Within the next couple of weeks, we are starting our second project for the course, which is called “The Scene” and the theme is “Friendship”. Within the next couple of weeks there will be a variety of Pre-Production, Production and Post-Production shown within this post.
To start with before actually starting the project, I wanted to have a look at various different one minute short films to see if I could get any ideas, and to see how effective some of them were compared to others. In total I’ve researched into 6 of them to find out their strengths and weaknesses and the amount of shots they used etc.
Short Film #1 – Special Date:
Special Date | One Minute short film (Glenn Brughmans, 2013)
There are only a few shots actually used within this short film, these include Close-ups, Mid-shot, extreme close up, most of the shot at the start is always in focus, depth of field on the mirror scene is only focussed on him in the mirror, if he moves the tiniest bit out of the original position he goes slightly out of focus – which could represent the mirror effect (e.g steam on the mirror causing more of a blur).
The editing in this has a few different elements to make it quite successful, for example, it seems to be a Simple Montage with quite a few Jump Cuts to pass the time and show a sense of anxiousness, possible colour correction to make the final part of the scene seem darker, the editing makes the scene flow in an effective way, and make’s it quite enjoyable to watch, adding a sense of humour.
The lighting within this seems to start off quite Natural, which fits with the mood of the certain part of the scene, mixing with the music. The bathroom could have extra artificial lighting in and generally it is soft lighting. Some lighting is minimal, for example the computer room.
Quite bright to start with, ending the colour was a lot darker. Bright and happy clothing (e.g yellow jeans) matches with the sound. Quite a use of blue – when leaving the bathroom you can see that the outside of that room has a blue light shining through, whilst he’s outside the sky is a darker shade of blue, and when he gets to the computer, the whole side of him that is lit is blue, represents a bit of a cold feel.
Jolly and Happy music which if you look in the video description it’s “Sunny Side Up” by Alumo. There’s not actually any dialogue within the scene, however for the character, there is the odd murmur as well as coughing, and a small and quick but weak laugh at the end. The Foley sound used within the short film include the water/shower running, hairspray, door opening and closing etc.
Short Film 2 – Misplaced:
"MISPLACED" 1-Minute Short Film (MrLodipi, 2015)
The variety of shots add a bit of a mystery towards the scene. There are a variety of Close-up shots (for example the keys), as well as long shots, extreme close ups, over the shoulder shots, low angle shots, high angle shots, etc. There is also a wider variety of shots used within this scene compared to the previous one. The audience also knows where the phone is before he does as there is a low angle shot with him looking in the background.
The editing within this scene is quite snappy, with quite a few jump cuts. It’s obvious that colour correction was most likely used to bring the saturation and lighting down a bit, and make the scene in particular look more of a grayscale with only a few colours minimally showing. Overall, the editing for this short film made it run quite smoothly and flow well.
Within this scene, it seems that only a few lights were used, and every area within the scene was well lit – you could clearly see everything within the scene no matter where it was, and it seemed to have a soft lighting touch. The scene itself also looks quite natural as if the lighting was in a hotel room for example, however clearly shows aspects a lot better than a hotel room would.
The colour within the scene mainly seemed to be on a grayscale tint however has a tiny bit of colour (e.g the skin colour) throughout. The colour also fits with the mood of the scene, for example at the end adding more of a creepy sense towards it, which is how the colour could easily reflect on the whole scene.
The sound within this scene seems to be quite simple sound, with the music being more minimal and dull and more of a mysterious Jazz than anything. There is only a tiny bit of dialogue (“Hello?” and “You’re welcome…”). The Dialogue from the person through the phone saying “you’re welcome” fits well with the music used in the short film as it adds a sense of creepiness or mystery towards the short film. There is also a variety of Foley sound used in the scene, for example, the phone ringing, rustling of objects, objects hitting the table etc.
Short Film #3 – URGENT – One Minute Short Film:
URGENT - One Minute Short Film (MikeHollowayFilms, 2016)
To start with in the scene, there is a wide shot that is also an establishing shot that shows the location of the scene, this then moves onto a close up of the persons feet moving, instantly suggesting the title “URGENT” means this person needs to go to the toilet. Following this onwards is a close up on his face showing his facial expressions which suggests how desperate he is to go to the toilet. This moves into a long shot with him running out of the door, and then has him running with a pan down a corridor and past a long shot in another corridor. There are various shots where the neutral line is used so that the character can change location, however in my opinion it isn’t used very effectively as it doesn’t really flow too well,
The editing within this piece is a montage. It’s his journey on how urgent he is to go to the bathroom. The whole thing flows rather well, however there are a few criticisms in my opinion. The way he changes the whole setup from 16:9 resolution to sudden wide screen resolution doesn’t flow brilliantly. I can see what he was trying to do, however it doesn’t work in my opinion too effectively as it would be better to flow the whole way through like that, otherwise it was rather enjoyable.
The lighting within this scene seems to be mainly natural lighting, as most of the scene is outside, and it seems that rather than having an artificial light being used, natural lighting is used. It seems that part of the scene was green screened as well which would need specific lighting to properly be effective. The inside scene as well might have artificial lighting. Finally, the lighting for the majority of the scene seems to be quite soft, however at times the lighting does suddenly change to more of a hard light, and shadows instantly seem more apparent and facial details do too (again, mainly parts of the outside scene, but only a few parts).
Within this short film, the sounds seem to mainly be Foley Sound, as well as up-beat music to create a montage purpose towards the short film. They seem to fit quite nicely with the different parts of the scene, in particular matching with each part that is being used. The Foley sound used as well is quite effective as we can hear what is happening, and it makes it seem a bit clearer to the audience what is happening at the current time.
