Instructional Video Production Series – Integrated Pest Management for Schools

August 1, 2014

Preparing for a scene in a classroom.

We just finished shooting a large instructional video production on the subject of Integrated Pest Management for Schools for the California Department of Pesticide Regulation. The project is a series of ten episodes, each focusing on a different pest problem in the school environment: cockroaches in the classroom, mice and rats in the kitchen, gophers in the athletic field, etc. To hold the audience’s attention throughout what could have turned out to be a very dry instructional video production the client asked for a humorous approach. We were more than happy to comply.

Three cameras ready to go for an interview.

The meat-and-potatoes part of this instructional video production is a series of interviews with experts in the pest management field. We kept these interviews scripted loosely so that they come across natural; after all, the experts know their subject so they can wing it. To help us with editing such a free-flowing conversation we shot each interview with two or three cameras. Daniel Gamburg was the Director of Photography and he used his favorite Canon 5D camera. As director I sometimes manned a second 5D. A few special shots were done with a GoPro and we had a Canon T3i on-hand for additional coverage, often used unattended as a lock-down wide shot camera.

Andy Linda directs, Daniel Gamburg is behind camera and Stephen Laferrier is the on-camera host.

Lorin Fink did an excellent job with our new iPad-based wireless Teleprompter system, even though the software is new and therefore still a little buggy. We really wanted to keep the narrator (Stephen Laferriere) moving, so walking-and-talking was the norm and for that we needed the wireless portability. It was out of the question to have Stephen memorize all the lines for such a long instructional video production. (He was very good about rehearsing so that he didn’t have any trouble with the Prompter.) Sound recording was handled by Ken Codeglia and our son Nick Linda was production assistant.

Special thanks go to Producer Angie Gamburg for keeping us fed and hydrated for two weeks in the Central Valley heat. Even the interiors were sweltering because most school buildings have their ventilation systems shut down for the summer. Still, we are grateful to the school districts in Manteca and Livermore for making their schools available for this project.

Getting props ready in a school kitchen.

This instructional video production got finished right on schedule in December. It added up to 73 minutes total and besides being distributed on DVDs directly to school districts, it is posted online.

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