Friday, January 18, 2013

Audio Slideshows - HOW TO



written by Laura Read

Eva Gilliam’s audio slideshow checklist — Don’t leave home without it!

Photo by Lerato Maduna 2012
Editors can only do so much with the material they’re provided. Freelance audio slideshow and video producer Eva Gilliam, who lives in Cape Town, South Africa, and produces videos and audio slideshows for various news agencies and NGOs, likes to provide a checklist to photographers and reporters she works with. One late night on Skype, she shared her list with the Soundslides community. What do you have on your field checklist? Tell us in the comments section below.

Photography strategy

  • Develop a rough scripting of the story before you go out: where is it, who are the characters, what are they doing?
  • List the shots that will illustrate each step of the story.
  • Prepare to photograph the situation from many angles. From each angle, be sure to get wide, medium and extreme close-up images. “Close-ups give you emotion; wide shots give you context,” Gilliam says. The variation between close-up, medium and wide provides overall texture in the audio slideshow.
  • Get close-up images of the objects, settings and situations around the subject that can fill out the story in interesting ways.
  • Show broader context by getting general wide shots of the place.

Audio recording strategy

  • Gather at least two minutes of ambient sound from of each of the main locations.
  • Record segments of each interview subject making his or her own introduction. “I always get an introduction of the person saying ‘Hi my name is ####. I’m ### years old and I live in ###,’” Gilliam says. “This has two purposes. One is, I don’t forget to include the person’s name in the slideshow. The second is, I’ve gotten the person’s consent. If they’re giving their name and everything on mic, they’re giving their consent; you don’t need a consent form. It’s also a really nice way to introduce someone in the audio slideshow, to have the person telling you who they are, as opposed to (presenting) a name on a screen.”
  • Record some local music if you can. “It can be someone singing on the streets, kids singing at school,” she says. “Find music that matches the story.”

Keep this in mind for sound

  • Pay attention to noises in the background of your interview. Make sure they work with the tone and subject of the interview.
  • “Protecting that interview sound is important,” Gilliam says. If it’s noisy, “pull someone aside or go behind a building, and watch out for wind or any background noise. Don’t hold the mic so close to the person that you get distortion or pops when the person is speaking.”
  • Good recording devices include Moranz or Roland RO5.
Check out more of Eva Gilliam’s audio slideshows and videos at the Children’s Radio Foundation.
For more information on Gilliam, read her blog.
 — Interview and story by Laura Read

Friday, November 16, 2012

Social Intelligence Reporting: A new approach to Social Service Delivery in Kenya

Social Intelligence Reporting (SIR) is a Kenya Government/UNICEF initiative aimed to enhance social service delivery – the services of health facilities, schools and the provision of safe drinking water. 

SIR works through using the collective intelligence of the community – working with what is known, to understand the overall situation and work together to find solutions.

This 5 minute video is a short version of a 26 minute piece made for UNICEF Kenya, to be broadcast on national television in English and Swahili.

If you would like further information on how to see the full-length version, please let me know!


Inside Somalia: Violence against women and girls

Another collaboration with photographer Kate Holt and UNICEF.  This audio slide show aims to bring to light the devastating plight of women and girls who are constantly at risk of Sexual and Gender-based violence in Somalia.

Photos by Kate Hold
Montage by Eva Gilliam
Music by the Color of Sound

Link to Guardian:

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Two Drops - Stop Polio!

Photographer Kate Holt and I put together this short piece on the men and women committed to fighting polio in Chad during our visit with UNICEF in April 2012.

The country had more confirmed cases of the diseases in 2011, than all cases combined since 2003.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

In Chad, UNICEF and partners step up emergency response to food crisis

N’DJAMENA, Chad, 11 April 2012 – Khadija’s 6-month-old son, Nawal, had been suffering from vomiting and diarrhoea for days, but she thought it was related to his teething. Finally, when his fever did not go down, she brought him to a clinic in N’Djamena, where he was diagnosed with severe acute malnutrition.

Even in a normal year, Chad has one of the highest rates of chronic malnutrition in the world.  The region experiences a yearly ‘lean’ or ‘hunger’ season, and according to UNICEF data from 2010, 15.7 per cent of children under age 5 were already suffering from severe acute malnutrition.

But in 2011, the rains did not come.

The failed rains, coupled with low crop yields, are causing a dramatic increase in rates of malnutrition – not only in Chad, but throughout the Sahel region.

Read the full article here.

Monday, April 23, 2012

In Abidjan, Côte d'Ivoire, assisting children alone in the big city - February 2012

UNICEF’s flagship report, ‘The State of the World’s Children 2012: Children in an Urban World," launched at the end of February, focusing attention on children in urban areas. One billion children live in urban areas, a number that is growing rapidly. Yet disparities within cities reveal that many lack access to schools, health care and sanitation, despite living alongside these services.

This story is part of a series highlighting the needs of these children.

ABIDJAN, Côte d'Ivoire, 21 February 2012 – After a fight with his father, 9-year-old Junior Coulibaly left his house in a huff. It was a Friday afternoon in mid-January 2011. Nine months would pass before he would see his father again.

Junior was playing in his neighbourhood of Yopougon, one of the country’s largest slums, when conflict erupted – the result of tension that had been building since the presidential elections six weeks earlier.

Read complete article here.

Somalia 2011

Below is a selection of stories from my time working with the UNICEF Somalia communications team. These stories were shot by Mohamed Sheik Nur in Mogadishu, and written and edited by myself.

Child Friendly Spaces in Mogadishu

MOGADISHU, Somalia, 9 November 2011 - For hundreds of thousands of displaced Somali children, daily life is a mixture of fear and insecurity. Communities break apart, as one by one families leave their villages to flee ongoing conflict. If they survive the journey to Mogadishu, life is not much easier, as they are faced with the daily challenge of finding food and shelter.

For children, this experience can be traumatizing. Having fled their homes in search of safety, they find themselves in overcrowded camps, away from all they know.

Read full article here.

Crisis continues 100 days after famine was declared in Somalia

NAIROBI, Kenya, 28 OCTOBER 2011 – Just two months ago, three-year-old Moktar Mohamed was on the verge of death. After his parents lost their livestock and crops to the drought, they travelled by foot and truck from Middle Shabelle to Mogadishu, a trek of over 100 kilometres.

When they arrived, little Moktar was just skin and bones, one of the hundreds of thousands of children in Somalia suffering from serious malnutrition.

Read the full article and watch the video here.