Sorry to say this but – you are most probably duped. What you see in advertisements or video clips these days are not the real deal.
But this is not a bad thing! In fact – it is the exact opposite.
Even though the truth may hurt, remember – it’s all for a good cause. For who exactly? Well, it’s you, of course! Filmmakers, producers, advertisers or even Youtubers who create a piece for a good laugh, put their heart and soul into their work.
A 2-minutes clip you are tearing up from actually took days, a 30-minutes short story you couldn’t take your eyes away from took weeks and the unforgettable, action-packed 2-hours film took months. See our point?
Now, let’s show you what video production really is!
The videos aren’t exactly ‘real’
Visuals: What you see is not what you get
The truth hurts, but lies are worse.
Who likes being lied to their face even when they know the truth? No one. Even if we have to deal with the cold, harsh reality – it’s really better than deceit.
All your delicious, mouth-watering food delights in all those advertisements of famous food brands you love are actually a mish-mash of different things combined together. Scrap product placement and high-quality cameras – they’re not enough!
See this masterpiece? It’s not as perfect as it looks in real life.
The image has spoken.
If that’s not enough, just take a look at what some people have to say.
The drop in ratings is real.
We know, the real deal doesn’t exactly look so enticing. But ask yourself this – would you be convinced to stuff down the actual burger if it remained the way it was before video productions? You know the truth yourself.
But here’s what you didn’t know – all the methods used to beautify food.
There are actually tons of tricks which are used to make them look extra appealing, so let’s run them down!
Deconstructing a burger advertisement
Before we go into how each different part of the burger is made in ads, we’re going to let the visuals talk.
All the goodness nicely placed, yum.
But with bare hands? Not in a million years.
So, that’s how the ad came about. But what about those magnificent solo pictures? We’ll tell you how.
If you think that all you need is just one bun – you’re wrong. You will have to search high and low just for that perfect bun – not too small or flattened.
Even the sesame seeds have to be lined up evenly. Glue and forceps will be used to rearrange the seeds so they turn out all nice, and pretty. As for the lower bun, a small piece of cardboard will be placed to hold the patty. Without it, the lower bun will start to become soggy from the grease.
Sadly, they’re not the piping hot and juicy meat you’ve always known. Advertisers actually use different methods to keep it fresh and appetising.
One thing for sure is, they’re raw to the very core. Why? Obviously, it has nothing to do at all with the actual cooking process. It’s all because food stylists and advertisers don’t want the meat to look cremated. They are just roasted for a couple of seconds so they remain large and tender.
If you still think we’re kidding, just look at how ‘perfect’ ice cream looks in commercials. Suspicious, or nay?
Our words may not convince you, but maybe this comparison will.
Now, don’t be shocked when we say that they even use shoe polish or use hot skewers to make grill marks! It’s all for the sake of crafting the ideal burger that everyone will salivate after.
And all that steam you see in the ads? We’re pretty sure you’ve got the idea by now.
Veggies and Condiments
When you look at the real burger; do you see any of the veggies or condiments noticeably coming out? Definitely not.
Realistically speaking, they will all be in between both buns. And all your sauce? In a complete mess.
Just like the buns, food stylists will have to look for only the best food products out there. And all the ingredients are pushed right to the front so it’s more visible.
Afterwards, glycerine – a type of sugar syrup – is sprayed all over the veggies so they look moist and fresh. Meanwhile, the cheese is laid on cold but to make it seem like the yummy gooey goodness that it is – a hot palette knife is used to melt down the corners so its oozes out nicely.
Last but not least, toothpicks are used to pin down the vegetables nicely.
Now, will the camera catch all these? Not at all! It’s only done to one side of the camera so the last thing you have to worry about is being exposed right at the very start of the ad.
Sound effects: How it actually works
Did you hear that? A storm is coming!
One made using leaves rustling that is.
All the magical and everyday sounds you hear in films are not computer-generated – the truth is far from that. The geniuses behind all these wondrous sounds are none other than Foley artists.
