Filming the Field: Athletics Dept. Get Their Seasons on Reels
Kevin Sethre, staff writer
After nearly every Augsburg Mens soccer match this season, fans who follow the team on Instagram have been able to watch the key moments of the match through video recaps. Every recap was filmed and edited by Finnr Elsmo, a senior Film major and former Auggie soccer player. Each video includes pregame and postgame speeches given by head coach Greg Holker, footage of the team warming up, music to set the scene, and, of course, lots of game action. Elsmo recently sat down for a short interview with The Echo, during which he discussed why he started making these recaps, how much time each one takes to make and some of his plans for the future.
Elsmo realized during his freshman year that he “wasn’t good enough [at soccer] to cut it” at the college level, but he had a lot of friends on the team, so he wanted to stay involved. He managed the team during his sophomore year and recorded the games “for the purpose of [the team] just watching it back.”
When asked if his previous playing experience helps make decisions about where to position the camera during matches, he answered, “It’s actually super important because I’ve decided I’m going to turn this into a company. But what I’m going to do differently than other sports production companies is, I’m going to make it that whatever sport you’re shooting, in your resume, you have to have played the sport for at least two years. Because knowing what goes into the sport and knowing the little things, knowing how the game works, who’s playing well, what’s a good moment, what’s a bad moment, what to use to make the team look good…is super important, and if you’ve played that sport and you understand that sport, you’re going to do a good job.”
When the pandemic sent everybody home, Elsmo spent a lot of time working on creative film projects. “During COVID, I really grinded on my creative outlooks,” he shared, adding that he worked on music videos and vlogs with other Augsburg students. He started making the videos because he thought it “would be a good way to get [his] name out there, build up some credibility, and bring some eyeballs to the soccer team, and it definitely did that.”
Still, the process can be time-consuming. As a self-described “music junkie”, Elsmo said that he bases his song choices on “how [he] feels in the moment while [he’s] shooting” and that it takes him about thirty minutes to pick each song because he wants to make sure he gets the right one. Still, that’s nothing compared to the editing process, which he estimated takes anywhere between 5-10 hours depending on the game.
He also recently filmed the Augsburg Mens Basketball team’s first practice and Iron Man Competition, and he would be willing to work with the team in the future but doesn’t yet know what else he’ll be doing with Augsburg Athletics during the winter and spring seasons. He has been working with Wass Productions, who put together the videos for the Auggie Awards every year, and some of his footage will be shown at the awards show in the spring.
Elsmo estimates that there are currently 2 ½ hours of content that he produced on the Augsburg Mens soccer Instagram, and he has recently started posting more of his work on his personal Instagram as well. You can find his work at @augsburgsoccer and @finn_elsmo on Instagram.