Camera shots and movement

Here is what we have learned today on different camera shots and movements.

Shots

Establishing shot/Extreme long shot : This could establish the time, weather, and location.

Here is an establishing shot of Hollywood.

  

Long shot : This enables audience to see a character of object of significance from head to foot and their relationship with the environment they are in.

Here is a long shot of members from Star Trek.

Mid shot : A shot from the waist up of a character or the important areas of an object of significance. This is to familiarize the audience with what is been shown. It shows detail/facial expression.

Here is a mid shot of Bruce Willis from John McTiernan’s Die Hard With A Vengeance.

 

Two shot : A shot which expresses the relationship between two characters (T.V chat shows). This shows interaction between the two as well.

Here is a two shot from Jean Luc Godard’s Vivre Sa Vie.

       

 Close up : Head and shoulders of a character with little background seen. An object of significance with lots of detail. For example a piece of paper.

Here is a close up shot from Martin Campbell’s film adaptation of  Casino Royale.

 

Extreme close ups :

Used artistically to create obscurity or to show intensive detail or significance in a smaller object.
 Here is an adapted image of an extreme close up from Kubrick’s A Clockwork Orange.

 

Point of view:

A self explanatory shot.

Here is an example from the famous video game Call Of Duty.

 

 

To find good examples of the camera movements we learnt would be near impossible so instead here is a link to an awesome website with loads of terms on it which I’ve been looking at and learning and I’ll briefly describe the shots we learnt in lesson. http://www.springhurst.org/cinemagic/glossary_terms.htm

 

Tilt shot – The shot could perhaps start at the bottom of a person, object, or perhaps a large building and then pan upwards. Or it could start at the top and vice versa. This expresses significance of this character and perhaps its height or strength (e.g. a very very tall building, or a very tall, strong character).

Panning shot – A pan from left to right or vice versa which follows an object of significance (car, animal etc) or character.

Tracking shot – A generic term for a movement which involves a dolly. Could be a pan which involves some tracking or a crab shot etc. A tracking in shot could take a mid-shot to a close-up.

Zoom shot – Poor equivalent of tracking in or tracking out shot.

Crab shot – A tracking shot on a dolly which moves sidewards.

Arc shot – A tracking shot which moves in a semi-circle or perhaps full circle around a point of significance or character.

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Media institutions

1. 5 media sectors and one leading profit making company for each sector.

– Film (Warner Bros)


– Television (Sky)


– Music (Island Records, part of Sony)


– Radio (BBC)


– Magazine (Time Magazine)

2. Name two independent music labels.

– Hassle Records http://www.hasslerecords.com/hassle/

– Big Scary Monsters Records http://www.bsmrocks.com/

3. Why is some music download illegal?


Artists will lose business if their music is freely accessible on the internet, so to counteract this establishments like iTunes have been created so audiences have to pay to reach the music.

4. Who owns the BBFC?

The BBFC is a non-governmental organization which is funded by the film industry. Its president is currently Sir Quentin Thomas and its director is David Cooke.

A rather sensuous picture of Quentin above.

5. Name 3 organizations that own British newspapers.

– Rupert Murdoch’s News Corporation owns The Sun, The News Of The World, The Sunday Times, The Times.

– The Independent is owned by the Independent media and newspaper company.

– Trinity Mirror owns the Mirror, the Sunday Mirror and The People.

6. Why does the BBC have no adverts?

The BBC is a public service and is free from commercial interests thus does not advertise. See the BBC policy for advertising here http://www.bbc.co.uk/aboutthebbc/policies/advertising.shtml

7. What is OFCOM?

OFCOM is the communications regulator. See their definition on their website http://www.ofcom.org.uk/about/what-is-ofcom/

8. What is MP4?

MP4 is the development on the MP3 and makes available other kinds of media such as videos and applications rather than just music and radio.

9. Why does the sound regularly disappear on the live BigBrother feed?

There is missing pieces of audio where the dialogue between the housemates breach viewing regulations. These breaches may concern profanities or accidental advertisement.

10 . Who owns Channel 5?