Short Film #4 – LOOP:
LOOP (FILMINUTE2011, 2011)
Within this short film, I found it really effective. The shots used were super and worked very well. To start with there are a variety of close-up shots, to start with, the blood being a major one, followed by the persons face which is slightly mirrored in the floor from the blood/liquid. This then moved onto an establishing shot to show that it was in the house of this specific person. This is followed by a close up of the person picking up the phone that’s been knocked over and putting it back where it was to start with, and a pan of wiping the what seems to be coffee off of the floor. Following onwards there’s a low angle shot making the person look high and mighty from inside the bin and a high angle shot of him looking into the bin, which could also be argued as a POV shot. Again, there are more close ups, and we can then see how the loop will continue – overall I really enjoyed this one.
The editing within this was very clever. The way it was prepared and completed was very effective and I feel that the person editing it did a fantastic job. It flowed very well, and you could see how it could end up in a loop again, and finally you can see that the person spent a lot of time on this. The editing was mainly a linear route, but I feel it was very effective the way the shots worked together to create this final edit.
The lighting within this short film would be artificial lighting to try and make it look as similar as possible to a real house, however make sure it’s still bright and everything can be clearly seen. The colour towards it was generally quite dull, which reflected the mood that is within the scene, and added a bit more of a mystery towards it.
The sound within this short film mainly seems to be Foley sound, for example the loud “beeping” for the phone. This seems to be quite effective within this as it clearly shows everything within the scene, as well as being effective within different parts of the short film – this is mainly due to the fact that they all fit in perfectly with what’s happening.
Short Film # 5 – Time:
Time - One minute film (Twin Entertainment, 2015)
To start with there is a close-up shot of a clock which reflects on the amount of time goes through within this video. It then moves onto a wide shot of a car driving and then an over the shoulder shot/mid-shot whilst in the car as well as a close-up on the watch and the person driving’s hand. This moves onto another shot of a lady who seems to be at a dinner table, possibly suggesting she’s waiting for this person – the shot is a wide shot. There is an extreme close up on the glass of wine/champagne which starts in focus, and then becomes out of focus as the camera begins to focus mainly on the lady shuffling her hands about, suggesting she’s nervous this person isn’t going to turn up. There are a variety of zoom shots, as well as the odd link to the clock again to show how much time is going past. Finally, there is a shot of the person arriving and it seems to be a bit of a low angle shot to show he has a bit of power at the current time in the shot. There is also a lot of extreme close-up shots towards the end of the lady in the car showing her full emotion, as well as the car crash which shows how so much can happen in so little time.
The editing of this is quite good, it has a linear pattern, and shows how much could easily happen within a minute of time, and it works within a linear pattern. The way the clock was edited to the specific time makes it seem as if the whole thing happened within a minute, when obviously it didn’t, but it shows that sort of effect. The colour could have been corrected at certain times as well because of the colour changing from bright and happy to dull and miserable outside, this is to reflect the mood most likely at the specific time, as generally you would see bright colours as rather happy, and then dull colours as miserable.
The lighting used within this scene seem to be a mix of artificial (for example inside the buildings) to give it more of a golden tone to everything, as well as natural lighting for any lighting that is used outside, and technically artificial as well for example, street lights.
The music within this short film seems to be quite slow and sad, which will reflect the mood within the short film itself. There are also a wide range of Foley sound, for example the clock ticking through most of the production, and parts of the car.
Short Film # 6 – Colors:
COLORS_2015 (AWARD WINNING ONE MINUTE SHORT FILM (YatnaArts, 2015)
To start with in this, there are a variety of wide angle shots showing the whole location within the first few seconds of the clip itself, as well as a slow zoom in, and technically it could be argued as over the shoulder as well. There are in fact some over the shoulder shots being used and a high angle shot making the little girl seem somewhat weak compared to everyone else. There is a close-up on the peoples feet running into the building, as well as a fast pan of the people running towards the building just prior to the close-up. This moves onto a wide shot which shows them running from one side of the room to another. There are a range of extreme close-up shots as well showing the exact expressions that the characters give throughout each part of the scene, mainly being the family and the little girl. These are usually taken whilst they are in the neutral line, which gives them the opportunity to change direction at any time.
The editing for this is very effective, it makes the whole production flow effectively as well as shows how much work was put into it. The video itself has a few different effects used within it, such as at the start it has a simple fade out and fade in to show the camera has got slightly closer and changes the shot just ever so slightly. The editing in this makes the whole thing flow effectively and really does portray the message that even the worst things in life can create colours.
The lighting and colouring of this in particular is very bright, there are the odd moments where it is a bit dark (for example the footprint part), however otherwise the colours are very bright, which suggests a bit of artificial lighting was used within this production to create the soft light that it has.
Within this short scene, there are no Foley Sounds actually being used – the only sounds that we can hear throughout is music, and it starts off sounding quite sad and relaxed, however it seems to speed up as time goes on and add a variety of different sounds (through the soundtrack) along with it. This seems effective as it sets the mood instantly and also shows progress throughout, as we can hear the song get a lot happier towards the end, reflecting the current mood within the short film.
There are various different aspects that I need to consider about creating my production, and I have an idea in my head that I think could work effectively, and still portray an idea of friendships. In particular, I wanted to focus mine on more “long distance friendships” or “internet friendships” as I have long distance friendships myself, and the only way to really communicate to them is either through text messages, emails, social media or services such as Skype, or even travelling to their specific location, which can be quite difficult and costly sometimes. I feel that my idea was sort of influenced by the “Special Date” video, however with a twist of my own which is obviously the Skype part.
