6 lessons on gathering audio
By Mark Anderson & Matt Mrozinski
TIME TO BREAK SOME BAD HABITS! Do you want to be great or average? Audi gathering technique is how you become great. Running around chasing people down with stick mic’s without reason makes both the reporter and photographer look sloppy. If you don’t have a shotgun on a coiled cord, the stick mic has a place, pressers, speed MOS, Perp walks, ambushes, and live elements. Outside of that we shouldn’t be using it, it’s sloppy, it’s lazy.
Mark Anderson who is a legendary storyteller from KSTP in Minneapolis gives us some tips on gathering interviews.
1. NEVER INTERVIEW PEOPLE. TALK WITH PEOPLE:
People freak out when you mention the word “interview”. They think about been on TV and eventually lose their spontaneity. Keep people in their comfort zone. Talk to people in normal conversation like you would talk to a friend. Be kind. Warm eye contact opens people up.
2. BE AN AUDIO SALESPERSON
My biggest challenge is to convince people to wear my wireless mic. I’m an audio sales person. Often times the greatest challenge we face is convincing people to wear mics. Many times, pictures are easy; getting those mics on people is the challenge. Remember, don’t take it personally if people won’t wear your wireless. Don’t waster your time. Shoot and move! Find another person and play pin the tail on the donkey!
3. PIN THE TAIL ON THE DONKEY.
Every shoot I challenge myself on how many times I can put the wireless mic on people. How many times do you pin the tail on the donkey?
4. HIDE YOUR MICS. KEEP THEM OUT OF THE SHOT. AND GET RID OF THE MIC FLAGS.
People want to see people’s faces, not mics slammed in their face. I believe, though, that it’s ok to us mic flags for live presentation
5. USE YOUR SENNHEISER SHOTGUN MIC FOR FAST SOUND IN THE FIELD.
Make sure the mic can be pulled off the camera. Get a curly cord so you can get the mic close to the source of sound. I personally work sound myself. I like to hold the mic so I can keep it out of the shot.
6. LISTEN FOR SUCCINCT SOUNDBITES.
Reporters do it every day. Somebody might say something really great, but it takes them 3 minutes to say it… Listen for short, understandable bites. Simple questions will get you great sound. Keep it simple!