Towards the end of last year I did a video promotion for a lovely Indian restaurant called Nokshi which is in the town of Moycullen in Galway. They do really good food with great prices and friendly service. The shots that I filmed in the restaurant were mostly food being served, drinks being poured and people enjoying the spicy cuisine. I also got a few close up shots of the menu with the logo plus some street views of the outside showing the sign and the location. But there was something missing. I knew that I needed something else to add a personal touch, something that would make this promotional video special for the restaurant and that would connect the viewers with the experience of visiting there.
The person meeting and greeting, showing up to our table and looking after the restaurant was a lovely man called Rubel who was very smart and well presented so I thought the shot that would really make it would be a simple face to camera one where he says something as if we are walking in and being greeted by him. I put it to him that we needed him to be the face for the video and to say a few words and he was very nervous but agreed to give it a go. I had a zoom stereo voice recorder with me and, with the help of my assistant Tadhg, we arranged to swoop the camera in towards Rubel while at the same time bringing the voice recorder into range just out of sight of the camera, then cueing Rubel to say his lines and wrap it up. We did a couple of takes and he was very quiet with the voice so I was worried that there would be more background noise than speech, but after about the third take he did a really good one with just the right expression so I listened back to the zoom recorder to see if we had the voice and it was there, clear and with not too much background noise from the restaurant. It was a wrap!
Later in the edit it became clear that the romantic low lighting of the restaurant did not translate into instantly usable video so I had to do a lot of post production to brighten the footage up using some plugins in Final Cut Pro especially one called Shadow Highlighter which did a great job. To bring a smoother look I then added some vignettes and some blurring around the edges, focusing towards the centre to showcase the good food. There were a couple of improvised slide moves where a drink was being poured that looked good with the Cobra logo on the beer and the bubbles rising. It was all coming together.
For the music I had some fun recording tabla sounds and adding some sitar and other suitable sounds until there was a music bed that seemed to work. The next step was to work on the all-important script to get something to hang the video onto. I came to Rubel’s part and found that the swooping in part was too quick to match the feel of the rest of the video, so I had to play around with the time, stretching it slower right up until the moment he speaks then back to normal with another slowing down at the end to capture the smile and to extend it slightly. With everything ready the edit came together because of the planning and the video sweetening. There was a shot with red wine pouring into a glass which I sent off to another program to get a super slow motion effect then imported that back into the main program. With a few credits at the end it was all done and ready for release. The clients were very happy and I think that Rubel has built up quite a fan base after his video appearance!
Videographer, Multimedia Creator, Composer, Lyricist, Song-Writer and Script-Writer