Sunday, 23 June 2013

Complex Problems On Set and Solutions: L04.

For unit L04: I have to outline the complex problems which I encountered on set and the variables I would use in future to combat the problems.

For the first scene I originally wanted a tracking shot, without a tripod I filmed a tracking shot which during the editing process looked shaky and did not achieve the required effect. To combat this during the editing process, I cut from a wide shot to a medium shot and finally to a close up shot of Steve as he entered the house. However in future to film a tracking shot I would use a steadycam or shoulder rig as I did not have the availability of a dolly track, using a rig or steadycam would ensure that I could capture a steady, smooth tracking shot.

The second complex issue was that on set I experienced lighting issues within the corridor, as Steve entered the house there was a lack of light exposure. This was not a huge issue as the darkness created a sense of mystery which was effective in creating tension, however a future recommendation would be to use a LED light supply or beam lights to give a lot more light exposure to the scene.

Importantly another complex issue was the shadow which was frequently in shot during scene 2, the light which came through the curtains ensured that shadows were casted on the wall and bed, in future I will ensure that the curtains are closed and there are no shadows being reflected onto surfaces or walls. A future recommendation for this type of scene, I will ensure that the lighting is correct in the room. I re-shot these scenes later on in a different location in which the shadow and lighting was not an issue, I ensured that there was not lots of direct sunlight coming in.

I also experienced an issue with the tracking shot of Steve as he walked through the city, this was filmed as I walked backwards and was challenging to ensure that it was steady, in future I would of tried to film with a dolly track or use a motorized vehicle controlled by someone else to ensure the track was smooth and steady.

A complex issue originally that I experienced was ensuring my actors / actresses did not look into the lens, this happened during one or two scenes and I had to re-film these scenes. In future I would ensure that my artist were more aware of the importance of not looking into the lens.

Another complex issue was finding a character that looked old enough to play Abbie's Dad, I asked Abbie's real father however due to his busy schedule this was not possible. I cast Richard Orange but during the edit I was notified that he did not look old enough and this needed to be changed,despite changing this again to Adam Mitulinski I still experienced the same issue, in future I would have ensured that I had an old enough character before I shot any scenes.

The final issue was shooting the scene in the classroom of Steve having a meditation, originally I filmed this using a zoom function but after being told this was not good, I re-shot this scene using a wide shot, medium shot and then close up shot, however in future I could of used a track or chair to achieve the zoom effect. 

Editing Decision List for Narrative Music Video: L04.

During the post production section of my narrative music video I made various decisions about the editing style I was going to use and the reason why I felt this editing style was successful, below I will outline my reasoning behind why I chose each cut.

For scene 1 I decided to cut out where Graham (Steve Maloney) comes into the garden as this did not establish any importance in the scene, instead I chose a wide shot of him in the garden, followed by a cut showing a medium shot of him walking up the steps, then a close up shot of him entering the house, the use of quick cuts between wide, medium and close up helped to give the viewer a more fluid experience as opposed to a tracking shot which would have been needless because it would not have progressed the scene in any real way. The choice to then cut from Graham as he enters the house, to walking into the bedroom was used as again it gives the footage more of a seamless transition as opposed to the original shots I was going to use which was a long tracking shot of him walking up the stairs and into the bedroom. I decided against using long tracking shot because they do not progress the story unless there is a real intention behind them, the use of a tracking shot to simply take a character from one area to another is not needed so this was my decision behind using a seamless cut from Graham entering the house to then entering the bedroom, as he takes off his blazer he sits down on the bed, looking exhausted as I hold the shot on Graham with a medium shot of him which establishes his position in the room. I chose the cut from the entrance of the house of the bedroom because I did not feel that it would jar the viewer in anyway but would engage them more.

I then cut from Graham sitting on the bed exhausted to his girlfriend entering the room a short while later to join him in bed. The reason why I chose this cut was due to the fact that it showed time passing between Graham entering the room and sitting thinking and then it creates a good transition to his girlfriend entering the room to join him. I then used a medium shot to signify that Graham and his Girlfriend are close and in each other's arms resting.

I then cut from Graham relaxing in bed with his girlfriend to Graham wandering the street contemplating life and pondering his situation. The decision behind selecting this cut was to show the unravelling of Graham's situation, the early shots show the comfort of his relationship as everything in his life is going as good as can be, the cuts to him walking alone show a time when he is struggling with loneliness and also struggling to find his place in the world. My decision behind choosing the next cut was to show Graham as we learn that things are not right in his relationship, this is signified by Graham giving his girlfriend flowers, this is to show that Graham is feeling like his relationship with his girlfriend is drifting away and as a way of reconnecting with her he decides to give flowers to show he stills cares.

