As this is a documentary recording real life it would not be possible to predict exactly the shots I would be able to get. However, I did have an idea of the type of shots I wanted to get if I was able to best present the sides of busking I wanted to show.
Below are my initial shot-list and storyboard for my documentary film.
- LS of a busker alone
- LS of a busker being ignored
- CU of a buskers social media
- Wide angle shot of the public walking around Brighton
- MCU of a busker I am interviewing
- Panning Mid-shots of instruments (probably guitars due to their frequency among buskers)
- LS of a homeless person sleeping
- MS of a homeless person sleeping (If possible)
- Long-establishing shot of exterior of the GAK building where the interview will be held with the international busker and colleague
- CU of busker playing instrument
- Mid-Shot from behind playing busker to get public reactions to the busker
- Mid-shot & LS of the public wearing headphones
- Long-shot of public tapping a foot or visually enjoying the music
- LS of a member of the public giving to a busker (preferably a child due to the innocent connotations they carry)
- CU of money in a busker’s hat/guitar case/ bucket etc.
These are the main shots I wanted to shoot that I felt would add to my documentary’s narrative. I felt these shots would humanise the buskers I filmed and present the issues of homelessness in Brighton. I also wanted to establish Brighton as a place and the GAK (guitars, amps & Keyboards) building as a new location too.
For a fiction film, this would be all shots in a film in order showing what will come after what. As I have said, a documentary film is a capture of reality in video, therefore it is impossible to predict what shots will be and in which order but I can present an ideal of my film.
My draft storyboard:
These are a few of the shots I have discussed in my shot-list.
- The establishing shot to begin with., it sets the place for the viewer. I have used a wide long-shot to present as much information as possible.
- The long-shot of the busker. This shows the topic of the film for the audience.
- The close-up of the instrument, this elaborates on the previous shot as an insert-shot. It gives context to the theme of the documentary and signifies music’s importance in the world of busking, not just money. This is a thematic debate, doing it for the money VS. doing it for the music, which I hope my film will address.
- This shot establishes the change in location to the GAK (Guitars, Amps & Keyboards) building. It is also used to establish the new character, the professional busker.
- The mid-shot of the main interviewee of this documentary. This shot is most common in professional documentary sitting interviews. I want to get the instruments behind him as this will reinforce the thematic significance of music in busking. This shot I feel is imperative to my documentary film. Not only because his opinion and answers will influence how I film the documentary but also because it gives the audience a still point to relax. He is a constant in the ever-moving film of people or musicians. A lot of my film will be on the street and thus this still is rarely achieved.
- The long-shot of a sleeping homeless person I also feel is imperative to my documentary. This shows the other side of joblessness and asking the public for money. A major plot point of my film will be the difference between busking and begging, between rewarding performance and giving from pity. This will be the twist/turning point of my documentary after the happy opening of the positives of busking and street performing.
- This long-shot of a member of the public tapping his/her feet in time to music was one recommended by the tutor for my film. It shows a level of engagement and enjoyment with music. This is a shot I had not considered before but I feel now it would add a level of audience connection to the film’s topic as this is a common action all people have done.
- The final shot is one I may not keep in the final film. It is a close-up of a buskers social media (if I am able to find one). The reason I now debate having this in the film is that the original twist of my film was supposed to be the proliferation of online medias killing live performance and busking, however after my research I have found that this is not true. Buskers and street performers are still as popular as they have been. In fact, the internet has only helped these people out to reach a wider audience. (I have actually filmed this shot just in case, so I have the option).
This shot-list was helpful when it came to shooting my documentary film out in Brighton as I knew the shots I needed to get to give my film a narrative and I could see what shots I already had. It also gave me a base to work off of. Any extra shots I got whilst out filming were ideas spawned from my shot-list and storyboard.