The location that I plan to use is simply my house for this project, there are a few different locations within the house that I will be using, these include:
- The Bedroom
- The Bathroom
- The Computer Room/Office
For the bedroom part of my scene, I plan on having it seem as if the character has overslept, and their phone alarm goes off and they see that it is a lot later than they expected, and they have a text that says something such as “Where are you” from one of the friends, at this point in time, it’ll make it seem like it’s a general meet-up outside somewhere rather than through a computer screen, this will then end with the character rushing out of the bed, quickly getting changed and then running straight into the bathroom to start getting ready.
The Bathroom will probably be one of the main parts of the scene itself, the first thing that will happen will be a close up of putting some music on the phone, and then whilst in there it will be the simple parts that people generally do whilst getting ready (e.g brushing teeth etc.), then moving onto fixing the hair up, maybe even singing into the hairbrush as that might add a bit of humour to it, using hair spray and then coughing a bunch from the hair spray, applying eyeliner and then finally getting a text at the end of all of it saying “How long are you going to be!?” or something similar. I had the idea to show that time was going by, by changing the song throughout each part that happens within this specific part of the short film. This part of the scene will most likely be shot through the mirror in the bathroom.
The Computer Room/Office
The main point of the whole short film will be shown in this part of the scene, finally coming to sit down at the computer, and going into a Skype Call where all of the other people are and then saying something simple such as “Hey! Sorry I’m late!” or something similar. It’s quite simple, but I feel it will be effective of the ways to overcome the long distance friendships that are out there, and show how it can totally be possible.
The main props that will be used within this short film in particular will be the phone, the computer will be a major one as well, a simple toothbrush, hairspray, eyeliner, a hair brush and a comb. Headphones could also be considered a prop as they will be simply used for the Skype part. Most of the office room equipment could also be considered as the microphone in there is used for online-talking as well.
The costumes within this will be quite simple luckily, and won’t need any extra costs going out towards the costumes. It’ll start with a costume which is simply pajamas, or at least similar to them, moving onto general clothing for the getting ready part of the short film. Quite simple luckily!
The Synopsis for the short film that I’m producing is that it starts off with a phone alarm going off, and you can hear it right at the start. This then moves onto a shot of the phone and the alarm still going off with finally the person waking up to the alarm (a lot later than expected) and has overslept. The person then rushes out of bed and into the bathroom to start getting ready, it starts simply with a quick shot of them in the mirror doing these activities: brushing their teeth, moving onto them brushing their hair, them singing into the brush for one of the songs playing, them backcombing their hair, then hair spraying their hair followed by coughing, whilst receiving a text that says “Where are you?” from one of the friends, and the person replies with “I’ll be 5 minutes” or something similar. This then moves onto them continuing to get ready by applying eyeliner. Finally, they leave the bathroom and go into the main room for this scene – a close up of them opening the door, followed by them walking in and round to the chair, putting on their headphones and joining a Skype call.
It sounds quite simple, but it’s going to have to be quite a bit of planning. I want to make sure the people in the Skype call have their webcams on as well to try and show that it’s a form of seeing each other and share about how long distant friendships can work, as well as also show that online friendships can work as well. The people I speak to online I’ve known for a few years now, and I met them in such strange ways, and consider them to be some of my best friends. I even get to see them often in person which definitely beats just sticking to talking to each other online.
The script for my short film will be quite simple, as it won’t need too much for it, as long as it follows the storyboard or is at least similar to the storyboard. The script will be as followed, or at least very similar with a few different actions:
The storyboard for my short film is essential so that I have a rough visual idea of what I want to happen. I don’t have to use it in the specified order that I’ve selected, however I feel that it will be quite effective in that way as it will allow me to know roughly what I would like within the specific scene, possibly with a couple of other actions or shots used.
My location recce covers three different locations within my house, in particular, the three that I will be using. I feel that this is an effective document to use as it really allows me to look into my locations in more detail to check that they are going to be suitable, as well as be the best locations to use for the specific shoot rather than somewhere else. This can be shown in the images below:
Health and Safety Risk Assessment
I have also taken a health and safety risk assessment within my three locations to be able to check if there are any hazards that will need to be fixed before the shoot, and surprisingly there are a few – not loads, but a few, and they are shown in the two screenshots below:
The text is quite small in the second screenshot sadly, so I’ll type it again so that it is fully viewable:
1.3 – Lack of Space for the Camera – Putting the tripod in a more suitable location, for example in the bath or a bit higher up and further back, taking advantage of the zoom. – Medium.
1.4 & 1.7 – Some wires could be a hazard – Moving the wires out of the way before the shoot and making sure it’s clean in the area – High
1.8 – Could cause coughing that’s unnecessary – Clean up the dust before the shoot in the specific locations – High.
UAL Project Proposal
This is my UAL Project Proposal document to show the Rationale of the short film in approximately 100 words, the Project Concept for my short film and a small evaluation of how I will have my project evaluated at the end of the post-production process. As well ast his, there is a Proposed Research Sources and Bibliography section which has the resources that I used to, and where I tried to get ideas for the current project.
Within the week, I started producing my project on Wednesday the 8th of March as I had work for the rest of the week, and mainly needed it completed within the morning. I started filming at about 11am and finished at about 1:30pm, which was enough time to get all the required shots within that amount of time before work, as well as being able to check over my footage to see if I needed to get any other shots.
