Professional placement

Wes c.v.

so here is an updated version of my c.v. which I have made and intend to look for some work with I have already worked with clients this year so will see if they are still in need of someone to be a videographer at their events, as they said it was all good earlier in the year I just haven’t heard back from them.

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started looking on ThisisPlymouth.co.uk but the majority of it is media sales or graphic design, found this website isn’t too bad although is a little intimidating the majority of places would prefer you to be experienced, but I guess I could try some “fake it til you make it”

http://www.filmandtvpro.com/uk/i/Jobs/Devon/Plymouth/

also probably looking into GodTV as it’s here, also South West Film

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also had a go with twofour media hopefully the file name wasn’t confusing.
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I just keep thinking about this….

so we have taken on the Tamar River Festival and I have been asked to come up with a concept for the project so I have been researching the river Tamar pretty solidly lately and trying to come up with something fitting. I am going to contact the company directly and ask what sort of direction they want to take the project. Which I did but with regards to the concept I was slightly overtaken by the group and it looks like we’re doing something else that is just mainly involving the river itself.

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also on top of this I have started building a website with Wix a free online site builder, focusing more on stills at community events I have a lot of photos to go through but it’s shaping up nicely anyway…

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So with regards to the River Project it was ok I know people had to pass the module so everyone sort of jumped on board, but there were far too many bodies and not really much going on, I sat in on the edit and helped choose shots and stabilise them etc, I am to understand that we pretty much need to redo the whole thing as they weren’t best pleased with it I think the idea was ok as far as it goes but maybe would have been better or at least a bit more professional if they had taken a tripod out to shoot!

so wanting to get as much on this module as I could I moved on as well to…

http://www.imwithgeek.com/

these guys seemed cool they were looking for a comic strip editor, so I applied thinking it was as a writer! I didn’t get the job for obvious reasons but they got back to me and asked if I would consider joining their staff of writers to which I said “ok would you like to see an example of my work”
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I spoke to one Mr.John William who said they did and so I sent them over The Camera Never Lies a short spoken word piece that I had made for Lucy’s contextual module (you can watch it here if you haven’t already seen it.)

after this more e-mails were sent via Indeed.co.uk an online job application service I had just about familiarised myself with, but as the job has been taken down so has the correspondence, he asked that I show him some more work as I showed promise and their initial goal is to help young writers that other wise would go un-noticed in the industry. So I sent him the link to this blog and apologised profusely that it wasn’t anything other than a stream of vaguely academic consciousness and he never got back to me!

This being the case I have now set up a blog so I can write my own personal feels and thoughts without having any boundaries as such, so therefore this won’t be happening again!

it’s currently untouched but I will be getting on with it in the next few days…

on top of that I finished my negotiated final major production and plugged it about as much as I could trying to contact different drug awareness campaigns I approached LegalHighAwareness.co.uk who have decided to take the original edit as it is to schools and colleges next year to raise awareness about legal highs which was the original intention. On top of this I have been in correspondence with the Angelus Foundation

http://www.angelusfoundation.com/

They are a company who were set up by Mitch Weinhouse after Amy Weinhouses death some few years ago, they loved it and I am currently working on a 2 minute edit so they can try and make it into a viral campaign or some sort of thing like that I guess, I am literally just awaiting a call back today and then I’ll be getting on with it. I told them of my intentions for it and wanting it to spread awareness also the fact that me and a friend made the music and video there would be no problems with copyright etc and they were more than happy to have it, it’s also currently 9th in some online award thing for video of the week which is nice so lots of positive stuff coming back from this. In the time since I started writing this I have been asked to make a 2 minute version for Angelus Films which will involve a ridiculous amount of exposure and such which is good, they are planning to take it around to festivals and schools etc…

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 you can watch the full version here

on top of this I applied for a job at BBC southwest as a personal assistant to a broadcaster I am not entirely sure why I did this but I didn’t get the job anyway but they were interested and have told me they will be keeping my c.v. on file whether or not anything comes of this is a seperate issue.

Critical reflection.

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A lot of the clients that I have come to work with over the recent months have been entirely generated by me applying myself and getting down to it, e-mailing on the phone and via social networking platforms. I feel I have completely grown as an individual and my confidence has somewhat grown. Just through interacting and trying to  get myself out there I have made some strong connections and have some realistic goals that are achievable, I will be working with TEDx at the university which covers quite a large online platform with issues such as technology and social justice/injustice this is something I have wanted to be involved with and have talked about over the past two years, my work with the RIO will cover the community aspect of what I also wanted to achieve this means I am basically doing what I initially wanted. Proving not only can I work to set goals but I can also set my own and get them covered through various ways mainly down to self-motivation, obviously confidence has helped me to pursue such things. I think I need to take time for the future to ensure that I manage everything as best as I possibly can especially if I intend to go out into the industry as a gun-for-hire, working to a deadline is ok it’s just remembering how much I have on, and not taking too long to do things. Once I have come up with a process that suits me with regards to my workload whilst maintaining a level of professionalism with clients I will be set, I will probably look into some self-help books and management styles over the summer take tid-bits from them and apply my own panache.

Fifa vs the Brazilian people

another short from moi,

I awoke to see the first Advert on the BBC when he asks why we shouldn’t go to Brazil this was all I could think of!

the music is an official fifa song by the way, my sense of music is not broken.
The more I listened to it, the more I realised it’s more ironic than alanis morisette finally understanding what irony is, going to write a song about it not being able to find a pen for her tens of thousands of spoons…

Negotiated Final Major Production

Synopsis: The idea for my project is a music video for a friend, it is based on the three-act way of script writing. Where each scene has an action at the end that leads onto more drama within the next scene. I will be using a track called Vortex which happens to be split into three parts, the story will follow a young man getting out of a taxi and arriving outside a club and meeting his girlfriend or date. Upon entering the club he has an altercation with a bouncer gets a bit gobby but gets let in goes up to someone who clearly doesn’t like him, (we are lead to believe they have a past) buys some drugs and heads to the bar, we see wide-angle shots of the barman at the bar so without realizing the audience is familiarized with his face, the barman also talks to him and says what the sample used in the track says. He then takes a pill and that is when the first music change happens and thus the end of the act. We then see our protagonist in slow motion from an unflattering angle with a fish eye lens, walking through the club sweating loads knocking people over and annoying people generally he sees the guy he bought the drugs from he knocks into him and the guy knocks him out. We then see him laying on the floor from an over head shot as he begins to seizure the music and digetic sounds of a heartbeat intensify until we fade to black (end act.) He awakes in a garage tied to a chair with a man in a mask again quoting the sample used from the song, with a big clown in the corner blowing up balloons his girlfriend is on the floor with a rope tied to her screaming with mascara all over her face, there is a man slapping him in the face, lots of macro shots of things going on he breaks free from the chair and is instantly thrown back into the real world where the bouncer is giving him cpr the other guy is slapping his face while his mrs is screaming in exactly the same position she was in the garage, we realize the guy is O.D. ing.My role in this will be director editor and possibly camera op, I will be working closely with my friend who made the track so I can represent him in the best way possible, I will also be asking for help organizing the club night which I shouldbe able to get a venue for quite soon. With regards to the research piece it will be looking at slow motion video and lighting, I want to make the scenes in the club as vulgarly beautiful as possible I will be looking into Dannie Boyle and such people for work like trainspotting and human traffic etc…the majority of sources I will look at will be focusing on lighting and camera work I will also be looking into club culture and drug problems among teens. I will be working on the preproduction of this as soon as I have met with my “client” I intend to get everything done as quickly as possible but well organized so I can get everything that I need. The only real worry I have with this is my own ability with regards to the technical side of this I will counteract this by enlisting someone who is a little ,more proficient than me with a camera multiple people will make this easier.

DIY Snorricam tutorial videos for club scene http://filmmakeriq.com/2011/04/22-diy-dslr-camera-rigs/

http://www.instructables.com/id/How-to-Make-a-Snorricam/

So using a few of these designs I worked alongside my partners dad who happens to be a carpenter to make a version of a Snorricam out of MDF wood and bolts to make a jointed chest mount with a bolt from a tripod mount, weighted against a back board held together with luggage straps. It took about a week and cost about £15-20 there there were a few things that had to be changed like the lengths of the arms, but the shot was framed and the angle picked for exactly what I wanted so the work is done exactly to that but with added stages to move within a groove. I can’t claim credit for it all as I was the “ideas” guy so really glad that this is now working. This is a video of it in action when it was still just the front mounted on a wooden board. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NXXeTST1h4o and a few shots of the rig itself …

The Club Scene shooting (7/5/2014) this is being shot next Wednesday and is currently being organised by myself josh and jake, a list of stuff needed for it is glitter balloons smoke machine spray bottles (for sweaty folk) empty bottles balloons food and Kanye sunglasses The shoot is going to be at 20:15 and I anticipate about 40 people being involved this is the biggest thing I have done so far so am expecting a lot to go wrong, hopefully the more I put into the pre-production the easier it will be, part of my influence for this can be seen here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EV7SA0BCUPw consider it a similar thing but with a dash of heroin chic, I will be working with my younger brother mike as our main character, lucy a friend who will be playing his girlfriend, bailey who will be playing the doorman and a casting call has been put out for the barman. I have story boarded and noted out like a million things I am yet to buy blue gels I want a specific look it’s just the only problem with buying online is that you have no idea how it is going to look, I want a very light blue almost silvery light but perhaps this can be touched up in post.The rig is raring to go I just need to resize it to fit someone smaller than me and away we go but I am yet to arrange a name for that so I will get back to you there. So the weekend before the shoot has gone on and I have been working on some storyboards for the shoot on Wednesday but not too much as it happens I got massively ill before I had to do things (not like that’s a cliche’!) I have met with Jake Bench so we can talk through a shooting script and a storyboard but mainly down to just doodling at the moment, I approached Jake as I had worked with him on other films and he’s a bit of a whizz with lighting so made sense.

