An event at Plymouth Arts Cinema turned the spotlight on post-production, with two experts from leading indie Twofour offering students a peek into industry practice.
Speaking after the RTS Devon and Cornwall “The secrets of finishing” masterclass last month, Sharney Adams, senior colourist and Head of Online at Twofour, said he had tried to “demystify some of the things we do to bring… the raw camera footage to what you see on television”.
Using his work on the BBC Three gay dating show I Kissed a Boy as an example, he highlighted the importance of “working out what the director wants and getting that done in the time and within the budget”.
He added: “You need to be able to work fast… when I was a student, we used to have weeks to do what I’m doing in a couple of hours.”
Jeremy Lock, dubbing mixer and Twofour Post Head of Audio, took students through the audio post-production process, with examples from his latest project, BBC One documentary Matt Willis: Fighting Addiction.
Artificial intelligence, he revealed, is increasingly used in post-production software, although, speaking after the event, he offered reassurance that TV jobs are not yet under threat. “We’re a long way off the piece of software being able to interpret something they see or hear… and emotionally convey that back to an audience,” he said.
The Twofour colleagues stressed the importance of events such as this masterclass. “Sharney and I have been working together for 25 years… but we both learned something about each other’s jobs today… these events can teach people but they can also bring people together and make connections… that is invaluable.”
Sharney added: “It’s really good that students get to see that the things they are learning can actually be applied to a proper job… and there’s a shortage of colourists.”
Arts University Plymouth student Faith Mackenzie said: “They touched on things that I hadn’t thought about before when it comes to the process of colour grading and sound editing.”
Industry experts, she added, offered students a “specialised” viewpoint, with “a different depth of knowledge [to] our lecturers”.