Hello Interwebs! This May, TPM expanded its reach across the internet. Get the behind-the-scenes of our output. And find out what else is new with us this month!
TPM has more projects in production than pre-production, for a change. That’s good for us and for you! My script for “Guy Who Won’t Let You Leave a Conversation” is all we have to show for this May, in terms of Pre-production. But I’ll talk more about that sketch in the following section.
What I’ll say here: this is the shortest TPM script I’ve yet produced. And I aim to keep my sketch lengths comparable to it going forward– between 2-4 minutes. My 5+ minute sketches are draining to prep, shoot, and edit. And I’ll bet the jokes overstay their welcome as well (at least sometimes).
Think about it this way: I can give you one 5+ minute video per month, OR potentially two or more videos at half the length (if I maintain production pace). My future sketch content will be both easier to watch and to produce.
Welcome to “the following section” where I get to tell you how frustrating it was to film “Guy Who Won’t Let You Leave a Conversation”!
Shoot Day 1:
My battery died twice (my fault); multiple of my neighbours mowed their lawns, one after the other (resulting in poor audio); I forgot to focus my camera for the first hour of shooting, so I had to re-do everything up to that point; and some of my shots featured my characters in their wrong costumes, or sitting on the wrong side of the table. In short, I was off the ball and had some bad luck…
‘Twas relatively smooth. It was actually one of my all-time fastest shoots! My increased experience with shooting sketches solo helps my speed. The shorter script was also easier to barrel through.
As usual, I kept my script in front of me on my laptop. Thankfully I didn’t have to teleprompt it this time! My writing is more efficient than it used to be– shorter lines for my characters means said lines are easier to memorize. And this only helped my performance.
But how did I “speak” to myself? Same as I have in the past: recorded lines on my phone and played them back in camera, leaving pauses where I’m supposed to speak. The timings aren’t always easy to get right, especially when the back-and-forths are longer. But my technique works well enough.
Day 3: I filmed my outro, because I forgot that on Day 2…
For the record, this shoot should NOT have taken 3 days. Should have been a couple hours maximum…
Only other thing I’ll say: I’m worried my performance was TOO subdued in this one. I think the video turned out alright, but my comedic performances should probably go bigger in the future (at least a little). But you can let me know in the comments down below.
This May I made time to edit blooper reels for our Patreon page. Phil Blye will be the first to release. And that’ll be sometime in June.
I’m also re-editing a few of our older videos to re-use on a certain app, which I discuss further in our OTHER section. On the one hand, I dislike that these re-edits are necessary. They ruin our original intentions as artists. Yet they also breathe new life into works which have grown stagnant, and they’re getting more views than ever. So I’ll take being a sell-out over nobody watching my stuff.
Ryan and I filmed Close Up Episode 5– which, fun fact, was actually the sixth CU we filmed. We just released it sooner because Doctor Strange 2 was more relevant at the time). My mouth was too close to the mic for that one… Ugh. I’m sorry. Doesn’t help that I’ve taken a lot of drama classes and naturally project my voice more than most people. I’ll get my audio right eventually. I’ve nearly got the proper distance to the mic nailed!
I’m also glad to report my video will see an uptick in quality as of CU E7. I got an external monitor to which I can hook my webcam. So I won’t get as much glare from my window. Hooray!
Ryan and I hope to get ourselves an RSS feed in the coming months. It’s probably something we should have done a while ago, but we’ve been busy (and our income is currently too limited to afford the monthly cost). We’ve decided to hold off on that, however, till we can get more consistent with our output. Our goal is to release one new episode per week! But, to do that, we’re unfortunately required to cut down the production value of the YouTube video version.
I do all the editing for these, and there’s no way produce weekly Close Ups if I’ve got to manage audio AND Video. So, going forward, we’ll still have the Zoom recorded video. But we won’t use further camera angles– at least till TPM gets itself a dedicated editor…
There’s been no notable progress here this May. But Justin’s practiced his digital art skills more of late. That can only benefit our Graphic Novels later! I really ought to take up art myself– if only to learn a new skill.
I finally returned to my subtitling efforts– completing my old reviews through to Why so Curious? Everything’s done now! Well, most everything… I still need to subtitle our Patreon exclusive blooper reels. But I’ll be done the later of those within the week.
I also retooled my TPM work schedule to enhance my productivity (again). It helps that I’m still unemployed and have time I may dedicate to creative endeavors. I operate from 9-5, most days of the week, which is why you’ve seen an uptick in output across our platforms.
Speaking of platforms: TPM started a TIkTok page, much to my chagrin. Our team, until this time, was opposed to TikTok. But we finally caved. We’ve gotta go where the watchers are, I suppose. And so far we’re doing alright! I look forward to continued growth on that app.
This has been TPM’s May news. If you have any questions about what I’ve written today, or have something you’d like to see addressed more in-depth in next month’s update, let me know in the comments. Also, if you have any ideas for future articles, or any general questions, let me know that as well. Be sure to like this article on Facebook and share if you enjoyed!
Till next time