I’m another life I used to make short films. I’ve been a horror fan all my life and myself and a mate used to make short horror films and a few dramas to boot. I was never one of those kids you hear about that grew up to be Spielbergs and Scorceses who were making 8mm shorts in their childhood and always wanted to be a filmmaker but I have always loved the craft.
On the original Monster Mashup video I found myself in uncharted territory incorporating green screen and match cuts on handheld footage amongst other things. It was tough and it was being created on the fly a lot of the time. I used to struggle to comprehend what exactly the role of a director was on a film set. I mean the writer brings the story and how it plays out. The importance of audio has never been lost on me. The actors, well, they’re kind’ve essential. So what does a director do exactly? Through making the short films and doubly so on Monster Mashup I discovered the answer to that – the director does it all.
The setup of Monster Mashup, with all of the production team bar one or two also being in front of the camera, made life pretty difficult and I still marvel at the fact that it came good at all. So I naturally decided that making a follow up with a one man crew was a great idea! Of course I had to scale things back a little and I also had the wonderful idea of doing all of this in 4 days. Genius! That said, like all videos I produce for this channel I first and foremost did it because I enjoy doing them.
As a film fan and primarily a horror fan I love stop motion. I’d always considered it pretty simple to do, pretty tough to do well and…well…I was right. Even a simple little shot here of making a Funko Pop figure walk along a flat surface took me two go arounds. The main reason for this? When I filmed the vocals there was a candle holder on the shelf. So naturally I removed it when I filmed the stop motion segment. Yes, I’m ashamed, an absolute rookie mistake.
This left me the choice of either refilming the stop motion segments and hoping I could match the framing and lighting, or redoing but it and the vocals. So I chose the latter. Over the summer I’ve taken to some DIY work a few times and my brother has repeated to me ad nauseam the age old mantra of “measure twice, cut once”. The same applies to filmmaking. Making this video has reminded me of a lot of things. Firstly it reminded me of the importance of a director as I mentioned above and the importance of preparation. Also it reminded me that I love filmmaking, and I plan to build on that.
Producing content for the niallon channel has always been a tough balancing act. It doesn’t pay any bills, it’s first and foremost a project I do for my own enjoyment and following on from that I love hearing feedback and discovering people enjoy the content I’m putting out. Over the next few weeks I’m going to start putting more effort into regularly producing these higher concept videos. I’ve always convinced myself that to keep the niallon project going weekly I’ve had to prioritise recording the more straightforward single take solo videos on batches. To be honest I think that’s more so an excuse now. If I can do something like this in 4 days then I can do a few multi angle videos in half that time. So stick with me. There’ll be teething problems along the way but as I always say, as long as at least one person is watching them I’ll keep making them.