Saturday, November 1, 2008

The Cipha - Part One

Yo!! Hope all are still well in this field of life. The post today is centred around the first part of 'The Cipha'. I shall walk you through what went into shooting the scenes, and how they were put together. So, hang on, and enjoy the ride.


The scene opens up with a shot of the National University of Lesotho's main entrance, then cuts into the first emcee to bless the documentary, Black Ice. We shot the scenes with a beatmaker called Symptorme (nuff shout), who assissted with some of the camera angles. During editing, we managed to get hold of some old footage which had Black Ice on it, and it became a perfect fit into the whole plot.


After a short interval/break in transmission, the documentary cuts into a scene of Black Ice spitting freestyles (something the man does quite well). The reason for this stylistic decision is that we had edited the second part of the documentary prior to the opening scene; actually, the opening scene was dictated by the narrator's script, which, by the way, wasn't scripted at all! This was another stylistic decision - to keep true to the tradition of the cipha, it was only fitting that the narratives should be freestyles.

Another break in transmission comes after the freestyle, and the documentary proceeds to the section where Black Ice breaks down his definition of the cipha. We used two cameras (another one courtesy of the man Symptorme), so the different angles make for quite an interesting view. Poisonfoul, another emcee from Lesotho, sits in the background as Ice carries on with his thoughts.


Black Ice's scene was one of last parts we shot for the documentary, but ended up being the opening part. We had already gotten the hang of the editing software, so for the hallway scene where he's freestyling, a split-screen stylistic effect was chosen. I find it quite amusing how people who have seen the documentary in my presence become boggled by this particular scene. Secret: well, there is not secret at all, we used two cameras - camera1 on the left side of the screen, and camera2 on the right, on either side of the emcee. One can even see Symptorme holding his camera if proper attention to detail is paid.


The documentary then reverts back to the interview where Black Ice continues to explain what the cipha means to him, amidst noise from a passerby truck (the joys of filming outside!). All in all, that's a bit of info on how this first part of the documentary was put together. If you dig it, leave comments. Please forward any questions through, we'll be happy to answer them.


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