Thursday, June 20, 2013

Blog 6: Most to Least Favorite Assignments

So for this last blog, I have to rate our six assignments from most to least favorite, so here I go.

1.  Multi-plane Animation - I have to say that this assignment was my favorite one to work on.  While it took a long time to animate it, the final product was really cool, and I loved seeing how it turned out.  Plus, it was fun to create the soundscape for the project.
2.  Bolex Long Take – The Bolex assignment was a lot of fun for a couple of reasons.  First, it was a really wild experience getting to use film.  This was the first time I have gotten to shoot with such a camera, and it was a great experience.  I really loved loading the camera and hearing the clicking as it ran the film.  Second, I really enjoyed getting to swim in the pool, especially since it was a hot day.  It was a nice way to relax and cool off instead of roast in the sun.
3.  3D Anaglyph – This assignment was a lot of fun to shoot and to see the final product.  PJ and I had a lot of fun sword fighting, and we had a good time figuring out what exactly we were going to do for the scene.  It was a unique opportunity to dress as a pirate and fight over treasure for a project.  I also enjoyed seeing the final product.  The 3D was surprisingly good, and I liked how it turned out.  I think the video made a lot of people laugh, so I feel like it was a mission accomplished.  The only complaint I had was that not everything lined up perfectly in editing, and it was a pain to deal with while compiling the footage.
4.  Direct Film Manipulation – The direct film manipulation was a neat assignment for me as it was the first time to get to work with film.  I really liked getting to paint and scribble on the film stock.  It was cool to see what techniques produced what kind of look, what worked and what didn’t, and what all in general could be done to the film stock.
5.  Crowdsourcing – I liked the crowdsourcing assignment because it allowed for some neat ideas to emerge and be produced.  I liked the ability to give out the work to others and see what they came up with for the frames.  I did not like the assignment too much though since I was having trouble finding people who were available to help me.  When I went in to the frame factory, I was alone for most of the time, and afterwards I was doing most of it by myself except for some that a friend was kind enough to help with.
6.  Media Fast – The media fast was interesting, and it gave me some perspective as to how tied to the media I am, along with other people in our society.  That being said, I was bored to tears and found myself doing pretty much anything to alleviate my boredom, which was mostly eating and sleeping.

Monday, June 17, 2013

Blog 5: The Rough Theatre

When I did the reading for the rough theatre, I began to think of our upcoming assignment for the Bolex shoot.  We have to do some improvising to make sure it works out and use things that are not high quality.  We use the tools at hand to bring in a second sensory element to our film, and it can be almost anything we want.  Plus, we’re going to be doing this in a backyard, or somewhere that is not expressly for screenings; I feel that adds a lot to the feeling of being similar to rough theatre.  We’re doing things in a very lo-fi situation, and it is very similar to what people might do for rough theatre.

I feel that aspects of rough theatre can be applied to making films as well.  Sometimes, you do not need fancy special effects or CGI to make a good movie.  A person can make a truly terrifying horror film without the need for crazy effects.  Sometimes, all one needs is a scene with low lighting and a person with some cheesy make up, and one could turn something not scary into a horrific experience that gives people nightmares.  Reading about rough theatre has helped remind me that sometimes doing things practically, and sometimes even inexpensively, can produce the right image.  While fancy effects are nice and can really go a long way to helping make something look good or right, it is important to remember that doing things on set can be helpful, even if it is as simple as powdering someone’s face to make them seem unnaturally pale.  Rough theatre contains some useful information for filmmakers, and it is important not to forget the lessons one can learn from that.

Monday, June 3, 2013

Blog 4: Film manipulation: A Refection and How It is Relevant to Me as a Filmmaker

Working with film and being able to directly manipulate it was a really fun and exciting experience.  It was the first time I had the ability to do something like that, and I really enjoyed being able to hold the film in my hands.  It was a unique experience, as I have spent my time working with digital video when making and editing films.  It was a different, and enlightening, experience to work with the film stock.  I could scribble on the film and not wait for it to render, and it was satisfying to be able to see my changes appearing in real time.  There was also the knowledge that any change I made was permanent, and I could not simply hit a couple of keys or click a button and undo my changes.  It was a bit daunting and lead to some moments of pause to consider whether I should paint this or scratch that.  In the end, I realized that I should not worry too much about what I was doing and just let my creativity flow so long as it doesn’t destroy the film.