The Story(boards)

The Car

Our story starts with Rob a young man pulling up in a typical chavvy car (yes i called my car chavvy) talking on his phone

Rob: Why not just come out for a bit man it’s the weekend?

(pause)

well it’s the weekend somewhere still,

i’ve got some blue clarky, nose-bosh and  quack handles

Rob: Well they’re legal highs so I’m guessing they’re alright other wise they wouldn’t be legal genius!

*pauses*

ahhhh go on… *grunts* whatever then…is Lucy still coming out?

*pause*

sister or not mate she’s fair game

CIAOW (shouts and hangs up quickly)

Rob looks down to the glove compartment grabs out bags of different drugs, over the top we will be using bright blue glitter to highlight how dangerous and unknown cosmetic drugs use is. He exits the car, the second that he opens the car door we are outside the driver door, the music starts and the camera moves in 4/4 with the music bar by bar, just showing the relationship of the audio to visual before we see him walk towards us (which will use jump-cut, as this fits the theme and speeds things up) and then off camera.

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Next we see a side-profile crawling from a car, we follow Rob walking along the street on his way to go out, this shot will be shot three times once with him just walking like a bolshy young man, one of him walking as if he’s slightly aware of the music so almost in rythmn and one of him full-blown dancing. The reason for this being the edit if the shot is long enough then I will be able to jump between the three these symbolise his nervous excitement about the night ahead, we then have a rig shot from behind he passes a tramp with a can of beer asleep and drinks it, we see him come into shot at close-up range, we zoom out he spins on the spot and throws the can behind him highlighting how much he doesn’t really care he walks towards us and we are behind him with the club in front of us.

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**some story board missing**

The Club (EXT.)

outside the club we see Rob start to act shiftily this is because he has no money and is relying solely on selling his “legal-highs” to go out, the bouncer clocks him and they lock eyes. he starts to act more nervously as he does he moves around the corner to where some people are coming down the road to enter the club. Rob manages to sell one of his bags and has the money we then see a young girl wandering along this is Lucy, the sister of the guy on the phone they meet do a line, and then enter the club, Rob blows a kiss at the bouncer in a mischievous fashion and enters the club.

(The music outside the club will have a Lo frequency cut filter on so the music sounds as if it actually in the club, there will some digetic noise of people talking and Rob sorting out the drugs, but this will be inaudible and muffled.)

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**again some story board missing**

The Club (INT.)

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we enter the club and this is the beginning of act 2 the club, we see Rob and Lucy arm in arm ready for a night-out as the music slows down there is a slider shot of them entering slowed down to 90% as the music does as well, they part ways she heads to the dancefloor he heads to the bar.

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we follow Rob along the bar on a dolly all the way to the end to order a drink, when he gets there he is finding it hard to concentrate and can’t figure out if the barman is talking to him (the barman says the sample from the break in the song)

“is elctrical power reaching out to specific vortexs in the earth’s crust and is it causing U.F.O. activity”

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Rob looks confused and heads to the dance floor, the music breaks down to passed half speed at this point and so does the footage, it will be shot on the AF100 and slowed down in camera and will be your typical run-of-the-mill club scene with lots of light and people with their hands in the air and so on,

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as the song begins to change we move to the Snorricam shot

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Rob leaves the toilet after what was maybe a line maybe a pee who knows he exits and we follow him through the dancefloor he sees a girl with a drink and steals it and downs it, then dances a bit and bumps into people, he sees someone wearing glasses and steals them and carries on, now rob has found lucy again and they are dancing together. The shot of them dancing together is to represent the way that they feel singled out and like they are the only people that exist for this effect to be apparent a vignette will be applied in post and the shot will be spot-lit. Rob carries on dancing and we see him start to flail he hits the ground and we go to an over head shot on the dancefloor and hear rob’s heart in time with the music starting to fade-out (incidentally so do the visuals ((clever huh)) )

now we have the breakdown of the song and into act 3 we have a few flash scenes of Rob being bundled out of the club and we hear a car boot open, close people talking inaudibly then the motor.

The Garage(INT.)

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Shot List

  

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basic layout

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In this scene Rob awakes to realise (possibly) that he has been kidnapped by the barman who then relays another sample from the song to him in whilst in a dark room with a swinging lightbulb. A close up of Robs eyes and they open, we are automatically launched into the scene with the music hitting around 174 bPM lots of cut away shots of things that are going on to keep with the pace of the video, Rob is being tortured by the barman with a torch whilst the bouncer is behind them and lucy is on the floor crying.

all of these things will be shot with a macro lens and edited quickly to the beat. Rob hits the floor in his chair and suddenly he is outside

The Layout from above

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The Club (ext.)

suddenly we are outside the club and Rob is on the floor, the bouncer is giving him CPR and the barman is shining a torch into his eyes while they try to revive him we realise that it has all been part of his subconscious and Rob has o.d.’d. The last shot will have all 4 characters in shot disappearing and reappearing as the music changes and Rob’s sense of reality is fading, we leave him either he dies or he lives the audience decides.

Influences and reasoning

my reasons for making this project are a few, the main one is legal highs and their availability to young kids being they are untested cosmetic drugs.

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there are literally hundreds of untested drugs flying around the world at the moment, some are psyco-active and some are stimulants so given that you also add into the equation uppers and downers at the same time it really is impossible to know the exact number of how many legal highs are actually on the market in our country let alone the world. Having a younger sibling that is slightly wild has made me realise how bad this is, also along with watching some friends really lose their grip then ending up incarcerated I figured I would try and use and way to find something to make a point of it to a younger audience. I think that the use of Channel 4 type “This is England 88” camera technique mixed with the look of hollyoaks or misfits or whichever you prefer. (not saying they all look the same, but there is a certain “feel” to each whether it’s in the camera work or grading etc… they are all carefully crafted pieces of poo and glitter. So I bought a load of glitter and balloons, and shot the club stuff which was intending to look something like this…

it did end up looking pretty “Channel 4” if I’m honest was very pleased with the dolly shots was well worth the extra hassle of getting all set up but the footage that came out was amazing, there were only 20 people there but we managed to make it look rather pretty/busy

so with that in mind we came up with a pretty cohesive look and feel to the night club scene of the video it’s currently un graded but it will look pretty special. I had bought glitter which I intended to use with the balloons and people while they were dancing, but due to lack of time as the balloons had to be weighted down with fishing wire, I cracked on with it anyway. Now as a joke and also not wanting to have spent money on something so trivial and not use it, I will make a concoction of unrealistic drugs for the beginning of the video. Giving them funny names as a homage to Chris Morris’ Brass Eye

as I sit writing this the Telegraph have published this in the last hour

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/health/10857635/New-legal-highs-on-rise-as-UK-death-rate-twice-Europe-average.html

it claims there are 350 known legal highs being sold in the U.K. and Europe and online at 651 different outlets, but in the u.k. the mortality rate from over-dose is 17% more than the rest of Europe whether or not you put that down to our binging culture, a failure to truly explain to kids about things because of red-tape, or general ignorance and readily available vices sold on e-bay the fact is it is a huge problem and children need to be protected from making bad-decisions at a young age, if you believe in theoretical “gateway” drugs then these are definitely them with all moral coding exempt by the web some faceless company making you get off yours on some kind of chemical compound made up of who knows what and for that matter where it came from it’s all a grey-washed area.

“Legal highs are particularly difficult to control as manufacturers, suppliers, retailers, website-hosting and payment-processing services can all be based in different countries.” the EMCDDA

“Most overdoses occur among individuals who have consumed multiple substances, and attributing causality is often problematic,”

even their fake weed is killer

http://www.newsshopper.co.uk/news/gravesend/10864976.Grieving_mum_starts_anti_legal_high_campaign_after_son_s_Gravesend_death/

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-21242664

Drug use remains one of the major causes of mortality among young people in Europe, the report said, with around 6,100 overdose deaths reported in Europe in 2012, down from 6,500 in 2011.

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the edit is going well I have bought a plug-in called “Twitch” which looks like it should be fun to use for the garage scene the motivation for the general theme of the garage scene even though it is in no way similar is the song “Breathe” by the Progidy

The general feel is uneasy and I wanted to try and replicate it as this part of the story is all in the guys mind, whether or not this will easily be defined is up to the edit. Obviously I know what has gone on but need to make it very apparent to the viewer so they aren’t just left to think about it themselves.

