San Diego Video production experience weighs heavily in video shoots. In fact, with BizVid Communications, this knowledge lends itself to many tips and video insights. People are familiar with the look of a film and video slate, also known as a clap-board but few outside the industry actually understand its purpose. BizVid’s Bill Gruber takes a moment behind the scenes of a full day video shoot to offer a blog, detailing the use of this oft seen, but little understood video production tool.
As with the video which BizVid shot on the day of this particular production, there may be scores, even hundreds of scenes which must be tracked and categorized to make the editor’s job easier. In addition to time codes on the working copy of the video tape, slates are vital and provide the roadmap for a well edited video. A slate is introduced before each segment, for the camera to record. It will tell the editor the name of the production, the scene number, the number of the take, the name of the director, producer and camera person. It also includes the date of the production. While these may sound obvious, when you are working with up to hundreds of scenes per video and on dozens and dozens of projects over a production year, video storage and scene filing can become problems.
Slates are the organizers to help keep post productions (also known as editing sessions) on track. Many times, a seemingly meaningless entry on a slate will help answer an editor’s mystery about what goes where on a complex production with many parts.
One of the components of the slate itself is the clapper. Not only is it cool to play with, it has an important role in editing. When a scene is ready to begin, the floor-director or grip or assistant places the slate in front of the talent or scene which is about to be shot. As cameras roll and the video taping commences, the clapper is snapped so that the sound can be synchronized with the audio and video tracks.
It takes a lot of coordination to make a video production successful. One of the unsung heroes is the slate or clap-board. Everyone clap for the clap-board.