Thursday, September 24, 2009

project 3 shot sequence

this is the setting for the nighttime shots-

here's the shot sequence
I'd like this film to focus on one character remembering something, and the film will be told through a series of up close views of everyday motions (for this character).

Tuesday, September 22, 2009


so a quick word choice correction-when I called smoking and applying makeup "mundane" I meant to call them motions that involve very small amounts of movement as compared to a more "active" movement like running or climbing a tree.

As far as distilling my idea, I've decided that this film should be a short character sketch made up of small movements. I'd like to focus on hands and on the things they are interacting with. Maybe if she is smoking you don't see her mouth like most smoking shots, but you see her hands spill the box of cigarettes. Another shot could be her trying on different rings, and choosing one. I'd also like to incorporate "passenger seat actions" the way people act when they are in the passenger seat of a car, does she put her feet up? hand out the window? holding a cigarette? As far as the model being aware/unaware of the camera, I'd like to get to the point where I can shoot scenes and she's somewhat forgotten that the camera is there. So maybe this is a matter of quantity. I feel like overcoming the awkwardness of the camera will be something I need to deal with without resorting to a surveillance type camera. I think there are other ways to do this, it might just involve a ton of time. I really want to start to solve the problem of creating a character or a sketch of a character without showing too much or saying too much. I'm also wondering if I should cross cut between two characters performing mostly the same task (maybe getting ready to go out) and having them meet at the end. It sounds a bit cheesy, but I think it could be pulled off, and it would be interesting in an editing sense as far as transitions go.

idea with some flesh

So, to expand upon the idea of filming people's miniature movements, I've picked out some spaces, a model to film, and a color scheme. The film will be focused around the actions of smoking and getting ready to go somewhere (applying makeup, etc.) I want it to be a character study, seeing how I can show some of the character of a person by the way that they do certain small tasks. I'd like to document these simple actions, does her foot nervously swing when she smokes? Does she speak differently with a cigarette? hand motions, eye motions, all of these minute actions that go into another small action. I'd like this film to have a voyeuristic feel, like we are watching something very personal-especially the bathroom make-up shots. Maybe I could shoot through a window or between cracks in the door. I'd also really like to learn how to achieve a strong mirror shot. This will also be a good experiment in editing and compressing time as this could get really boring really quickly. I'd like to try some Godard-Breathless style jumpy cuts for this part. Another thing I would like to learn through this assignment is how to make things look like super-8 home movie footage, I think this aesthetic would go well with the subtle concept, and I'd like this to look as much like film as possible. Maybe shooting in this square format could also be interesting? like a slide show...

Here's some test photos to help visualize the aesthetic I'm going for...

these spaces/greenish color scheme-

this model-


Wednesday, September 16, 2009


here's the stop motion with titles and whatnot...

reading and ideas

"Values become engulfed in miniature and miniature causes men to dream"

"On the other hand, the planetary image of Bohr's atom-in scientific thinking, if not in a few indigent, harmful evaluations of popular philosophy-is a pure synthetic construct of mathematical thoughts. In Bohr's planetary atom, the little central sun is
not hot."

1.) Taking a very small motion, like someone's hand fidgeting, or the little hairs on top of their heads moving in the wind and combining this with a very scientific graph could be interesting. I like this idea of "mathematical thoughts." Is there a way to map the world around us in a way that is mathematical only to the person thinking the thoughts? Maybe an exposure of the different ways people notice and approach situations. I could film normal, mundane movements of someone sitting down, and have somebody else with a voiceover analyzing the situation and essentially verbally mapping out what is happening as they see it.

"But he entered into a miniature world and right away images began to abound, then grow, then escape....large issues from small...thanks to liberation from obligations of dimensions"

2.)This quote immediately makes me think of disproportional things, and believability in a film. It also makes me question the "truth" of cinema, and I think that it is important for films to do that, whether in a subtle or big way. This could be a good excuse to continue with my experiments with cut-outs, to see if I could create a world with minimal movement, and much distortion. Basically, I would continue to cut out and make "actors" out of miniature props, and I would have them interact in different ways. I'd like to expand on the world I created in my stop motion project, maybe really go into the different spaces that were created, especially the sky. Going into and out of all the windows and openings cut out of the images could be very interesting as well. I'd like to work with the metaphor of "windows" and what is contained inside of them.

