The Rachel Ray interview wasn't nearly the biggest shoot I had a hand in over the last few days. At the Ritz Carlton on Sunday morning I supervised an interview with Katie Couric, our new CBS Evening News Anchor and Managing Editor.
It might have been the biggest shoot I've had all year. This was a huge deal for my station and it absolutely needed to work out well.
Hmm. I keep starting this post over. I can't help it, I keep writing myself into a corner speculating about the decision that went into hiring Katie Couric and how I think she's going to do at our network.
I'll try to stay focused.
It was an important shoot. I understand you might have one or two things more critical happening in your life. Sure, I get that. Family health and well being? Way higher priority in the grand scheme of things. I don't think anybody would argue the point. That wasn't the kind of importance attached to this shoot.
Photo by Marvin Stone
The company wanted this interview to look good. They rented special HD gear for us.
That wasn't all.
We had two lighting guys and a freelance sound guy in addition to myself and two other staff photographers to shoot the interview. We had a makeup person, a field producer, and half a dozen people in the room (I couldn't even tell you what most of them were for).
The crew start time was 7:00am. That almost gave us "network time" to set up for the interview. Katie wasn't going to be available until after 11:00am.
We managed to get the room ready without a lot of drama. The two photographers made some suggestions and even brought some of their own gear to help tweak the look of the interview.
I think that probably made the biggest difference in the success of this shoot.
Thank goodness the lighting looked right.
It seemed like everybody who walked into the room took a peek at the monitors to make sure everything on camera was perfect. It could have gone really bad if we weren't ready. That's not the kind of pressure most people enjoy.
I don't let it bother me. I like to stay calm and it helps most often when everyone else is in panic mode.
I know some people might want to hear something more gossipy, but there's nothing more to it and I'm happy for that. The truth is, Katie was nice and the interview was quick and painless.
We weren't her first stop that day and she still had a full schedule to keep.
It all went well. I don't know if anyone else feels the same as I do, but it's always a good feeling after the work is done (no matter how important the shoot), when it's over it just feels like another day at the office.