Gavin Scott posted:
As for early video captions - they were normally sourced from a studio camera pointed at a black and white caption on a caption stand, a small postcard sized B&W caption pointed in front of a specialised "TelOp" small camera, or a B&W slide in a flying spot style slide scanner.
Many years ago I went along to see an episode of Take the High Road (!) being taped at STV's Gateway Studios in Edinburgh. For the closing credits they had 3 lecterns with a stack of black cards on each and a separate camera trained on each one. As the music ran the vision mixer cut from one to the next, while the floor manager lifted off the top card on each stack off after it had been used to reveal the next one. I was amazed at how 'manual' the operation was. The credits were lumakeyed over some scratchy 16mm film telecine of Loch Lomond. The then Vision Mixer John Frame told me how he "wished they could shoot the titles on video", something they went on to do years later.
Didn't Crossroads used to do something similar with a tilt/pan style movement, which Victoria Wood's Acorn Antiques went to on take the p*ss out of, with the cameras going the wrong way and getting confused?
Yep - that was how it was done. Until quite recently it was a standard director training exercise to direct a picture sequence of captions from 3 caption stands, directing the floor manager to change the captions on the stands, the cameras to pan/zoom around them, and the vision mixer to cut/mix between them. A lot of talking, and more difficult than it sounds, especially if done to music and to time.
Crossroads originally used either panning cameras, or sliding captions.
In News it was common to build up complex graphics sequences using a full cardboard graphic, with strips of cardboard pulled out by the floor manager to successively reveal information a line at a time... Also there were special machines to create these graphics - using special cardboard that changed colour when pressure and heat was applied. Rather than using stencils or letraset, you'd use something like a printing press, laying out the type with metal letters, which were then heated and pressed into the cardboard using a large press. In most regions there were piles and piles of pre-printed regional maps, which would just have placenames added for specific stories etc.
ISTR that there was a drama in the 80s or 90s made by BBC Scotland set in a TV graphics dept in the 60s that featured stuff like this...