The night of shoot was during one of the hottest days on the year, which meant it was pleasant being able to spend the night inside of an ice rink. After loading the equipment into the vehicles we headed to pick up Nigel from his home. We planned to meet the rest of the team in the car park of the ice rink. Here we had a quick pre-shoot meeting, mainly about health and safety which is always a big concern of mine during shoots this size.
We had provided our insurance policies and we made sure to be safe with all leading cables and equipment. Most of the floors inside the ice rink were wet and damp so this meant we had to be extra vigilant.
We were asked to load and enter the ice rink through a side door that was also an external fire exit. This meant we could load our kit whilst the public exited the site and the ice was resurfaced. We had a conversation prior to the shoot about the surface of the ice. This was important for a few reasons, visuals, safety and Nigel’s preference. Visually, we wanted to ice left quite choppy which meant you could see a few people had been skating on it. This was also beneficial to Nigel’s preference and safety as it meant for more grip.
For each scene, the aforementioned storyboard was used as a reference for the DOP, director and lighting tech to set up the shots. This was the biggest time constraint for us. Lighting a scene can take a large amount of time, something that should have been better factored into the equation. We focused on using tungsten spotlights for the majority of the ice skating scenes to contrast with the cold blue floods, however for the other scenes we used a combination of harsh flood and spots.
We focused on capturing Nigel’s ice skating scenes first as a priority. We were under a time and budget constraint, so capturing this content was most important. Each take was orchestrated by the director James Mckenzie-Blyth and George, who would usher on takes and setups to stay on time of time.
Frustratingly as we had also used the house lights to cast the majority blue, we had little control over them, which limited some of the creative control. If budget and time allowed, a better option would have been to use our own production lights so we had full creative control over brightness, positioning etc.