzie drove around outside Blue Earth while Jim filmed her. Kelly told me what filming the city scenes in Minneapolis traffic were like — scary! — and we both had some nervous moments watching Jim move around to get different angles of Makenzie behind the wheel. At one point, he was getting ready to lean against the passenger door and I was like “Please make sure the door is latched first!”

Filming the “crowd scene” on Main Street was a lot of fun! I was glad to see the folks who showed up to “say goodbye” to Makenzie as she “drove out of town” on her way to the big city.

The last scenes they shot were of Makenzie standing in the Ford convertible in the middle of Main Street as her adoring fans danced to her song as she sang. I’d never heard of “Norwegian dancing” before! Must be a Blue Earth thing.

I was supposed to be taking pictures of all this, but I admit, I wound up spending a lot of time standing behind Scott Hoffman as he operated the crane that swung back and forth to film the scene. From that angle, I could see the screen and watch everything unfold from a camera’s eye view. Getting to see it from that perspective was awesome.

I learned it takes a lot of time to shoot even a few scenes of a short video, but it’s very enlightening to watch how it’s all done. I can’t wait to see the finished video and compare it to how I know it was shot.


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