I had a difficult time creating a practical concept for this project. Although there were plenty of ideas floating around in my head, most of them were entirely too far-fetched for a three-minute documentary. My interests spanned from society’s perception of vulnerability to the anatomy of teaching, concepts that sparked my creative mind and invited inspiration. After filming ten interviews about vulnerability, I came to the realization that to do this kind of production justice, it would require at least a one-hour showing time, months of research, and a great deal of work. I forced myself to address my tendency to excessively overcommit, and retired my vision to create a documentary about something so important to me (for now). Instead, I chose something light, relatable to my peers, and close to home: dancer feet.
When shooting for this documentary, I became instantly aware of how incredibly lucky I am to have a camera of such high quality. Although my Sony Alpha 6000 takes up quite a bit of space and adds some weight to my backpack, it is brilliant for high resolution, sharp images and video. I am always aware of how lucky I am to have possession of this technology, but when I downloaded my footage, I was especially thankful. Almost every interview, and the majority of the B-roll footage, was beautifully represented. The natural light caught their faces perfectly and the dancing feet were crisp and well-balanced.
I did my best to get a variety of interviewees, diverse in gender and race and varying in backgrounds. I realized after gathering my footage, that including diversity in age would have advanced the thesis of my project, but I was limited by time, so all of my dancers are freshmen in the OSU dance department. My interviews resulted in an array of interesting and detailed stories about feet. Kat Sprudzs referred to her feet as “reptilian,” Anthony Millan told of his experience with a calloused wart, and there were multiple comments about blisters, ingrown toenails, and the utterly disgusting smell. I was pleased with the entertainment value in their slightly disturbing stories.
The most difficult part of editing this documentary was balancing the audio. I fought with different levels of background noise, speed, and diction. Because I had to cut and paste so much of the audio due to the length of dialogues, I had to manage double the number of audio files than video segments. This required even more work since each piece of audio required individual editing even if it was a section of an interview I already worked with.
Overall, I am pleased with my product, and I hope you are too! Please enjoy Up Close: Dancers and Their Feet: