Tag Archives: Preliminary Task

Lucky You: Our Attempt…

Similarly to before when we recreated the opening to Reservoir Dogs, we were once again given the task to replicate a movie scene from “Lucky You”. Rather than working as a class, this time around we were put into groups. I was put into a group with Emily Jackson, Kieran Cross and Emelia Rodgers.  Unfortunately, I was off school on the days where my group planned and filmed the recreation of this scene due to illness. However, I was back for the lesson that we were given to edit. In this lesson, I was partnered up with Kieran. We found the given time period of one lesson to edit extremely difficult as not only did we have to edit the footage, Kieran had to explain to me what was going on! When watching the final, edited piece of footage you can tell that we were extremely rushed as there are many problems and issues. Firstly, there are many issues surrounding the audio. When editing, Kieran and I found it extremely difficult to find the correct pieces of audio for the correct piece of footage. However, we tried our best in the given time period. Another problem is the positioning of Kieran’s eyes. I was told that when filming, the script was written on the board behind as a prompt. When I was told this, it became clear that Kieran was reading the script off of the board when filming. There are various other problems with this recreation, however, with more time I feel as though Kieran and I could have done a much better job…

Preliminary Task – Take 2/Getting It Right

Now we know much more about rules to do with continuity editing such as the 180° rule, match on action and shot reverse shot. Because of this, we have been given the task to redo our previous task but incorporating these features in hope that our final product will be better and more professional than our previous one.

We were given the same task, to film and edit a character opening a door, crossing a room and sitting down in a chair opposite another character, with whom s/he then exchanges a few lines of dialogue. This time around we were placed into new groups. I was placed in a group with Emily Jackson, Sean Stubbs and Kieran Cross. Due to there being more of us, we could have one person per piece of equipment.

Planning

For this task our focus was getting it right. Because of this, we were given two lessons to complete the task rather than one like before. We had lesson 3 and lesson 5 to finish filming our short film. Firstly, I went to the office in order to book out a room for these two lessons so that it was ours to use. However, this is where we encountered our first problem. There were no rooms available for the two of the sessions and so we were given the Irrational Room for lesson 3 and Room 11 for lesson 5. This was a huge problem as the rooms are vey different and using two different locations would ruin our film. The only solution to this problem was to make sure we had everything planned so that we could get our filming finished in one lesson. Next, we decided to brainstorm our ideas. We all had different viewpoints and opinions about what would be best but the two most popular ideas were a first date and a dramatic twist of someone getting hit by a car. Both sides wanted to do their film and so we decided to merge the two together to keep everyone in the group happy. Our next task was to create the script. We did so and planned out a simple storyboard sequence. Our next challenge that we had to face was to find three actors. Our actors, Georgia, Oliver and Harrison volunteered to help.

Filming 

Due to problems with booking out rooms we had 50 minutes to film our short video. Firstly, Emily collected the equipment whilst we found our actors. Bearing in mind feedback that we received before, our next mission was to move all of the tables and chairs because you should not film against a wall as this eliminates depth to the shot. This time around everything went well with setting up the camera and sound recorder. Our next problem was to do with the actors. Our actors did not take the task at hand too seriously and so many of our shots include smiling and giggling. We did not think this to be too much of a problem as on a first date if you’re nervous then maybe you laugh in a nervous manner. However, when watching the shots later on this looked unprofessional. Although we only had the 50 minute time slot and giggly actors, we managed to film all of the critical points in order to succeed in the task. Redoing the task also allowed us to have extra practise with using the equipment. Our main problem when filming was our lack of communication throughout the team. Some teammates had a laugh with the actors and everyone was unsure of what their role was. Everyone’s perception of what the 180° rule is was different and so shots were taken from the wrong side which broke the rule. Due to the fact that this was the main purpose of redoing the task I knew that this attempt would not be as good as we had hoped…

Editing

To edit our take 2 of the task we used the same software, Final Cut Pro X. Firstly we had to download all of the footage and recordings and place them into a file ready to be downloaded onto Final Cut Pro X. Next, I began to view the footage and begin to order the scenes. From here I began to edit the video together. Many of our shots were not focussed correctly and were taken on an angle. However, to resolve this we managed to cut down the clips. Although this reduced the dodgy filming, it made our video much shorter than intended. When editing and trimming the various pieces of footage together I noticed that we had broken the 180° rule in one of our most important scenes. We had not filmed this scene from any angles that stuck to the rule. It was then that I knew I would have to redo the task. Pieces of dialogue had to be cut down drastically in order to cut out the laughter and make the video seem convincing. Our second shot of getting it right had gone so so wrong…

Artifact

Here is the final video from our take 2…

Conclusion

From watching my final video I have decided to redo the task. This time I will try my best to incorporate all of the rules we have just learnt. I have decided to work with Emelia Rodgers. Due to the fact that there is just the two of us we may find it difficult to use the equipment. Also, this is the first time that the both of us will be using the two pieces of equipment due to other team members wanting to do that in our past tasks. Due to there only being the two of us, we will need actors. Also, because we can no longer work on this task in lesson time due to the fact that we need to move onto some textual analysis work, Emelia and I will borrow the equipment from school and work on our video this weekend. We will need to keep it simple as we want to solely display our new understanding of new rules in media. We shall consider pieces of feedback from our previous tasks. Carrying out this task one last time with Emelia will allow the both of us to learn how to use the equipment before having to use it in our final piece. Hopefully this time we can get it right…!

Getting it Right… Take 3…

Due to the mistakes made in our take 2 I decided to re film our preliminary task. This time I worked with Emelia Rodgers and we borrowed equipment from school to film over the weekend at home. To do so, we had to ask 2 people to be in our film as we needed one of us for the camerawork, Emelia, and one for the sound recording, myself. Although we did not break any of the rules that we recently learnt, for example the 180 degree rule, this was the first time that we used the equipment firsthand and so were unsure on how to focus the camera. Because of this our re film is much more blurred than previously. Here is our take 3 preliminary task…

Preliminary Exercise: Evaluation

Although I am happy with the end product from our task, there are various things that I would do differently if doing the task again.

Filming 

We were given one lesson to film our short video. This is a 50 minute slot and so we had to be efficient with our filming. Firstly, Emelia and I collected the equipment whilst Adam went to find our actors. We then met in our room for the video, the irrational room. Although it is a small room, it was bright and large enough for our idea.

The first problem that we came across was to do with setting up the equipment. With this being the first time any of us had used this equipment this was bound to happen. Our first problem was the camera as we could not get it to film. To resolve this we had to speak to one of our teachers, Mr Grant. It turned out that we were on the wrong setting. Our next problem was to do with the sound recorder and the boom pole as we could not hear the noise through our headphones. At first, we believed this was because the headphones that we were using were broken but when we used a different pair we came across the same problem. When checking over the various settings, I spotted that we had our wires in the wrong input and outputs. Our microphone was plugged into the headphone jack and vice versa. Once we swapped these over the recording was working as expected.

Our next major problem that we came across was to do with our script. Due to the fact that our script only consisted of a couple of lines we decided to be creative and write it in Spanish. However, our time to film conflicted with the Spanish lesson and our actors were not up for speaking Spanish and so we had to cut that part out and do it in English. Although this took away our original idea, we could still stick to the actual content of our script.

Once we had overcome our various problems, there was not a lot of time left to film and so we had to be as efficient as possible. In order to succeed in our task we decided to film the most important scenes first such as the speaking scenes and left the shots such as the different angles of opening the door and reaching for the handle to last as these were not critical for succeeding the given task. This proved to be a success as once we had filmed all of the pivotal scenes we could focus on using different angles and movements in order to make our video much more varied and interesting. Although we did not manage to film as much as we had originally hoped, we were happy with the result considering the problems we faced.

Editing

To edit our video we used an app called Final Cut Pro X. This is the same software that we used for our coursework at GCSE when we made music videos. Although this is good because I had an idea of how to use it, it had been a long time since. Also, this task was very different as I had to match up video footage with the correct recording and at the specific time. I had never done this before. Originally we were given one lesson, 50 minutes, to edit our videos. However, not many people finished in this time slot and so we had one more lesson to complete it.

Firstly we had to download all of our footage and recordings onto the Macs. Once this was done, I created a folder that contained everything that I would need for editing the video. Firstly I downloaded it all into Final Cut Pro X and began to view the footage. Then I began to edit my footage. I decided to cut and fit together the video footage first. This was not too difficult as I remembered various similar features from using the same software in GCSE. I found that I was cutting down various clips into much shorter clips so that the video would display different angles and shots. This caused more problems when matching the sound but I felt was a necessity. Once I had put together all of the trimmed clips it was time to match the sound recording. This proved to be the most difficult part of the process. When filming we used a clapperboard in attempt to make this easier and more accurate, however, we did not think to say which take the clip was on each one and so it proved to be difficult matching the correct recording with the correct footage. Arguably, this was one of the main reasons as to why editing took much longer than expected. However, by the second lesson I had finished my editing.

Conclusion

Once I had finished editing my video, I showed it to my classmates. We watched one another’s videos and gave critical feedback. I got various points of feedback that I could work on if I were to complete the task again…

  • Be careful when matching up footage so that the action does not appear to occur more than once. For example when putting together the various shots for the opening of the door, make sure that each shot flows correctly.
  • To always film from eye level unless using a bird’s eye view on purpose.
  • To say out loud which shot we are filming when using the clapperboard so that when matching up footage and recordings we know which is which.
  • To focus the camera properly before filming the scene.

If I were to carry out this task again, I would consider each of these pieces of feedback. Although I will not be carrying out this task again, all of the feedback and practice of using the equipment and software will help me with my final production. The problems that I have faced, I now know the solutions and so can apply this new knowledge in the future on important projects.

Preliminary Task: Planning

We were given the task to film and edit a character opening a door, crossing a room and sitting down in a chair opposite another character, with whom s/he then exchanges a few lines of dialogue. This task will allow us to learn how to use the various equipment and software that we will use in our end production.

Firstly, we were put into groups of three. I am in a group with Emelia Rodgers and Adam Zayee. Firstly we decided to brainstorm our ideas. We had various ideas such as: a shock, a pregnancy scare, a therapist session; done in another language; a first date; a person back from the war; or emergency. Our final decision was to use a different language for our short dialogue. We chose this because we believed that it would display creativity and imagination.

Our first task was to create the script. I did Spanish at GCSE and so used my knowledge from that to write the script. We decided to use a dramatic storyline and used the pregnancy scare idea as we knew the vocabulary to do so. Next, we had to write in the shots and actions that we were going to use. We are using a variety of shots in order to get across various expressions and emotions. After this, we were taught how to set up and use all of the various equipment in preparation for filming. Whilst practicing this Adam Zayee booked out a room for us to film in. Our next challenge was to find two actors who were willing to be in our short clip, this turned out to be our first problem that we came across in this process. We have been given period one to film our footage. Unfortunately, Spanish lessons are on at the same time as our allocated slot and so we have had to find other people to act. In the end we found two actors, Grace Morris and Alex Lai. Our filming will begin tomorrow morning…