Monday, 28 February 2011

Camera tutorial

As an introduction to our coursework unit we had a video camera tutorial. We had to plan a practice preliminary opening sequence. First we had to learn about how to film with the camera. We were told how to turn it on, inserting the memory card and also how to record. In addition to this we were also told about filters,delete and playback, and zoom and focus. We had to carefully place the camera's on the tripods and practice handling the camera and the tripods, working out how to adjust the camera and tripod and tighten the camera to the tripod.  We really had to be careful with the camera (im sure nobody in the class wants a 3000 pound fine ) so we had to pay attention to how we fasten the camera to the tripod.

After this we had to sign an agreement to show we understood how to use the camera and we were give the groups memory card.

Planning our Thriller- Omnipresent

We were told in the last lesson of the week that the following lesson we would be presenting a pitch to the class for the opening to our thirller, Omnipresent. We had a group discussion on what our sub genre would be and we decided it should be psycological. The reason of this wasit was best suited to the ideas we had and we could use some intertexuality from films we had studied. 

We were told by our teacher that as a group we had to decide on the props used in the film, the mise en scene, the costumes, preliminary ideas about sound the production schedule, the risk assesment, institution and audience detail and planned locations to film and shot that we would consider. If we are sucessful in delivering a good pitch which had to consist of all of these sections, we would be able to film as soon as possible

We started on a powerpoint presentation that would consist of the sections above including the title Omnipresent which is a term for someone or something that is always around or in many places. This would give an idea to how one character is going to be described or portrayed. We also brought up the treatment as a point of discussion, what will happen in the opening sequence and how we would intice our audience and keep the wondering what would happen.

Our Pitch in the Making

In the first half of our lesson, we made a pitch for the opening sequence of film omnipresent. We split our group up into one person doing the presentation (Jessica) and two of us (Olivia and myself) worked on the storyboards. We would help with each others jobs with suggestions now and again. Neither of us had drawing as our forte so instead we described what would happen in the film through writing and annotating titles credits effects,sounds ect.After the first half of the lesson we had to present our pitch to the class. Our group was sucessful in convincing the class about risk assessments, the storyline, places we would film and other aspects of planning. This meant we were given permission to film the lesson after that.

Tuesday, 15 February 2011

How To Use LiveType !

First And Foremost You Click Onto Livetype At The Bottom

After that, the program actually opens up and you see this:


There are 4 windows.
 This is the screen for the text that i would write



This window would be used for choosing the text, style, effects, timing, attributes.
 This is where your can change the type of font and make it come alive (kinda bounce) Different textures, objects and effects to make the text look abnormal .

















And lastly here is a timeline that would show everything that i had done.
    
First i go to the second window where i will type the name of my film:

After that, i go to the effects (in the Inspector:Untitled Window) and in the media Browser, i clicked the 'fades' category and applied 'fade it' and 'fade out'. After that, i change the duration of the actions in the timeline.
After that i added a new track (simply go onto new track and add new track) and done the same thing again. This time i added spray text and squeeze out.

Ater that, i go to file, render preview... then hit normal and it will come up that this:


Here is how my first try of livetype looks like:

video




Jelly Babies Part 2

After taking pictures of the jelly babies, we imported them into Final Cut pro and arrange them together making it look like a sequence.

Here is our first try of our jelly babies animatic storyboard:



video





Jelly Babies Part 1: The Camera Shots

Here are the camera shots of the jelly babies that we took to make our short preliminary film:








Our Pitch (Slideshow)

Here are the slides from our pitch:










Our Pitch

Yesterday, we finished making our pitch in the first half of the lesson. In our group, we split up and let one person (Jessica) write up the pitch whilst the others (Shannon and I) made our storyboards. As we are not comfortable with drawing, we literally just wrote what would happening in the scene instead of drawing onto our storyboard and still annotated our titles, credits and effects/sound.