To start with within the day, I did actually sleep through my alarm, luckily I have two set and it allowed me to wake up just in time for it. A main problem that occurred is that I wasn’t feeling too great the day before hand, and it had a slight knock on effect onto this day, however I still tried my hardest to get it completed as I had work for the rest of the week and the Wednesday afternoon.
I started recording my footage at about 11am after getting all of my equipment ready, and straight away, there was a problem – my tripod was broken, and even better – my spare tripod was broken! I had to work with what I had at the time, as I didn’t have any other tripods, and luckily I managed to push one of the legs straight back into the socket and keep it there for a short while… until later in the day, but that will come later in the post.
After the first catastrophe, luckily the majority of the shots went quite smoothly, with a few takes on each shot (except for the getting ready part). For the getting ready part, I just made sure that the mirror was in focus at all times so that no progress had to be reversed. After each part I looked through the footage that I had to check whether or not it was good to go, or whether I thought it would need to be reshot. The reshoots occurred on Sunday the 12th of March, as well as the final part of the scene (the Skype Call).
There was a major problem which could’ve stopped the entire shoot that occurred on Wednesday, as I was about to film one of the shots, the tripod simply gave up and just fell about 4 feet – this wouldn’t be too bad, however, the camera was straight ontop of it, and it could’ve ended as a disaster. Luckily, the camera was perfectly fine still, same with the microphone, the batteries for the camera and the lens for the camera. This could’ve been a major problem, and if the camera did in fact break, I would’ve had to either borrow a camera or use a replacement for the camera, such as simply my iPhone 6s for parts. I luckily had the funds for a cheaper camera if it was needed too.
This is what it looked like originally, then suddenly…
There was the odd problem as well where suddenly one of my cats peered into the shot, so I had to reshoot some of them and move them straight out of the current part of the short film, just so that I was able to get it the way that I wanted it, and so there were no cat distractions in the final piece.
The biggest problem that I had whilst I was filming was that I was doing this project on my own – there was nobody to help me with anything such as lighting or the camera work, so I was completely in charge of every aspect of this production. I originally asked my dad if he could help me out with it, but he had work most of the time I needed to film, so I ended up deciding that the best bet was to use my tripod, and try and be as effective as I could without having to pan or tilt the camera and make the whole scene work. As well as this, there are tripods that can work from a remote to pan and tilt, so this could’ve been a solution (but of course, that’s quite a bit of money to get one).
At first, I was going to get the footage for the Skype call recorded later in the day once my friend Fraser was home from work, however, he was busy in the night so we decided to reschedule it to the reshooting day, and it came out quite nicely, even though it was simple. On Sunday the 12th of March, I used the morning to get some re-shoots of certain parts that needed reshooting desperately. This included a phone text message, getting clothes out of a draw as well as finally getting the main part of the scene completed – the Skype Call. For this, I managed to get my friend onto Skype and get him on webcam and record him and myself in a Skype Call. There were a couple more shots that were being completed on this day, such as a simple door opening.
I feel that the Production part of my project was quite successful. Luckily as well, Fraser has a good microphone on his end, and the equipment used for it was simply a webcam on either of our ends, our microphones (his being the Blue Yeti Microphone, mine being the Rode NT1) as well as the PC recording software OBS Studio (Open Broadcast Software Studio) with 1080p 30fps settings on to make the footage rather smooth and fit with the current project settings as the camera recorded in 1080p 30fps too. I feel that the whole production went quite well, and am looking forward to the Post-Production stage
Within the week starting Monday the 13th of March, this will be where Post-Production begins. Within this week I will be editing the footage together, asking around for some feedback about it as well as finally uploading it to various different platforms (such as YouTube, Instagram, Twitter etc.) to try and get it out there a bit.
Starting off with my footage, I made sure that I watched through all of it through the computers at the college to make sure it was the best it possibly could be, and if anything needed re-shooting in the post-production process. After looking through the footage that I have, it seemed that nothing actually needed re-shooting for a third time, so luckily it seemed that it was on to the edit! Straight after this, I started importing the files I wanted to use into a new project within Avid (at 1080p 30fps as that’s what my camera recorded on the day) so that I could start work on the edit – one problem with this, the footage was quite long on parts of them, and it took about an hour just to import all of the visual footage, there’s not really a solution for this, so in the end I just had to wait for it to import and get some other things done such as part of this blog post.
To start with, I wanted to talk about the various different effects that I used within the short film that I’ve created, and to keep continuity and the scene running quite nicely, there’s a few that I had to use, especially to make it seem more “rushed” in the manner of time is running out to get ready, as I’d be “late”. The main effect used was the “Speed Boost” effect to change the speed of the specific clip to try and make it a lot faster, as shown in the screenshots below.
Another effect that I used was the head and tail fades as I thought these would make some clips flow a bit nicer, especially for some music and the introduction. A main part in the introduction was the title, and the clock moving ever so slightly, this took 2 different title tools to do as it could then allow a title over another title, which could make the clock move. I didn’t actually know how to make it move or even rotate at the time, and I couldn’t find it online anywhere after searching for about 15 minutes, so I then thought this would be a good resolution to fix my current problem.
There was actually only one transition within my whole piece which surprised me quite a bit, however I tried to keep continuity without using too many transitions, so I decided maybe it would be best to try and just use one at the start, as it could work quite nicely. The transition that I used was the Head/Tail Fade again, as I thought this would clearly move one of the shots into the other like a Cross Dissolve would.
Within the edit of this short film production, I surprisingly used quite a few different sound effects and music choices. To start with, I simply used the iPhone alarm known as “Marimba” as I thought it would be quite a generic alarm to use, and it would fit within the first part of the scene effectively, and it’s one everyone can recognise straight from the start as being an iPhone alarm.
