Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Isla San Cristobal: Sea Lions are Dogs in Water, Kickarock Kicked Ass, and Ninos Love Cameras

Hola from the Galapagos, San Cristobal in particular, the eagle, or should I say eagles have landed. Las Tortugas have been hard at work trying to create a platform for science book donations and really any other related educational resources to the school systems down here. Two days ago, we had a great excursion out to Kickarock and Isla Lobos, where we practiced and came up with some great underwater footage. It's much harder than it looks! We swam with eagle spotted rays and sharks in the depths of Kickarock and then frolicked with adolescent sea lions at Isla Lobos. We also got great clips of stalking different types of fish. Needless to say it was a busy and tiring day in the surf. Between Shaun and Seb, I think it's fair to say that combined we sunburned a whole human body, particularly in the feet/ankle and back area.
Yesterday, however, was the start of our more serious production work. We visited the Naval school (where Whitman's kids go) and traveled throughout the grades getting different shots of kids, teachers, and administrators. Fortunately we had Whitman with us and between him and Jamey, we were able to deliver our various questions effectively and recieved some very interesting responses. Shaun, Yuma, and Seb ran like a well oiled machine swapping around the camera and sound boom making sure we had fresh hands at all times so that we caught every interaction. We ran the gamut. From the small kids who adored and basically attacked the camera to the oldest kids who were simply 'too cool for school.' With some coaching from Jamey and Whitman, however, we got good insight from everyone.
The highlight of the filming was when we were able to interview a science teacher who was originally from Guyaquil and has been teaching on the Galapagos for nine years. She had just finished a lecture on global warming to a class of 4th graders (pretty serious stuff for that age group) and we were able to get some of her lecture on film as well! She provided a lot of useful information on the her school and the school system at large. There were certain hiccups in terms of technical stuff with the camera such as exposure, lighting, and white balance, however, for our first run through, it went very smoothly and we are definitely pleased with the results! We still have a lot of work to do, but we can't wait to continue our work! Tomorrow, we are off to Santa Cruz.

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