The Channel 5 website reads:

Channel 5 is wholly owned by Northern & Shell. Northern & Shell was founded in December 1974 with the vision of becoming a significant force in British and worldwide media. That ambition was developed through a broad portfolio of magazines and broadcast interests and came of age with the acquisition of Express Newspapers in November 2000. Today, Northern & Shell owns four national newspapers and is a 50 per cent joint venture partner in two more in Eire. It also dominates important parts of the consumer magazine market in the UK and worldwide with 12 foreign editions, operates in all major areas of publishing and has diverse interests in television, print, distribution, investment and property. www.northernandshell.co.uk

11. What happened as a result of the Hutton Report?

The Hutton Report is an extremely complex tale of the circumstances surrounding the death of Dr. David Kelly, the authenticity of the September Dossier on the Weapons of Mass Destruction, the decision to go to war in Iraq on falsifiable pretences, and the BBC’s criticism of manipulative journalism to avoid a war in Iraq. In terms of media, the Hutton Report saw the resignation of many key decision-makers in the BBC including the then director general.

One person fired said “This report casts a chill over all journalism, not just the BBC’s. It seeks to hold reporters, with all the difficulties they face, to a standard that it does not appear to demand of, for instance, Government dossiers.”

The BBC’s own ethical stance on the war on Iraq lead them to demote the war in Iraq through unfair journalism. The corporation recieved heavy criticism and after the resignation of the director and many others the BBC – a corporation designed to purely relay information with no commercial (or in this case political/ethical benefit) – they are going to attempt to relay fairer and non-biased information.

12.

Although magazine publishers earn a lot from the people who buy the actual magazine, profit is mostly made from companies who buy advertisement slots in the magazines.

13.

ITV’s license holders


 

 14.

Like magazines, websites can profit from having viral advertisements on their pages as well as affiliate deals with other websites.

 

15.

The ASA will investigate and send a notice to ClearCast to remove the ad if it is deemed necessary to take it off. http://www.clearcast.co.uk/viewer-complaints.html

 

16.

The biggest film industry……

Bollywood, mate. Dutifully keeping the world cringing at all-singing-all-dancing, melodramatic nightmare viewing experience. 

 

17.

BBFC sorts out the classification for video games. They’ve banned a few I wanted to play on. Silly Quentin.

 

18.

 

 

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Evaluative questions: 7, Looking back at your preliminary task (the continuity editing task), what do you feel you have learnt in the progression from it – to full product?

Obviously I have learnt more technological skills since the Continuity task (see Evaluative question: 6), but there are more important aspects I have also developed since then.

  

Teamwork

In terms of media production I have found that teamwork is vital. There are so many creative ideas flowing through the heads of everyone in a team it is extremely problematic to include them all and manifest them in a coherent way. We thus spent a lot of time thinking through, brainstorming, and discussing aspects of the footage and the treatment in order to achieve a fulfilment of everyone’s idea. We exhaustively communicated to each other all our ideas. When it came to practical work – the filming, the editing, the writing, the planning, and so forth, we all gave different types of contributions but ultimately remained equally contributive. Although manually we did not do everything equally (I did the least manual operation of the computer in the editing; the others did not manually scribe the treatment or write the order in which the shots appear in the film), we did all sit present and equally contribute during everything. Only together did we produce our film. We played to our strengths: Andy in his meticulous approach to planning the shooting; me in my writing of the treatment and the complex task of selecting the order of the shots from half an hours’ worth of footage; and Harry in his manual editing due to his knowledgable use of the iMac. We agreed it would be unfair to say that I did not equally contribute to editing, or the others did not contribute equally to the planning because we were all present and we all contributed the same but it is fair to say that in literally clicking the mouse or writing on paper we did not do the same amount.

Due to our comprehensive method and our intimately-functioning execution of tasks we managed to be the first to finish our films, and weeks in advance of the other groups and months in advance of the deadline.

