Find a camera position with a good vantage point of what you want to shoot. In some cases, it works to set the camera on a table or chair and zoom out wide. In all cases, a tripod will help. Using a tripod increases the kinds of positions in which you can hold the camera: It can be at eye level or higher; it can be up in a corner somewhere; it can be right in the middle of things, zoomed in tight on the activity you've chosen.
Before you start, set up the tripod; load a new, clean digital tape into your camera; lock it into the tripod; and check the focus and exposure. (And, if the project is long or important, maybe do a little test or rehearsal.) Then turn on your camera and get hold of the remote. Using the remote onlynever touching the camerastart recording.
Depending on the event's actual length, you may try one of two options. For shorter events (say, under an hour), you will let the tape roll, undisturbed, until it runs out. Later you can carefully select the best parts. For longer events, turn on the camcorder for shorter periods of timesay, a few minutesthen off again. And then, a little bit later (how much later depends on how long the event is), do it again. For a 2-hour event, you might try shooting 5 minutes, then stopping for 5 minutes, repeatedly. Or you could just improvise. Jennifer's plan is to shoot Richard painting a plate in the Italian brushstroke style, something she's seen him do in about 30 minutes.