Project Description

Three days, two locations: capturing the Shrewsbury LGBT+ History Festival as an event video

The Shrewsbury LGBT+ History Festival is an annual event, which seeks to celebrate and educate people about local LGBT+ History.

It normally takes place over the course of the weekend, and features a huge variety of events; with film screenings; educational presentations; and artistic showcases among them.

The organisers of the Shrewsbury LGBT+ History Festival wanted an event video of the weekend, so that they’d got a historical record of what happened, and were able to promote the event in future as well.

And who am I to say no to a long weekend in the lovely Shropshire market town!

Hannah Quinn from VideoHQ filming the Shrewsbury LGBT+ History Festival

What was the pre-production process like?

I’ve worked with SAND (the organisation behind the festival) on multiple occasions, so I’m pretty clued up on their brief, and what they look to achieve with their videos.

So a lot of the pre-production work was based on technicals. The festival kicked off on the Friday night, and ran through to the Sunday lunchtime. It was also based at two different locations – The Hive in Belmont and the Shropshire Wildlife Trust in Abbey Foregate – so there was a lot of work looking at where I needed to be, and when.

A big part of how I film event videos is gathering video feedback with participants and event goers – this really boosts the video and helps you to craft a narrative.

While a lot of this is spontaneous – like grabbing people as they leave an event – a lot of it is worked out in advance. I made a list of who they wanted me to interview, when they would be available to speak to, and worked this into my schedule.

What was the filming process like? 

Busy, but organised!

With filming events, you’re looking at three key elements: cameras, sound, and lighting. And getting these set up quickly in the changeovers between events was tricky, especially when moving between venues in Shrewsbury!

Speakers needed to be mic’d up before each event began to make sure the audio quality was perfect. Lighting needed to be adjusted throughout the day as the amount of daylight coming through the windows changed. And my two cameras needed adjusting and focussing.

I use two cameras when filming events so that I can have a camera at the back to capture a full recording of the whole event, and a handheld camera for close ups and more artistic shots which are great for the final montage video.

Filming the Shrewsbury LGBT+ History festival at the Shropshire Wildlife trust

What was the editing process like?

As you can imagine from a three day festival, there was a lot of footage to look through! But fortunately my background as a journalist makes this process a bit easier.

While filming, I’m constantly on the lookout for great quotes and engaging narratives – I don’t want it to be just a ‘this is what happened’ event video montage.

For example, during the presentation about the Shropshire LGBT Switchboard, an audience member said that he thinks he was one of the first people to use the service. After the event, I jumped in and grabbed a quick interview with him. 

Therefore, a lot of the editing process is finding these moments in the footage I captured, and weaving together a narrative using them.

I also set the video to a music track, and colour grade all of my footage. When filming an event video across multiple days and locations, it would be easy for the footage to all look really different. Colour grading them the same helps to tie it together into a cohesive video.

Filming a play for the Shrewsbury LGBT+ History Festival at the Quarry