3.)This quote also makes me think of filming real people, but in a very very minimal and miniature way. For example, if I were to shoot a scene where two characters were talking, I would never show full shots of the characters, but I would show their minimal motions and hopefully imply character by them. (i.e. smoking a cigarette, twitching feet, moving hands, moving hair behind ears) very mundane motions. I have no idea what the conversation would be about, maybe something very mundane, or maybe there wouldn't need to be any dialogue at all. Could I show (in the most un-cheesy way possible) these character's relationship without words?

some inspiration for those close up "mundane" people shots (the godard portion)...

Monday, September 14, 2009

002 stop motion write-up

Overall, I felt that the project was successful (as an experiment) despite some technical difficulties. Conceptually, I was working with the idea of limiting myself to a few materials (some old national geographics, tinfoil, cellophane, glue, tape and scissors), and to convert my ongoing obsession of covering real things/people/scenes to inanimate collages. In this case, tinfoil served as the covering. I also wanted to experiment on a small scale to see what it felt like to be completely in control, since these were inanimate objects being covered. This gave me some serious tedious time to try to work out why exactly I am so fascinated with covering things. I've came around to the conclusion that it must have something to do with the way society is constantly encouraging us to change, to improve. These old (early 1960s-early 1970's) National Geographics I was using are less than politically correct, and filled with especially questionable advertisements. I think they are the perfect example for what society expects a well-rounded American to enjoy, and the advertisements contained inside of it are an example of what Americans are supposed to be. The men are most often represented as explorers and conquerors (especially within the articles of the magazine), and the women are represented as housewifes, supporters, and items to be adorned, flaunted. I focused mostly on the expectations for women to be housewives, and the many, many kitchen advertisements that support this idea. The tinfoil comes from the kitchen, and I repeatedly make it explode from the inside of things, maybe a metaphor for the thing that we are told to be as something that is internalized and something that eventually becomes destructive. Those are the conceptual ideas I discovered as I was working on the project. I'd like to work to develop this concept some more through my next films.
As far as technical challenges go, I had some major difficulties with the istopmotion. It kept rearranging my images, and that got old, so I switched to just taking stills with the D40 and importing them into quick time movies, and doing all of the editing in quick time. I tried to edit in final cut pro, but I lost so much image quality, I may have been importing things the wrong way.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

3 ideas

more visual inspiration from Cristina Couceiro:

idea #1-use a stop motion technique with magnetic letters. The letters will move around on the fridge and spell out words. maybe something like "should we?" and then "we should" then the letters will travel off of the fridge and crawl up and eventually completely cover a person. (more letters would have to join the ones that came off of the fridge, so I was thinking that I could have some cheesy horror movie sounds and letters could come out of the air vents and under the cracks in the door, the window, whatnot.

idea #2-Using images extracted from National Geographic magazines, I will create a stop motion collage. I have some issues that are about space, so that might be the scene I start in. The scenes would morph and change into completely opposite scenes. For example, the film may start out in space, but that scene might end up being in a TV which would allow the scene to morph into to that of a living room, etc.

idea #3-I'd like to use pixelization to cover people in tinfoil, cellophane, and yarn. I'd like to film people in ordinary situations, i.e. watching TV, walking down the street (the material would have to "catch up" to them, and I think this would be neat) or laying in the yard. I imagine the structure of this film to be like this: character one is watching television, and he (along with the space he is in) gets covered in tinfoil without him so much as moving. Character two is sitting and playing an instrument, and she gets covered in cellophane. Finally character three is doing something very active, like running, and she tries to run away from the yarn, but it chases her by the two characters covered in cellophane and tinfoil, and she eventually gets covered in yarn. I'm really not sure how I could pull this off, but I could see it looking really cool if I did. Maybe I could simplify it a bit.

I'm really leaning toward idea #2, I think it gives me the most leeway to explore different spaces and techniques. I feel like ideas one and three could be neat, but I have no idea how I would go about actually filming them.

geez louise these ideas are neat

such an amazing idea, geeez.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009