Our First Shoot in a Post Covid World:
Navigating Production While Keeping Clients and Crew Safe

We recently completed our first shoot since the start of quarantine and social distancing. Clearly this was a big step, and while it was exciting to get back to doing what we love, we still approached the situation with appropriate care for the safety of our crew and clients. Below is a quick rundown of the steps we took but you can always contact us at info@narrativemediallc.com if you’d like to talk through your specific filming scenario with our team directly.

Not the New Gear We Hoped to Aquire in 2020

The first step was to require masks for all crew and clients in the room and crew members were required to wear gloves at all times as well. The only exception to this was that the single person being filmed could remove their mask during filming.

Smaller Teams = More Social Distance:

In order to maintain these safety measures, we needed to change a few things. The first step was to reduce crew size and limit the number of client representatives in the space. For this shoot, we ended up having only a Director and Camera Operator on our crew, one client representative and the talent, who in this case was the organization’s CEO.

Our crew began by dividing responsibilities between them.

Director Responsibilities:
-Teleprompter
-Backdrop
-Client and Director Monitors
-Sound

Camera Operator Responsibilities:
-Camera
-Lenses
-Lighting

Once our team had set up the equipment, they were then responsible for any adjustments that needed to be made. This ensured that multiple individuals didn’t touch the same pieces of equipment.

Safe Collaboration for our Team On-Set and Remote Monitoring for Those Off-Site:

Filmmaking is an inherently collaborative effort and on any of our production sets in a pre-covid world, you’d find multiple individuals gathered around a monitor to talk through the shots. In order to try and maintain that collaborative nature, we set up three monitors broadcasting our camera’s video feed. One for the Director, one for the client, and one for the camera operator. This way our team could talk through the shots and performances, while maintaining our six foot distance.

We also have the capability to broadcast our camera and audio feed over a private video chat using Zoom or Google Meet. This allows for additional client team members to collaborate from a remote location. While this option wasn’t necessary for this shoot, it is something we’ll be offering clients in future productions.

During filming, our on-screen talent used a teleprompter to deliver remarks. While the teleprompter was placed in front of the camera, we were able to control it remotely and make adjustments using a wireless bluetooth remote.

Additionally, we opted against using any on-person microphones. Usually we hide microphones under clothing and hide the wires, but that seemed too risky given the times. Instead, we opted to use an overhead boom microphone, that could be set up prior to the talent arrival and adjusted from an appropriate distance.

Breakdown and Sanitize:

Upon completion of the shoot, our clients departed and our team sanitized gear using disinfectant wipes. We paid special attention to any equipment that might have been close to the mouths of anyone on set. This included overhead microphones, monitors and cameras. After we loaded our gear into the truck, we disposed of our gloves and sanitized our hands and went on our way.

Closing:

I’m incredibly grateful that we’ve been able to work on set again, and as we begin to come out of lockdown, I expect that production will ramp up slowly. This will give us time to learn new strategies to be creative and create beautiful content for our clients while keeping ourselves, our clients and our crews safe.

As always, we’re here to help with any of your content creation needs. Just let us know how we can help.

Be well and stay safe.

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