Tuesday, July 28, 2009

For the Love of Art

If it isn't africa hot, it's raining buckets. Really interesting weather, but at least it dropped fifteen degrees. Week two of prep has started and today marks exactly two weeks left on the countdown timer to first day of shooting.

Art department has started, and two weeks is unusually short for art department. But for this script, I wrote it in such a way to have minimal art. For the layman, art department is run by the Production Designer (PD). Underneath her is the Art Director. Then you have a bunch of different positions... Prop Master, Set Dresser, Buyer, etc. But on indie films, this might all be combined.

What is the art department responsible for? All sets. If you don't have a set, they build it. If you have a set, they'll dress it up. All signage in your script. All props. All picture vehicles (picture vehicle is the term to denote a car that is seen on camera... for instance, "Garrett" drives a hot sports car. The sports car is a "picture vehicle"). Anything the actor holds that is not wardrobe is part of art department.

The PD and her team will take the script and "spot it." That means going through and listing every single prop, sign, picture vehicle, etc. If a scene calls for a sofa for the actor to sit on, it's their responsibility to have it on set, ready to go. So now they comb through the city looking for what they need. They look for deals on signage creation. They buy and collect.

Once the movie begins, the PD usually works a day or a few days ahead of the main unit, prepping out the next locations. One or two art department people are left with the main company on shoot days. You have the prop person and maybe a PA that's assisting as dresser. That way if anything needs changing, repairing or moved, you have someone ready to go.

1 comment:

  1. Nancy said...
    Dear Daniel,
    I just read your blog and have looked up Rising Stars on IMDB. I am extremely interested in working on Rising Stars! I emailed Jeff Rogers a few days ago but did not hear anything. If you could and I know you are extremely busy but I would love to know if you are completely crewed. I recently completed script supervising a feature in La. but would also be willing to work in set design, wardrobe...
    thanks and I hope to hear from you,
    ( or