Day 03 – the finish line

Sunday, 20 May 2007

Production Diary 


  • shoot cowboy scene
  • shoot CD store scene
  • shoot noose /lasoo scene
  • re-shoot closeups, counseling group scene
  • final edit
  • foley, soundtrack recording
  • export to mini DV/DVD at worst case scenario
  • check paperwork
  • get the tape to Pirie St
  • pack out
  • PARTY!!!!


  • Level 3 (shoot & re-shoot)
  • Dan’s backyard (cowboy scene)
  • front level 1 (CD store scene)
  • level 1 (editing suite, foley)


Things went really well during the shoot, but trouble was to get the PC working the way I wanted it (no crashing)… although I already had 2 hours allowance for delay because of crashes, it still didn’t cut it. We didn’t get the colour effects done because we wouldn’t have time to render it. Export via firewire also didn’t work.

8 minutes to spare was a really late hand in, my target was to be finished by 5 or at least start final render/export by 5.30, but then again, can’t really do anything when technology fails on you. So… we’re glad that we got it in on time.


We were behind schedule thanks to the machine… but hey we SURVIVED and that’s the main thing! :) We had lots of fun during the weekend and definitely learned lots of stuff and definitely had strengthen our team bonds. So that’s awesome!!!! Thanks a lot guys! :)

My Diary 

I don’t think I need to say it… but gosh we were late (again)… Found it sooooo hard to wake up!!! Luckily by the time we got there everyone was still having coffee and getting ready for the shoot. I can’t remember what time it was, but I remember it was breakfast time coz my tummy was protesting… lol… so we went to Shell to get a little breakfast while Dan, Cameron, Kelly and Matt went out to get the cowboy shoot done. Jacob went home to freshen up. After  breakfast I rushed to my editing machine again to polish the rough edit and get exact time lapses for the re-shoot, while Cory went to crash on the bed on level 3 for about an hour.

Around 8.30am I heard noises coming from the workshop and followed by a familiar laugh… Symon, Jackie and Mark were in (they were working that weekend)…  and of course, I got commented on my ‘zombie’ look from the lack of sleep and stressed out because the machine started to crash on me.

By the time the rest of production crew came back, Jacob was already ready in the studio with his electric guitar and all other equipment I wasn’t familiar with. The cowboy scene looked awesome!!!! Especially when Matt started dishing out that tear!!! That was awesome! After knowing exactly what to re-shoot I started to txt everyone else to come over for the shoot. Meanwhile, Dan and Cameron were shooting the CD store scene. I was digging up my old artwork for something that would be suitable for a CD cover. And luckily I found one of my experimental piece that I haven’t touched for quite awhile… when Cory said it looked suitable for the set, I did a little fixing here and there before printing it out and slipped it on as a CD cover…. and now that artwork was also the DVD cover for this short and also the background image for DVD menu. And we also had a little discussion on what the title should be… it was quite a hard decision… we even did a draw out of cowboy hat that was filled with random words that associate to the short. But in the end we went with “Darkest Before Dawn” taken from a line in the movie, which really suits the genre, story and even the CD cover.

After all the shoots were done… it was crunch time for me!!! I started to get really stressed out when the computer crashed twice within ten minutes. And the third time it crashed, it corrupted 3 versions of files… I was going nuts!!!!! So angry that I really really really want to put a friggin’ hole in the machine!!!! Luckily Cameron came to the rescue and Dan took me outside for fresh air… while Cam took over the edit suite and did some more polishing…. one more minute in the studio, that machine was going down!!!! So I went for a little walk down to nearby cafe with Cory to get some lunch. And what do you know… they had my favourite “Funky Salmon Stack”!!! I haven’t had it for sooo long coz everytime I go the always ran out :( Hehehe…

But Dan had to leave the car keys in the car… so Cameron and Jacob was trying to break into Dan’s car… so… if we count it… how many cars did we break into this weekend??? Hehehe… yeah… *Ferg’s abandoned car included*

Feeling refreshed, I went back to the editing… *thanks Cam*. Jacob and Matt started to make music… so I had this angry music in the background which really fueled my concentration towards the movie somehow… so that was good… and Pat was sitting behind me to remind me every few minutes to safe the file just in case in crashed again… but of course it did!!!! Urgh!!!! Oh well… fired it up again and re-boot…. boy I felt so sorry for the boys coz I bet they’ve never heard soooo much loud swearing coming from me… hahahahaha… of course I was swearing at the machine.