I think the handling of film and doing direct manipulation has given me a new perspective on filmmaking.  It has shown me that I don’t always need a camera to make something worth watching.  I can go and draw, paint, or scratch something on film and use it to help tell a story or make people feel something.  I feel it has also given me a glimpse into the history of film that is important.  There were ways to make movies before digital video, but it was much more thoughtful as people had to think about the cost of film.  Now, we can go out and shoot as much as we can fit on a memory card.  To be able to hold film and realize how whatever I do is permanent has made me sit down and re-evaluate my attitude towards filming.  Sometimes, I will not be so worried about the details of some shots that are the “quick and easy” ones.  Now, I think I will take more time to make sure they are good.  There is no waste of time when it comes to making sure a shot looks good and doesn’t have flaws.  It is what filmmakers had to do not too long ago, and it is something that can help me make better films from now on.

Blog 3: Response to the Crowdsourcing Readings

After reading the articles, and watching the TED talk, I have a new understanding and appreciation for crowdsourcing.  It’s a really awesome concept, and I feel it can be used for a lot of good.  By opening up projects on a broader scale, such as global, I feel like it can be used to bring people together by having them work towards a common goal.  It can bring people who would never meet together and possibly introduce them into something they never would have encountered.

I feel crowdsourcing has the potential to be used to produce some real good.  For example, Wikipedia is a fantastic example of crowdsourcing doing something beneficial.  In the TED talk, Jimmy Wales discusses how Wikipedia is meant to be a free, open-source repository of human knowledge.  Personally, I feel this is a truly awesome and admirable thing.  I feel people should have access to the information they need.  It’s more beneficial for people to learn what they need to than be denied it simply because they cannot afford to pay the money to buy a book.  It can really benefit humanity as a whole to make information more widely available so everyone can learn.

When applied to filmmaking, I feel it can be really spectacular to see what a bunch of people can do to help make a film.  The Johnny Cash Project is a prime example.  People from all over the world can contribute to the project, and it has lead to many variations of the same video in unique and exciting styles.  It is also great to see when people can come together to support endeavors through crowdfunding, like on Kickstarter.  One of my favorite web series, Video Game High School (or VGHS for short), was made with crowdfunding by fans of the creators previous works.  It involved the talents of the people at Rocket Jump, which consists of people behind the Freddiew youtube channel among others, who were able to make a great series with the support of fans.  They are once again relying on fans, who have answered the call, to make the second season of VGHS.  I feel crowdsourcing, and crowdfunding, can help make interesting and exciting content for people to enjoy.  It shows people don’t need super expensive film equipment and software to make a cool film.  All they need are people and the tools to give people the power to create.  Though, it doesn’t help to have some good editing software to compile it all.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Monday, May 20, 2013

Day 1: Stream of Consciousness

It was weird but interesting.  My eyes hurt at several points.  I didn't like that.  I did like the music.  Felt like old night club music in movies.  It was upbeat and lacked the wu of today's stuff.  I also liked the colors.  Transitions hurt when bouncing, but vibrance was nice.  The "dancing"was also pretty cool.  Dancing figures and symbols and lines made nifty bits to watch.  It did have points where I thought it would end then introduced new music and visuals.  It was a wild thing to set that up and deny it.  Probably would have saved eye pain if it had done the ending.  Real end was abrupt which I kinda anticipated.  Everything else was relatively quick except the slower sections but the end was at a fast section so it made sense.  Multi-lingual stuff was wild too.  Nice way to have broad appeal and have cool stuff.  I think the color movements were wild too.  Love to see the film stock for this.