Media Objects: Editing Task

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For this task I decided to create a horror trailer. I cut together the footage from my Single Shot Video Assessment as well as footage from archive.org of different horror films. I also cut in my photography work and audio tasks. I used iMovie to create the horror trailer with their trailer template. This created exactly what I was aiming for and with the audio playing over each other it created an eerie and action packed trailer.

My video task was somewhat of an action film already so it was easy to cut that footage together and create an action packed trailer. Inspired by the films The Ring (2000) and a Touch of Evil (1958) as seen on blackboard, I wanted to create a real sense of horror that would impact the audience both visually and aurally.

The task asked us to explore editing based on the theme or idea of ‘impact.’ Impact to me represents being affected by what you watch. Horror films have always left a big impact on me and would affect my sleep and day to day activities if it were particularly scary. I wanted to capture the horror genre in my trailer and leave the audience craving more. I wanted my trailer to incorporate impact not only through story telling but also in the fast paced editing required to leave an impact on the audience. The visuals I used hinted at a dangerous and off putting course of narrative. I wanted the style to be fast and sharp hinting at danger in every corner. The audio used was a mix of iMovie stock horror audio and my audio assessments including the heartbeat track, catalyst song as well as my own audio tracks of raining.

For the most part I am happy with my trailer however I would have preferred to just use my video project as the only source of footage. I am proud of what we shot for the single video assessment task. The black and white cinematography and action packed sequence provided plenty to use for a horror (or thriller, action, mystery) trailer. I feel using found footage off the internet cheapened my trailer and gave it a tacky youtube mashup vibe. Originally I planned to use horror films of the black and white period to match with my black and white single shot video. However as I searched for footage I found some quite frightening video of clowns and steamy alley ways that I couldn’t resist including in my final. Although the footage doesn’t match with my single shot video I found the impact is more disturbing juxtaposed with my footage.

I enjoyed completing this task as I love editing. I want to continue editing films and I believe the opportunity will arise again as I complete my Masters.

 

Sources of my found footage video included in the trailer;

https://archive.org/details/OdeToTheHorrorMovie

https://archive.org/details/Horror_201307

https://archive.org/details/AHORRORMONTAGE

https://archive.org/details/GrindhouseHorrorTrailerCollection

 

Sources of audio

Catalyst by Zilmrah at freesound.org

Heartbeat at 60bpm by klangfabrik at freesound.org

 

Media Objects: Photography Critical Reflection

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For our photography assessment we are to create five images, which represent the theme of ‘Catalyst’. The theme of catalyst was selected to emphasise this point; something that provokes change, that exists on the precipice of cause-and-effect relationships.

As I looked at the theme of catalyst, I looked at catalysts in my own day-to-day activities. As I poured my cup of coffee and sat to drink it I thought about coffee and its affect on my day and my body. Coffee is regularly drunk in the morning with breakfast. It contains caffeine, which can give one a boost of energy to start their day. I thought coffee would be a great object to look at for my photography.

However I didn’t just want to take five pictures of someone drinking coffee. Originally I wanted to take slow motion shots of the coffee machine at work. The coffee powder hitting the cup. The boiled water steaming towards the powder. I thought this could be a good idea. I researched how to take slow motion photography, which could be taken with a high-speed camera. As I researched different techniques I can up with another idea. I thought of a sequence of five shots showing different catalysts including coffee, red bull and alcohol and how they change the body. Then I began developing this new idea.

I changed my mind one last time as I was researching different photography techniques I found ‘burst’ photography. Burst photography is a series of shots taken in quick succession which can either be blended together in one image or separated to find the best shot. I thought I could incorporate this technique with my idea. I thought of coffee and the sequence of how its made with the water hitting the powder to create change and ultimately create change in someone’s body. I decided on five different breakfast foods as they are catalysts for each person’s day. They help them wake up and strive.

I chose five different forms of catalysts for breakfast.

Coffee: Hot coffee whether you have it black, with milk, or with sugar is the quintessential pick up for everybody in the morning. It contains loads of caffeine, which can give you a boost and gets you up and ready for work, school or play.

Green Tea: A hot cup of green tea is becoming increasingly popular in our western culture. It is quickly becoming a healthier option to coffee and even regular black tea. With less caffeine and more antioxidants, green tea also helps with cancer prevention, cardiovascular health and weight loss. I now have one black coffee in the morning and if I need another boost during the day I’ll have a green tea.

Berocca: Berocca is also becoming a healthier choice for a boost in the morning. With Vitamins B & C, Folic Acid, Magnesium, Biotin, Zinc and Calcium Berocca does indeed give you that “B-B-Bounce”. It is a powdered tablet, which you put in water and allow it to quickly dissolve. Then drink it up and your ready for another busy day.

Eggs: Eggs are an important whole food and are a healthy and tasty option for breakfast. They are packed with protein and can be fried, scrambled or poached. I love them any way and I especially love them with bacon in the morning. They also help you get a boost in the morning and help you take on another busy day.

