Horizon Imaging

Interviews filmed for Willmott Dixon for their 2017 SECBE award nominations

Last month we were commissioned by national construction firm Willmott Dixon to produce a number of interview videos which were to be used as supplementary material during the judging process for the 2017 SECBE Constructing Excellence awards. The videos would act as supporting evidence for the nominated teams / individuals in the categories of Apprenticeships, Sustainability and Young Achievers — after all, it’s a lot more convincing to listen to someone else describe how amazing you are than to say so yourself! 
We filmed the interviews in one of the meeting rooms at Willmott Dixon’s Cobham office, and the entire arrangement of the room was left to us. By careful arrangement of the furniture and the position where the interviewee would be seated, we were able to frame the interviewees against a plain grey background, whilst filling the other side of the frame with Willmott Dixon branded material, including a lecturn and a motivational poster on the wall behind. 
One of the most important factors in the success of interview videos is the lighting. For these videos, we turned off all the other room lights, closed all the window blinds and used a ‘three-point’ continuous lighting setup (where three variable-brightness LED panel lights are positioned around the subject being filmed) to make the interviewees pop out of the surrounding scene. This has the effect of drawing the viewers’ attention directly to the subject of the videos — the person speaking. You can see this three-point lighting setup in the photo below. 
The three-point lighting setup we used to film the Willmott Dixon interview videos. Click to enlarge. 
To ensure the interviewees were as comfortable as possible, they were not asked to look directly into the camera (which often makes people seize up and forget what they want to say!). Instead, a member of staff from Willmott Dixon (who all the interviewees knew) sat to the left of the camera and effectively had an informal conversation with the interviewees — being able to make eye contact with a real person (rather than looking down the barrel of a lens!) is a great way to make the interviewees feel more relaxed. 
To watch any of these videos, simply click the play button and be sure to click the full-screen button to enjoy the videos in full HD quality. 
The four interview videos we produced for Willmott Dixon to use as supplementary evidence during the judging phase of the SECBE Constructing Excellent awards. Click the play button to watch the videos and be sure to click on the full-screen icon at the bottom right to watch the videos in full HD quality. 
The most complicated part of producing engaging interview videos isn’t the equipment or how it’s used, it’s actually working out what questions to ask the interviewees to ensure their answers are sufficiently detailed such that the final video holds the attention of the viewer. Although it’s impossible to tell what an interviewee will say when asked a particular question, the more specific the questions, the more likely they are to provide answers which can be woven together to tell an engaging story. 
For all but one of the videos above, there were several interviewees who were all asked the same questions. This ensured that during post-production there were a number of different answers to the same question to choose from. In the case of the Young Achiever videos, they were all asked the same questions, including: 
    • What is it like to work with [nominee]? 
    • How long have you known [nominee]? 
    • How has [nominee] helped you in your particular line of work? 
    • What makes [nominee] different to other members of staff? 
    • What does the future hold for [nominee]? 
After all the video footage had been captured, then came the daunting task of sifting through it all and picking the key messages from each interviewee, before cutting the footage together, top and tailing the video with suitable logos and captions, and setting it to backing music. In the case of the first Young Achiever video above (video 3 of 4 above), a total of 30 minutes of footage was captured and it had to be reduced to just under 4 minutes — that’s a lot of material to throw away! 
In the end, we were on site for a little over 5 hours and the editing took just over 7 hours! Willmott Dixon were delighted with the finished videos which we delivered to them in a very short timescale, and they recently sent us the following kind testimonial: 
“Thank you David for your professional approach to our filming. You have been extremely flexible in accommodating such a late request and have been committed to delivering quality films to a very tight deadline. At all times you listened to our requests and demonstrated a positive approach to getting the films just right.” 

Are you looking to produce engaging interview videos for your website? Perhaps you want to film some of your clients giving your company a glowing testimonial about the work you’ve undertaken for them? Give us a call today for a no obligation chat about our video production services and how we can make your brand stand out from your competition.