May 6th. The day that I can finally show the world Living With Meningitis. It’s safe to say that the last three years has been leading up to this, making it perhaps the most important day of my life to date.
It hasn’t all been smooth sailing, there has been plenty of ups and just as many downs. There has been a number of occasions where I have been close to the brink of just packing it all in, calling it a day and cutting my loses. However, I didn’t, and now I am days away from releasing my first (at least I class it as my first) professional, substantial, piece of work.
The process, as is probably obvious, has been long. I worked alone in creating Living With Meningitis right from the first sketches of the logo, all the way through filming and editing. This, is the first thing I think I would change if I was able to start again and have a ‘do-over’. I underestimated the work load, and my initial thoughts about having more than enough time were proven to be wrong. Now knowing the true amount of work and effort it takes to make a professional piece of media I would have joined ranks with someone who could have brought something extra to the table. My skills lie heavily within the graphics side of things and I have some skills with a camera; editing however, it’s something I’ve done in the past but it’s not my strongest area and this slowed down my overall process quite a lot.
This being said, I did account for my slight lack of knowledge in this area, and I left plenty of time to edit. The final piece is now done, a day to go before release. I have shown it to a select few, family and friends, to gain their views to see if there are some any areas that needed changing… There was a few, these comments were taken on board and changes have been made. This is another reason I feel that working with someone else would have been beneficial. It would have given me someone to bounce idea off, someone to look at the work at a slightly different angle. Its safe to conclude that I would work within a team if I could do this project again.
Looking back I have enjoyed the production process, I have been able to create logos, DVD covers, professional posters, I have started my own online presence (professionally) now running an Instagram Page, Facebook and Twitter. I invested in an iPad Pro, this has helped the production no ends – Allowing me to storyboard digitally, making amendments where and when they are needed. I have used it to help create the advertising pack and also to promote Living With Meningitis on social media. This is the main aspect I am proud of, I feel it has ran smoothly and my work is of a professional standard, I have an an entire portfolio of advertisements for the production – suitable for any occasion.
Back to the editing process, I initially started off using Adobe Premier Pro, its the software of Adobe’s that I am least custom to (having Adobe credited qualifications in both Photoshop and DreamWeaver) I tested the waters with Premier Pro for a few weeks, making little progress – due to this I switched tactics and used Final Cut Pro. This allowed me to feel more at ease with editing because it was familiar ground. Once I started using this software the editing side became more relaxed (and enjoyable), meaning I was able to create an overall better piece. If I was able to redo the Documentary I would easily skip the two weeks of messing on Premier Pro and dive straight into Final Cut Pro!
Now that the whole piece is coming to an end I can look back and say that I am truly proud of what I have created. Its incredibly personal to myself, but I feel it will do the job that I want it to. That job is to raise awareness around a disease which is often just shrugged off as a common cold/flu. As the documentary will explain and demonstrate Meningitis doesn’t just have two outcomes of death or survive, it has many different in between scenarios. I want the documentary to scare people (in a way) to create a buzz around Meningitis, I want it to scare people into taking proper and right action to see that children are given the fighting chance they deserve.
Overall I am happy with the entire process from start to finish, I was lucky enough to be supported by Meningitis Now, and again lucky enough not to experience any major problems along the way. As previously mentioned the main thing I would change is working in a team/with someone else, simply to spread the load and in turn help create a more polished documentary.