Friday, December 23, 2011

Spotlight On: Jeff Moore, DP Victims of Circumstance

I first met Jeff Moore in highschool, some 19 years ago. We shared a passion for storytelling and spent hours upon hours developing various theoretical projects and discussing the movie we would someday make.

It seemed only fitting, then, that VOC was birthed through similar conversations with the man. Back when I decided that I wanted to start production on a web-project, Jeff was the first person I contacted. In the early stages, VOC was to be a throw-away endeavor; something quick and easy I could cut my teeth on. As time went on, the story (and my passion for it) grew exponentially and it became the film you are all soon to experience.

Early on I knew that I was asking a lot of Jeff as DP: take a movie that is exposition heavy and make it look interesting. He was more than up to the task and his work on the project still amazes me.

All that being said, I now invite you to take a few moments and get to know the man behind the camera.

Paul: We’ve known each other for a long, long time, sir. What’s your most interesting memory of us from back in the day?

JM: Wow… That’s an amazingly tough question. We spent our high school theatre days – which suddenly seem like a terribly long time ago – causing various kinds of innocent trouble. If I could narrow it down to one thing, it would be an incredible feat. Let’s just let it be known that there are plenty of good times behind as well as ahead.

Paul: What made you decide that Film (be it web series, shorts, features, etc) is what you wanted to pursue?

JM: My wife and I started a live theatre company when she was fresh out of college, and we did that for a while. As time went by, we discovered that the particular challenges of that type of production were becoming obstacles to our goals that were not worth pursuing – both financially and creatively. I had a bit of experience with the film process, and the idea of the web series was just startingto become a “thing.” Since we also had some experience with podcasting, we transitioned to video for the web and found it – and its own unique challenges – to be exactly what we wanted to tackle next. It’s a comfortable discipline for me to work in, and I have a great deal of interest in working and learning. It just made a lot of sense.

Paul: You’re a whiz when it comes to Post Production effects. What scene (in any project) are you most proud of?

JM: I’ve got a pretty elaborate composite that I’m working on for Gamer Chick that includes multiple greenscreen[sic] and CGplates. I expect that to be pretty great when it comes together. If you want one I’ve already finished, I visualized, directed, shot and completed work for a pretty neat comp for season one of Gamer Chick. It involves a single character playing all the villains in a shot, and the timing of the whole thing worked out much better than I had expected.

Paul: What made you decide to sign on as the DP of VOC?

JM: I had been working on a project that my company is producing. As a creative partner and the only technical artist currently working on it, I end up doing many, many jobs; it’s very time-consuming, and can be exhausting. When the opportunity came up to do a single job on a project, I jumped at it. I still ended up lending some equipment and my varying levels of expertise on a few other subjects, but I really only had the one job. That was a nice feeling.

Paul: What was your biggest challenge during this production?

JM: My biggest challenge during the production of VOC was to continually find ways to use the camera as a tool to heighten the on-screen action. The show has a lot of dialogue-heavy scenes,so I really had to push myself to keep finding new angles and new moves to amplify their mood.

Paul: The movie is being edited as I type. Regarding your camera work, is there one scene in particular that you are most proud of?

JM: I honestly couldn’t pick one. There are always going to be things that you feel like you could have done better or differently or whatever, but I feel like my work was consistent from start to finish on this show. That was actually something I was fairly proud of, now that I’m thinking about it – maintaining a consistent look with minimal gear in various interior and exterior locations over the course of close to a year.

Paul: You’re given a multi-million dollar budget. Whatproject would you green light?

JM: I’ve got a feature script in the early stages that I’d love to make one day. I think a multi-million dollar budget would enable me to finish the first draft.