My first two weeks as a WAVY10/FOX43 News intern have concluded and I think I’m finally settling into the daily swing of things. I have come to find that all of the complexity and nuance that goes into producing live television is NOT actually quaint and simple. It is just that – complex and nuanced. The highly-skilled and professional individuals at work in the studio can sure make it look simple, though. The team’s cohesion in becoming a single unit in order to produce a smooth show for the audience (even though members are constantly swapping according to their schedules) is a marvel to observe. There is no wondering why the station is consistently number one.
I learned the basics of studio production from a couple courses at school, but it was entirely based on manual operation (i.e. switcher operator, audio operator, graphics operator, etc.) Therefore, upon finding out that the WAVY10/FOX43 studio and control room are almost entirely automated, I felt a bit like a fish out of water. Unfamiliar software suites and robotic cameras will undoubtedly take time to get used to, but I am already able to see how much more convenient and advanced the system is (not to mention, for better or for worse, how there are far less people in the studio and control room). I had no idea news stations utilized automation and robotics, so I am now genuinely curious as to how studios and control rooms will look in the near-future. Will anchors be the only people required for news shows in the next, say, 50 years? Depending on the state of visual graphics, effects and automation, perhaps anchors won’t even be needed?
Since beginning last week, I have been actively learning about directing, (coding, “punching,” audio, etc.) producing, and running the teleprompter. I spent some time learning about the automated camera controls. I also had the luxury of hearing some horror stories of accidents that were made on-air. Hopefully, just hearing about these nightmares will allow me to refrain from living through them anytime soon. Unexpectedly, I have already begun a bit of teleprompting for live shows and recorded segments (thankfully, without any issues [so far]).
Needless to say, the beginning of my internship has spurred my curiosity in not only TV production, but also news production and the industry itself. The next few weeks have me excited to really dive into the nitty-gritty of production. We are only just getting started.