A Very Difficult Day of Editing

As I mentioned yesterday, today was changed from a field day to an editing day as we felt that we wold not have enough time to fully complete our projects. I agree that this day was needed, especially for my video group, as we hadn’t even started the editing process yet! This still didn’t hide my disappointment for not returning to the Kopala Spring Water Project – it is in such a beautiful location and the members there are so lovely, I’d have loved for my fellow Brighton students to experience the area as well.

Once again, I must start by thanking the cooks for spoiling us once again. This time it was not eggy bread that we filled our stomachs with but instead pancakes – delicious! These familiar foods give me the comfort of England and therefore puts me in a good mood to being the day.

After breakfast, we were to begin editing, but first I had to wait for the rest of my group to come into university. By the time we were all united, it was gone 11am so we hastily began to go through all of the footage and audio that we had captured over the past week and sort them into relevant folders to make the editing process easier. Finding the video footage was easy enough as the thumbnails told us instantly which video was which. The real challenge was finding out which audio we needed to match the video. First and foremost, there are no thumbnails, so we have to manually listen to each file to discover if it is what we are looking for. To make things even harder, the Zoom creates a new folder for every file that is recorded – it seemed like we were having to go through hundreds of folders! Furthermore, Hafsah had planned to do a focus group for her dissertation this morning, which required Aron and Eve to participate and me to record it. That meant that Mercie was the only person left in our group and had to go through all of the audio on her own. She done a great job of it however, finding everything we needed and putting it all into named files, making it easier to find in the future.

The focus group was fascinating. Hafsah asked extremely engaging questions about their opinions of being black and black identity. I feel like I have a basic understanding of black identity through the way its depicted in western popular culture texts such as film and television. However, it was intriguing to learn about the opinions of a group of Kenyan students attending university in a rural area, with minimal exposure to these texts. Some topics were really debated with a lot of passion (and even a bit of heat at times). However, as interesting as this was, it ran for almost an hour and a half which massively ate into the time that we had planned to start our edit. Not to mention that I declined a chair, thinking that it would only last for 10-15 minutes – my legs were killing after! By the time that I had cleared away the camera and the rest of the equipment, it was coming up to 12:30pm. When I came back to the lecture room, neither Mercie nor her laptop were still there. It turned out that she had a class and wouldn’t be returning until after 1pm, limiting our editing time once again.

Finally we were all reunited, and started the edit. This threw a whole new set of problems at us. Firstly, the laptop didn’t work unless it was plugged in, meaning that we all had to crowd around a plug socket in the corner of the room. Then, it was discovered that Premiere Pro on the laptop did not feature the audio synchronize feature that I had expected, as it is on all of the Premiere Pro software that I have worked with before. This meant that I had to manually match the zoom audio with the video. To make things even harder for me, it was extremely laggy – the video played about 1 frame every 3 seconds! This meant that I couldn’t see if the lips were in sync with the audio which therefore resulted in me lining up the two audio clips perfectly so that they sounded like one when it was played. Did I mention that the headphone jack didn’t work and the audio was extremely quiet as well? In all honesty, it was the most difficult editing experience of my life to date, but I tried to keep patient and upbeat. I knew that days like today were always going to happen, both on this trip and in my life in general, especially if I want to pursue a career in video production in the future. If I want to become successful, I know I need to cope better with these types of situations in the future.

All moaning aside, we actually accomplished quite a lot today and I’m very happy with the work that we have done. We managed to cut down all of the interviews that we have filmed to date with the exception of those that are in Luo, but we plan to do this on Monday when Mac or Wendy is here.

Reading back through this blog, it has an extremely negative approach to it so I shall finish with something a lot lighter. This evening, as we know tomorrow as a rest day, we have had a few drinks. Katie kindly prepared another pub quiz for us. It was only two rounds this time (general knowledge and music), but still was an absolute blast! I won, which I am very proud of as I felt that I would really let myself down on the music round. A little later on we heard a frog croaking near the veranda, so we set off on a mission to find it. We narrowed it down to the flower bed that was next to the veranda and all peered in with our torches to see if we could sneak a peek at it. It was quite a tense few moments as we waited to see if it would jump out. The next sequence of events happened almost instantly. Katie made me jump and I farted – I was trying so hard to hold it in with fear of stinking everyone out! Everyone was in stitches for the next 5 minutes and I was so embarrassed!

Hopefully this story has lightened the mood to the end of this blog. I’m sorry that it has been very moany and would just like to clarify that I’m not blaming anybody for anything that I’ve highlighted today, I know that these things happen and are pretty much unavoidable. I’m looking forward to a nice relaxing Saturday tomorrow. Goodnight!


Sam 🙂

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