Three-Act Structure

 

over the winter holidays last year I realised that I was entitled to up to £450 worth of books and materials, so I decided to take full advantage of this and went out and bought some books

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these books were rather interesting I think by far the best was “The Art of Digital Film-making” by Mike Figgis the dude who invented the fig-rig not the greatest piece of equipment (i found personally) but the whole book is very good it reads almost as if you were having a conversation with someone which is essentially what the book tries to emulate, however I also bought some screen writing books etc and the more I read into them the more I realised that I believe writing is something you can’t teach, or more to the point creative writing (that actually involves being creative) is the same as art or music if your tone-deaf there is no getting over that, it is built in and ingrained from your brain’s development. This being said I found myself wanting to write at the same time don’t get me wrong I just wondered what would be the outcome if I actually limited myself to a confine or structure, I realised that the 3 act structure that everyone was ranting about is said literature is a very simple way to write and therefore may be better suited to music videos with a story-line. For any one who is reading this and doesn’t know what the 3 act structure is it basically is the theory that film needs 3 acts to be a whole and that every end of every act requires an action that leads through into the next act, basically

The Software

So in order to obtain the glitchy effect that I wanted I went ahead and bought a program called twitch, but being as my Mac isn’t entirely great neither is my graphics card I had a lot of trouble getting everything to run, also the fact that my only real experience with After Effects has been with the Title Sequence Project that we had done really proved troublesome I didn’t want to let that stop me, I bought the copy of it used it in college and at home and for some reason my projects wouldn’t render after an entire evening of searching CreativeCow.net and other website yahoo answers etc, I sent quite an abrupt e-mail to video copilot and received an answer within 5 mins turns out I was using an old copy of Twitch I dont know why this is the downloadable one on their site but that was put right and all was ok!

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so bearing this in mind I went back to the drawing board and managed to find a program called Data-Glitch 2.0 this is less “twitchy” more giving an imitated break in visual feed, the two options are subtractive colours or primary colours, I decided to use RGB as it fitted with the colour scheme of the video so far, this program can also be used in Premier. This didn’t work in the end as I didn’t have the AE key so was unable to get rid of the water-mark here is my attempt

The Ball-ache

ok so I ended up messing up hugely on the night of the last shoot I had intended to go from the shoot straight home went out via BANGBANG on North Hill wasn’t a smart move, I ended up having the camera stolen from me and lost the plot. I was literally stood by the bar talking to Alex (Plasmator-the guy who made the song) someone lifted it straight up from next to me, which is ridiculous and lucky at the same time as I had my own Canon-600d and Macbook Pro in my bag, realising what had happened I asked to see the CCTV and was told I would have to wait until the morning, not being a great believer in people in general I decided to get blind drunk (real smart yup?) I was initially thinking that I would have to replace a 7D and 2 samjang lenses worth about 2 grand. Not wanting to think about this and having had problems with alcohol and substance abuse for the last 10 years I “relapsed” for about 3/4 days and made my home-life quite difficult for everyone around me, this wasn’t ideal as I had been sober since September and had joined the college to try and regain some sort of composure to my headspace and the way things were, in the time that I was  being a drama queen and a huge drunk one at that someone handed in the camera to the college I am yet to find out who did I think it was a photography student. The plan is when I go back to find out and give them a reward because they vaguely instilled some kind of faith in humanity in me again, so the camera was back and the only thing that was missing was a charger ok not a problem 30-40 quid I went onto WEX Photographic and bought one for 10 pounds more than the recomended AMAZON site, (as Amazon don’t pay their taxes and are generally a bunch of sh*ts) yeah I know moralistic eh? got the camera back got the charger back now to get the last piece of footage I need the dialogue……but, the day that I lost the camera was my first offence with the ERC and it took a week to get the charger, when the charger arrived I took it into the college (after having spent the day a few days before getting my extenuating circumstances) and they decided that from the day I handed it back I had a week ban, so this in mind I was put a week back. I did try various people that I had worked with to try and book out the equipment so that we could get this in the bag but people had gone home or were busy trying to tie up their own loose ends I would have to wait until the video could be finished and just wanted shot of it!

It has taken nearly a month as all my actors work, which is good for them and such but I am stuck trying to tie things together and it’s nearly impossible. I am glad that this has happened in some ways as I now know unless I choose a particularly “bummy” person I will be working with actors from Casting Call!

Proffesional Practices

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Making Futures: Received an e-mail from college about making futures an art conference being held over at Mount Edgcumbe, realising for the first time this year that this is an amazing opportunity to get a decent (enough) c.v. over the next year and then top up year should I choose to do it (which I think I probably shall.). We got together a few days later after liaising online as I had no phone. The fact that I had no phone didn’t end up being too much of a problem, but I am now equipped so things will just be easier and have been since. A few of us met up on Wednesday the day before the shoot and went over to mount edgcumbe to check out the set-up and get a sense of direction in both filming the event and navigating a massive-ass country house. It was pretty standard I would imagine to your normal conference/business function malarky with a boom up front towards the person speaking and me about 20ft away with a sony Z-1 and external recording do-hicky. The shooting on the first day went ok we arrived earlier than we needed to as we were asked to do so anyway, filmed the plenary sessions in the morning and went to our allocated cameras throughout said house. When I arrived I was immediately asked about a podium type platform for the speaker but they used the technical term and after a few braindead attempts it finally computed and I went off to find something, I then came back and was asked about a remote for the projector bearing in mind I didn’t set up anything nor do I even know how to use a projector but went to find someone who could help. I think the fact that I wore black suitish attire maybe lent to the questioning and then someone thinking I was a speaker the second day!

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I did what I could obviously and had my teeth in so no qualms just trying to be professional about things and also knowing that I was out representing the college. The Plenary sessions ended up going over when I shot them on the second day and I somehow managed to capture it without any issue and was fully engrossed in the topic anyway, it was a talk about how mobile phones are used in third worlds for farmers and for people to send home money to their families all at the cost of head cancer if they managed to live 20 years…but still useful at present. In my actual room for the conference it was pretty much the same thing as you can see by the picture it was all running via the mains so rather than strangle the back row of listeners “looking for that perfect shot” stood there occasionally zooming,tweaking (not twerking) audio levels, and watching the timer on the tape as the camera still needs to be tricked into thinking it’s shooting to camera. I didn’t have any issues with this shoot I managed to log as I went not knowing whether or not I was going to edit and am still sort of sketchy on what’s going on.

Press release for Drawn to the Valley

Drawn to the Valley:

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Risk Assessment

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Drawn to the valley was a community event in which artist and local crafts people from the Tamar Valley area of Cornwall put on workshops for local children who came over the weekend and joined in the fun even rounded off with an impromptu martial arts exhibit the justification of this was that they were drawing in light, whether or not that was actually the point or whether or not that sounded good as the sun came out after a muggy start  will remain unanswered in history! First we got hold of the event-holder via e-mail after being given the address in response to an advert posted on the college blog (which clearly works as a system.) and asked what sort of outcome she wanted and how to portray what was going on, we were pretty much given creative freedom in shooting and editing footage down to create a short promo video for the event which will be available for people to stream on the group’s web-site. We travelled pretty light with a fig-rig 2 DLSR’s, tripod, a small boom to hold by hand, headphones and a ZOOM just because I have an unhealthy obsession and want to empty all the batteries in the world! Something happened towards the end of the day either with the zoom or the microphone I will have to speak to someone who knows more when we are trying to salvage the sound. The day started off drab but this didn’t prove to be problematic, the location was all one marquee the people weren’t too freaked out all though a few children froze up with the camera but we have enough to work with and intend to have it finished by the end of next week.

13/11/2013

Ok so with the edit taking a little longer than we had expected we decided to do a voice-over, as the footage that we had taken on the actual event was completely lost in parts not entirely sure why it was like this as on the day it sounded ok. The way to resolve this is to next time do some test audio when first hiring out the equipment. We edited what we had and sent it to the client to give some sort of guidance on what sort of direction she wanted to take with it, apparently we had put too much emphasis on the venue and also where we had time-lapsed people coming and going it was found to be too confusing. We will have to re-think what we’re doing luckily there isn’t a massive focus on the deadline for this project although it will need to be viewed in the next few weeks by other people that work with the Drawn to the Valley group. The issue with the sped-up footage was that because the day was a little dead we thought it would possibly make it look a little busier but if it’s not right, well it just aint right is it! We will regroup over the next few days and see what we can muster up whilst delivering the best product we can, then move on from it as there are more things to be getting on with right now

1/12/2013

Still not quite there we have Tessa coming in on Wednesday to talk to her about a live script

here are some screen-grabs

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It has been a couple of weeks since we have had any sort of correspondance with Tessa so got her in the edit suite this week so as not to let the project go stale, especially with the end of term coming up. It honestly was a personal choice of ours to try and tie this up not just to fit the deadline, I personally hadn’t realised how much time had escaped me. We kept the main structure after giving it some thought when we had corresponded with Tessa before she had said that some of it was confusing with regards to the art gallery that had been there. I thought as the video was for a web promotion on Twitter and Facebook and also being aimed at parents as well in order to raise general awareness for the group, the best music to use would be some good old The audio which had been taken from the day was not completely lost but we ended up with about 1/3 of the footage we had intended to get using the EMC and the Zoom. I personally from now on will put just as much focus on setting up the audio I know this seems like common sense, because as it stands I did everything the right way in terms of actually setting the equipment up. I just didn’t give enough thought as to what would/should happen when I encountered a problem, in this instance the problem was with the micraphone had I taken the time to test it was working the night before I had the shoot this problem could have been resolved or at least better understood.We had been asked by the client to show something of the art gallery that had been set up by the funders to run along with the event at Mt Edgcumbe and so we did. Originally our focus had been on how we were going to fit all these things together and get some sort of continuity to show the feel of the event. None of this was possible without a voice-over the day that we had shot, Tessa the event organiser had given us an amazing speel of everything about the organisation the day itself and people involved was completely fluid and would have been perfect for creating the right track to run along the short video (originally intended to be around two minutes.), but alas was just drowned out by background noise and kids screaming (want to reference something funny here, trying hard to keep it together). So stepping away and giving it some thought decided to try and go with her explaining the video which was already playing on a screen in front of her and the day to try and recreate the atmosphere in her mind to try and capture some of that natural fluidity from before. This was helpful in various ways after and we now had an introduction to everyone and their individual workshops the names of funders for the credits and there had been a workshop on the day which was Tai Kwondo this was supposed to symbolise drawing in light, the concept itself was very arty so wanted to show this and be able to explain the relevance of it , it would be completely lost without her extra help.The last part is tie all paper work together and

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(some shots of the re-recording of the audio with Tessa, same mic less problems!)

