This was an incredibly fun project to work on! When Paula Bachman of the SUNY Plattsburgh admissions office started to talk about making a music video for incoming accepted students, I was excited and nervous at the same time. The idea was to show the students and staff of the college dancing and singing to the song but also to show as much of the campus “in the background” as we could. With the possibility of hundreds of participants, and as much as 30 locations for a 3 minute song, it was a little unnerving to think about pulling off.
Luckily Paula would handle the coordination with all the students, groups and faculty and try to schedule them in as few days as possible. (She is AMAZINGLY organized)! We then mapped out the locations of the campus we wanted to include, then what parts of the song would be lip synced and what parts would be danced too. Then as the list of participants came in, we decided who would sing what parts. We used a small bluetooth speaker for location playback off of an iphone. It was difficult to pre-plan much beyond that as we never knew how many would show up or what they had for props etc. We also had to think fast to design the shot for each as most people only had 15-30 minutes.
Everyone was really into it and made shooting fun! Usually once we nailed the “action” we would rewind that section of the song and then shoot it several times. I used a 11-16mm wide angle Tokina lens on almost every shot so we could see the campus “in the background” and did the entire shoot handheld to give it the energy and drive it needed.
The biggest challenge was clearing the rights to the music! It took SUNY Legal over a year to do it!! The music industry has GOT to make that easier.
Anyway, please enjoy this video, 3 minutes…and several weeks of work to make!