UNCG Dept of Media Studies News

The University of North Carolina at Greensboro

An update from Grad Student abroad, Colby Gottert

October 28th 2010

I am currently in transit in Dubai after a long haul flight from JFK that lasted twelve hours.  I am on my way to Dhaka to shoot footage for a series of short documentaries about Helen Keller International’s work in the country.  During our two-week trip we will document three different programs.  The first is a diabetic retinopathy program, which identifies and treats individuals who are at risk of going blind from diabetes.  The second is a homestead food production program that is designed to encourage rural families to grow nutritious fruits and vegetables in garden plots to supplement the vitamin intake of their children.  The third is a gender equity program that aims to increase women’s empowerment across HKI’s programs in Bangladesh so that they can more effectively act to protect the health of their families.

On this trip, I am traveling with Jennifer Klopp, who is the communications director and a vice-president of Helen Keller International, and Trevor Snapp, who is a photographer and videographer with extensive international experience.  Trevor and I are co-directing and co-producing the videos.  This means that Trevor and I are working together to develop the pre-production outlines for each video, we are both filming footage for the videos and we are collaborating during the editing process.  Trevor is bringing a photojournalist’s eye to the production while I approach it from a video production perspective.  This means that we will be able to blend different types of imagery during the post-production process.  Trevor will gather more composed shots with shallow depth of field using his Canon 5D, while I gather run and gun “verité” footage using a Sony EX1.

We brought the following gear on the trip:

§  Canon 5D kit with the following lenses 50mm, 16-35 mm L, 24 mm L, 70-200 mm L

§  Sony EX1 kit with a Letus lens adapter.

§  Satchler tripod and Glidecam stabilizer system

§  Arri light kit with three 200 watt lights and a 1k with a softbox (these will mostly be used to light interviews

§  Sennheiser wireless lavaliere system, Sonotrim wired mic for sit down interviews and sony shotgun mic

Trevor and I will be trading off, so we each get a chance to shoot with the Canon 5D and Sony EX1 during field production.

We will be taking off for Dhaka in a few minutes, so I will sign off for now and post again from Dhaka.  If you have any specific questions that you want me to answer, please feel free to e-mail me at colby_gottert@yahoo.com.

All the best,



Written by uncgmst

October 29, 2010 at 6:33 pm

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