kitkat video

on our Principles of Sound and Video production lesson we were briefed to create a short video using mini dv tape video cameras+tripod provided. the aim of this project was to learn how to compose film narrative using variety of shots. we can film using many different shots  and combining them in good and skillful practice leads to a successful story telling throughout the  film. i learned some professional terminology during these lessons enabling me in case of being a cameraman and communicate with director. it is important to know technical descriptions of tools and actions in order to produce professional piece. there are usually large amounts of money involved in film industry and each mistake or delay in delivery can lead to loss of money, pissed off directors and eventually sacking.
here i would like to enumerate  some important aspects i learned during the class. i also did  some additional research on theme regarding the language of video//
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TYPES OF SHOT*
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VERY LONG SHOT :: It is panoramic shot of scene. this big master shot can convey sense of isolation by setting small human figure in vast landscape.
LONG SHOT :: Includes all the important features of a scene. it conveys information and  is considered to be master or establishing shot. it establishes relationship between subject and environment. only big gestures are visible.
MID-SHOT :: Reveals expression but does not focus on one subject. establishes interplay between two characters.
CLOSE-UP :: Concentrates on a face or detail of a scene. reveals characters and feelings.
BIG CLOSE-UP :: Focuses on part of subject’s face (such as the eyes) or hands.
EXTRA BIG CLOSE-UP :: Focuses on a minute detail often to the extent that you cannot recognize the object. creates a sense of mystery and surprise once the entire subject is disclosed.

There are bunch of other important aspects when shooting a video such as framing the subject (rule of thirds), using different angles of view, creating a feeling of depth, etc. They all serve as various narrtive techniques and have a particular purpose on how viewer will be guided throughout the film.

here is our film project which we shot in woods beside uni. we didnt bother with script as we felt to do some sort of film-as-we-go flux style movie. what we did was got a kitkat chocolate bar and a thread. we went into woods and made this::

–after capturing it on computer, Max did major editing in Adobe Premiere. we also used some free-royalty sound files from http://www.freesound.com///
In total we managed to make not so brilliant but educational for us film which was received quite well by our fellow students. maybe because of the fun element in the film, respectively,  max-werewolf-type of character chasing after choco bar attached to me bike.
first two are establishing shots introducing the scene. then it cuts to another long shot which introduces both characters–a girl on the bicycle and super-hungry character in the tree. the movement starts from right to left. we used here panning method to follow the bicycle which wasnt so succesful. we could have cut this shot in two static shots letting bicycle come in and come out of shot and then have another shot with bicycle keep going left to right, leaving the scene and keep our shot on second character—max in the tree. the reason why i like this shot is the transition of music which clearly describes two different characters, in this case–classical music reveals peace and tranquility of girl cycling the woods, while hard rock music introduces  max character which is hectic, mad and off his tits.
next cut is a close-up of max’s face which continually gets closer and closer and in 3rd cut we have extreme close-up of his eyes. to make it work better and progressively heighten the sense of drama we should have cut them close-up shots  much quicker. they are few seconds long and slows down a building up tension. i particularly love the next POV shot. it gives the right tensity and keeps viewer on track.
next are shots of both characters moving from left to right in hand-held camera action. i like the way it looks and cuts along with music, also a hand shake give these shots a sense of rush and manic nature of whole situation. chase looks good when filmed through leaves and is not steady. in next shot where girl eventually realizes a gore attacker behind her and gives out quite lame shout movement has crossed the line and is sporting from left to right. that is little bit confusing and leads to interruption of continuity. in order to cross the line successfully, we need to do it within wide shot so it is clearly seen . it helps to change the movement better and introduce different direction to viewer gradually. if we want  to reach the opposite effect by confusing viewer and leading it to an eerie feeling, we would continue with crossed the line movement in next shot as we did in this case, which was a purpose but it didnt really worked so well.
we reestablished the chasing  scene in next long panning shot. even though we were using a tripod for panning, in fact, it is very difficult task to perform accurately. maintaining smooth, continuous movement requires more than steady pair of hands. it is decision when go for panning. camcorders work best when they are static and the movement takes place within the picture area, not when the camcorder is itself in motion.  we could have made it static and it would have worked as good. chase ends up when max finally gets what he was after during whole film. we wanted to introduce kitkat bar only in last episode when max eventually manages to get hold of it but it didnt work out as well as we planned.  it feels as if we should have cut in some close-up shots of chocolate at first stage. up till finishing scene viewer could see  something twiddling at the back of the bike but it didnt convey the message that this “little thing” was an actual item max was chasing after. we made one  close-up of kitkat in one of our last shots and in the last mid-shot max actually states that this is the KITKAT. his aggressive nature smoothens up as he fixes himself a chocolate and we crash it with happy ending. done.

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* this information is based on this source-  Squires, M. (1992) The Camcorder Handbook, London: Headline Book Publishing PLC

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