I’m re-starting my filmic adventure. Its been a busy year and I’ve realised I really need to focus regulary to feel like a real OCA student. I’ve struggled a bit with the whole disembodied element on online study. I’m an OU veteran but I’ve found it hard to feel connected without strict deadlines and tutorials. I’m restarting at the start of the academic year so I can benefit from a sense of structure by observing (as far as I can) the traditional 3 term set up. I’ve got small children in school which will hopefully help me to keep track of the dates….

(As an aside, I did get the short I based my 5 frame exercise on edited Its not formatted for assignment 1. but I thought I’d include the link for interest & to show what I’ve been doing outside of this course.)

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Editing attempts

I shot my footage for my first short piece of film before xmas with a help of a friend with a funky new camera. I think I’ve finally worked out how to get my editing software to read the footage and now its time to assemble my 5 shots for assignment 1. The filming process was a bit scary trying to work out what shots to capture and working with a professional actor. I have the film running in my head and the footage looks usable but I want to get the sense of tension to work. I’m blogging while I wait for the mass of HD files to download. I know editing is a form of film directing beyond shooting the footage and I want see what happens first if I edit exactly as storyboarded. I’ll try and post the footage when I’ve got my 5 shots assembled.

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Finally posting some work – Framing exercise 1

I only appear to be updating monthly at the moment.  Not quite as I’d planned but getting started is the hardest part I think and a little is hopefully better than nothing.

The first Framing task is to show a familiar story in 5 images. As a child I always liked Cinderella so I’m starting with that.

Shots 1-5 as follows:

1. Cinders Scrubbing         2. Fairy Godmother’s help

cinderella scenes

3. With prince at middnight   4. Losing her slipper

cinderella scene 5

5. The shoe fits

My sketching is rather scruffy but I feel I’ve included the essentials of the story. As a way in to a story this approach makes sense to me. I sometimes find it hard to split analysis into simple and small enough elements to get started and I can see that this gives a simple structure to start building a visual language.

The next task is to look at other people’s work but I jumped ahead to sketching 5 images for a piece of my own work as I wanted to avoid being influenced by other people’s (possibly better drawn) images.

My scenes are as follows:

1. Exterior night- tracking in on the keyhole of a heavy looking wooden door. (sounds of footsteps on gravel)

2. Interior night- a wowan cowers in terror as a gunshot is heard followed by a heavy thud

3. Exterior night – close up on a key being turned in the lock

4. Interior night – close up on the woman as her apprehension increases

5. Interior night – the man enters and the woman runs in to his embrace, smiling with relief.

my 5 scenes

I’ve already written a 1 page script and I’m not sure that I’ve taken the key 5 images to tell the story but this in itself forces me to think about what key images are important to tell the story. I’m planning to use this for my first assignment so I want to firm up which scenes to use as I work through the rest of this module and learn more about framing.

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Hopes, plans and expectations

Its several weeks since my OCA tutor made contact and high time I got in touch. I’ve spent time over the last couple of weeks setting up this blog site and getting my PC set up to handle editing (which I’ve never attempted before).

I’ve braved fiddling around inside my PC’s hardware and have managed to upgrade the 160Gb HD with a second 500Gb HD and increased the RAM to its maximum 4Gb. I’ve been using the HDV setting on my Canon HV20 camcorder so I’ll need lots of space to save the files. I’ve also loaded Vegas Movie Studio Platinum 9.0 which seemed a good choice from reading round a few forums. Now I just need to learn how to use it!

So, techy info given, what are my hopes, plans and expectations for this course?

I hope it will give me a structure within which to hold off my internal critic and experiment creatively with film.

I plan to learn the camera craft as I go a long but I want more to develop creatively using the film medium and not just focus on the technical skills required.  I’ll be taking some short courses along side and making more time to watch new and classic films.

My expectations are quite open. I want to enjoy the course and use it provide impetus to actually try out my ideas instead of letting day to day responsibilities suck up all my time. I’m excited about putting some work forward for feedback but also a little apprehensive.  My aim is to get beyond minor fears and embarrassment and just try some things and see what the results are like.

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Exploring the possibilities of digital film making

I’m newly enrolled on a film making course with the Open College of Arts and looking forward (mostly) to getting some feedback on my early forays into filmmaking…..

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