After the first half, we all had to present our pitch and thankfully, my group was successful when presenting our pitch and we have permission to start filming as soon as possible :)

Sunday, 13 February 2011

Planning Our Thriller Opening

In our last lesson of the week (thursday just gone ), we were told that on Monday, we will put forward our pitch for our thriller opening.We decided to base our thirller with its sub-genre being psychological. The reason why we chose to do a psychological thriller is because it best suited our ideas and gathered that most people generally like these sort of thrillers.

We were informed that our pitch is due to be shown in class next lesson (this monday). Our pitch has to be agreed so that we can move onto the next and actually start filming our thriller opening.

We started to make a power point presentation that is going to contain all of our ideas including the title which is "Omnipresent"  which generally means the person is always there/around. That gives an insight to how the character in our thriller may be.We have also discussed the treatment, how the opening sequence will run and what questions would be asked from the opening sequence ( what questions would be asked)

We also talked about what type of setting it should have, the locations and all the props needed for the mise en scene etc.

Friday, 11 February 2011

Planning thriller opening

Today we planned our opening to a thriller scene. we chose that we wanted to make a psychological thriller because it best suited our ideas and most people generally like these sort of thrillers. we got told that we have to do a pitch in our next lesson to see if we are able to carry out our thriller. We made a power point presentation that contains all of our ideas including the title which is "Omnipresent"  which generally means the person is always there/around. That gives an insight to how the character in our thriller may be.We also talked about what type of setting it should have and all the things needed for the misce en scene etc.

Tutorial for using the cameras

Many lessons ago, my class was given a chance to create a thrilling and suspenseful footage of someone reading a newspaper as our first experience in filming.

Before we could begin with the filming we were introduced to how the cameras work and how to safely operate them.We were shown how to turn on and off the camera, where to insert the memory card,how to zoom,set a focus, look at our work (view our work after we had taken the shot), delete footage and move the camera safely.

We were also shown how to use a tripod, set it up and bring it back down safely. How to place the camer on the tripod and MAKE SURE the camera does not end up damaged after it was used on the tripod (these cameras are REALLY expensive). When we lock the camera on the tripod, we were taught how to moved the camera up and down, side to side and spin it without doing so much work.

After this, we had to sign an agreement to show the members of the media department that we understand the concepts of using a camera

Wednesday, 9 February 2011

My Response To The 'Watching' Documentary

In our media lesson, we watched a half an hour long documentary which allowed us to listen to the views of different directors about Thriller film openings.

Thomas Sutcliffe said that "Films need to seduce their audience into long term commitment. While there are many types of seduction, the temptation to go for instant arousal is almost irresistible." What I’ve understood from his statement is that any film must announce as much ambition at the beginning as it will do throughout the movie to maintain the interest of the audience. There should be a good sharp shot and that the accelerator (for the movie) must be pressed to the floor, suggesting that actions should hurry up and have an effect straight away. He also says that the film opening must "satisfy" so that with the audience there is "immediate gratification"

According to the Director Jean Jacques Beineix, there are risks of 'instant arousal' because he thinks that the audience must wait before they get complete satisfaction.
Stanley Kauffmann describes the ‘’classic’’ opening with an establishing shot of New York City, then following with a close up shot to a tall building, then zooming to a window, a close up of what is inside it then tracking past the 'receptionist.'
This opening shows us where the 'hero' is found and suggests that everything here is related which is why it works. However a thriller film is different, it presents us with contrast images that are not logical.
So if I was to create a film opening, I would have to make sure that it starts off strong and I would have to maintain a high standard throughout. With this, I’m setting the ‘bar way to high for myself from the beginning which puts more stress on me to make my film more successful.

"A good beginning must make the audience feel that it doesn't know nearly enough yet, and at the same time make sure that it doesn't know too little." I agree with this statement that the Director made. He talking about being able to capture the audience and make them want to know more about the film, for them to be able to get on the same wavelength as the director to lead the story.

Kyle Cooper's title sequence to the film 'Se7en' is highly effective as it tells us a story and foreshadows future events. It also does a thing called "Show don't Tell" this is where we see what could happen but it doesn't tell us, it also reveals a lot about the main character the 'killer' however we are not even introduced to him yet. I loved how the camera uses a lot of extreme close-ups and establishing shots to show the connection between the character and the props the character uses.

