Production Techniques

Audio-When researching how i should record my audio i found that it was important that i ensure that the sensitivity levels are set so that the input is not peaking as this will make the audio inaudible or dangerous for the listener, i, therefore, looked for the best input and found that i wanted a volume of around -12db to -6db as this is loud enough to hear but not too loud as to peak. i experimented with how the sensitivity would affect this and found that the optimum setting was around the number of 6 if i was close to my interviewee, i will need to assess my interview location as there will be different acoustics and ensure that my audio is around this range.

Filming-When researching how i should film a documentary what i found was that depth of field would play a huge part in the look of my piece, a wide depth of field would distract the viewer from Leo due to the background being in focus as much as Leo, whereas a narrow depth of field would put Leo in hard focus and therefore mean that he stands out from the background and the viewer is not distracted from the interviewee. I will, therefore, esnure that my project uses a narrow depth of field by having a large distance from the camera to my subject and then zoom focusing on Leo which will give a narrow depth of field.

Lighting a scene-I researched how to light a scene i found how would be best to light with three lights as this was all that was available for me, i found out i could use my lights to give me a key light as well as fill light, and backlight i found that i could place my key light to the side that Leo would be looking and place my fill light the other side due to it being a lighting kit with the option to lower the brightness which will make it possible for me to have a fill light the same distance as my key. After seeing where i would film my interview i decided that i would not need a backlight and therefore i planned for my shoot with the use of just my key and fill light. The key will be positioned the side Leo is looking the fill will be the other side of the camera.

Documentary Style-My documentary style is a mix of expository and participatory as i have an interview with my contributor making it participatory but i have him explaining an overarching narrative. I find this works for the documentary as i wanted him talking directly to the audience but also to tell the story of leos life.


Documentary analysis

Blood Sugar Diabetes-Blood Sugar – Type 1 Diabetes Documentary | DocumentaryTube

Screen Shot 2017-06-24 at 20.16.18.pngThis documentary has a good use of actuality footage as it shows what the little girl would actually be doing instead of using an interview, we see her living her normal life which is spliced in with people asking about what she hates to give us an idea of how the girl feels, the narrative jeopardy of the piece is how the illness will affect the little girls life, which is addressed by her saying she hates every part of diabetes. I can see from this documentary that I will need to make use of actuality footage to show how leos normal life is.

last minutes with Oden-

Last Minutes with ODEN on VimeoScreen Shot 2017-06-24 at 20.18.07.pngScreen Shot 2017-06-24 at 20.17.52.png

Has the interview playing underneath footage of him biking outside contrasting with him talking about his bad period. Then uses actuality footage of him crying on the phone and taking Oden to the vets this helps to show the emotion he has for oden as we see his reactions to his saying goodbye. there is no footage of him doing the interview instead showing him biking which makes it more emotional as we are not seeing him in a studio but instead in his normal environment. This shows me i might need to consider having some footage of him doing something to play under the interview.

Strawberries will save the world-Strawberries Will Save The World by Yoko Okumura

This is a light-hearted documentary which manages to tell a story with the use of one interviewee’s story and use of her family talking about her love of strawberries. The piece also uses actuality footage to show how far Yonos obsession goes with footage from her travelling for strawberries conventions. The documentary does, however, show me that i should ensure my framing is correct as some of the interview shots had yono too close to the centre and made it look awkward therefore i should be careful to not place Leo too close to the centre. i have also been shown by this documentary that as long as i have lots of cutaway shots i can have one interviewee whilst keeping the piece interesting.Picture

About employment-(1) “About Employment” 5-minute short documentary (SUBMISSION 2016) – YouTubeScreen Shot 2017-06-24 at 20.20.11.png

This uses footage of the woman being told what’s in the documentary which shows straight away that she is unsure of whether they want to help her or just use her disability to get views, there is no strict interview in the film instead making use of actuality footage of her getting ready for interviews and applying for jobs this helps to give a sense of why she struggles to get jobs as it is very hard for her to apply, there is also some footage where the screen is black which gives an idea of what she sees when people are talking and further highlights how difficult it is for her to get a job. I feel that this shows that could perhaps have a segment where the screen goes black when Leo talks about the comma as this would immerse the viewer in his life.





A tracheostomy is an opening created at the front of the neck so a tube can be inserted into the windpipe to help you breathe.

A biventricular assist device (BiVAD) is an implantable pump designed to help your heart function better when both sides of your heart are failing.

When blood from your body returns to the right side of your heart, the right ventricle (one of the pumping chambers) pumps the blood into your lungs to receive oxygen. The oxygen-rich blood then goes back to the left side of your heart, where your left ventricle pumps blood out through the main artery leaving your heart.

Research Into Heart Transplants

The first heart transplant was performed on decemeber 031967 in cape town south africa. The recipient was dying of chronic heart disease he was given the heart of a 25 year old woman who was in a car crash. He was given medication that suppressed his immune system so that his body wouldn’t reject his heart. Due to this he was susceptiple to germs and passed away 18 days later.

One of the earliest UK transplants was that of Gordon MCDonald he had surgery in 1979 he was very ill and jumped at the chance. His surgeon was Sir Terence English. Continue reading “Research Into Heart Transplants”

Other Documentary Analysis

Stephanies Story-

This documentary built narrative through the narration of the main character Stephanie this is something I would like for my documentary but due to the fact that I have no footage of Leo before the operation it is unlikely that I will be able to have the narration do this, it is  more likely that any cutaway shots will have his questions playing over them than any narration.

I also liked that before the operation everything was black and white and afterwards it changed to colour this helped to show how much it changed her life, but again I couldn’t do this.

Life After Death-

A documentary that discusses peoples near death experiences, this project showed me how I could perhaps focus on paranormal elements but due to Leo not experiencing this to my knowledge i have decided that this approach would not be best for my documentary.

The Boy Who Gave His Heart Away-

This radio series helped to give me ideas for my documentary as it focuses on the v iew of the family who met the person who had there sons heart, this would not be possible for my documentary as Leo does not know the identity of his donor however it gave me the idea that I could perhaps interview his girlfriend or parents to help give another view of the procedure.

Kirstie:My New Lungs

This documentary takes a very personal approach having her life documented through out her normal life and including footage taken of her during the operation. Questions she answers are quite sensitive but she never refuses to discuss her experiences.

Research into heart transplants


A heart transplant is only considered if someone has severe heart failure and medical treatments aren’t helping.

A heart transplant must happen as soon as possible once a donour heart has been found. The patient gets given general anaesthesia during the operation.

While the operation is performed a heart lung bypass machine keeps the blood circulating with oxygen. A cut is made in the centre of the chest and the diseased heart is removed and the new heart is connected to the main arteries and veins. After the operation the patient stays in hospital for usually two to three weeks, getting back to normal life within a few months. Certain activities need to be avoided during recovery. Regular meetings take place between the patient nd the doctors in charge of transplants. The patient needs medications called immunosuppressants for the rest of their life otherwise there body would attack the heart as a foreign heart which is called rejection.

Risks include rejection of the heart, the new heart not working properly, arteries to the heart narrowing. Most of these can be treated although a second transplant may be needed.

Outlook for patients is that it is easy to return to normal activities however there can still be complications with half the life expectancy of there family.

The patient needs to stay in hospital for around two or three weeks after a heart transplant. Most are able to start returning to many of their normal activities within a few months. Need to have regular check-ups with transplant team after the transplant. The patient also need to take medications called immunosuppressants for the rest of their life. Without these medicines, the body may recognise new heart as foreign and attack it.


What the procedure entails.

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