The shots of Graham giving his girlfriend the flowers and her indifferent reaction to this is then cut with Graham as he walks along the street, wandering lonely with no sense of direction. After Graham's long walk, I cut to imagery of him entering the house shocked and upset he finds his girlfriend in bed with a new man. I then chose to cut to Graham walking again to show the build up of thoughts in his mind and the progression of his frustration and loss is amplified through the imagery of Graham walking isolated and along the hills.

Importantly I then cut to Graham venting his rage and frustration at his girlfriend's new lover, the choice to select this scene was significant as it shows the build up of anger between him walking alone lost and lonely, the thoughts in his mind are signified through the use of quick cuts and then finally the scene with him arguing with the new partner signifies that all the emotion he has held in my mind is finally being released.

Notably I then juxtapose this visually with imagery of Graham as he has a breakdown, sobbing as he has his life turned upside down. Again I choose to cut to Graham walking along the hills as it signifies that the hills are his only friend, this imagery is important throughout the whole of the music video, Graham's progression from a comfortable situation to his life dismantling before him, the idea is that Graham never wants to feel this way again.

My next cut was to Graham crying and weeping as his girlfriend tells him about her abortion, originally I shot wide shots of Graham entering the room but in the final edit I chose to use a close up shot of Graham upset as he learns even more devastating news, this puzzles Graham as he cannot understand why life has been difficult for him and why he has been treated this way. Again I chose to cut to Graham walking through the hills, this imagery is evident throughout the music video to depict the idea of Graham going through a journey much like most people in life do.

I then chose to cut to a wide shot of Graham in a room meditating and feeling at ease with the world, I then cut to a medium shot and finally to a close up to show the level of calmness and tranquillity of Graham as he sits in a calmer place.

My decision behind choosing the next scene was to show Graham accepting that his girlfriend has a new lover and how he is coming to terms with a devastating loss in his life. The choice and decision behind the next close up is the saddened emotion on Graham's face as he blames himself for not helping more but also feels upset as all he ever wanted was his girlfriend's life.

From this we cut to Graham all alone in his bed, the use of a cross dissolve with edge balance shows an image of his girlfriend which is meant to depict a memory of time before when they were together, it also shows the emptiness in Graham's situation as he now sleeps alone. I then chose a white flash to signify a flashback, this cuts to a more happier period as Graham and his then girlfriend watched TV and relaxed. This cut was used to display that Graham did experience happier period in his life and that not everything was dark and upsetting.

Finally the last sequence I cut to Graham as he overlooks the pond, the visual symbolism showing that Graham is thinking and imagining a new happier place in the future. This is meant to display Graham thinking about his future and if he will ever truly be happy.

I then intercut images of Graham at the pond to images of a happy family enjoying a birthday and making time for love and happiness. The use of intercutting was to display that Graham is dreaming of a future where he will be happy, I then cut back to images of him at the pond again to show his current state, finally ending the music video as he looks out in the distance, this is to signify his unsure thoughts on what the future holds.

Saturday, 22 June 2013

L04 - Managing the Post Production for my narrative music video.

For unit L04 -

The requirement is to outline how I managed my post-production for my narrative music video.

This will be a clear overview of the process of the project's initial concept to the final delivery.

I begun my project by creating a schedule of meetings between myself and my musician Graham Woolley, these meetings were either weekly or fortnightly and were an opportunity for me to listen to songs from Graham, discuss themes, ideas and also outline the vision for the video.

During the first meeting I began by outlining financial lists for the budget which included cost of travel to the shooting locations, travel for actors to each location and cost of equipment needed for the shoot.

Early on I knew the importance of communication with Graham so that I could acquire his musical file and begin to craft my storyboards and plan for location recces.

I acquired the musical sounds file from Graham and consent form which was very helpful early on and I then begun to look at pre-production documents such as consent forms for filming in each location, permission to film and risk assessments for each location.

After acquiring the musical file I contacted several performing artists to inquire if they would like to be in my short narrative music video, I outlined the story idea, the locations, costume, character profiles.

I then conducted my location recce, I did a recce at Abbie Chilton's house which was suitable for the large bulk of the scene's, I then did a location recce of Bradford College and met with security officers and area managers to ensure I had permission to film.

After outlaying the concept of the music video and the deadlines several performing artists were extremely busy but several were also willing to help so I organised several meetings on a weekly or fortnightly basis to go through the shooting script, character profiles, the style of the video, my personal vision for the video and also the meaning and idea behind the song, this helped the group understand the idea and tap into the characters perspectives.

Using my detailed checklist this ensured I did not make costly errors, although when I successfully secured my location for the first shoot at Abbie's House I did experience time issues due to the nature of large amounts of footage needing to be captured. The critically important issue was the budget and schedule, I created a schedule to keep my artists informed of times to meet and the specific locations.

Throughout the process I learnt about the smoothest way to manage dailies, logging footage and recording shot types.