With his opening Orson Welles wanted to plunge the audience into the story without preparing themselves, however Universal changed this because they didn't want the expectation to be too high for the rest of the film.

The very simple opening to the film 'The Shining' is very effective although it just shows a car travelling along the mountains with the credits rolling continuously in the middle. We suspect a Thrill because of the stressed drumbeat and loud music increasing in volume and it presents the car to be like a predator though we have a feeling that it is going completely the wrong way leading into its prey.
If there is one thing I would love to take from the film ‘se7en’ is the use of over the shoulder shots, extreme close-ups and the fact that there was no use of dialogue in the film opening. I feel it makes the film more interesting if there is no dialogue or ‘false dialogue’ (murmuring, using sounds from the mouth, stuttering) it makes the film more exciting and intriguing for the viewer.

The Camera Tutorial

Many lessons ago, my class was given a chance to create a thrilling and suspenseful footage of someone reading a newspaper as our first experience in filming.

Before we could begin with the filming we were introduced to how the cameras work and how to safely operate them.We were shown how to turn on and off the camera, where to insert the memory card,how to zoom,set a focus, look at our work (view our work after we had taken the shot), delete footage and move the camera safely.

We were also shown how to use a tripod, set it up and bring it back down safely. How to place the camer on the tripod and MAKE SURE the camera does not end up damaged after it was used on the tripod (these cameras are REALLY expensive). When we lock the camera on the tripod, we were taught how to moved the camera up and down, side to side and spin it without doing so much work.

After this, we had to sign an agreement to show the members of the media department that we understand the concepts of using a camera.
 ....And we were given our memory card :)

Using Jelly Babies To Make Our short 'Animatic' storyboard

As a group we had to plan out how we wanted our short film to be. We used jellybaies as our (pretend) real life characters, made a table and a door out of paper and there we had our own little world to take pictures of!

We took pictures of how we would actually film our final piece.

As our decision for our short film would be filmed in a room, it was very easy to make a mini room , take picutres and have the mini-world look like real life by taking pictures. After today's exercise, i feel it would be very easy to compare the jellybaby storyboard film with the final real-life one (when its done) because my group was able to make our small mini-world look realistic enough to get a clear image of how the final cut in real life film will be.

We didn't plan to have any dialogue in our short clip, but we decide that it is vital for us to plan out where the camera will be and what type of shots we would be taking for the real-life film, using the 180 degree rule and shot reverse shots. After we had finished taking the pictures of our jelly babies we then had to import our images onto match cut, arranged the jelly babies to fall in motion with match cuts, making our short 'animatic' storyboard.

Today was fun... and we got to eat jelly babies :D

Match Cut Exercise

In lesson we had to use jelly babies to plan out our story board for are film we will be making. We were given a task to use jelly babies to make our short 'animatic' storyboard and with that we would take pictures and plan a prelim film .

In order to do this, we had to use the program Final Cut and use Match Cut which is a transition within the scene and follows in some way directly matching a character or object in the previous scene.
We also had to used shot/reverse shot to show a flowing conversation done by two characters,/ or a connection between them and we had to use the 180 degree rule.
The 180° rule is a basic guideline in film-making that connects two characters in the same scene should always have the same left/right relationship to each other. If the camera passes over the imaginary axis connecting the two subjects, it is called crossing the line. The new shot, from the opposite side, is known as a reverse angle.
The reason for using the 180 degree rule, is to make the film more believable and to change the audience with you so they feel part of the scene portrayed in the film.
An example:

This diagram shows the axis between two characters, when cutting from the green arc to the red arc, the characters switch places on the screen.

Monday, 7 February 2011

Day 9: Finishing our preliminary movie

Today, we finished adding our credits to our movie sequence from Live Type. Even though we had already imported an instrumental from youtube into Final Cut pro to suit our movie, we still wanted to add more sound effects so we dragged our finished product into Soundtrack Pro to add more sound effects.