Feedback from the project

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My Time to Shine:
My role in this production is the story-board artist/writer after I had put myself down for position of writer our first project Drawn to the Valley had gotten a little longer than we had expected due to audio issues, I decided to step back as one of my peers had expressed a great interest in wanting to learn how to write etc… and as I am taking on the task for contemporary I thought I would play the back-ground. My proposal if you will is to liaise with the director and the director of photography this week so we can set a clear idea of what they want, and in turn I will go away and do several storyboards in various styles until one fits or I have enough to pass the module! I have found a piece of software http://www.powerproduction.com/storyboard-quick-software.html which I intend to do at least one, it is aimed at people who aren’t very artistic for confidence building within projects I think, as I can actually draw I just thought I’d see if this was maybe the way to go about giving a clear concise version of events. I have been sent the script and it really shouldn’t get to hard it’s dialogue and a musical number , but the rest is relative to the D.O.P. (Liam)

I have started looking at storyboards from other well known films first, I have always had a great interest in storyboards and graphic novels (especially story boards that have been grafted into graphic novels) and collected a few along the way which I will refer to some of my favourite are

(first)The Fountain (Kent Williams) (second)  Star wars Episode 1 (Mark Storey) (third) Psycho (Saul Bass)
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star-wars-episode-i-storyboard-image-6-600x259psycho these are a few that stick out when I think of storyboarding although I am intesretd to look at scoresese’s work as I have heard he started out wanting to be an animator, using flick-books when he had no other means.

We met with Mike to discuss the plans for the musical think he didn’t get on with the idea though at the time he seemed to “be on a level” people have decided to drop out and we are hopefully going to find out about a new director. I am hoping that I can just stay in the position I am in already though if we are to continue to work with the client the script will have to be re-written as that was the focus we discussed…

(Press release for my time to shine)

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Music of the Night

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A night of music radio people local sellers and a possible flash mob, the gig is on the 13th December at the Guild Hall. I have asked Kurt to come along as the more the merrier I thought I would be shooting alone so quite glad about this, I intend to record the audio via the Zoom directly from the desk but also will have it recording via the built in mics as well so creating a live ambience from crowd reactions etc… we will be using 3 600D DLSRs one on a shoulder mount one roaming and one static to film people entering the building. I have recently spoken to the event organisers and they basically want full coverage of the entire night not just the music this will include some behind the scenes footage, a radio show for the winner of the evening and they have also requested someone filming the judging panels so will be alot of editing but sounds like a lot of fun. The outcome will be used by the NBC Radio the event organisers and also potentially shown on the big screen in town so watch this/that space…

jennifers body

The Monstrous Feminine…
(picture from Jennifer’s
Body)

Started reading “HORROR AND THE MONSTROUS-FEMININE: AN IMAGINARY ABJECTION” after briefly talking about little mermaids and teethed vaginas, what would otherwise be a seemingly normal Tuesday morning was about to blind-side me and make my own genitalia crawl back inside me for the remainder of the foreseeable future. The text starts by talking about male castration and how every man is subject to this at birth after their entry into the world as we know it  their mother’s vagina and therefore subconsciously living in fear that one day we will be castrated ourselves (rendering you somewhat redundant for the furthering of our “amazing” species *see sarcasm) it’s relevant to a piece taken from a paper called Fetishism written by Freud in the twenties. I was already aware of this piece of work as I had read it in my spare time as psychology is well interesting…init. I am also aware of how important a few key women were in changing the whole process of theorising film and taking a more psycho-analytical approach to how we view subtext and hidden references sometimes this can be applied although I feel that some of it lends itself to everything needing to be explained and justified in order for something to either be considered “art” or just purely because people constant need to question and need answers is not too dissimilar to David Dimbleby Brian Cox and an autistic child would be after smoking peyote (not the kid obviously that’s just plain wrong).

“Feminist philosophers question patriarchal theories and urge the need to link theory with practice. Allegedly science/theory has the virtues of being unifying, coherent, well-grounded, and explanatory. But film theorists naively invoke concepts that are quite contested, such as explanation, justification, and systematicity. Nor is there operational agreement within the discipline for what counts as evidence, testing, or confirmation of a theory. This differs sharply from feminism’s more usual emphasis on the experiential.”
(taken from Encyclopedia of Aesthetics)

Feminist Film Theory:
Feminist film theory has been around for the last 30/40 years or so and is widely recognised by academics the world over, it incorporates Marxism psycho-analysm and semiotics (the study of signs.) it started in the 70’s and was headed by a paper written by one Laura Mulvey “Visual Pleasure and Narrative Cinema.” I have not yet read this but I will and will then comment further this is just an over-view so as to grab an understanding of what this is. The paper put forth the claim that in mainstream Hollywood the male is always the driving force behind a film and the girl is there to be objectified ( and/or to make other women feel ugly and self-coinscious about their own bodies)* I will get back to this as it’s something that personally grinds my gears. This is true it’s obvious you would only need to pick up a magazine or watch an advert break to realise this, the paper insisted that women were subject to being used in cinema as a means of visual pleasure and not much sway in the narrative, she was heavily criticised for this as she did not let up on the fact that women were objectified, when there are other genres and less “mainstream” cinema where this was not the case hence the term theory. Barbara Creed who wrote “The Monstrous Feminine” borrowed from this text and then went further into it with the work of Kristeva whose work was on abjection,femininity and the female body in cinema and and a further psycho analytical angle introducing the Oedipus Complex and male castration, she insisted that women were portrayed as monsters rather than hapless f-witts. The psycho analysis spec. used is of one Jacques Lacan’s Self and Desire. Philosophy of such a nature has been criticised for being used as the parameters are already set to define the outcome because you are looking for a particular thing…(I had no idea how to word that sentence!)

*This is pretty cool* The intention is pretty obvious there is a heavily tattooed girl twerking with some swords whilst images of sex-changes ovaries and other associated things are projected onto her…

On the flip-side to this here is a paper called the monstrous masculine and it focuses on adolescent males becoming monsters (which is essentially just nature anyway!), but I will come back to this.

I don’t know where I sit with regards to abjection as I am more anal-expulsive, I don’t get off on throwing feaces around the place or relieving myself though I find it completely trivial that anyone would find human functions disgusting, I do like to play on peoples sheepish nature when it comes to things like this which is so much more fun now I have teeth to take out and put places they shouldn’t be.

World Cinema (third cinema)

Started looking at World cinema or third cinema which is one of my favourite genres…is how I would start this if I was a closed-minded funk nugget! nah we totally talked about the importance of other countries (non european) not being grouped into one collective coined “WORLD CINEMA” as if all European and American films were thought up and shot on the moon. I have always found it somewhat annoying that it is thrown about so much when there are some amazing film-makers the world over, same as there are musicians, artists, app creators and so on and socetera. The fact that we view it any other way is purely down to money and branding and also deeming things less integral or important when said money or branding is not used, I personally am a big fan of Chan Park Wook, Joon Ho-Bong a lot of different French horror directors some Swedish stuff without vampires or trolls. I must admit that I havent really grasped hold of a lot of names we will put that down to good ol british ignorance for now…Tasked to choose a country to research and briefly scratch the surface of in order to be able to relay info. to other likely educational companions in a college-like situation I picked

Bulgaria

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(here is a picture of the Bulgarian Space Program)

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“image from http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1127702/”

So with regards to the film I watched it was called Mission London and strangely enough turned out to be a Bulgarian film set in the London Embassy so couldn’t help but think that it had probably been somewhat changed to fit the English market. The film played out like a cross between Delicatessen (the oh-so acclaimed januty French film) and Parent Trap (the crappy Lohan one not the original.) the story didn’t make a great deal of sense and a lot of the shots were typically 90s looking the soundtrack didn’t help that image as it was shot in 2009 but resembled something made for Channel 5 movies in the afternoon produced then straight to a slot after Home and Away. I didn’t want to embrace the view that it’s a cultural divide more that it had been a mistake or misunderstanding of some sort and will endeavour to watch something more “Bulgarian” maybe something without Alan Ford in it…init!