For my pre-production portfolio I had risk assessment forms which I completed for all three locations outlining the detailed risks and ways to minimize risk, I got signed consent forms from each location, storyboards which clearly outlined the movement of the shot, shot type and audio. Importantly my folder contained a treatment which gave a breakdown of the shooting outline, a proposal outlining intended aim, target audience, justification for choosing target.

After the shooting had finished on June 3rd 2013, I began the editing process, this started with me transferring my files from my hard drive to the Mac computer, creating a file named 'Jake Regan narrative music video production' I saw all the raw footage and then also created a file for converted footage.

Using meticulous levels of detail I used Adobe Premiere Pro and dropped all my files into the editing software. I had large amounts of footage and did find the experience challenging especially cutting and using correct transitions.

My editing style began with me using cuts to ensure that my narrative music video had good seamless transitions, however due to the nature of my storyline's complexities, I rearranged parts of the story for the final edit and using various techniques such as cross fading, dip to black, flash dissolve and dissolve I managed to create the desired effects.

My time schedule was particularly busy throughout this period so I did not manage to dedicate all my time to the editing process, for a future recommendation I would have also gained more experience from editing from going to have an editing class with professional editors. During the editing process I did create a schedule in which I edited everyday, I began to extract the scenes I wanted into the correct order on the timeline and then use the razor tool to decide the best place for the cut.

During the latter stages of the edit I was assisted by an editor Kathryn Pogue who helped with the edit by adding technical effects such as the dip to black to symbolize the passing of time, cross fade to symbolize the imagery of Abbie next to Stephen and the transition's between several shots to give the music video a smooth more refined look.

During the creation of the narrative music video I wanted it to have one look to it as opposed to being over exposed or desaturated. The vibrant colours came through naturally and the dullness of the sky was also shown so I did not need to grade during the editing process.

Commenting on my editing style I was largely inspired by the editing style of Martin Scorsese, the use of flashes, rapid cuts and jump cuts. During my edit I did not however overuse jump cuts or rapid cuts because I did not want the audience to feel jarred, instead I was very brutal and fast with where I cut due to my time limitations. Importantly my editing style ensured that my film looked like a seamless smooth transition,
I wanted to achieve the effect of a character who goes through a journey.

Managing post-production for my narrative music video included ensuring I had the footage saved in the correct location on a file on my hard drive and saved on work in progress as a music video folder. Ensuring I had access to the files easily was important with the edit and also helped me with time management.

For future recommendations I would of begun my editing process much earlier, however due to my earlier schedule of liaising with my music client and liaising with my performing artists, I did not execute a detailed enough time planner.

On conclusion I did manage the production successfully, liaising with a client to create a music video and uploading the film to short music film festivals.

Wednesday, 19 June 2013

L04 - Critically reviewing editing techniques and aesthetic.

For unit L04 I was assigned the task of critically analysing the final narrative music video which I have created, this includes referencing a theory or style of editing techniques and complex problems during the shoot with more than one variable.

The area of study for my narrative music video production is the using of fast cutting, My narrative music video production utilized the style of cutting as I wanted to ensure the narrative short video was succinct and clear.

The problem I experienced with opening scene was a tracking shot in which Graham Woolley comes home from meditation, the camera tracks him from the end of the garden into his house, as I did not have a dolly track I could not ensure that the tracking was smooth and steady, however another variable to improve the type of shot would be a shoulder rig which would be very secure.

The use of cutting as an editing style is something I adhere to and have tried to incorporate as I did not want to focus on any other theory such as colour theory, desaturation, montage theory but instead wanted to focus on types of editors and how they select the cut and where it is best used.

Intended aim of Narrative music video production

For Unit L02 I have to outline the intended aim and what I hope to achieve with my narrative music video production.

The initial aim of my project is to create a narrative video production with a technical and visual aesthetic which is to a professional standard, linking this to a particular shooting style and editing style including rapid cuts and jump cutting.

The aim of my project was to successfully liaise with a musician who will be the client for the assignment, I must demonstrate skills in planning, pre-production, staging, shooting, editing and delivering a narrative music video production.

Production meetings with Crew and Cast.

For unit L02 production documents I have to outline minutes of meetings for all meeting conducted with my cast including actors and make-up and other crew members.

The purposes of these meetings were to inform the cast and crew members of the detail's behind there role in the production, their locations for filming, dates for filming, character profiles, shooting scripts, consent forms and risk assessments.

AGENDA for meeting Thursday 2nd May 2013:

1. Welcome / Introduction to the meeting.

2. Apologies.

3. Agreed minutes of meetings.

4. Generation of ideas.

5. A.O.B.

6. Date of next meeting.

Upside Down Productions:
Date of 1st Meeting with crew  Thursday 2nd May from 1pm until 3pm - Abbie Chilton (Girlfriend), Becky Chilton (Extra), Dom Maloney (Extra), James Shearer (Extra) Steven Maloney (Graham), Gina Amos (Mum), Thomas Shearer (New boyfriend), Richard Orange (Dad). This meeting was at Bradford College, Great Horton Road, BD7 1AY.