It was nearing to 6pm when Jacob and Matt finsihed recording the soundtrack (with a few interruption from my swearing *sorry about that*). But I love the soundtrack!!!! Hahaha!!! It suits the movie! So for the next 20 minutes I had almost the whole team behind me cheering every so often while I put the soundtrack and sound effect into the movie. I have to say that I started to get that itch I always get whenever I’m almost finish with my projects…. so I couldn’t stop twitching and tapping away… hahaha!

By 6.20pm we were ready to export the movie. It was such a pity that we couldn’t get the colour effects done… but if we did it we wouldn’t have enough time to render (thanks to the crashes!!! ARGH!!!!). Then we were faced with a new nightmare… the computer refused to spit video into the mini DV tape!!!!! So after the 2nd try, we tried to export through Dan’s camera… it looked promising at first because at least it stated “recording”… but it had no image… so there goes our option! Worst case scenario, we decided to burn into DVD without wasting anymore time.. and that was the longest wait ever!!!!

As soon as the DVD was ready, I took the label and Dan ran the DVD into the workshop to get it tested, while Jacob got the van ready to take some of us to the hand in. Thank God it worked!!!!  So Matt, Pat and I jumped into the van with Jacob… I went on the back seat *BIG mistake*. I literally travelled from one end of the van to another!!!!! So struggling to stay still!!! But somehow I was grateful I wasn’t sitting on the front seat coz I knew I would have nightmare from then on if I have to go into the van with Jacob again… hahaha! We were 10 minutes away from the deadline when we finally got to the bottom of Pirie St. Halfway through, we got stuck by traffic and Jacob yelled out “Bail!!!” so we all went out of the van and started sprinting like our lives depend on it to the top of the hill… passing the envelope with our movie and paperwork in it from one person to another. I honestly thought I was going to be sore tomorrow because of that sprinting… I didn’t even know I could run that fast!!!! Hahaha!!!!

At 6.52pm Matt made it to the hand in desk!!!! Yeeha!!!! Sooooo happy!!!! Of course we cracked open the beer and waited until the countdown.  I saw Preston and Guido there again… and had the chance to catch up with them. That 20 seconds countdown was quite a suspense… especially seeing people who were still running to get their movies handed in… I felt really sorry for the guy who got to the door when we just reached the countdown to 0… coz it was too late for him…. so I was just glad that we got our movie in on time.

After finishing our beer, we went back to help the others pack out… oh geez… the place was a total mess!!! Hahaha!!!! But we had a lot of fun… so the mess was totally worth it!!! We even had our own screening at the editing studio, fired the movie off onto the projector and watched it on a (slightly) bigger screen… hehehe… at the end of the day… we were all satisfied with the result… now all I had to do was just to tweak some things in the movie and make the final and intended version of “Darkest Before Dawn”… :)

Although I’m a little scared after picking up sooo many cans of V… hmmm… yeah… well… the photo below wasn’t all of it yet… lots of them had already gone to the rubbish bag or the bin… talk about caffeine overload!

V mountain

But of course, the celebration didn’t stop with beer and viewing… Cory and I went to have a Korean dinner!!! YUMMY!!! I thought after that manic weekend and lots of unhealthy eating and lots of cans of V’s, our tummies deserved something yummy… hehehhee…

Well… we’re calling it an early night… too tired to stay awake… plus I have to wake up early tomorrow to go to work :(… hahahaha…. I had a wonderful weekend… thank you all :) *fingers crossed for the viewing*

NITE NITE!!! zzzzzzz…… zzzzzzz…. zzzz…..


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