Continuing with the sound effects used, I wanted to make sure it sounded as natural as possible, and wanted to make the production sound as similar as possible to what reality would sound like. There were a few specific sound effects which made a slight difference within the production itself, the majority of them coming from FreeSound.org. These include a fast and quick rustling sound effect (from iesp) which was for picking up the headphones towards the end, a creaking door (from suhral) for the door opening to make it sound a bit more life-like, a door opening and closing (from rivernile7) as it would be more effective than me recording the audio on location – the reason I say that is because the audio that I originally got didn’t have a sound towards it, and at the time I didn’t know too much how to re-create the sound. There’s also the iPhone Lock Screen sound effect which I recorded from my phone locking into the Rode NT1 Microphone, the text message sound effect (when a text is outgoing and make’s the small sound to say it’s sent), as well as the iPhone SMS Tone (for the text message actually going off). There’s also a small use of sound effects such as the hairspray sound effect (from grizzlypwn) as trying to record hairspray as a sound effect is a nightmare and sounds nothing like hairspray does. As well as this there was the electric toothbrush sound (from adeluc4) as the recording sounded more like a vibration than the toothbrush going off. There was also the simple “beep” sound effect that was used in previous productions within the weeks as it was quite effective to try and suggest something was pressed on the phone to start the music. There are some simple footsteps used within this production as well (from speedygonzo) which produces a better sense of movement, however it’s not too loud making it seem that it’s on quite a soft surface at the time. The Skype ringing sound effect was also used to try and make use of the idea that this is simply a Skype call rather than going out to see someone, and to show how to overcome long distance friendships. This was recorded through my computer at home when the call was being received. There was also a draw opening and closing as the sound that I originally recorded wasn’t too good on that either, so luckily caithlin-100 on FreeSound had a sound of the draw opening and closing to take the place of this one. Finally – there were 2 pieces used within the bed section, these being: the general bed foley sound effect (from bsmacbride) and the cape swoosh sound effect (from cosmicembers) to make use of it sounding more natural like a bed would. Quite a lot of sound effects this week, but it was all in good-use to make sure that it sounded as best as possible within a minute and keep people hooked.
Within this week I actually tried to use a tiny bit of Foley sound which I recorded on the 12th of March on the re-shoots. This in particular was the coughing part within the footage (where the hairspray is). I thought that if I used the original footage, you would hear music faintly in the background which wasn’t at a very good quality at the time, as well as the hairspray that was already there not working too well with it, so instead I watched the footage over and over, and recorded myself in Audacity a few times until I got the coughing part quite close to what it would actually look like within the footage.
The final part of this section is dedicated to the Music that I used within the scene – to avoid any copyright notices, I made sure I only used a minimal amount of each of the songs that I’ve chosen within this as that can be classed under the “Fair Use” act, and I’ve also used the music to try and make it look like time is taking some time for each part, and shows progress through the scene.
The first song heard within this is Motorhead’s “Ace of Spades” as it’s a great song in my opinion, and has some meaning towards my dad in particular, as Lemmy (the singer from Motorhead) who died back in late December 2015 was his flat mate in London a long time ago, as well as being good friends throughout and before his career, and I wanted to make sure I had something to show some form of remembrance, as well as show the scene suddenly change from somewhat “happy” to “this is fast and extreme and the character is likely rushing”.
Motörhead - Ace Of Spades (Canal de BoPTePegar, 2009)
The next song that I used within the footage was to try and make it seem quite comedic by adding something that a general person would easily do in the mirror. The song that I chose was Queen’s “I Want to Break Free”, again, because I like the song and it seemed quite comedic.
Queen - I Want to Break Free (Official Video), (Queen Official, 2008)
The next song that I decided to use was Livin’ On A Prayer because I thought it was quite a good one to have in the mix of the songs that I’ve already used – a few times people suggested I should add Brittany Spears for a laugh, but I’m not too sure about that one!
Bon Jovi - Livin' On A Prayer (BonJoviVEVO, 2009)
The next song that I decided to use was Alice Cooper’s “Poison” as I liked the song, and also thought that it would fit quite nicely into the short film that I produced.
Alice Cooper - Poison (AliceCooperVEVO, 2009)
Finally, the final song that I used within my short film was Muse’s “Mercy” as it’s quite a different song to have within the ones that have been chosen, an could suggest that it is the end of the “getting ready” process and can move onto the next part of the scene nicely. I also originally chose this song as I had an idea of using some flashbacks towards the end (as me and my friend went to a Muse concert in London back in April 2016, and I recorded us at it at the time), and sadly I already had around a minute, and the only things I could change the time of were the “getting ready” part of the scene to make it fit. This is still an idea, and I might cut them down a few milliseconds to make them more effective (as from the feedback I’ve received from others).
Muse - Mercy [Official Music Video] (Muse, 2015)
The Final Edit
The final edit for my production seems quite simple, however there is a bit of complexity in the timing for this, and the way all of it works together.
Within my sequence as shown in the screenshot above, there are 4 video tracks, and 4 audio tracks. I tried to make as much of it as effective as possible, as well as keep it working in a continuous screen direction, and getting away with using some by using the neutral line to change the direction.
The visuals within this production were actually quite straight forward, the majority of the visual shots are shown on the second track, as for the first track was a simple opening shot, and the third and fourth tracks were for the clock changing the time which was done through tree different titles – the first one being the word “Late”, the second one being the clock with only one hand (being the hour hand) and the third one being the minute hand for the clock to change the time (it’s not majorly noticeable unless you look carefully, but it is there). The reason that I stuck to mainly use one track was so that I could make sure that the screen motion was all in one place and worked effectively.
