In Cornwall, General

Truro City of Lights is one of the big annual events on the Cornwall calendar and Piran Films were present, filming it for Cornwall Life Magazine.
The event, which is held in mid November each year, sees a dazzling procession of withy and tissue lanterns float through the streets, handmade and carried by professional artists, Cornish school children and local community and youth groups. Each year is themed, 2014 being ‘Heroes’ inspired by the ordinary people placed in extraordinary circumstances, particularly in the First World War.
I did a “reccie” a week before the event and managed to secure permission to film from the second floor of the local Waterstone’s Bookshop and the Hall for Cornwall. What was interesting and reassuring for me was to see that I had chosen identical vantage points to BBC Spotlight, who were covering the event live.
I also mentored one of my pupils, Matt Pitman. I say mentored – we took turns filming using my Sony PMWEX1 off a monopod – and when I got back home to upload the footage, I couldn’t really tell which was mine and which was Matt’s. So all credit and thanks to him.
Back at Truro School two days later with my video production group, I asked them how they would edit the video. We spoke about the importance of not “crossing the line” and making sure that each shot in the sequence followed in the same direction (left to right or vice versa). I think we managed that, or did we in deed?

I have taken on board a number of their suggestions; the principal one being, to break up the procession by using the interviews we shot at the end of the lantern parade. I did think about using some of the foley we recorded on an Edirol, but in the end there was only one piece of “iffy” audio and unfortunately that was one of the interviews.

Last year I was filming for the Cornwall Channel and my daughter stood in as presenter and narrator. On reflection, that worked better than the format I used this year. We were also spoilt with much larger lanterns. Sadly, Falmouth University pulled out this year. However, Truro School featured again, having made their lantern in the space of two days. Incredible, and all credit to our Head of Dept. Dave Meads, who features on the film and to our senior school and prep school pupils.


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