THE DEADLINE STUFFS!!!!

“Television Prose”

meme

Aims and Objectives

To create an unbiased argument as to whether or not television is directly negative in developing countries, to research examples where indigenous people have had their own sense of identity radically westernised by television, and to also research areas that are developing more because of t.v. be it through helping people from feeling cut off in their troubles, educational programming or teletext based programs that farmers use for online market places.

This project particularly relates to me as a writer and as a person, having recently caved after over a decade of not having television. I mainly have negative views when it comes to t.v. and it’s use in our culture and others from what little I do know from various documentaries. I filmed a plenary session at the Making Futures event over at Mount Edgcumbe the talk was on Nokia’s geographic nomads, and how they help developing countries with the use of mobile phones.

“Ever since the publication of the Jipp Curve in 19631, researchers have repeatedly observed a positive relationship between a country’s teledensity (i.e. the number of telephones per 100 inhabitants) and its economic growth/wealth (measured as Gross Domestic Product per capita).”

This made me wonder if perhaps I could find some kind of good in TV and see how they could have possibly helped countries other than ours that are less fortunate, here purpose of television is to subdue or scare us or show us pretty things/shiny things tell us stories remind us what we need to buy in order to feed the apathy monkey sat on our shoulders *waves at the monkey. I think there should be more positives pointed out that we don’t neccesarily think about when it comes to tv media.  There has been so much time put into the devising and development of it over the last century that surely some good is coming of it,  are they developmentally challenging countries? are they for the cause? do I care? all this and more

This is a clip with an interview with one the heads of google talking about TV white noise which is essentially using old frequency transmitters so non-digital old type things that Africa would have used for television and radio and to broadcast on a lower frequency so that these “White Noise” areas where there is no television or internet can be reached without having to put up transmitters and destroy the natural landscape, Google claim to that everyone should be connected and that possibly the reason for their being under-developed is to do with the web and whether or not people can receive information in order to grow,(nothing to do with us then, cheers Guys!) I fail to see how porn is going to help their situation as it would only lead to further dehydration. This seems to be a prime example of what it was I was looking for with intention of sorting out if I believe they actually want to load up peoples brains with knowledge or upload peoples brains in the not-so-distant-cyborg-hashtag-future.

Television and ICT diffusion.

 

Ok so after taking some time to think about it whilst getting other things done, I have come to the realisation that this is an absolutely huge topic I had settled with after not having enough papers I could find linked specifically to t.v. I have chosen to focus on moving image in developing countries so Mobile Videos which will be spontaneous and truthful, TV documentaries which will be planned and editied, as will films and finally advertsing – planned propaganda.also looking into subheadings for the positive outcomes of these: Exposure of crime, whistleblowing, Increasing tourism, Human rights issues and environmental issues.

Dis·ney·fi·ca·tion

noun \ˌdiz-nē-fə-ˈkā-shən\

Definition of DISNEYFICATION

:  the transformation (as of something real or unsettling) into carefully controlled and safe entertainment or an environment with similar qualities <the Disneyfication of a downtown>

Origin of DISNEYFICATION

Walt Disney + -fication

First Known Use: 1982Spoken Word
Spoken word piece the camera never liesAims: To use a spoken word piece with stock/news/copywritten material to make the point that the camera doesn’t lie but the person behind it does, looking into other areas such as tourism and then behind the scenes of what happens really (for instance Sandals Holiday Parks and then real life footage from Jamaican Cops) then to documentaries and how they are pre written to paint aspects in a certain light, then moving to mobile phones and people being bundled from the streets into police vans in Iran, how corporations pollute water and use advertising to market things as being ok. So basically a run down of how we are lied to by people but not by cameras.

Cameras never lie,

They process image burned inside,

There was a time where we’d reside without the spoon that feeds our minds,

Cumbersome and hard to get yet some would bet to some extent,

If they weren’t snapping they’d forget their grandparents or family pet,

And these are portraits hung on walls forgotten in museum halls,

The history in toilet stalls we see how people lived before

 

Memento Mori

the knowledge grew so did the scene so moving image now was key,

And people keen to see on screen the foreign places never been,

 

And then they went to fight

 

With two world wars where blood was spilled,

So now the cameras always filming broken homes and evil villains,

Politicians in slave-trade buildings,

Binding families torn apart in war in which they all took part,

Without the knowledge of the lies this revolution televised,

The products sold from product lines to heal the sick and strengthen ties,

And when we all were blown to blitz they started selling helpful tips,

Women please don’t look like shit you’ve got a countries frame to fit,

And husbands who weren’t shot to bits can soothe the war by getting pissed,

 

Then crept the lethargy

 

Electrons danced on phosphorous screens and folks are told that prosperous means,

A family holiday overseas exotic spots that you’ve now seen in Red Green and Blue,

And you helped the cause and fought those wars your dogs are barking rest those paws,

The rest of us were restless cause the rest were busy building walls,

And changing rules for what we saw far less privy than before,

The editors hands must be sore the footage never seen before and then never seen again,

But when the media had its spin the fingers pointed look at him,

And her in lights that you’ve not seen because “We are your eyes now”,

Have some opinions, you are hapless minions,

You happen to live in these happy conditions, cause habit traditions,

And satisfied living have shackled you glued to your fat-asses prisoners in your own front room,

With one big eye watching you,

 

In this techno revolution time it’s pretty cheap to buy an iris,

Shoot cause cameras never lie it’s just the person stood behind it…

 

Title sequence and green screening.

“Movie titles and opening credits play an important role in the feature presentations they introduce.They set the mood, facilitating the audience’s smooth entrance into the world created by the film”  Vartanian of Goligo Books taken from Typo-Graphics

I wanted to share this title sequence  the show is “United States of Tara” and follows a woman who has multiple personality disorder the sketchiness and obvious contrast going on this intro really somes it up nicely with a little piece written for it by The Polyphonic Spree. It starts with a wooden board with 3 streaks on and one pure white one which is pretty obvious what it is if you have seen the show….

(through out this I will just drop in cheeky title sequences as they come to me, trying to stay away from the obvious cliche’s )

We have been set the task of recreating a title sequence to a film that already exists whilst also using an element of green screen and incorporating a narative. At first I didn’t quite get what we had been asked to do ( I thought we coud literally do something vaguely similar to what had already been done.). Now I understood the task that had been set and finally had gotten to grips with how I could use green screening in my piece, I was ready to start making the story-board or animatic as it were, again didn’t fully grasp the concept… okay so the original idea I had was Taxi Driver when I thought of this I thought of the speech about the rain coming down and washing the scum from the streets however upon researching I found that my tiny bird brain had just mixed two parts of the film together…

(this is the original title sequence)

I didnt actually want to do this piece once I had understood the task, but knowing the pace of this module would require a lot of learning by me as I have no formal after effects or photoshop experience post 2005, decided to do it anyway as it was the idea and as my idea was now gone then this presented a challenge I felt would be a good one to document and generally get me a little out of doing purely what I want to do. I understand what is going on in the original it is very theatrical much like the film so that is lent to it, the font isn’t really that relevant other than the fact it’s yellow. I found it to be somewhat of a bore as far as title sequences go.

http://lib.dr.iastate.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=2416&context=etd (PDF. linked to a paper written on typography in film by Iowa State University)

This title has stuck with me my whole life

and the more I keep rewatching things i have always liked these same narrative themes keep popping up, I haven’t been able to switch off from critiquing everything!

I then watched this video and did a little research into the graphic design element and narrative that is synced with film, and wanted to know exactly what it was a title sequence does

this is a short interview with 3 companies i think, one which was involved with David Fincher’s Se7en , blue valentine and madmen. I have seen the first quite a few times and wanted to stay away from that but as I have more names have kept creeping up other than Saul Bass and Kyle Cooper one of which was Danny Yount but I’ll get into that a little later on. I found after watching this short was completely reeled into watching Blue Valentine which I haven’t yet seen. The fact that this happened to me made me realise exactly what the point of a title sequence to encapsulate people within the first 5 minutes it’s almost like an entirely more intelligent approach to what advertising in film does, without completely ruining the narrative or otherwise making you completely avoid something because of how poorly it is portrayed. In terms of narrative you can’ t really grasp anything from adverts these days as the majority use action shots fast cuts etc… in a grandiose attempt to show off the companies range of effects or emotion or sometimes just for comedy’s sake sort of reminiscent to a 14 year old with a stupid opinion webcam and youtube account.