The audio within this production worked quite nicely, and I actually used a wide variety as shown previously in this post – with the music working to show time is going past a bit easier than using different sections of the same song for different parts, as well as the Foley sound such as at the start to make it sound like the phone’s audio is coming from another room, and just in general I feel that it works quite nicely for all of these reasons, as well as the ones previously stated in the post.
Finally, here is my one minute short film that I decided to call “Late” – it’s simple, effective and it’s something people could easily search for. As well as this it fits perfectly with what the scene is about and will let the audience know straight away what it’s about – being late!
As it’s the end of the post-production stage, that shows that the short film is officially complete! As always I will be evaluating my work, as well as getting some other people to have a look at it and give me some constructive criticism for next time, as well as try and find out what went well within the shoot.
My project was about long distant friendships, and I feel that it worked quite nicely from the inspiration of the “Special Date” video, as it shows that long distant friendships can be achieved through what we have nowadays, such as texting, social media & software such as Skype (which can also be on apps on the phone too). My original plan was to have it a lot more simplified than what I actually ended up doing. After looking at the storyboard that I produced, despite it not being too great, it reflected what actually occurred within the final edit. I decided to add some form of establishing shot at the beginning of the edit from another shot that I took later in the day, which would obviously show the title, and would present a rough idea of what the short film was about, without giving it away straight away. This then moved onto what I had on my storyboard – the first shot which was simply a shot of the character in bed, and the alarm going off, the second shot which was a close up on the alarm (just in the final production it was at a different angle to prevent the camera being reflected in the phones display) and the third shot which was rushing out of bed. After this I decided it would be quite a good idea to show the person actually grabbing some clothes rather than running straight into the bathroom, so I decided to include a few extra shots, such as the journey rushing into there and show the character had actually somewhat changed clothes. This then moved back to what I had in my storyboard, with shot 4 being simply brushing the teeth in the mirror with a song in the background (which I chose “Ace of Spades” for, as I thought it was quite a good way to show “this is rushing now”). As well as this it moved onto shot 5 which was the simple brushing down of the hair, and into shot 6 which was singing into the hairbrush – I could’ve changed the song if I wanted to as you can’t actually see the mouth in this shot, and some people suggested using Brittany Spears instead, but I thought personally it would fit better with the music used if I used Queen’s “I Want To Break Free”. Continuing forward, this then moved onto the backcombing part being shot 7 which lasted possibly a few seconds too much, then straight onto the hairspray part being shot 8 from my storyboard. This then moved onto the phone text from shot 9. After this there was a simple eyeliner shot that lasted a second at most, and this then moved onto a thumbs up in the mirror. This was where I changed my storyboard a tiny bit more again, as I felt it might be an idea to have the door opening just in case, and it would make it flow nicer, so I had a few shots of the door opening, and then the normal shots of walking through to the computer, putting the headphones on and then the Skype call at the end.
I also thought it could’ve been an idea to try and get a few shots of some flashbacks at the end, as they were some memories that I had, however my short film was already a minute long as the requirement said “It has to be one minute”, so I decided not to use them. They’re quite simple clips, and I thought it might make it a bit better at the time, but after thinking about it, it could’ve ruined the whole project for me, so I decided to leave it as I had it as I was actually quite happy with how it turned out, and felt that it worked really effectively as it was already and portrayed my message across. My goal in the end was achieved as my ultimate goal was how typically, people want to look “as best as possible” when they go out to meet their friends, and sometimes when you’re at home and on the computer it doesn’t matter as much, but as soon as you put your webcam on, that all changes – and it also presents and idea it’s actually “going out to meet friends” rather than staying in and going simply into a Skype call.
I feel the most challenging part of this project is that I did it all on my own (except for the Skype call, as my friend was able to help out with that quickly). It might sound strange, but being in control of everything – the camera, the lighting, the audio, the whole pre-production process, the whole production process etc. without much help was quite difficult as there were obviously specific shots that I couldn’t get, such as any pan, tilt or tracking shots. Even though I didn’t use these shots, I still feel it worked quite effectively as the screen motion was kept throughout the entirety of the short film, and maybe using something as simple as a pan, tilt or tracking shot could’ve even ruined my production. I think the most different part about this production is the ending, after someone has got ready as they’re late and their friend texts them asking “Where are you?”, and unless you know me personally, you would think that my friend Fraser actually lived around here and was outside somewhere waiting for me, but no, he actually lives over in Bath, and using a Skype Call within my production I feel it was quite different and actually quite interesting because it’s portraying a different way in life about how friendship can work, no matter the distance and how all of the technology around nowadays can make it so you can see your friends from afar no matter where you are. Below I’ve included a couple of screenshots from clips that didn’t make the final edit of this production, but it shows me and my friend actually in person rather than in a Skype call, as we meet up every other month roughly, or at least try to as much as possible, and we pretty much talk every day on services such as Skype, TeamSpeak & Discord. I feel bringing someone quite close to me into a college project was actually a nice idea as he’s one of the people I speak to most often, and it was a great idea to get him included in the short film.
The screenshots above are only a few of the times we actually see each other in person, but the friendship still stays just as well despite not living close to each other.
