Having a Whale of a Time! Filming WhaleFest 2011: Day 2

After the success of the first day of filming, I was really looking forward to the second day as I would hopefully be interacting more with the many cetacean based companies and organisations. Once we’d arrived and set up the cameras and sound equipment, we divided back into the two filming groups and I directed them as to what we would each be filming. Holly and Sam would be completing the interviews they had lined up and the voxpops from the members of the public whilst myself, Rachel and Codie would be getting people to say

Myself and Rachel investigating an inflatable pilot whale

“Welcome to WhaleFest” on camera and other voxpops, general view shots and any other interviews.

Everything went to plan and we managed to get two interviews almost immediately with ‘Earthrace‘ and the ‘Cardigan Bay Marine Wildlife Centre‘ and were even given two more projects as a result of this. One is filming promotional footage of the dolphins and wildlife in Cardigan Bay in West Wales which I am hoping we are able to do as I had planned on contacting them originally about doing that for my major project and it would also be  great experience and example of filming with marine life. The other is an all expenses paid trip to London with ‘Earthrace’ to film a protest outside the Australian Embassy in association with the ‘Bob Irwin Wildlife Fund‘, to protect sea turtles and dugongs which again would be a fantastic opportunity as marine conservation is something I feel very strongly about.

After we’d got the interviews sorted, a couple more GVs and more “Welcome to WhaleFest” clips , Rachel offered to look after the camera and tripod for a bit whilst myself and Codie went around the exhibitions and stalls so that I could talk to people in the industry. This was incredibly helpful as I was able to obtain a lot more information about all the different conservation projects and companies and get their contact details which I can hopefully use in the future. We were also able to get an interview with the two organisers of the event, Dylan

Dylan Walker and Ian Rowlands "Welcome to WhaleFest!"

Walker and Ian Rowlands which I am really happy about because they were such an integral part of ‘WhaleFest’. However I had to sort out other things at the same time which meant that I wasn’t there to listen to or film the interview which was a disappointment because having organised and arranged the filming, I would have liked to have been there myself. I suppose that’s what comes with being the producer though, so much to sort out!

Despite this, I did like the filming we got with Dylan and Ian shouting “Welcome to WhaleFest” in the main hall next to the huge inflatable whale with the zoom out to reveal the rest of the room as I feel that not only does in show the organisers and their passion for the event, it also encapsulates the sheer size and amazing atmosphere of it all as well. We also spoke to Stephanie St James, who informed us that she would like some of the sponsors included in the footage and Dylan and Ian also suggested we included some of the whale watching operators too as that’s what ‘Planet Whale‘ is about which meant that we divided back up and went off to film that. Rachel, Codie and I managed to  interview a few whale watching operators, ‘Discover The World‘ and ‘Gentle Giants‘, who were very helpful and Holly and Sam succeeded in obtaining more voxpops and interviews with the sponsors. This will be useful when it comes to editing everything together as we now have a lot of material to use and hopefully show everybody involved as well as all it’s success.

I am very pleased I was given the opportunity to be able to film at ‘WhaleFest’ and be a part of such an incredible event and meeting of cetacean enthusiasts. As I have always wanted to work with marine life both through volunteer work and from a filming perspective, this experience has been a real asset to my interests and it is something that I would definitely like to attend again. My passion has been enforced through meeting so many like minded people and I am now very tempted to go on one (or more!) of the whale watching and research trips I have learnt about.

Although there were occasionally a couple of issues regarding who was filming what, I feel that overall everything went well and the crew all worked very well together to get the most out of everything.  Meeting Derek Spicer of Pico Productions was also a big help as he was also filming at the event and it was decided that he would film parts of the talks and presentations. This meant that we were able to spend time filming more of the event rather than have to rush through it which was better. When it comes to editing all our footage together, I am positive that together we can do the event justice and encapsulate the amazing atmosphere of it all.  I am proud to have been the producer for ‘WhaleFest’ and to have been given the chance to meet such passionate people and I definitely had a whale of a time!

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