They’re the ones creating all the sounds in the films but hold that thought – not necessarily every single one of them. If the cameraman manages to get a hold of the natural sounds such as footsteps, hooray! But in the event that it doesn’t, a Foley artist will swoop in and save the day.
It may have been a tad disappointing to realise the truth behind all the visuals, products and scenes you’ve watched and admired for a long time, but sounds speak otherwise.
Once you’ve heard the truth – just like the sounds in films – you just can’t unhear them!
Looking Into ‘Bumblebee’
The Transformers franchise has been around since 2007 – praised for its realistic graphics, brilliant acting and fantastic plot – it’s really no surprise that it has gone this far. Wait, there’s still one more thing you’re forgetting – sound effects.
Foley artists have to go through great lengths to come up with the perfect sound. Think of it this way. When editing a simple video clip, it’s not just the visuals which will be affected but the sounds too. And where do they come from? Recording.
That’s right, folks – recording. Want to create snow? Use cornstarch. What about arrows? Easy – bamboos. And gunshots? The holy grail – staple guns. These are just a few out of the many daily objects used to create famous SFX.
But when people hear all the explosions and loud, metallic sounds – they conclude that these are digitally made right away. But is it true? The answer’s yes and no.
Let’s look into the big no first.
When it comes to some of the sounds in Bumblebee, synchronisation plays a huge part.
The duo: lawnmower and seat cushion.
And don’t worry, we’re not about to stop yet. All his adorable clumsiness and curiosity lives on throughout this comedic scene.
If you’ve watched the film, we’re sure you know there’s more where that came from. We know, poor Charlie. (Hailee Steinfeld)
Bumblebee strikes again.
Over here, Foley artists Alicia Stevenson and Dawn Lunsford used ‘rain birds’ to create the sounds of Bumblebee handling a can of soft drink. And as we know, it didn’t turn out so good.
However, it gets even more challenging when assembling multipart sounds.
Unlike the first scene shown where synchronisation is necessary, it is not the case here.
In fact, going solo works much better. The purpose of recording two separate sounds is to give the editor more control to layer the sounds digitally. And it’s really harder than it looks, something as simple as a lampshade can take up to five tracks.
On the other hand, some sounds happened exactly just how you imagined them to be.
Hailee had to jump into the sea but the crystal clear water splashing sounds? All thanks to Foley artist, Dawn.
But don’t even think for a second that she only puts her feet in – it’s not always that easy.
Now, it’s time for the big finale – explosions!
If you think that Foley artists actually do the real deal – it’s kaboom to you for getting it wrong. That’s pretty much impossible as any sort of explosives are not allowed for citizens’ usage.
So, unlike all the antics used to come out with the different sounds in the film – the computer is the one taking over this part of the job.
However, they cannot sound the same – each one of them has its own impact.
Likewise, it’s even more important when it comes to fights between Decepticons and Autobots. The loser and winner determine how loud or soft their character’s sounds are.
Not just about one single process – filming
When asked about how films were made, the first thing that probably pops in your head is filming. Unfortunately, that’s just how it is. Pre-production and post-production just aren’t getting the credit they deserve.
Don’t worry, we won’t bore you with the details.
We just want to give you a kind reminder of how the before and after process matters a lot. Just like how it is with sound effects and visuals, photoshop and editing are just as important too.
Let’s go all the way back to the burger. Photoshop has to step to remove any kind of impurities that will normally be seen on regular burgers. And as for editing? The echolocation sound we heard from the monsters in ‘A Quiet Place’ had to be rapidly slowed down via editing to capture the individual electric clicks.
All three processes are part and parcel of film and video production; they contribute greatly to the end result of a video clip.
Learning the truth behind advertisements and video clips don’t make the product or story any less real. It’s all about putting bits and pieces together to impress the viewer, which is none other than you.
But if you’re the one behind the camera trying to entice your audiences, you don’t have to do it alone. Let a video production company come in and help you create a masterpiece.