Megan Kaiser – Staff Writer
Three teams. Three films. One deadline.
The new equipment that the Digital Media Department purchased this previous summer, including cameras, a new greenscreen, a Go-Pro and new lights, has been put to work this semester. The ones to really utilize this equipment were two independent study groups and the short film production class.
Director Nathan Walter, producer Kaylie Ogle, director of photography James Newhouse, director of photography Dan Woudenberg and editor Lance Wunderink made up the short film production crew.
“The Confession is a psychological thriller about a young detective trying to crack a convict who allegedly killed three people. It deals with concepts of revenge, personal justification, and the nature of evil. I think it very powerfully speaks against many popular films of today like Taken or Bourne that justify mass killings for the sake of a personal vendetta,” said junior Nathan Walter.
“The coolest experience for me and my whole team was the cemetery shoot. We spent five hours outside in the cold, snow, and wind to capture a 24 second shot – and it was awesome! We were able to simulate a sweeping crane move with a big electrician’s lift, and we had a real coffin and hearse and extras there too! It was an incredible experience!” Walter said.
One of the independent study films consists of Eli Anderson and Abby Louwerse. Their film is titled Tara, a story based on the book of Esther.
“The story is about a woman who gets out of a bad romantic situation by being selected to be the 1st lady of her country, but then finds that she may be killed because of her association with less than great characters in her past. Abby and I hope to one-day make a feature length film of the story of Esther and other books of the Bible. This video is the last 6 minutes of the potential full-length film,” said Anderson.
The second independent study film consists of Daryl Bruinsma and Megan Kaiser. They created a short music video to an original song by Jerusha Pimentel. Her song is titled Tyger & Lamb.
“One cool feature of our music video this semester was the use of slow motion for Jerusha’s vocals. To create slow motion we shot the video at a high frame rate, like 60 frames per second and then slowed it down to the regular 24 frames per second. To accommodate the slow motion we sped up the song and played it twice as fast at the shoot,” said Bruinsma.
“I found it very easy to do some of the more bizarre things, like changing in and out of outfits a dozen times, and singing in double speed,” Pimentel said. “We had met beforehand to discuss what they were envisioning for the video, and there was a part where they wanted it to be in slow motion, but with my lips singing the song in real time. In order to do that I had to sing the song double-speed while they were recording. They sped the song up for me already, but it was hard not to laugh while recording. It sounded somewhat like one of the chipmunks singing to an eerie mariachi strum. It was hilarious.”
“We had Professor Drissell’s daughter Natalee in our video,” Bruinsma said. “Working with a child actress was kind of a daunting idea at first, but in the end it worked out really well. She was comfortable with being in front of the camera. She was a natural.”
All three of the teams utilized the basement of Kuyper for one scene or more. “It was just easy to manipulate the area into the way we wanted it to look,” said junior Kaylie Ogle.
All-nighters weren’t out of the question in the final week before the three premieres.
“Gratefully, the film shoots went very smoothly and without any painful mistakes or issues,” said Walter.
The films premiered to Dordt audiences the last week of the semester.