Creation

The creation of our product involved imagination and individuality in how we worked. Through our brainstorming we established some ideas of what our film could be about. There were three ideas we came up with – Harry and Andy’s idea of a film about a boy waking up in the morning and running through his morning mundanities with credits appearing in odd places. This was an experimental, querky, indie idea. However we dismissed this after we thought that it was too common and did not express enough imaginative flair. Then came my idea of a fulminant series of shots showing a person running through woodland being chased by a heard but unseen animal; this would be hard in terms of filming but good to hit a specific genre and create exciting viewing. Again however we dismissed this after we thought it was too common and a “cop-out” option. Harry suggested the idea of something so visually brutal noone would have ever thought to have shot something like it before. He suggested some sort of torture scene. From there I changed this to slavery and human trafficking, a theme I had not yet seen being explored in students’ blogs. I then fitted a treatment to this filming idea. Admittedly this was quite a reverse way of producing a film and a treatment; surely one would think to write the treatment first and then the footage, but we were so sure of our idea and thought it was so original we just had to develop on it. In my writing I was inspired by 3 key films I have kept referring to: Cronenberg’s Eastern Promises, Barber’s Harry Brown, and Mcqueen’s Hunger. Thematically Honey is related to Eastern Promises, visually it is related to Hunger, and locationally it is related to Harry Brown. 

I have thus learnt how to produce footage and a treatment which conforms to the conventions of real-media products.

Practice

 

In practice I have learnt the skills of writing, shooting, and editing.

I will start chronologically with the writing:

Obviously to base the treatment for 2 hours of viewing on a 2 minute clip we’d be making meant I’d have to produce an entire story with all the characters, events, themes, and nuances an actual bearable movie would hold. I drafted and altered the treatment frequently to include Harry’s and Andy’s ideas as well. I kept the story exciting without being farfetched; addressed social issues; and always had our audience targeted. I tried to make the characters dynamic and avoid a static plot. The writing for the 2 minutes of footage was easier: there was not a storyline in the 2 minutes but just an establishment of the prisoner holding room. This meant planning, in detail, what the room would look like and the types of shot we wanted but luckily didn’t involve copious amounts of writing.      

I started the course with absolutely no understanding in using cameras or how scenes are shot. I literally struggled with even the most rudimentary terminology (i.e “shot”, “cut”, “reverse shot” and so forth). For the Continuity Task I had to learn the “match on action”, “shot/reverse shot” and the “180 degree rule”. Since then I have learnt “pull focus”, “establishing shot”. I have learnt how to take “panning shots” (horizontally and vertically). I have learnt how to take “dolly shots” and obviously setting up the dolly track correctly and efficiently. I have learnt “zoom shots” and how they should almost always be replaced with a dolly moving in closer, and that they are not very professional. I have learnt how important lighting is. I learnt how to use the floodlight and the reflector effectively to create the special lighting we had in the footage. I embraced this completely new experienced and feel much more well-versed in this area of production.

Editing was the last practical skill I learnt. In the Continuity Task I did nothing but watch when we edited our 30 seconds of footage. In our 2 minutes of footage for Honey I was not exactly proactive in operating the editing software but I did equally direct the editing and was present during the manual work. I did however develop manual editing skills using the  same software in the other areas of the course: for example, the Anchoring task. The skills I learnt here are denoted in the previous post.

Conclusion

I have developed an eye for what looks professional and what looks home-made, and what looks subtly stylistic and what looks like a distastefully blatant attempt at expressing a theme or creating a genre. I feel I have definitely become a critical but fair viewer who has now been armed with the experience, know-how and technicalities to judge the quality of a film.   

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Evaluative questions: 6, What have you learnt about technologies from the process of constructing this product?

Throughout my perennial production process, I have encountered three specific technologies: Final Cut (editing software); LiveType (text and graphic production software); and the technological equipment we used to shoot the film with.

Final Cut Express HD

Throughout the process of making Honey I have learnt, to a sound degree, how to use the editing programme Final Cut. In my post “Anchoring” I had to use Final Cut on my own for the first time to select 30 seconds out of a 10 minute clip and edit it to make it appear as firstly a conventional Horror film, and secondly as a conventional Comedy film. Here is the clip of the 30 seconds anchored as a Horror. I have chosen this one because I edited it more thoroughly than the Comedy anchor.

 [blip.tv ?posts_id=4360257&dest=-1]

I learnt how to cut specific parts of footage out (my selected 30 seconds out of the ten minute clip); how to layer music over the top of this and express cresecendos and diminuendos at desired points; how to change the colouring on the footage, and how to layer subtle visual effects on.

