Friday, November 14, 2008

My disdain for filmmaking

I'm not crazy about this movie project. In fact, I've been dreading it since the Profs. mentioned it way back when we had the week off. I don't know why, it's just another project like any other. I thought because my thinking isn't very linear, it may make it extra difficult... but then I remembered my few interactions with film... and I'm still cringing.

In early middle school, I remember some boys who I went to elementary school with, coming up to me one day to tell they had been over to Josh's house and were watching their old soccer games. Well, apparently, there's a video of me playing goalie and one of the other boys (who was of course, the most handsome, charming, funny, soooo cute boy in the sixth grade and a neighbor of mine) running up to the goal and kicking the soccer ball... into my face. I was told I cried. I was told it looked like it hurt. And then they laughed. I didn't remember it at all, but at that moment, I absolutely hated technology that could record past events to be replayed unbeknownest me.

Then, in seventh grade, everyone had to make an "ad" in Social Studies. A friend and I made one for a trip to D.C. that the school was having. I played the Star Spangled banner on my sax for the soundtrack and we acted out a ridiculous script. Oh, the laughter that ensued. The tape of my saxophone playing was way too loud in the background to hear anything that was being said. And too loud to not notice the all too often errors. (I was never much for practicing.) It's like being in a ball park and the singer of the anthem is just too bad that you just want it to end. Well, it's 10x worse for the singer. I wanted it to end too. But no, the three minutes dragged on. How was I supposed to know that you have to actually adjust sound levels? Wouldn't it just tape the way it was playing out in my head?

I quit saxophone and stayed out of the spotlight for most of high school. Until senior year, when in one last show of bravada, some friends and I created a dance routine for Moulin Rouge's "Lady Marmalade" to perform as part of Air Band (essentially an end of the year hurrah where everyone lip syncs to silly songs in front of an auditorium of people.) Mid song I manage to forget most of my dance movies. was much more interested in observing the audience observing me than in actually performing. Well, unfortunately, during the senior week breakfast morning, they decided to have viewing of the evening's performances in case anyone had missed it. I slunked so far down when my group's song came up, I might as well have been lying on the floor.

There also may be a story about an educational video for Spanish class, but I'm not ready to open that Pandora's box. (Did you know Pandora actually had something more like an rounded sort of jug/vessel/vase thing, not a box? Box was just a word a writer chose because it sounded better.)

There's something about film and me that I equate with humiliation. But, hopefully this time it will be better--because I'm not in it, I'm behind it. Nevertheless... please keep your giggles to a minimum... or else I will never work in film again. That's a promise.

On a side note: after this project, I have an increased respect for moviemakers. I've always been impressed by the thoughtfulness of it all: the angle of shots, shooting scenes out of order, creating an ambience, multitasking in every aspect of life (sound, light, movement, time, etc.).
So, props to all you filmmakers out there.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Project 5 -Narrative

This iMovie project is definitely going to be not my best work, so to speak. I have no idea how to use iMovie and more own thinking isn't very linear, so this whole thing is going to be difficult. Not to mention, I'm just using jpgs, everytime I want someone to movie I'm working with same still and moving a limb or an eyebrow just a bit again and again. But anyway, that's not what this post is about.

There's something to be said about people who go through the trouble of stop-motion videos. Here's a great one (I don't know if there is sound or how it looks with sound, I don't have sound currently...): They used over 3,000 images.

London (harder, better, faster, stronger) from David Hubert on Vimeo.

[Update 11.12.08]
Here's another cool video (not a stop-motion)--again, no sound, so I don't know if the music is any good. I like the concept. It starts to lag, but watch til the end, the credits part is pretty cool.
I wonder if they hired a hand model?

KRAAK AND SMAAK squeeze me from FunkySpaceMonkey on Vimeo.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Show & Tell: Narrative

For last week's class, I brought a Tretorn ad that was a photograph of a boy chasing a girl on a bike. I thought it might constitute a narrative, but it turns out the image itself isn't a narrative, it's a visual snippet, and as the viewer I create the narrative (he catches the elusive girl). Although, I think it was close to a narrative because it did show action . I think the main thing that prevents it from being a narrative is the fact that it didn't show a progression of time. I suppose that's the difference between vignette and narrative. Vignettes are snippets. Narratives include time.

I guess an important thing to discuss is to define what narrative is. Dr. Gisbon says it has to include two characters, conflict, time... maybe some other stuff. The dictionary defines narrative: a story or account of events, experiences, or the like, whether true or fictitious. So I think the most important part of narrative is that it's an account of events (plural!). So not characters, conflict, etc., but time.

Which brings me to this Candian Club whiskey ad, which is one of my favorite ads. I think this is a narrative because we see the images as retelling events, and the headline "Your mom wasn't your dad's first" is the thread between the images. With both these elements there is a narrative within the ad, rather than being supplied by the viewer--although, the viewer could easily add more to the narrative with some imagination.