Sunday, 12 August 2012

Assignment 1

PDF Files
Tutor File: Tutor_Report_Assignment_1.pdf


My story is about a person who waits for a call. When he answers the phone he gets bad news.


Frame 1: somebody is laying on a bed, looking above.  I wanted here to evoke in viewer question what is happen so I used the medium close-up shot.

Frame 2: A telephone shot: close-up of telephone. The shot of telephone shows that maybe the someone is waiting for a call.

Frame 3: Someone receiving a call. An extreme close-up frame should give a clear picture what the call is about. The ECU reveals the feelings of the character.

Frame 4: Medium close-up or Mid-shot to see result of the call - character's expression.

Frame 5: Medium close-up: we can see how the character face with information from the call. There can be a drop of tear.


Critically assess your finished product:

Where is the tipping point which I mentioned in exercise about how to learn?
As usual I am not satisfied with it :-). I have to admit that when I have draw the storyboard I thought it will be a good small dramatic sequence. We will see somebody receive a bad call. We do know what exactly it was about but we see the expression of the character. I think there is a lack of creativity. Maybe I did try to express more sadness, I do not know. Maybe I do not like it because I am the actor and a shyness is enhancing my critical mind, I do not know. I like the receiving the call (frame3) shot. It tells us nearly without words that the message is bad just because we see expressions. The film is strong medium to tell the story without words and I think it will be my intention to try to tell the stories in this way. I like illustrations which do the same thing. I remember now that a film Eraserhead by David Lynch has minimum dialogs and the meaning is build by shots and each audience has their own meaning.

What I have learned:

1. To be carefully what the actor is wearing because in the shots you can see that on the T-shirt is a name of company.

2. Frame 4: when I filmed myself I did not realize that behind me is an open door. The figure is connected to the darkness of the space in door. I do not like it but I let it be. There would be better contrast if the door would be closed.  Using a shallow depth of field could help here also. I like the depth of field which use Stuart. It helps to concentrate on focused object/subject. 
3. Even I filmed every frame few times (3-4) there were problems to chose suitable moments, e.g. I finish the scene too early, or I was too much blinking or my head was badly placed in frame.

4. The sensitivity about my new Rode microphone: when I was cutting the shots I could not believed that the microphone is so sensitive to record my hungry belly :-))).

5. Stay close to the story board: I wanted to add some action into the frames, I mean action like going up, laying down on bed etc. After I loaded the shots into PC I tried to connect the shots together. It were those actions in shots which encouraged me to change order of frames against storyboard. I wanted to have those actions there such as the character go up to pick up the phone but I have problem to connect it with the phone shot, so I move the shot of phone before the shot of somebody is lying on bed to avoid a problem with connection. You can see it in second video on my blog. When I have read the assignment again and saw the notion try and stay true to your storyboards I made the sequence again accurate to the storyboard. I deleted the mentioned actions and connected the shots in order in the storyboard and it worked. The sequence conveys the same meaning without redundant actions. It means that the preparation stage is the most important.

6. Frame 5 and a drop of tear: I wanted to show the sadness by  a drop of tear but I was not able to do it. When the camera was on I did my best but no one tear reveals. I tried to listen to sad song but nothing helped.

7. Frame 4: I do not like the composition here. I wanted to have my head on the right side but when I turned camera on I did not see that I moved a little bit to the left side :-).


I need to more explore the framing and angles of camera by studding them in other films. I still do not know how to use them properly to support different meaning / feeling. As I discovered I need to strengthen the preparation stage I need to do more things like notions about angles of camera and actions within every frame in storyboard. 

Here is the sequence which was cutted as a first:


  1. Hi Emil
    Thanks for asking me to comment. This assignment was about framing and you have got a good variety here - MCU, CU, XCU. It gives variety and involves the viewer well in the scenes. I can see from Frame 1 that the actor is waiting anxiously for a call. The telephone ringing had me looking for my phone, it was so clear. The XCU of your actor works really well and it is clear that he has received bad news. I can feel the anxiety myself. I'm not sure whether I would call the next shot of the actor on the bed a long shot but in any case, it works well - we can see his environment and we can see he is not happy. Frame 5 shows the actor lying on the bed in the same position as Frame 1. I got the feeling that we were back at the start of the film until I saw his face crumple. Well done! I thought you fulfilled the assignment really well - I was left feeling I wanted to know more about your story.

  2. I really liked this Emil,it is simple and very much to the point. As Margaret said, your framimg is good. I was in no doubt what the narrative was and like Margaret, I want to know what the next part of the story is!

    1. Yes, Richard's right. This idea could probably be continued in assignment 2, if you wanted to do that.

  3. The first thing that grabbed me was the right framing for the first couple of shots - and I liked it. For me, I think the closeness created some tension, a bit like I was trying to step back but I couldn't. I know this first assignment isn't about audio, but it might have been an idea to first hear the phone ring in shot 1 and then cut to the phone as it's ringing. You did something similar in on e of your previous exercises.

    I would have liked to see shot four a little longer, as it felt a little too quick and I found it hard to scan the room and take in the detail before the next shot appeared.

    The emotion is carried across well!

  4. Many thanks for your comments I really appreciate them.

    I was thinking about what Stuart wrote, to let ringing the phone in shot 1. I think that if I would do this there is not time to cut to phone because after the fist ring there is cut on shot 3 where we see the actor has the phone at ear. That was the reason I cut from shot 1 to 2 and let a time for viewer to see the mobile and maybe connect the idea that the actor waits for a call.

    It looks that I should do the assignment two to reveal more from that story. I will try it :-)

    All the best. Emil