Whilst making Honey, this process of selecting specific parts of footage out of reams of it became important. With over half an hour’s worth of footage and around twenty different shots we had the onerous task of trawling through all this and selecting and extracting desired clips for editing cultivation for the actual 2 minutes. The layering of music and knowing how to use it to emphasise certain moments was very very important considering the music plays an imperative part in our film and not just an addition to the visuals. We made it marry into the shots well. Also, considering our film held a very specific aesthetic, it was important that our colouring remained coherent and deliberately dull and lifeless. The addition of visual effects like the “Dip to Colour Dissolve” feature which we applied to the transition between shots gave a coherency in the colouring.

     

LiveType

In my Anchoring assignment I also learnt and cultivated skills on LiveType which would also become important in the making of Honey. Here is my Comedy anchor which I believe expresses my use of titles better than Horror.

[blip.tv ?posts_id=4294491&dest=-1]

Although the purpose was to anchor the Comedy genre it was essentially an exercise, so I experimented with a variety of titles. LiveType gave me a vast choice of options of titles and fonts which I could alter in colour, size, positioning on the screen, and its duration on screen.

In the making of Honey we had to include titles. Although we did not use LiveType the skills I learnt did come in useful and we created titles to the effect we wanted – a black screen with a simplistic font (we were aiming for simple!  

Equipment


In the shooting I learnt how to operate the camera and the lights. Both were very easy and did not take over five minutes to be fully verse myself in.
  

                          



 

 

One feature which did involve a complicated technical procedure which me and Andy learnt from Mr Grant is the pull-focus shot which involved manual zooming on the camera. This pull-focus shots are displayed between 19-22 seconds, 57-63 seconds, and 67-71 seconds.

[blip.tv ?posts_id=4761222&dest=-1]

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Evaluative questions: 5, How did you attract/address your audience?

This is how we addressed the 18 certificate we expected our movie to fall in to.

Again, the BBFC stated on  their website that examiners for 18 certificated movie “look at issues such as discrimination, drugs, horror, imitable behaviour, language, nudity, sex, sexual violence, theme and violence when making decisions. They also consider context, the tone and impact of a work (eg how it makes the audience feel) and even the release format (for example, as DVDs are watched in the home, there is a higher risk of underage viewing)”.

I have selected passages from my treatment which show how our film addresses the expected 18 certificate.

– “Dobson is a human trafficker” = Discrimination

– “Brash conversations” = Language

– “Hard drug habit” = Drugs

– “Scratching addict” = Drugs

– “They take heroine” = Drugs

– “Markie shouts comments at Honey” = Language

– “Infrequent, horrific shots of the holding room are shown throughout the feature” = Horror, Discrimination

– “The slaves are all semi nude, male, and severely malnourished.” = Discrimination

– “Dobson and Big are aggressive towards them.” = Violence

– “The Baltic shop owner is fuming and starts shouting” = Language

– “Dobson severely beats Honey” = Violence

– “he is drowning in dark, stagnant water.” = Horror.

– “Weasel is beaten” = Violence

– “He dreams that night of a world…with Elizabeth” = Sexual

– “Honey has a long and climatic conversation with Dobson” = Language

– “Harry replies never to call him Honey, and takes Big’s knife from on top of his coat and kills Dobson in a haze of tears and screams.” = Violence

– “he sees Markie having sex with Elizabeth” = Sexual

– “They baton the back of his legs and unnecessarily mace him.” = Violence

– “He is violently cuffed and the closing shot is of Honey’s bleeding face being grazed agains the London pavement.” = Violence.

 

Although our 2 minutes of footage does not feature all these trigger words (Violence, Drugs, Discrimination) which BBFC has stated, our treatment clearly does.

Our two minutes of footage did however depict Discrimination.

And, as stated in “Evaluative questions: 2, How does your media product represent particular social groups?”, the questionnaire clearly proved that we successfully portrayed abused minors with ambiguous nationalities.