The things that could be associated with Taxi Driver: his mohawke, taxi?!,

Went out and took moving image shots for my piece after toying with the idea I thought as the music in the intro is a repetition of intense orchestral stabs to have the back ground as either a double yellow line or black screen either way shot at night with filters added in after-effects so as to highlight the gloominess of the narrative, while different images or stills taken from moving image are sequencially placed to the audio. I intend to use the part of the speech from the begining of the film which is a rather well-known and poignant part of it, this is partly to show the character it is based around and also because of me remembering that as the title sequence to begin with. (maybe this is because the original isn’t very stand-outish or at least I personally didn’t find it to be. So the original soundtrack will remain with the sound of rain water over a wild track possibly ambient royalty free soundscape I can find following the lines on the road with various shots showing the city and different things, inner shots of the car I will go out this week and film a taxi itself when it’s raining and attempt to get an extreme close-up of rain splashing on the bonnet to over-lay and hopefully the editing process will give the idea that what is going on is happening in a Taxi and not a small Peugeot!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ez8pB0hZmWc * slow-motion.

http://www.sparknotes.com/film/taxidriver/themes.html

The Process

When it came to actually shooting I used my phone which in hindsight was a bad idea, even though it has 4k capabilities and all the other stuff the guy in the shiny phone shop said, I hadn’t used it to shoot and edit before. Schoolboy error…I took the shots in a point of view sort of way. The reason for doing this was the theme of my remake of the Taxi Driver intro was the road that Travis Bickle is headed and so wanted to include the viewer almost subliminally, the old one had pretty much nothing to do with it and seemed to sort of just lend to the trendy and culture of the time. This being the case I also tried to keep everything retro looking and used some of the Luminatrek presets I had downloaded as the image in the second piece of moving image had to be stretched to fit the screen, (this was the problem that I had with the phone. Originally I had intended to theme a heavy amount of the intro on the rain taking from the quote “One day a real storm will come and wash the scum off the streets. The paramount logo was my starting point and so I animated the rain over the logo as Paramount do tend to “switch up” their logo when they have some god awful teen horror or animation, whatever it was a vague homage. To animate the rain I imported the logo made and made it black and white sort of expecting the outcome to not be as crisp looking as it should, I used Particle World to create a motion preset called “burst” then messed with it by taking off the grid turning down the velocity and dropping the x-radius so it gave it a longer elliptical direction to flow in. With regards to the music I wanted to keep the dramatic orchestral stabs from the original and thought I could create a strong link between audio and visual I think I acheived this on a more basic scale than I had first though, but am happy with the outcome. The mac that I had been using in college decided to do this

so the first two weeks of what I had solely done in After Effects was lost I had a few files and the original footage from the car shoot.When I got back to doing it I had decided to drop the line about the rain because unless it’s justified via a jumpcut or something you generally  don’t really see people choosing lines from a movies script prior to it showing, maybe this is just me but I figured I’d leave it.  I then took the greenscreen footage in the film studio I chose to use a pair of clippers as they were symbolic to the point which I was trying to get to, which is as I said that moment where Travis snaps after travelling his long road of general disassociation. The footage was taken with a back light and a light either side so as to give a more street-light effect on the metal of the hair clippers. I acheived the footage I wanted and took it straight off and into After Effects I used Keylight 1.2 and had literally no problem getting the green gone. Once this was done I realised that it looked a bit like a fairy liquid ad from the 90s with some hoofing great hand telling you it’s ok to carry on washing dishes, also without having knowledge at the time of flare plug-ins I decided to cut out the hand by masking it with a cloud effect called Fog Lights. Without trying to tie too many things together I felt this also added to the piece as the clouds and rain which runs through out as a theme until the final logo appears. The way that the music progessively gets more intense is the reason that I chose to fade in and out of most of the clips to give a pulsing theme, I think I was trying to replicate how sodium light makes me feel.
With the greenscreen shot and the car scenes done it was time to edit on the mac in the college hoping that the bugs on the system had been temperamental….they had not.

I started working at home on the project and couldn’t get my head around the lay-out of after effects and after hours of swearing to myself like a trooper I realised that I didn’t even have to do this, I could have done it all structure-wise in Premier, in fact the project was even supposed to be in Premier with dynamic links so I had wasted a couple of weeks misunderstanding things and generally stressing myself out for no good reason. This knowledge out there (even though it was to begin with) I started understanding the process of dynamically linking things and with the basic backbone of the edit there I find it entirely easier to use After Effects and when I did use it purely for each individual link I understood the need for it and how easy it can make things. My new confidence overwhelming me I decided to try and go down new road using an image of Deniro that I was going to subtly drop in the back ground almost hidden of him having shaved his head and looking rather manic. I used a burst creation to make a puddle I then used particle world to try and make it seem like the image was a puddle with drops splashing off of it (still wanting to use the quote at any chance I could.) After a while I saved it and carried on the next day when I came back to it everything had dynamically unlinked itself and so I endeavoured to start again, I downloaded a trial copy of after effects and and premier onto my girlfriends mac as adobe were getting wise to anything that I put on mine and I ran out of email addresses for free trials. I was hit by this….

again I lost a lot of work but knew what I was doing so started again, by now the sheer amount of starting and restarting was getting ridiculous, my harddrive was jammed with more corrupt files and dead space than a government building. I decided when putting it back together that I was going to leave the quote and just head on with the driving shots and the rain theme running throughout, I smashed through the majority of it and found a font, the same font I used for the titles and actors the font was taken from 1001fonts.com and is called “Mexcellent 3d” I think that is particularly reminiscent of the era and was quite lucky to find one for free, the audio/visual link is rather good as the title shows and the music changes up to that well known saxaphone piece. The last decision was to beef out the last 5 seconds to take the music to a place that it seemed it could end, and so I decided to not the writer as the more I thought about I wasn’t even aware of who wrote Taxi Driver as it is somewhat overshadowed by Scorsese’s upcoming notoriety I used an American Type Writer font for the writer and director, this was again to lend to the era with the other fonts in mind as well.

I think that the outcome was good I would be a little more organised and try and work on as few computers as possible will look into sorting this out I appreciate the relevance of keeping everything in seperate folders etc… had I not done this in the first place it would have taken a lot longer for me to find the files sort through what was needed and what wasn’t. I am quite confident when using After Effects now it was literally just foreign but the basics of it are pretty easy to understand and I look forward to using it in the future, Premier is still Premier and doing it’s thing….

hopefully all these words are relevant 🙂

Cheers

  1. editing decisions: columbia logo in the rain (for the rain theme) used After Effects
  2. Martin Scorsese picture in type writer font to show the era (fade)
  3. Green screened clippers : (shaving away Robert Deniro’s name like the hair)
  4. POV shot luring people into being ok with the lonely taxi guy (fade)
  5. Jodie Fosters name again the hair thing
  6. A long dashboard shot to show the slow progression of his losing his shit (fade)
  7. Taxi Driver written in the font Mexcellent
  8. writers name

(Nearly all shots fade this is because of the nature of both the film and the music.)

Round 2: Practical Screencraft. (Stu & Greg the Phone)

I have chosen to put these illegible notes here for your perusal as they were quite well documented (for me) and I completely took it all in for the first time I understand how cameras work with other things such as crop factor ( having bought myself my own camera with a smaller sensor, * see i totally get it!) different types of shot, framing, difference between lenses and the reasons for using them (not complete but competent) different depths of field and I feel alot more confident now when I am behind the camera, I just didn’t see the need in re-writing everything that we did in class and hopefully the proof is in the pudding.

IMG_2562 IMG_2561 IMG_2560 IMG_2559Ok so for this project and part of the term we have been mainly focusing on lens and lights, which is great but I can’t help but feel as an under-confident camera op. this should have been structured the other way around as I personally didn’t know much, but maybe it’s supposed to be common knowledge by this point and I have missed something. Either way I finally got my loan so I went out and applied what we had learned about depth of field and tried to take some shots here are some of my favourites although I don’t know whether or not they are good or interesting things to have photographed the first one is just a soft-focus.

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…with my new Canon-600D I started just pointing and shooting at pretty much everything for the next few weeks and still am with it, we were tasked with using the camera to tell a narrative without using any dialogue, to me this was massively daunting but I chose to use an inanimate object as somehow I thought this would be easier. I clearly did not talk this through with my skill based part of my brain as I found it pretty difficult to capture emotion without the use of a person and their face!

I decided to use a Fisher Price telephone that I bought for my son when I was in London, this was a bad idea as it may have/did get trashed and cost a lot as we got stuck on the high street the day the tubes were on strike. I did however manage to take lots of stills and come up with my story whilst there.

The story:

greggers

The idea of the story is that a phone which is owned by a youngish guy is taken out of his flat when his girlfriend moves in and put in a charity shop, not happy with this he decides to break free from the shop in a 90s kid tv homage kinda way, he then goes out and for the first time he has a sense of freedom and is able to do what he wants. He then finds a wallet and as this phone is upset he goes straight to the pub to drown his sorrows where he bumps into a gremlin, (deeper rooted the Gremlin is actually an asociate alter-ego ((which is why he’s only ever around when the phone is causing havoc)) sort of like Raol Duke’s associate in the Fear and Loathing saga by Hunter S Thompson. I am aware this is completely unbeknown to a viewer but I know it! The phone then goes on a rampage of gambling drinking and snorting drugs in a club bathroom until he has a nose-bleed he then gets kicked out of the pub and goes on to break into a house-party but is kicked out for smashing a beer. The gremlin and the phone then wind up on a bench as they leave the wallet in the party, (this shot again is left-out so may not make the best sense) unhappy with life the phone attempts suicide by hurtling himself down a flight of stairs and bleeds out, only to be found by a little boy and taken home to live with him. (there’s your equilibrium).

