By: Tom Curran, Equipment Manager/Grip
B-Roll, sound design, lower thirds; just like any industry we video professionals work within a vocabulary that may seem like nonsense to those outside the field. To get you up to speed on all things jargon-ey, here is a brief list of common filmmaking terms.
Color correction is one of our last steps in the production process. This is where we take the video and make it look even better! We’re also adjusting the color balance and contrast from clip to clip so the scene/edit is seamless.
B-Roll is any shot that’s not someone doing an interview or talking to camera. It could be shots of our subject in a meeting, a timelapse, people walking down a hallway, people running down a hallway – you get the idea. Here’s a super-funny clip that explains exactly what B-Roll is:
Sound Design, just like color correction, is a finishing step. The video has been locked down or has “picture lock,” and now we polish it up for the final video delivery. Sound Design is exactly what it sounds like – mixing and refining the audio tracks of the project so everything sounds as good as possible. It could be cleaning up an interview that has a little background noise (most commonly an AC unit), leveling out the music track and adding sound effects.
So that everyone can give comments on a video using a precise frame of reference, we put timecode into our videos during the review process. Timecode is simply a counter like on a VCR that is counting up using minutes, hours and seconds.
A lower-third is a little box with someone’s name and credentials in it. It can be the easiest thing to do, but put a little creativity behind it and it can really tie in the rest of the graphic elements in a video.
Having an understanding of these 5 terms will help you fit in on any production set.
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