City River: Day 3 on Location

Nethergate Quay_Group

Last Thursday we completed our 3rd day of ‘location scouting.’ This one was actually more of an evening trip (than a day trip), and began with another mini-workshop in the Geography Department here at University of Dundee, and gave us another chance to get more familiar with the use of our iPads. Chatting with everyone during the workshops has been really helpful in terms of thinking about how we will plan out our ‘for real’ filming and what opportunities/limitations there may be in terms of the types of shots, audio, and stills that we can use.



Since this was the first scouting trip for a few people, we used The Law again as a starting point to orient ourselves and the impressive views–particularly a striking sky!–gave us some interesting inspirations.

While up on The Law we got chatting about the sort of length of film each of us may want to create: we’re thinking in the range of 3 1/2 to 5 minutes–enough to tell a story, but not so long that we start to become a bit too river-like and needlessly meander! There’s a lot you can do in 5 minutes: a look at the BBC Film Network – Films shorts section, gives an idea of the variety of content and approach a short film can incorporate. So our next meeting, sketching out our storyboards, will be a good opportunity to focus on the key points in each story and poem we will be using as a basis for our first set of films.


On location at City QuayAfter The Law we headed down to the City Quay neighbourhood of Dundee’s waterfront. This is an area that has seen significant social, economic and material changes during the past century–from a shipping centre linked to the whaling and jute industry, to the current transformation as a creative arts hub (and lots of other things inbetween). Some vestiges of old harbour structures remain alongside more recent hotel, retail and apartment developments, as well as a waterfront walkway. The area adjacent to City Quay is also going through a substantial transformation as part of the Dundee Waterfront redevelopment, incorporating the high profile V&A Museum of Design, Dundee.

Filming the Unicorn at City Quay

As we walked through this area we were joined by Nethergate Writer, Ward McGaughrin, who took some great photographs of our activities and has kindly allowed us to include several of these here.



The Panmure Passage sculpture, a granite structure that inhabits the 1901 slipway site of the RSS Discovery, provided a catalyst for even more photographs and (arty!) film shots as well as conversations about how this landscape has changed.

The Panmure Passage sculpture by Marion Smith at the City Quay, Dundee.

The Panmure Passage sculpture by Marion Smith at the City Quay, Dundee.

This was then followed by a short walk along the City Quay waterfront and a chance to practice some River Tay shots, before tracking down all of our group (!), hopping back on to the bus, and heading back to the campus.


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