The ideal target audience for my production in general was for people that generally like short films, people who have friends from either the internet or just in general have long distant friendships, as well as a tiny bit of comedy and people who like experimental projects. The reason I said these options are simply because within the final production I feel these are the ones that simply match up to the short film, as well as being my original intentions, and to show how much effort goes into friendship, no matter how far away the other person is. I feel my short film presents and promotes my idea to the chosen target audience, as at times it is quite funny to watch, it has a variety of different elements to keep it flowing, and I feel people would be wondering “What is he late for?” and would clearly understand at the end of the short film the effort that goes in. I feel the audience should consume the media production as I feel it is quite a good message, and also feel that it works quite effectively throughout, keeping the screen direction and portraying quite a good message about some of the technology around nowadays, and how effective it really can be. I feel the way that the alarm showed that the person was late at the start of the short film easily proved straight away that the person was late for something – whether it was work, meeting a friend or something in general, and it instantly has the audience thinking “this is someone who’s woken up late to meet a friend” as soon as that text message has come through. I think once the person walks into the computer room, the audience know straight away that this is actually a Skype call as you can hear the Skype incoming call sound straight away, and it makes it finally proves what the message was actually about, and shows the friendship through technology uses.
During Production, there was almost a major catastrophe like I mentioned previously in the post with the tripod I was using at the time – it completely broke, and fell forwards and almost broke my camera, but luckily there wasn’t even a scratch on the camera or the lens that I used, and the microphone I used on the camera was perfectly fine as well which was a great thing. I think the main solution now is to say that I need to buy a new tripod (which I’ve been looking into for a while, but never had this problem with my tripod previously) and hopefully I can get it to work a lot nicer than my current one. To fix the tripod, luckily I could just slot it back in with some force and get the leg back on which seemed to work, but I know it’s going to give up again soon!
The other problem that I encountered during the production process was that some shots that I got at the time were quite blurry and just simply not in focus, and to fix this it was as simple as either using manual focus, or holding down the auto focus to focus on a specific area within the shot. If I didn’t notice until later in the day (as I had to go to work) and looking back at the shots when I uploaded them to the computer I was able to see what needed re-shooting before the post-production stage to get it as perfect as possible – the main ones were the opening and closing of the draw, the phone’s text message (as I just typed something like “6 minutes” because I couldn’t see the phone properly at the time) and finally the opening of the door clip just vanished as if I’d never originally recorded it, despite actually recording it… so I re-recorded that as well.
There was a problem during the production stage as well – I had to text myself! I couldn’t get my friend to text me at the time because he was working, so instead I changed my phone contact to his name (Fraser) and then text myself and quickly locked my phone so that the message would appear on my home screen. To prevent seeing the text twice within my messages, I held down the message so I could reply simply from the home screen. I feel this was quite effective as it would still have the text coming through and being sent as if it actually happened and could look a lot more realistic than unlocking the phone and then texting because that would just be extra time being “wasted” in the sense of the scene.
Within the post-production process, I encountered a couple of problems and luckily had a solution to the majority of them, all except for one which I did actually have a solution for, but it’s a bit too late to be able to get a solution for it. I will talk about this in particular a bit later in this section.
The first problem that I encountered during the post-production stage was that I moved one of the clips the tiniest bit, and I kept getting an error I’d never seen before whenever I tried doing absolutely anything: it came up with “A fatal error has occurred, restart the program immediately”. I did as it said and hoped that everything I had to that point had an auto-save (I did previously save in case, but a few shots before hand and would’ve had to re-edit the specific shots). Luckily, restarting the program brought it back up, and I only lost a tiny bit of audio which was easy to put back into place. Originally from what I remember the error came from putting a speed effect onto one of the clips and then moving the visual clip – so a rule for me is to pretty much never move one of them again (I probably will, it was probably just an error at the time).
Another problem that I came across throughout the editing was that I wanted to use an effective title at the start that had the clock changing, originally I tried using one of the rotate effects, however it just rotated the whole clip, and the one underneath it as well, and it just looked quite stupid as you can see in the screenshot below.
To overcome this, it was quite simple, and as I’ve previously mentioned in this post, I made three titles – one with the clock and the hour hand, one with the word “Late” and finally one with the minute hand so that I could move it easily. This seemed to work quite well, however it does seem a bit off-centre at times, but I think it looks quite nice and adds a bit more depth to the intro of the video to instantly let people know it’s about someone being late – they don’t know what for, but they know the person is late. Other ways I could’ve done this could have included simply animating it within Adobe Flash Professional and exporting it as a movie file, and then using a Chroma Key effect to remove the background, or I could’ve even found online an already-made clock that could’ve moved and then Chroma Keyed or masked it to cut it out.
Overall in the post-production stage I didn’t come across that many issues with either my visuals or audio, except for one major one which I only just realised after the editing and on Tuesday the 14th of March. Luckily it’s not too noticeable and I might just be able to get away with it – take a close look at both of these images, what can you see that’s different and doesn’t look right other than the time (which was intentional) and the alarm/text?
If you haven’t been able to notice, it’s a lot simpler than you’d expect, I just didn’t remember that the specific element shows up on the phone at the time, completely forgetting! If you look closely, have a look at the date – the first one taken from earlier in the scene was shot on Wednesday the 8th of March, and the second one on Sunday the 12th of March – I completely forgot to change the date on my phone in the second one as this was my re-shooting day – sadly it seems quite late to re-shoot this, however I might try and re-shoot it quickly either this Wednesday or Thursday as the deadline for this project is on Monday the 20th of March, and then I can keep the continuity, and I would just need to quickly edit the one piece on my phone to this. Otherwise it’s not a major issue as it’s not too noticeable as it’s only there for a split few seconds.