Juice: The last image would be of a blender and juice. This is a very healthy option for breakfast. You can put fruit, vegetables, milk or water blend them together and have a tasty healthy breakfast. They will also give you a boost in the morning as most fruits contain sugar and while drinking the juice you get a pretty quick hit of sugar from the fruits.

One can also see my photos in another form of catalyst as they each show how the breakfast is made through a sequence such as the coffee hitting the water, tea bag hitting the water, berocca hitting the water, egg getting cooked and fruit getting blended shows the cause and effect chain and the change that happens when elements combine.

I am quite happy with how my shots came out. Although during the week while I was researching and taking my shots I came over with a terrible cold. My last two shots of the blender and the berocca I feel aren’t as strong as the shots for coffee and eggs.

I enjoyed this task and it gave me an opportunity to be creative with photography. I used photoshop to digitally edit my photos by improving the contrast and overlapping the images. I am happy with my finals and feel more confident with taking shots and photo editing.

Before I took the photos I storyboarded each shot.

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Below are my final images (Note: these photos are compressed for this site. I have emailed the files in their full format to the lecturers)

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Media Objects – Single Shot Video Critical Reflection

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For the assessment task – Single Shot Video, the students of Media Objects were to get into a group and develop an idea for a one-minute single take video incorporating the theme of “success”. On the first day of our intensive I met Brenda, Bo and Mari. We got together and worked on a practise task, which enabled us to work together and get to know each others strengths and weaknesses regarding the production of a short single take film. Our practise task was successful and with our newfound confidence in filmmaking, we began developing our single shot assessment task.

Success as a theme can be represented in many ways. The night before I had watched The Wolf of Wall Street directed by Martin Scorsese. That film explored the idea of success by tracing the rise and fall of a Stock Broker who cheated his way to the top. The character of Jordan Belfort played brilliantly by Leonardo DiCaprio believed success was directly tied to being rich. Money was his main motivation throughout the film, and he would stop at nothing to ensure he had as much as possible. After hearing that our theme was success I automatically thought of that film and of doing something similar. However every good idea that I had would require a multiple cuts. The single take was limiting to my vision and I had to rely on other ideas in order to be successful in this task. We eventually decided on the idea of someone being robbed and chased and then being rescued and that would be the “success.” It would be shot with an in your face, action aesthetic similar to director Paul Greengrass of The Bourne Identity films. These films incorporate a lot of handheld action, which give you the experience of actually being there. It is thrilling and leaves the audience with a dizzying effect. We knew because of the constraints of having one shot, we had to make it as thrilling as possible so the audience would be able to experience something new in this format. We decided on including a chase scene, which would give the viewer a sense of the real time action. As we developed the story further we agreed on a location and who would act and film.

The story would be as follows;

Brenda would walk down the stairs of a train station, walk down an empty alleyway where she would get a phone call. As she answered the phone, unbeknown to her, Bo would snatch her bag and run down the alleyway. I would play a local merchant who just happened to be there. I would intervene, get the bag off her and return it to Brenda. The success would be her getting her bag back.

We filmed the scene in a few takes and were happy with the results. As we returned to class our tutor Jeremy took a look. He gave us feedback and said that perhaps we could include a bit more to the story, perhaps some form of a narrative twist. We all agreed and decided to meet up the weekend after and re-film our scene. During the week we kept in touch via email and discussed how we could improve our one shot film and add a twist. We decided to have Brenda have an envelope with something important inside and put it in her bag. As she is robbed by Bo, I would again intervene and rescue her bag. However the twist is that Bo and I are in it together and I get the envelope from her bag while I return it to her. As Brenda leaves happy her bag is returned. I meet Bo and tell her I got the envelope and that’s our “success”.

Our second round of filming took longer than our initial film, however due to the advanced storyline, many takes were required. We had up to 19 different takes and the last one was the best. As we filmed that day problems with the film included the actors not being able to keep a straight face and shaky handheld filming. We didn’t use the Sony Video Camera we used the week before, we used a Canon DSLR, which unfortunately wasn’t as stable as the Sony Camera from the University. The smooth filming from the first day was lost in the process. Our final cut is shakier however it does incorporate the handheld action aesthetic that we originally wanted. Our video now looks more in the style of the action films of Paul Greengrass and Michael Bay.

Our final cut will be uploaded to youtube for public viewing. I will advertise it through my blog as well as social media such as Twitter and Instagram. I am happy with our final cut and hope to make a film with my group again.

Title: The Envelope

Credits:

Written & Directed by Bo Dechphant, Mari Guren, Daniel Hennequin & Brenda Au-Yeung

Starring:

Brenda Au-Yeung as Lady with envelope

Bo Dechphant as Thief

Daniel Hennequin as Stranger/Helper

Director of Photography: Mari Guren