Significant shots the list of them and locations and reasoning for them:

My House

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The first place that the film starts off is my house nice and easy I used a tripod, a sony one that was absolutely terrible, but I then stopped using it as it got jammed and I didn’t want to break it! shutter speed was 30 aperture 4.5 and ISO 1600 to make it look bright and slightly over exposed this is to either play with in post and try and warm up the feel of it, but also to represent better times than the rest of the phones little story. When I shot inside I just used the natural lighting of the room this was to make it seem more normal and everyday.

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The shot for the stairs going down was done using an LED at the top of the stairs with a low ISO and wide aperture the LED was angled to try and extenuate all the lines of the stairwell even the Daido rail leading down towards the door and out of the flat to show the direction the story is going. There were more stills which were used but then droppped the two used are taken

Mr Scarecrow’s Attic

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Mr Scarecrow’s attic belongs to a friend of mine and rather than go looking for a charity shop I thought it would be a nice location to use it is a second hand store and I had to keep reminding myself of this so’s not to offend the owners when shooting there, in all it took 1 hour on one day and then the second day i took another 20 minutes whilst I took some shots of the shop for them for letting me use their space. I have recently been informed that one of them is being used in  a magazine article on the shop as it is about to open a new store so that is quite cool. The first shoot didn’t go well or badly to be honest I think I didnt do the location enough justice but I found it hard to get my head around how to set the tone, I had an idea of what I wanted to do but couldn’t get there. The slider didn’t have a base-plate with it so I ended up gaffa taping the camera to it which is why there are wobbles in the shot which I used. That shot is the best of about 20 and I still wasn’t happy with it. The mood I was trying to capture was still quite dark and bleak as the phone had just been abandoned so for the static shots as I didn’t want to take away from the location at all shutter speed was 50 at 4.5 and the iso was at 400 as the last project had loads of grain so I have been wary of that. I used the static shots from the first day and went back to try at the slider again as this shot was darker than it had looked on the screen.I think from now on that a portable monitor is the best way to go about resolving this issue or looking into there being an app. on Android.

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I used a GoPro to capture the first person perspective as it seemed like the perfect thing to do as the lens is slightly fish-eye and it was obvious to tell what was going on and what you were looking at.

In the Street

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    This scene is supposed to show liberation of the phone and his new found freedom all of the shots are taken from his level and are quite spacious and wide in terms of the size of the subject, when shooting in the street for the movement I wanted to use a wide angle and Sigma 70-300 zoom lens to show what little action there was how well this came across is down to the viewer,  the fact that it’s a toy on a piece of fishing wire kind of negates this approach i think! when I shot on the wide angle lens the shutter speed was 30 as it is good for slow moving pans aperture 4.5 and ISO right down to 100 with a neutral density filter, the reason for using this was that the weather had been so off and on I thought it would take away from any obvious glare so it could carry on with the same feels. The phone finds a wallet in this shot all the lines are leading to the wallet, to draw your gaze with what the phone is looking at.

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The Voodoo Lounge

This was shot with a higher ISO to show that it is happy fun times and a quicker shutter speed for the quicker movement of the crab at first I had tried to use the colleges tripods and come up with the best way that I could make a modern hiphop ish look to the phone getting plastered. Due to the equipment I went home and got some toys as these would be at just the right level to capture the phone with and work as a dolly, unfortunately later this didn’t work as the tires to the toy were slightly ridged and therefore showed a lot of movement, the other shots were an over the shoulder shot to show the phone at the bar then shakily jerked upwards to show his mind is elsewhere,

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the toilet scene

fim

this was filmed at home with a wide angle lense very close up and an LED in the dark this was supposed to recreate a dingy club toilet but maybe could have done with a connecting shot showing his way to the toilet but I’m pretty sure what’s going on is implied. The shots of the phone and Gremlin  leaving were shot with a 7.1 aperture 100 ISO and a Neutral density filter because it was really sunny again.

Shot of the sky in the alley

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this was really me just playing around with the neutral density filters to see how defined i could get the sky to look and what it would look like, I wanted to be showing that it is still bright and stuff is still going on for our friends and that they are still in good spirits. This was mainly a connecting shot to link the alley to the GoPro footage at the party.

GoPro Party

This scene starts off with our heroes going into a party and set, and finding some beer, the reason I used the set which was set up for liam’s project was a sort of homage to Adaptation where he visits the scene to Being John Malkovich (this was actually premeditated not just an idea I had to fill shots!) . The party was shot at 30fps and with a wide aperture to let in as much light as possible as this would be the last time they were happy the ISO was at 400 as Liam had already set up the lights for his own production.

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For them partying I used a lot of overhead shots of both the phone and then the gremlin to show that we feel bad for them because they’re just getting wrecked and doing no good. Slight focus pulls and movement were supposed to represent a 90’s drug film moment a bit like Human Traffic etc.

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I also used  a slightly weird right to left crab this was supposed to mimick the first crab at voodoo so you know what was going on. There’s a 5-10 sec clip where you see the phone and Gremlin next to a broken beer bottle this shot was just as it happened before it got cleared away so I totally screwed it up and it was dark so I tried to use premier (which im not so good at) to brighten it up but all it did was make it seem out of place

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 we then go to GoPro P.O.V. of them being kicked out of the party and left outside on the doorstep feeling cold and alone.

Park Bench and suicide

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This was shot with neutral density filters with the aperture right up and a low ISO the day was foggy it looked dreary enough this was the look I was going for, I tried colour correction for the first time in the edit that was good fun, but the shots of him falling down the stairs were a bit weak as he stopped there was a pull focus then he falls down the stairs. I had intended to “cut to the action” as it were but the standard lens focus ring is maybe a little jolty or perhaps its that combined with my camera ability I am not sure, however i do think I should look into getting one that rotates almost mechanically so my heavy-handedness doesn’t interfere with shots that I want.

Suicidal Failure!!!!

quite a few things went wrong with this project it was maybe too elaborate for me teamed with my organisational mishaps, the last shot that I wanted was after the phone had gotten the money from the public, he went to the shop (Boozemart) and then down to the waterfront to kill himself. I thought that the last shot would be absolutely amazing I was going to use a wide-angle lense and tele-photo lens and position the phone looking out towards the sea from a jetti, at first using a telephoto lens to compress the image then have a few pans around the place ending on a wide-angle shot of the Jetti pointing outwards towards the sea all perfectly pushing forward showing that the only option for him was suicide.

IMG_2471

this is the location that I had in mind! Boozemart didn’t seem happy with the story once I told them it anyway, but I put that down to it being a franchise and the owners own sense of moral implications, (let’s hope you carry on getting tramps and kids drunk so you can sleep at night)

Strip Club
another shot I was going to use but ran out of time, was a strip-club. The idea was that the phone would either go to a strip club or down a back alley and to a prostitute, I got the LED lights out some red gels even bought the materials and had hung up some sheets on the wall to give it the feel of a strip-booth. I was going to shoot from the floor so for comedic value was only going to have a strippers legs so there was no need for anyone to get naked. (I tried in several gentleman’s clubs neither they or my mrs. were happy with the idea so I moved on.) being as the project is about lens and light I thought this would be perfect, however when I came to shoot my stripper had come down with baby-related illness and me being me got annoyed and took everything down, I should have at least taken a still of it but didn’t think to. I instead just booked out stuff didn’t use it and went in for 9:15 on my day off!

The Private Shop

after the strip club idea failed I got in touch with the private shop owner to shoot there I did go down and get about 2 mins of footage (when edited) but it didn’t really fit into the story, I wondered whether or not this could have been used as the ext. location of the strip club but had moved passed by this point. One thing I have come to notice is when u ask people if they can help you and you pitch your idea, they are always really interested up until the point they just flat-out refuse you!

Bokeh

The last shots I took were going to be used as the credits, so after we leave the little boys room via the window (sounds more sinister out of context) the shot went onto Exeter street and left us with this warm glowy Bokeh that I shot out of the window great shame but I got obsessive with other stuff so here’s a pic

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Contemporary Practices.

Proposal

so on the side-line I have a script that I am working on and have also been tasked to help with the re-writing of the script for a short musicl for an external client, I will attempt to get both of them finished to give a contrast in my work. I am still not entirely sure which part of the creative process I am actually most excited about (pre/post production),but am a keen writer so this will be the main focus.

With this in mind I keep getting confused as to the task at hand!

I keep going to show people the idea and basis behind my short and getting stuck talking about the musical and somehow the other day managed to digress into political cartoon strips. I think as I had to show my blog I felt perhaps put on the spot talked more or less like a self-aware parrot on amphetamines about what I thought the question was this however was not the case. My intenti0n is to write and storyboard a piece for my final major project which I have started to do in my own way,

after mentioning the Pilgrim Bible Fellowship in passing conversation I thought I’d put some up here for the tutors to look at if they’ve not come across it before.

pbf1

butterdead

 

So where as it has been a while, it’s not to say that I have/haven’t been slaving over a metaphorical stove brimming with ideas and otherwise story related articles, the Christmas period did kind of take it out of me, but none-the-less I have been working quietly offline on the beginning (and end) of “Scrotes” a short film which I endeavour to make as my final major, we shall see how this pans out. I should probably get to the basics of how this script started coming about, firstly I didn’t properly understand the task at hand and was looking to tie in two classes together thinking that would cover the criteria, but HOLD UP! the criteria just changed and I don’t really want to be just a storyboard artist as I have a lot more focus on writing. So now we have to submit a “no longer than 15 minute film”, first call port of call is some test shots so I will pop out to a local park and get some tonight as Astor Playing Field in Cattedown it’s lit up perfectly at night very dim very grim VERY run-down and  begging to be filmed lest it’s apparent vulgarity be overlooked.