The effects that we wanted to add were :

  •  the male character turning on the light
  • an ear-ry sound at the end to add tension to the atmosphere
We use the 'Lighter 4' effect at 14.36 seconds and it lasts until 15.33 seconds. 

Afterwards, we added the 'Movement Slow Rated' effects at 2:12:03 seconds and it lasts until 2:24:32 seconds. 

Here is our end product with the added effects:

video






Livetype

These are instructions on how to use live type in 7 easy steps

1. start off at the home screen, look down at the bottom where all the icons are and find a picture with a "T" on it and that is live type

2. a screen should appear where theres a chequered background with a green line running through it and on the right hand side there are different tabs for you to click on.

3. click on any of the tabs you see and then at the bottom of the screen there's a sign that says "apply to new track" and then you will see the chosen design appear on the screen in front of you.

4.  If however you do not like the chosen design you chose you can always change it using the tabs on your righht hand side. This is where your can change the type of font and make it into your own personal taste, there are different textures, objects and effects to make the text look abnormal .


5. First i go to the second window where i will typed in the name of our thriller ans the my own name. After that, i go to the effects (in the Inspector:Untitled Window) and in the media Browser, i clicked fonts and then i found the one that says "tap" and i applied it to screen.

6. After that i added a new track (simply go onto new track and add new track) and done the same thing again. But this time i added the bounce affect to it so it would slide across the screen and then bounce.

7. After that press the render button, wait for you submission to render and press play to see your creation.







 
These are just 2 things that i have created out of fun as examples of things you can do with live type.

Saturday, 5 February 2011

Cinema Audiences

In 2009, 31 suspense films were released and 503 films in the UK were released altogether that year.
Action, animation and comedy films are so popular because they bring a sense of excitment to peoples lives. They aren't the "boring" films that some people tend to watch. Action films are for any type of auience and are very enjoyable. Animation are usually aimed at children and families, mayn families like going to the cinema as a fun day out. Comedy films are for eveyrone, all audieneces enjoy a good laugh.

I think that thriller films account for quiet a low proportion of the UK Box Office takings because some may not be to everyones taste and because there are areas in thriller films where it could be 'scary' and not many people enjoy scary films.

Females often go to view romantic genres as they are associated with women. Suspence films seem to be more on the female side of the diagram, maybe bcause woman like the idea of a thriller film because its nott scary? The comedy is in the middle which shows that both genders like a comdey film.

The age certificate for 10 of the films featured on the teaching blogs shows that the thriller film are only suitable for those that are of the age of 15 and over, because 15 is round about the age where they're old enough to watch films that are of the thriller standard.

Documentary of Film Openings

In class we watched a short documentary about film openings and why certain films are made in certain ways.
 Thomas Sutcliffe said "Films need to seduce their audience into long term commitment. While there are many types of seduction, the temptation to go for instant arousal is almost irresistible". he basically means that when watching a film, the audience need to be drawn in, in order of them wanting to continue watch it. He's also aying that the temptation to instantly catch the audience is almost irresistable because, they want the viwers to enjoy the film and maybe even go and tell some one else about it so they too can then go and be "seduced".

There are certain risks of 'instant arousal': e.g, "if you erouse the audience too early it may get them bored because its almost as though already know whats going to happen"- says the director Jean Jaccues Beieix.

"A good beginning must make the audience feel that it doesnt know nearly enough yet, and at the same time make sure that it doesnt know too little". This is because if the audience know basically the whole plot to the story it loses their concentration, just aswell if they know too little it makes them feel as though the story isnt getting anywhere, which then again loses their concentration.

Kyle Cooper's opening to the film Seven is so effective because it wakes everyone up. it has the effect of making the audience feel as though they are part of the film. the story told introducesus to a weird character; having that opeining alerts the audience that something strange is going to happen.

Orson Welles wanted people to be plunged before watching his film " A Touch of Evil". the studios didnt like that arrangement as they thought there would be no poin in doing it.

