Wednesday, August 27, 2014


I've been lucky in my video career to have worked in a variety of environments.

I worked as part of a production crew for Seneca College Media Productions where we produced video training tapes (yes, tape as in video tape Google it) and promotional material for the college. It was a great first job; my principle duties were as a VTR op doing everything from logging tapes to operating the decks in the A/B Roll edit bay .. don't google that, I suspect you won't find out what the hell that means. But I was also able to go on shoots, getting valuable hands on experience in lighting, audio and some camera work

I have had brief forays into TV .. and we should all be glad they were brief. I worked for YTV as a VTR op and quickly learned that the control room of a TV enterprise was not for me.

My other TV gig was as the on-air promotions writer at the Shopping Channel. This suited me much better, drawing on my skills as a writer and my background in Promotions. Alas, all good things come to an end as it did one Black Friday for about 40 of us

For a year I ran a training program sponsored by the Bramption Youth Initiative and the John Howard Society .. don't ask me why, it just was. I loved that job, spreading my bullshit .. er .. knowledge to people learning the basics of video production and creating some very good videos for community public service organizations

Then I entered the longest phase of my career, working as an editor and writer for Videopulse Productions, creating a wide variety of non broadcast video: Promo, corporate, training and live event. Lots and lots and lots of live event, principally weddings.

After about 10 yrs that company folded and I went freelance. Mostly I earned my living as a live event editor with the odd promo video  thrown in. For these videos I was able to do everything, writing, camera as well as the post production.

Add to that my college "movies" I consider myself very lucky to have worked in and create a wide variety of videos. I have also created several videos for film festivals, some of which brought me some success. The video below won third place at the Amplify Me Video Festival in Florida

Are You There from Victor Kellar on Vimeo.
The one area in which I have no experience is the documentary/reality field. Well, let's change that.

I have been attending comic cons and the massive Fan Expo in Toronto for many years now. I usually go for a day, buy some comics, some games, some art and shoot video which I turn into music style videos for my own amusement

Here's one that I did for Comic Con last year

Toronto Comic Con 2014 from Victor Kellar on Vimeo.

This year, the 20th anniversary of the Fan Expo, I decided to change things up a bit. I'm going for all four days of the Expo (well three and a half) with the intent of shooting not a promo/trailer style vid but a documentary

My new Sony NX handycam is proving to be a pretty amazing cam for such a small package, I have some solid audio and stabilizing gear and I think this will be a great opportunity to really see what the package can do

Documentaries tend to be made as they are made, that is as you shoot and collect footage, the story is written. But I still like to have a direction.  I will have a lot of access, with this time available to me, so I can shoot stuff I never have before, telling the story of the expo in a general sense. I hope to encounter people who may be willing to quickly jump on cam and talk to me, what we call "streeters" or "man on the street"

But as Oliver said: "But I want more" And that is Oliver Twist, by the way, but it could equally be Oliver North

I wanted to go beyond the sound bites you get from streeters. I wanted to find someone who was coming to the Expo, get their permission to "follow" them and document their experience. I would mix it in with interview footage that would give some background on the person, why they went there, what their interests are etc

But where would I find someone who would agree to this? Hello Craigslist my old friend. I put an ad on the site basically outlining what I was looking for. I guess I was envisioning some young person, an avid fan of comics/anime/sci fi/cosplay who was going to the expo to show off their costume and hang out with their friends

What I got, was Nadia

She is a young woman attending the expo for the first time. She is going with a guy who has been around the comicon scene for a while, she will be Black Cat to his Spiderman. Nadia has very little background in comics or fandom but comes from the fetish cosplay world.
We met and I found a very bright, very excited, very cute girl who was happy to enter into what, for her, is a new world and was very happy to have me follow her and record her reactions, her thoughts etc.
Not what I expected but I think it may give me a new perspective on the situation. So we are going to meet up Sunday and spend the day at the Expo together. I predict that it will not be dull.
One thing I know about documentaries, the post is important and it can take a while. I do intend to shoot a lot of footage (really Vic? No shit) so the process will take a while. But I intend to document, as much as I can, on this blog.
So, stay tuned, same Bat time, same Black Cat With a Whip channel

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