Chair of meeting: Jake Regan.

Present members of meeting: Gina Amos, Abbie Chilton, Becky Chilton, Dom Maloney, Steve Maloney, Richard Orange, Thomas Shearer.

1. Jake Regan as the chair of the meeting welcomes all acting / make-up members to the meeting. Jake Regan sends round the idea for his narrative music video to give the crew an idea on the style of narrative music video.

2. No apologies as all members attended the meetings.

3. Minutes agreed by all members of meeting.

4. Ideas raised during the meeting - During this meeting a question and response session was held between Jake Regan (Director) and all crew members. This meeting outlined the idea behind the narrative music video, the song which will accompany the narrative music video, the style / genre of the narrative music video, a description of the song's meaning and inspiration for choosing the song.

5. A.O.B - During this meeting the crew wanted to know about character profiles and requested them for the next meeting on Thursday 9th May 2013.

6. Date of next meeting - Thursday 9th May 2013.

Upside Down Productions:
Date of 2nd Meeting with crew  Thursday 9th May from 2pm until 4pm - Abbie Chilton (Girlfriend), Becky Chilton (Extra), Dom Maloney (Extra), James Shearer (Extra) Steven Maloney (Graham), Gina Amos (Mum), Thomas Shearer (New boyfriend), Richard Orange (Dad). This meeting was at Bradford College, Great Horton Road, BD7 1AY.

AGENDA for meeting Thursday 9th May 2013:

1. Welcome / Introduction to the meeting.

2. Apologies.

3. Agreed minutes of meetings.

4. Generation of ideas.

5. A.O.B.

6. Date of next meeting.

Chair of the meeting: Jake Regan.

Members present at meeting:

Present members of meeting: Gina Amos, Abbie Chilton, Becky Chilton, Dom Maloney, Steve Maloney, Richard Orange, Thomas Shearer.

1. Jake Regan as the chair of the meeting welcomed everyone to the meeting hall. Jake Regan made a note of details of the last meeting and all requests from the crew, Jake Regan also outlined detail pre-production schedule's to all members of the meeting.

2. No apologies were needed for this meeting.

3. Minutes of the meetings were agreed by all members of the group.

4. Discussion during this meeting character profiles were handed out for each character, this informed each crew member of their role, importantly filming dates were also outlined in the meeting as Thursday May 23rd 2013, Friday 31st May 2013 and Monday 3rd June 2013. During this meeting all crew members requested that during the 3rd and final meeting a run through of the format, sequences and type of style, this was for the final meeting on Thursday 16th May 2013.

5. A.O.B - During this session crew members outlined that they wanted locations specified, Jake Regan outlined that the day one of shooting on Thursday 23rd May would be at Abbie Chilton's house 14 Moorside Road, Bradford, BD2 2EU, The second shoot would be at Bradford College, Great Horton Road, BD7 1AY on Friday May 31st and the final shoot would be at Bradford College, Great Horton Road, BD7 1AY and Student Accommodation Halls, Bradford, BD5 0NH.

6. Final meeting - Thursday 16th May 2013.

Upside Down Productions:
Date of final Meeting with crew  Thursday 16th May from 2pm until 6pm - Abbie Chilton (Girlfriend), Becky Chilton (Extra), Dom Maloney (Extra), James Shearer (Extra) Steven Maloney (Graham), Gina Amos (Mum), Thomas Shearer (New boyfriend), Richard Orange (Dad). This meeting was at Bradford College, Great Horton Road, BD7 1AY.
AGENDA for meeting Thursday 16th May 2013:

1. Welcome / Introduction to the meeting.

2. Apologies.

3. Agreed minutes of meetings.

4. Generation of ideas.

5. A.O.B.

6. Date of next meeting.

Chair of meeting: Jake Regan.

Present members of meeting: Gina Amos, Abbie Chilton, Becky Chilton, Dom Maloney, Steve Maloney, Adam Mitulinski (Could be drafted in as  Dad character), Richard Orange, Thomas Shearer.

1. Jake Regan welcomes the team to the final meeting before the shoot on May 23rd 2013; Jake Regan asks if any crew members have any questions or queries.

2. No apologies as no members of the group were missing or late.

3. Minutes of meetings were agreed by the group.

4. Ideas generated for meeting - During the final meeting the crew did a run through of each scene, the vision, placement, staging, style of narrative music video and shooting script. All crew members were aware of dates for shoot and locations and times to arrive at.

5. A.O.B - All pre-production documents had been collated and organized into a portfolio folder.

6. No more meeting before shooting on Thursday May 23rd 2013.