The story follows a group of young men (just leaving school not really knowing where they are at types) who frequent a local park and generally spend days together not really achieving much. They are seemingly lost in a world that has forgotten about them, but in return they never really cared much for it either. Our cronies have never seen the point in socialising online and so offline serves them well, they are cast out by people because of their weird behaviour which involves going to the park and playing outside , it’s a satyrical look at people  their age as it seems no one wants to play outside these days. The ongoing themes in this piece will be social networking and inclusion stalking and friendship mixed with a little bit of tragedy. (maybe a lot of tragedy.)

So let’s talk more in depth about my motivation for this piece I will give a brief overview of what has inspired me to write what is becoming bigger and bigger every time i pick up a pen.

motivation firstly is…

“Skins”

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This wonderful gift-wrapped turd by Channel 4 makes out like life is one huge student union having sex on drugs, the simple story lines are not too far off your average soaps, it is really mind numbing and everything about it is linear. With all of this in mind though it does have a specific look to it, whether or not it is in the editing and the camera work used, but my intention is to watch some “how it’s made type stuff” on it so I can give the same theme that they so carefully crafter for their own, as a little response to how I view, how they view the people that view it! The show is awash with STD’s sex rape drugs even some ex-eastenders for good measure, I find it completely irresponsible as it is on for anyone to watch on a Sunday or similarly online, the way that it is shot is trying far too hard to be gritty and their whole reasoning for things looking dark and sad stick out like a sore thumb (with a heroin problem!). If I can imitate this specific look then I am onto a winner, it has the while Channel 4 stamp all over it and is rather pretty to look at although it’s not that great for you not too dissimilar to the sun.

http://www.channel4.com/programmes/skins

(here is the link to the Skins Channel 4 web-site should you be so inclined!)
TestShots:

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 #GLOOMYTESTSHOTS

I found some videos of the post production process of Skins on the Channel 4 website, on average an episode of skins has about 800-1000 shots to be edited and a lot of the way they get the specific look is through the grading so I will have to get some test shots and see what I can do. I have recently bought a Canon 600d and this will give me a chance to use it and then have a crack at colour-enhancing and grading. The Skins team put a lot of focus on the soundtrack working with various composers to give each episode it’s own soundtrack as if it were a short film, which is essentially why it achieves looking like a short film with a bad soundtrack quite well. I started looking for any tips on how they do their lighting, colour correction and so on, I couldn’t find anything that specific but I will try and contact someone if possible. Right now I have started looking into similar Channel 4 shows also toying with the idea of Ideal the show with Johnny Vegas. I have come to a point with my script where I am happy with it, however I have no idea how to write a screen play in the required format for the project, so will have to look for help online. I managed to find an app. called CeltX that’s simple and neat to use, giving the guise of professionalism!

Black-Mirror-DVD-black-mirror-33681303-800-1119

I guess another point of reference would be Black Mirror by Charlie Brooker, this is not an intentional reference it’s just there aren’t that many mainstream programs that make fun of the same elements. Everyone I have spoken to about the project seems to come back to this I think this is mainly as they know I study film and don’t like the way the world is, so therefore somewhat like Charlie Brooker.

I suppose this isn’t such a bad thing to be told, but that’s not what this is at all. I do find the references are very similar but this is a more quirky take on youth culture as oppose to a modernistic Soilent Green.

The other one to mention that is possibly also relevant is Nathan Barley

Nathan_Barley

Scrotes

Dating advertisement.

The film starts off with a satirical advert for a fake dating advertising agency that I will fabricate using an on-line web builder tool. I have spent time looking at what makes a stereotypical dating agency seem appealing to their target audience. Not being part of that audience myself I hope that some reoccurring themes will crop up and these will be the little nuggets I use to make it all the more real and sarcastic. A lot of the themes of peoples on-line profiles are based around the old-school a/s/l (age sex location) mixed with a bit of  wage related stuff and obviously subscriptions. Match.com spends half of it’s income on adverts bringing in 5.4 million paying members in 2009 and 6.9 million of them in 2010. Some new websites like Grindr have functions that actually enable paying users to see how close they are from other members via GPS locations…bad technology! no! the next part of my research is to watch a lot of dating site adverts so here goes…

Our audience is immediately thrown into a sepia 70’s throw back world where robotic hipsters all sing like Lilly Allen. We see a girl in a knitted jumper that she’s wearing with along with a dusty record shop combo that she had laying about her communal squat in Peckham contemplating and then playing a small organ in an oh-so-carefree manner. She begins by playing a chord and we see a boy in a casual suit jacket t shirt combo who clearly just doesn’t care what people think about him enter and play a chord at the same time and guess what…it’s only the same chord! They started singing and they find out they both like watching movies not just any movies old ones what are the odds in that, but he likes The Godfather part 3 and no one really likes that much so we know he’s got quirk. The girl responds by sounding like a crazy woman announcing she’s impulsive and laughs in her sleep *SEE BIPOLAR/SLEEP PSYCHOSIS,  but he sings back with her so you know it’s going to be ok. The shop is awash with vintage attire/hipster clutter and all those Mumford n sons type instruments that you used to just associate with having to do mandatory country dancing at schools on a nationwide scale in preparation for the end of times great dixie Armageddon. They finish playing and they both look at each other for a long time I think they’re having a staring competition, but it gets rudely interrupted by an old lady’s voice trying to love or something to that effect.

So……all that aside what does this advert tell us, well they start off in a shop clearly set around London or another peroxide metropolis it’s filled with interest such as instruments, film names, hipster culture and it’s aimed at a very specific age range.

“Elite” Singles…shocking! One would expect the 1% to have better contingencies for dating surely they still have cousins. This advert has got a sailing boat and nautical theme some handsome chap in a royal blue suit with a campy voiceover guy, and a company logo that looks suspiciously like a tennis emblem. This advert says it all it gets the point across to an “elitist” audience who are really just jumped up normal people that are bordering middle class middle age and saving the world buying fair trade thinking they are truly better than the lottery playing toothless big-eared farm boys.

I think this must be a working-class fetish web-site where a girl  at a desk  who reads a lot of books about finding love has just created her character profile for Uniform Dating as soon as she does we are rushed into an even worse animation where everyone is normal and there are 3 guys in uniform running through the streets like loons to get to the woman (who has now somehow gotten herself stuck in her computer ). They all stand around trying not to seem too full on as it is only around 20 seconds after she initially posted her BIO, but it’s ok because she likes guys in uniform?!

Ok so apparently people can’t do things for themselves and what a way to tamper with peoples lives, menace all your single friends now hopefully they have a GSOH about it. This is shot at quite wide angles making it seems roomy and full of detail when really the information your being given is quite specific books computers pianos etc they are all comfortably in their own domain which connotes accessibility. Shots of things are slightly askew the lamp shade is tilted the desk seems too angular I am not sure what this look is attempting to achieve, perhaps I am not the target audience…perhaps.

This is one of a series of adverts made for Zoosk.com they are noted for usually spending half of their revenue of their advertising. The majority of said advertising is plugged on-line, but they still bought out some narrative based television spots where women get into calamitous situations with guys then decide it’s best things are done on their terms so as not to damage their sense of independence.

(aimed at your more accident prone independent 30-40 year old women.)

just a funny little video I found which was done near enough how I was intending to shoot mine so why don’t we talk about that…

so what have we found out about online dating sites, well they are always targeted at a certain type of person, whether it’s vague or specific it might be fun to try both of these extremes out, maybe even merging them “Cat-loving Nazi Love.com” or something to that effect, they almost always bombard you with interesting things tailored to quite normal interests, boats music books (these are interesting things really, but are sort of dissected and placed hanging from IKEA culture. There is a  lot of over exposure with spacious shots, voice overs and people breaking the fourth wall almost always ending on a logo with a saxophone playing, food friends life has white back grounds and everyone really just wants to have sex.

Shooting and making the advert

ok so now we have a vague script and an actor for the shoot this will be one Kurt Osbourne and here is a rough idea

Hola stranger

and a logo created for free on logo maker.com an online tool that let’s you make and or pay for a logo… I did not.

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this one works as it looks like your typical dating site font anyway at least a low-budget one, I also made this

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but maybe that’s too odd for a dating company, the first one will do.

Shoot is tomorrow and should take a couple of hours I decided against my idea of editing a video as I didn’t want to have to spend all that time editing I would rather be out using my camera and trying to gain composure in that aspect, the edit still however should take a while to get just right, it should have the right mix of cut-aways and a medium length shot at the end of kurt riding a bus ( to show that he is every day people) and borrowing the technique of whiting out people using this technique I was recommended by a friend. I did intend to make the music for the advert myself but am having issues with my midi keyboard at the moment so due to the amount of time I have I will use a track from http://incompetech.com/music/royalty-free/index.html?genre=Latin

here’s the finished advert