Friday, 4 February 2011

Genre of 2009

In 2009 the maximum number of suspense/thriller films released overall was 31. I think action, animation and comedy account for 52% of Box office because they are some of most popular genres. Everyone likes a good laugh, everyone likes to see things blow up (predominately males) and everyone at one point in their lives has enjoy a good cartoon.  Females like a touch of romance that may attract them to a RomCom or an action thriller with a few love scene or two.  This is also a niche for a younger audience. Most Thrillers that are distributed to cinemas have an age certificate e.g 16, 18.  This means that however popular the film may be, there will be a percentage of people that would not get to watch it 


As you can see this diagram shows us the target demo for diferent types of genres. It's not surprising that comedy is in the middle. It is enjoyed by both sexes.

Looking at some age certificates for some films see inappropriate for young people aged 15 and under

Wednesday, 2 February 2011

Who watches Thrillers?

1) How many suspense films were released in 2009? How many films were released altogether last year?
The number of suspense films that was released in 2009 was 31. In total, the number of films that was released altogether in that year was 503
        
2) Action, animation and comedy account for 52% of Box Office in the UK in 2009. Why do you think these genres are so popular?
All of these genres include various sub-genres that would have attracted the audience to watch the movies. For example- X Men Origins:Wolverine is an action film. The genre of action appears to be more attracted by the males , but it includes female characters and a little bit of romance. The little detail of romance and its other contributions drives other audiences that are not in favour of pure action to watch the film.
Another reason for action, animation and comedy to account for over 50% of the box office is because that is what the young audiences are mainly attracted to.
3) Why do you think Thrillers account for quite a low proprotion of UK Box Office takings (4% in 2009)?
 Most thrillers that are shown in the cinema have age restriction and the young audience is unable to watch them because of their age.
4) Looking at the 'genre by gender' diagram above, what information can be derived about Thriller audiences and gender?
Females often go to view romantic genres as they are associated with women. What seems to suprise me is the genre 'Suspense' is more on the women's side of this diagram this could be because there are different types of Thrillers they may appeal to women more than men for example-romance and/physcological thriller. Comedy is the genre that appears in the middle which shows that its target audience is for both men and women.

5) Look at the age certificate for 10 of the films featured on the teaching blog. What does this tell you about Thriller audiences?
This shows that most, if not all thrillers are only suitable for those who are 15 or over the age of 15, as they seem to be able to exposed to the scenes in the movies as they are 'appropriate' for that age.

Newspaper Thriller

Today we started to edit our 'newspaper thriller' tasks using Final Cut Pro.
With the clips that we had taken, we edited (including cut and various effects) our clips so that they would look like an actual sequence.
From this exercise, we found somethings hard to connect with as i didn't film the clips properly (started to soon and ended to early). We also learnt to come up with a rule of 5 when anybody in our group decides to film. The rule of five is:
  • To allow five seconds before acting in a scene,
  • and once finished, leave another 5 seconds
This will make the editing on final cut pro more easier to for both clips to fit in correctly.

We had also used transitions when faded in and out to create tension between some of the clips.

This is how we made our unfinished Newspaper thriller.

Day 7: Documentary on Film Openings

In our media lesson, we watched a half an hour long documentary which allowed us to listen to the views of different directors about Thriller film openings.

Thomas Sutcliffe says that "Films need to seduce their audience into long term commitment. While there are many types of seduction, the temptation to go for instant arousal is almost irresistible." With this statement I think he means that the film must announce as much ambition at the beginning as it will do throughout the movie to maintain the interest of the audience. There must be a good sharp shot and that the accelerator (for the movie) must be pressed to the floor, suggesting that actions should be speeded up and have an effect straight away. He also says that the film opening must "satisfy" so that with the audience there is "immediate gratification"

However according to the Director Jean Jacques Beineix says that there are risks of 'instant arousal' because he thinks that the audience must wait before they get complete satisfaction, and that if you start strong you have to maintain a high standard throught, so you are setting the bar way to high for yourself from the beginning.

"A good beginning must make the audience feel that it doesn't know nearly enough yet, and at the same time make sure that it doesn't know too little." I think with this statement the Director wants to capture the audience and make them want to know more about the film, for them to be able to get on the same wavelength as the director to lead the story.

