Another month, another few days of work experience and living my dream life. This time, I headed to Doghouse Post-Productions, which is conveniently located just across the road from the BBC’s Natural History Unit, and also visible from my living room.
The work I did at Doghouse was much more varied than what I got up to at Silverback. I spent my mornings shadowing their runner, helping her to make cups of tea for the company’s clients and staff members. This was a fantastic way to get to know the people working in the edit suites, as well as what they were working on, and thus what I might later get the chance to sit in on.
True to form, I spent my first afternoon sitting in on the edit of a programme about wildlife – this time, one aimed at children. This particular show uses a combination of bluechip footage and green-screen superimposition to place the characters in the wilderness with the animals in question. It was fascinating to watch how this kind of show comes together and how green-screen editing works, as it was completely different to anything I had worked on before. That, plus a view in to the rushes of some of my favourite bluechip productions, made for a very entertaining afternoon.
On day two, I arrived to something of a buzz of excitement in the company. One of their clients was preparing to do the voice over for their production that day, and the celebrity who gave said voice over would be in the office shortly. I leapt at the opportunity to sit in on this experience; script-writing skills are difficult to hone without hands-on experience, and here I had the chance to watch the words for a wildlife show come together before me. It was an amazing learning experience, and a great story to gloat about once we wrapped for the day.
My final day at Doghouse (as their placements are limited to three days in length) saw me pack in two more brilliant insights to the post-production process. For the morning, I sat in on the grading of one of their productions using DaVinci Resolve, and was able to stay for the screening to the producer, who signed off on it at the end. That afternoon, I was back in the dubbing suite, observing the sound mixing for a series of web clips to accompany a natural history series that was about to premier using ProTools. Both of these processes are incredibly interesting to watch and highly skilful, using complex-looking software and relying heavily on a keen eye (or, indeed, ear).
To summarise, the time I spent doing work experience at Doghouse Post-Productions was fantastic. I somehow managed to pack a wealth of experiences in to just three days, and came away feeling like I had learned and experienced so much. I always find it funny how every time I do work experience or finish a project I’m suddenly hit by a wave of motivation, and this was no different – I came away rearing to go for the next step in my career, small though that step may be. And for that, Doghouse, I thank you.