In “Evaluative question: 4, Who would be the audience for your media product?”, I stated that “the music in the footage we made is modern and abstract and would appeal to a younger audience. The special effects on the shots made our footage appear like a modern movie and not a more traditional one”, and therefore we are aiming to produce a movie for 18-30 year olds.

This is how we did this:

The music we produced was made of synthetic, computer-generated sounds and not from an orchestra, or traditional instruments like a piano, guitar, or drums and so forth. This would appeal towards perhaps a younger audience over the age of 18 who would listen to more modern music, rather than a generation more accustomed to listening to music produced by the said more traditional instruments.

Some shots have special effects which may not have been used in films of an older generation mean that this film is even more less appealing to an older, more traditional viewer. Again though, this means it is more appealing to a younger viewer who is over 18.

Note the music and the modernistic shots from 1.15-1.26 in our clip below:

[blip.tv ?posts_id=4761222&dest=-1]

 

Furthermore, in our questionnaire we asked:

“Although distressing, would you expect that a certain audience would find the clip stylistically appealing? Yes or No?”

100% of people said Yes.

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Evaluative questions: 4, Who would be the audience for your media product?

In my post “Planning” I stated thatthe violent, sexual, and drug related themes of the treatment, combined with the brutality of the 2 minute footage we intend to create, surmounts to us aiming to produce a film of an 18 certificate and specifically targeting 18-30 year olds. This aim to produce a film for the younger sector of an audience above 18 is due to the fact that the leads are teenagers and young adults and the explicit nature of the 2 minute footage, as well as the whole plot, could be perhaps distasteful to an older generation. So some older people probably wouldn’t like some of the imagery

British Board of Film Certification state that to certify a film as 18 their “examiners look at issues such as discrimination, drugs, horror, imitable behaviour, language, nudity, sex, sexual violence, theme and violence when making decisions. They also consider context, the tone and impact of a work (eg how it makes the audience feel) and even the release format (for example, as DVDs are watched in the home, there is a higher risk of underage viewing)”. Clearly our aim of certification conforms to BBFC’s 18 certification guidelines.


 

 

Also

-Almost all the characters are under 30 year olds, and the treatment does not denote any themes which would particularly interest an audience older than 30.

– In the 2 minutes of footage the slaves are not depicted to look over 30.

– The music in the footage we made is modern and abstract and would appeal to a younger audience. The special effects on the shots made our footage appear like a modern movie and not a more traditional one.

From these three points and the certificate we aimed our film to fall in to, we agreed we are targeting 18-30 year olds. Due to the gritty imagery, violence and male dominated cast we are aiming more towards male 18-30 year olds.

In our questionnaire we asked a question pertaining to this Evaluative question: “Who would you watch this film with?

Girlfriend/boyfriend,

Group of friends,

Family,

Yourself?”

The results are as follows:

A younger audience of over 18 would group together to watch a movie (a social gathering etc.). It is unlikely that groups of people above the age of 30 would meet up to watch a movie together, therefore our questionnaire shows that our target audience remains as 18-30 year olds.

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Evaluative questions: 3, What kind of media institution might distribute your media product and why?

Our film would be fully produced by a British production team on British location and so would probably be funded by the UK Film Council. The UK Film Council themselves are funded by the National Lottery but do not have the vast financial assets which American Hollywood production companies have. Considering their limitations of finance, the rights and licensing of distribution would probably have to be sold to various distributors.

– The film Dog Soldiers by Neil Marshall was a British production and was distributed by Pathe Distribution Ltd. The film grossed c£1,200,000.

– The film Love Actually by Richard Curtis was a British production and was distributed by the more lucrative Universal Pictures. The film grossed £155,000,000.

Obviously the production and distribution budget of Love Actually far surpassed Dog Soldiers. We believe, however, that our film would be too lowly distributed if we sold the rights to Pathe Distribution. We also think Universal may not buy the rights for their distribution because the income from the film would be inproportionate to the cost of distributing. So we would probably sell our distribution rights to a happy medium like Danny Boyle’s 28 Weeks Later which was distributed by 20th Century Fox UK and eventually grossed £40,000,000.

I would also sell our television rights to Film4 after 2 years because Film4 exhibit a vast amount of British films (and recently Hollywood films too) and is a popular film channel in Britain.

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