Stanley Kauffmann describes the classic opening with an establishing shot of New York City, then following with a close up shot to a tall building, then zooming to a window, a close up of what is inside it then tracking past the 'receptionist.' This opening shows us where the 'hero' is found and suggests that everything here is related which is why it works. However a thriller film is different, it presents us with juxtaposed images that are not logical and disfunctional

Kyle Cooper's title sequence to the film 'Se7en' is highly effective as it tells us a story and foreshadows future events. It also does a thing called "Show don't Tell" this is where we see what could happen but it doesn't tell us, it also reveals a lot about the main character the 'killer' however we are not even introduced to him yet.

With his opening Orson Welles wanted to plunge the audience into the story without preparing themselves, however Universal changed this because they didn't want the expectation to be too high for the rest of the film.

The very simple opening to the film 'The Shining' is very effective although it just shows a car travelling along the mountains with the credits rolling continously in the middle. We suspect a Thrill though because of the tense drumbeat and loud music increasing in volume, and it presents the car to be like a predator though we have a feeling that it is going completely the wrong way leading to its danger.

Day 7: Font Analysis

Brody says that "Fonts convey an emotion without actually having to say the words." I completely agree with this statement because the fonts give a signature style to the particular film that it is advertising and we can identify with this. It creates emotion already as we are lured into the product as we view its title.

The font type PALANTINO in the use of promotion for 'Pearl Harbour' is a serif font. It is a font that is regarded as very traditional and smart, this film is based on historic events so an element of respect and formality must be shown. The size of it is also quite small suggesting that it is the image that will portray the story rather then the name, however it still has some importance.

The film 'Rocky' uses a more informal sans serif font called FRANKLIN GOTHIC HEAVY. This font is a lot more informal and modern, it is said to be more 'friendly.' The very bold font stands out, resembling the character Rocky himself as big, bold and strong. It is very heavy and simple. The title seems to represent the film more rather then the picture, which is the opposite to the film 'Pearl Harbour'. Also we see that the film is unrelated to historical events and more about the emergence of a person and his life.

Day 7: The Structure of Thriller Openings

In different film openings, there are three basic structure which can be followed, each of these has a different effect and look which can differentiate the appearance of each film.

The thriller film 'Panic Room' uses a narrative opening, this is where the titles are running throughout. This choice of narrative opening only shows the landscape and the surroundings, which is New York, mainly its buildings, giving a business feel. It does not refer to any of the characters so far in the film, until the opening scene. The string orchestra increases in tempo throughout the opening to suggest the impact of a thrill, the surroundings and use of sans serif font give a modern effect to the film.

The thriller film 'Se7en' which is a psychological chiller uses a discrete title sequence. There is no narrative and the whole opening is a series of extreme close ups on particular objects and elements of his actions. There is a lot of emphasis on a black pen that he uses to disguise particular newspaper print. We also see them removing their fingerprints with a razor and that he is making a collage. It makes the audience wonder whether this is the psycho, this type of title sequence reveals a lot about a character but without showing him in the opening.


The thriller film 'Dead Calm' uses titles over a blank screen, which is then followed by a narrative opening. At the beginning there is eerie music which increases in volume. The titles are very plain, however there is an interesting fade into the title which appears bold on the screen. As we see the tracking shot of the old railway train, we see that there is some historical event linked with the movie. But also it does not reveal a lot about any characters or the film.

The thriller film 'Mezrine: killer instinct' uses stylised editing for its titles, the effective use of its split screen allows us to see the character from different perspectives and at a slower delayed pace so that we can view their movements in great detail. It also allows the camerawork to be more advanced using a variety of different shots, eg over the shoulder, point of view shots which help to engage the viewer. The split screen also resmebles 1970s context and imagery, giving the opening a sense of authenticity. A thrill is also administered through music, with the sound gradually building up to a crescendo. Already what is revealed are the two main characters and their actions suggest that something terrible will happen to them.