I think luckily my project was quite effective in solving the various different audio, visual and interactive problems that you could encounter – I clearly showed the majority of the problems at the start of this in the planning stage (pre-production) and could simply find out suitable methods to be able to continue with the production if something were to go wrong – and in many cases within my project, something did go wrong (such as the tripod giving up and a few re-shoots). As well as this, I was able to fix the majority of the problems that occurred without too much of a problem, and could work out different ideas that could help with the project rather than wasting time having to suddenly think about what I could do. Obviously as I was alone as well, I worked out quite a few different ways to be able to make something effective and work whilst just filming on my own without any help in the house what-so-ever, and I feel that was quite good practise there on it’s own as it meant if worse came to worse and I had to do a project on my own, I would know what to do in the majority of the different sectors (e.g how to run the camera, how to re-record/dub/ADR Audio, an effective lighting method etc.).
I think one of the main ways that I could make my project even better would be shortening some of the clips, literally just by a few milliseconds like it has been suggested, and maybe adding a bit of extra sound or some light music to the intro, but for all I know that could ruin it entirely unless I tried it first. One of the things that was suggested the most was by a few people, and as I said it was simply cutting down a few milliseconds in the “getting ready” stage of the short film, this could be quite effective as it would mean that the whole thing could probably flow a lot nicer, and maybe it would seem more rushed as well, for example, rather than having a specific clip keep running for 5 seconds, say put it down to 4 and a half and maybe it would work quite a lot nicer. That might be an idea for future use if need be. As well as this I would say next time I need to triple check the footage to make sure everything is correct, for example, that date on the phone! It’s a simple thing, however it would’ve made it look so much better if just that one thing was changed. Finally, I think if I had the chance to, I would re-shoot the whole short film again, as I feel I would be able to do it so much better now than I did then, however I am still quite happy with how this project turned out, but next time it might be an idea to try editing it from home first (not in Avid as I don’t have it at home) and have a look at what it could come out as, with a few different ideas, and then editing it in college fully and make it as best as possible.
For the Final Major Project that is coming up quite quickly, in a short amount of time, I feel that I’ve learnt quite a few different audio, visual and interactive skills that I could develop even further to be able to make my Final Major Project as best as possible.
A big audio skill that I’ve learnt and can develop even further is the different keyframing of different places to change the levels of the audio, as well as using programs such as Audacity to be able to edit some of the sound such as the way I did the phone call within Week 7’s task, or how I changed the pitch back in the Hello Project for one of the voices, or simply just changing the pitch of a voice through Avid – this could be very effective as it would mean that if I wanted to focus on a horror project for it, then I could make someone or “something” sound a lot deeper in the voice than it actually is. I think also experimenting with different microphones to use throughout this project was quite effective as I could get the best quality through different microphones and make it a lot more effective and even better throughout, and it’s helped me learn more about microphones in general. This could mean very clear audio could be used within my Final Major Project rather than audio from a phone or in general from the wrong microphone.
The biggest visual skills that I’ve learnt whilst working on this project I would have to say is screen motion and lighting. Without the screen motion, it wouldn’t flow, and I think I’ve started to understand it a lot more, and I’ve worked out quite a few different ways that it can be effective nowadays, and how I can take advantage of using the neutral line to be able to change whichever side of the camera I would want to go. I feel lighting has been an important aspect within this whole project as well. Without a decent lighting setup, every single piece of footage that is recorded wouldn’t look natural, it wouldn’t look right, something would look wrong about it, but luckily the project allowed me to work a bit more on lighting and make sure it was to the best of the ability, and if anything needed correcting it could be done within Avid. As well as this, previous work on it throughout the year allowed me to look at the lighting in different genres of films, so it allows me to know the best lighting setup for different genres, which could help majorly in the Final Major Project.
Finally, the interactive skills within this project are actually quite minimal as I didn’t really interact with many people throughout this project except for my friend. I feel that as I messaged my friend asking if he was available to help me with my project was quite good to start with, because I messaged him on the first day we got this task, and had his word that he would be able to help me for a quick few minutes through Skype and knew instantly that he would be able to help. In general, I’ve found myself to become quite a lot more interactive with people. I feel a lot more confident speaking to different people like the ones I don’t really speak to as much, and I think I’ve found that I’m getting a lot more comfortable just generally talking to people as well and not being as shy as I actually seem, especially with some opportunities that I get nowadays. I can see that my interactive skills with people is starting to improve, and I feel it could develop even further, especially for the Final Major Project where I want to get some of my friends involved with it that don’t actually live within this area, whether it’s getting them down here or physically going to them for a few days to get my project filmed, as I think they could be quite good at being in the projects to come, and I don’t do much off-screen filming with them unless I actually meet them again, and I feel it would be quite a lot better to go to these places rather than stay within the people I’m comfortable with at college already. Even though I’m already comfortable with them, I think it could easily improve my interactive skills with people easily.
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Sound Effect Credits
- S: Fast/Quick Rustling by IESP | License: Attribution
- S: creaking door_3.mp3 by suhral | License: Attribution
- S: creaking-door-open01.flac by Aiyumi | License: Creative Commons 0
- S: Door Open And Close by rivernile7 | License: Attribution
- S: Hairspray by grizzlypwn | License: Creative Commons 0
- S: electric toothbrush.aiff by adeluc4 | License: Creative Commons 0
- S: Typing on an iPhone.mp3 by Caitlin_100 | License: Creative Commons 0
- S: microwave beep.wav by KeyKrusher | License: Attribution
- S: Footsteps_sneakers on wood.wav by speedygonzo | License: Creative Commons 0
- S: Drawer open & close.mp3 by Caitlin_100 | License: Creative Commons 0
- S: Bed Foley.wav by bsmacbride | License: Creative Commons 0
- S: cape-swoosh by CosmicEmbers | License: Attribution