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'Sunny' music shoot

I had an incredible day yesterday at the Sunny shoot.  Although it was a small and lean film shoot in regular terms, there's still a vast amount of hard work entailed to making these happen and it's a massive collaborative process.  Having a great bunch of people on the team makes the shoot so much more enjoyable and smoother running, yesterday was no exception.

Here's a run down of the 16 team members involved:

Myself as Stylist and my DoP hubby Den, James the Director, Hair & Makeup artist Sally, Production Manager Sarah, Lighting supplier Ben, DIT and Location Contact Matt, James on Behind The Scenes and 6 of our film making students and of course Artist Kelly Waters and her husband.

An early start and a car packed full of props and camera equipment, to get to the location - a palatial Victorian property similar to this one.  I can tell you I was bog eyed as we pulled up.  If I could I would have moved in there and then. Huge doorways, sweeping staircase, tall ceilings and a kitchen big enough to fit extras such as a tall period dresser, an 8 seater dining table and a couple of large armchairs.  The biggest reward of this job is of course getting to spy other peoples homes.

The schedule for the day is read before getting down swiftly to business with placing the props and dressing each of the rooms where the scenes are to be shot, while the artist Kelly is in Makeup.  'Sunny' is a happy, catchy tune about Love and has been relentlessly replaying in my mind since we left the shoot last night. Hear and read the lyrics here.


And here's a few shots of the day (apologies to my Instagram followers).

Kitchen scene set up for singing while cupcake making.

Production Manager Sarah, as 'stand in' for shot set up, with James filming the behind the scenes.

The students getting the low down in that kitchen I was telling you about - an ipad with the help of Movieslate app makes a time saving and cool clapperboard.

Bagpuss was the real celebrity star of the shoot but the nodding dogs got some coverage too.  As well as styling, I was signed up as Dog Wrangler for the day.  This involved tieing some long transparent thread to their ears, sitting down behind the counter out of shot and pulling the threads to nod the bulldogs head to the tune of the music.  I had to do the same with a pink and white poodle in the bedroom.  The glamour!  And a note to self - buy transparent thread for my styling box.  There's always something you'll need that you don't have with you and thankfully Matt's mum had some for us to use.

Can you see the thread?

Kelly's makeup getting a touch up from Sally

Bedroom scene and more touching up of makeup taking place

The penultimate scene of the day, scrabble with the song lyrics for words on the board.

 And the last scene with Kelly playing her guitar.


The garden scene was ditched due to the low light.  Naturally the Director wanted only Sunny conditions and at 8pm last night, was in scant quantity.

Today Den, James and the team, with the help of the students are cutting and editing the video in a suite in Soho.  I cannot wait to see it but when it's finished, I'll  of course post it up.

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Reader Comments (8)

I've been totally negligent over on Instagram so this didn't feel repetitive to me at all! And even if I'd seen them before, it's so cool to have the contextual background with your account of the day to go with them. So neat that you got to be on the set all day and see how things went! That shooting schedule looks crazy, so much to capture! When we see the video I'll look for the dog's bobbing head and know it was you :) That's such a funny little detail that I'd have overlooked otherwise, but I guess it really does take a ton of behind-the-scenes work to pull something like this together! Bravo! Can't wait to see the final edit.

August 17, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterErin

Firstly I love that you have a 'styling box', that's brilliant! Congratulations on your fabulous styling, the bobbing of the dogs heads seems like so much work for such a small thing, but I imagine it will be really effective on the video. I will be thinking of you pulling their strings when I watch it :)

What a great post, it's amazing to see all of the work that goes into it, can't wait to see the final version! x

August 17, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKelly Sparkes

the words to the lyrics are so cute and the music so "sunny"... i love all the pics that you took, i also love seeing what you do in a days work. LOVE this xx

August 18, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterleah of sang the bird

What a great day, Sam! I love seeing all the behind-the-scenes photos. Goes to show that much planning and layers of skilled people are involved in video shoots. Now the hard part begins, the editing. I am forever fascinated by editors and their skill to take all those shots and create video magic. I'm looking forward to seeing the final cut soon.
Happy weekend, Sam!

August 19, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterTheresa

Oh, how very exciting - congratulations! The amount of painstaking work that goes on behind-the-scenes at photoshoots/fashion shows/video shoots never ceases to amaze me. You guys should be celebrated a lot more than you usually are, if you ask me!

Your styling captures the fun, light-hearted feel of Kelly's song perfectly and I love the quirky addition of Bagpuss and the nodding dog.

I'm sure it'll lead to even more fabulous work for you in the future. Can't wait to see the finished video! :D

August 19, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterChi @ 106

@Erin - It was a really loooong day, especially when there's the packing down and turning the location back into a house again. We ordered 18 pizzas for lunch and couldn't get through them. The car smelt of sweaty pizza on the way home. the edit is almost ready to show you. Thanks x

@Kelly - I didn't have a styling box but I have now! Thank you for your nice words too. I got dead arms with all the dog nodding and getting it going in time to the music was the hardest. x

@Leah - thank you dear, glad you like/love! x

@Theresa - the editing is definitely an art. Mr L. rather fancies the colour grading process these days. But it has been really successful, I've seen the edit as it stands and it's really cool. Kelly will get a fantastic video, I really hope it helps further her career. x

@Chi - you are very sweet, thank you. It's all the tiny details that make the project work. I can just imagine a fashion shoot being just as frantic. The big challenge is not just the working together but working around each other too. There's often not a lot of space to work in. I'd love more work like this, I was really in the 'flow' x

August 20, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSam Lennie

How fun! She' so cute. I can't wait to see the final product. I love video and all that it entails. Such a creative process! Teri

August 20, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterTeri

Oh well done Sam it looks great. I used to love Bagpuss so much, he makes me feel all sleepy and happy. I love her red dress too, that's really pretty. I can't wait to see the finished video either, so cool that you have something permanently that you did! x

August 23, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterannie

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