Filming B-roll

Stills from my B-roll. Click images to view larger.

Niles Pond October Sunrise

One of the most gorgeous, interesting, and enjoyable aspects of filmmaking I find is shooting B-roll. I am swamped with design work, organizing lecture programs, and hoping to finish the edits on my Black Swallowtail film very soon, but there is no better time of year to shoot B-roll for my Monarch film than autumn in Gloucester; the light is simply stunning, and what I like to refer to as “atmospheric.”

Niles Pond September Sunrise

B-roll further tells the story in a beautifully subtle, and alternatively not so subtle, manner and gives the project a sense of place. While filming and waiting, for example, for birds to take flight (whether swans or homies) I have my still camera readily available.

Salt Island Sunrise

The most extraordinarily beautiful things occur spontaneously. I feel so very fortunate to see, and in turn share, the natural world through the camera lens. Only several weeks ago while filming a spider’s web in a tree, capturing the filaments of silky webbing dancing in the light of the setting sun (with the pinky schooner Ardelle and the Dog Bar Breakwater in the background), the web’s maker came cavorting through the scene with a capture of her own!

Eastern Point

9 comments

    • Thank you Donna–you always write the sweetest things and I so always appreciate your kind words.

      So gorgeous this late afternoon and I am DYING to get out with my camera and away from this comp!!

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  • Hi Kim. I had to learn what B-roll meant, so I looked it up. It’s supplementary footage or stills that can be used on a film project for a variety of reasons. Since I’m not a film maker, I’ll let your readers figure out the reasons from Wiki: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/B-roll BTW, where’d you learn that?

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    • Fred I don’t recall where I learned the term; I thought it was fairly common–maybe because i am always thinking about B-roll! Thank you for bringing it to my attention that not everyone knows this term. The wiki definition you provided is perfect.

      I must have picked it up B.K. (Before Kids). Before my Kids were born, and up until Liv was about five, I worked as a costume and set designer for several feature films, music videos, and a short-lived television show that was filmed in Boston called Against the Law.

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      • It’s always nice to learn new things. Did you ever encounter a set designer named Hillary Derby? She still doing major films in the area. Hillary is Janet’s cousin:)

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        • No Fred I haven’t heard Hillary’s name. My work as a set and costume designer was not my full time occupation but an extension of my clothing design business. I’d love to meet Hillary at the next Bodin Historic Gallery event!

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  • Gorgeous photos! Thanks for sharing!

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  • Hillary is a lot like you, now that I think of it. She and her husband Tom do come to some of my events. I’ll let you know.

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