It's over...it's over! (view this story)

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Rep: 50
Michael Lloyd Sept. 4, 2010, 12:31 p.m. permalink

An interesting discussion could begin here. Do the stills work better than a video of this woman and her son telling a tragic story. I listened more than looked at this piece. The stills showed her and the boy doing very little. The key to a still picture story is shooting a lot of varied situations and finding essential moments along the way. This was a set of pictures of them sitting on the couch, playing and looking at pictures—a very small part of their story.


On the other hand, I heard a lot of feeling in her voice as she talked about her grief and struggles with addiction. Lacking a visual narrative that showed THAT, I really wanted to see her face as she told the story. That might well have made me feel much more for her than I did in looking at the stills.

In editing, listen for emotional cue to cut on. There were several in the opening minute or so. It takes a lot of images to keep the so-called audio slide show moving. The pictures and the words didn't match that well in this one. And not every transition should be a dissolve. You wouldn't do that with video (I hope) so don't do it here. 

Rep: 8
Mike De Sisti Sept. 7, 2010, 9:29 p.m. permalink

You have some really nice images here. And a great interview to boot. I know music is sometimes seen as taboo in our field, but some somber piano, for example, could have helped some. She has a lot of very powerful sound bites that could have used some breathing room in between. Some moody music, along with holding a litter longer on some of the more powerful photos may help. Example: "Furges says to me, 'Is daddy really gonna shoot himself with a gun." Here would have been one spot to pause a little before the next quote to give us some time to reflect on what was just said. All in all, great interview with solid audio and really nice images to support.

Rep: 3
Submitter
Brian Tankersley Sept. 10, 2010, 12:21 p.m. permalink

Thank you Michael and Mike for taking the time to review my story. I think this is a rare occasion where video, or pictures, couldn't be as compelling as her story. Being that I work in video, I wanted to focus on the still pictures in hopes to broaden my range of work. I produced it to be somewhat "raw" with it being B&W and with no music, I didn't want it to be over the top with some moody music. However, I probably should have at least laid some music down to see how the feel of the story changed. And Mike you are right about letting some of the bites breath a bit. I think it would have given the viewer more time to take it in. Thanks again for your review.

Rep: 4
Don Himsel Oct. 4, 2010, 6:49 a.m. permalink

Hi Brian,

Photographically, there are some nice moments here.  I think that some work with the pacing of this story would have helped.

Just like with music, a rest can make a world of difference.  Yes, perhaps music would have lent a little something to this and brought out more feeling.  Certainly some ambient audio from the room they were in to break things up and let the viewer or reader digest what was just said at any given moment.  

Editing-  Hit people hard and early.  How about starting with what we hear at about :33-  "Fergus doesn't remember hearing the shot..." or what she says at 1:22 to 1:33 about coping and drinking, ending in "it's over, it's over..."  That's pretty powerful stuff.

Do you have any photos from elsewhere or another visit?  More and tighter details?  Was it necessary to produce in less than a week or were you faced with a deadline?  Was it accompanying a story on suicide?  Embedded in a package?

-Don

Rep: 3
Submitter
Brian Tankersley Oct. 5, 2010, 8:13 a.m. permalink

Thanks Don for taking the time to view the story. My thought process about the bites, and saving some of the more powerful one's for later, were to set it up in a way that added some tension. I wanted it to be somewhat of a surprise, or resolution to the set-up. 


I was limited to really just one visit to gather all the elements. Shooting multimedia story's is not considered a part of my responsibility in my department. I'm in the Commercial/Promotions department for TV, this story was something I  had to fit it on a down day. It was a stand-alone story for the web. I'm just trying to work on being a more rounded photographer/journalist.

Thanks again for your time,

Brian

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