Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Bolex Shoot

Initially I was very iffy about doing the Saturday shoot without having Andre present. Once the day had arrived, I felt okay enough with my own knowledge of the bolex and the film processing along with the knowledge of my other classmates that it seemed like an average shoot except easier! Because our partner group knew exactly what to do and what they wanted for their shoot, we didn't have much to do. It was the same way once our group received the bolex. We were able to knock out our shot after two quick run throughs. Processing was cool. I was worried about this portion the most but it was actually my favorite part. To process the film yourself and see your work come to life in your hands was incredible. It created a different feeling than the processing of the rayograms. When we loaded it into the projector and ran it so record it digitally, I felt a sense of gratitude to see it on screen. We were all really stoked with how we started with one idea and were able to see it through. I look forward to editing it and adding in the sensory elements.

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Bridgman Packer

The workshop portion we had with Bridgman Packer was an interesting experience. I wasn't expecting to loosen up and dance. With that said, I was somewhat glad there were actually dancers there because I'm sure most if not all of us were not as comfortable with using our bodies. On top of that, it was nice to mirror or feel a sense of encouragement to loosen up from the dancers but especially for the camera. It was a little intimidating at moments because I had no idea what to do or how to move. That's what makes us different from dancers, we're used to being behind the camera or being directed. As filmmakers we think about placements on screen but we don't consider movement of the body and how that translates to the big screen. The whole concept of using cameras and projections together was something I never consider for creating my own work, but now that I've experienced it, it's one experimental way I'll keep in mind. 

The actual performance that Friday was far from what I was expecting despite our attendance to the workshop. Both pieces were very well thought out, however, the first half resonated with me a lot better. Bridgman and Packer did an amazing job using both the curtain and their own bodies and costumes for the projections. With the curtain piece, it was cool because at certain points it took me a second or two to figure out if it was the projected image of them or if it were actually them. The portion with the instillation was a bit harder to grasp. Projection and image wise, it was clearly well thought out. It was interesting to see their image and not their actual body on stage. Something about that is very powerful -  to be somewhere but not physically. 

Overall, I thought it was a great experience. It would have been great to have other opportunities like this in my other years here at school. I found it beneficial and think it could be a great source of inspiration for others.

Monday, March 17, 2014

Reflection on Crowdsourcing

My overall impression of crowdsourcing is that it can be very difficult. To me, it reminds me of when you're given say a box of candy for a school fundraiser and you have to see all of the candy in the box, otherwise you just look like a loser and/or you have to pay for it. With crowdsourcing, if you don't put yourself out there, no one is going to be there to listen, and no one is going to wait for you either. I didn't really push for my friends to help with with the crowdsourcing assignment for a few reasons. I did have my roommate do one frame because she has the perfect handwriting for an idea, but other than that I either didn't trust my friends to do well or make the frame worth it, or I just felt like I would be a burden to them. To crowdsource and to really make anything happen in life, I know I will need to change up my way of thought and approach because without action there are no results.

Through this assignment I confirmed to myself that when it comes to work that has my name attached to it, I am very protective over the end product meaning I want it to be just as good as something I would producer or better. That is why I did not want my not-so-artistically-inclined friends to do any frames. Crowdsourcing is not a technique I can see myself using. I prefer a more hands on approach with my work.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

St. Louise Response Exercise

Watching a cameraless film this time around was a different experience. Being able to watch it this time, I was able to notice certain techniques that were used to complete assignment one. A few aspects that stood out to me were the use of animation, scratching, and film stock with pre-recorded footage. Doing the animation for assignment one was a good starting place for what I completed, and seeing what the Scratch Film Junkies did with the use of the arrows was great. It's what I would like to accomplish if I continue to do cameraless film projects. Scratching is a simple component, but what made the difference here was that they scratched the film after using paint or ink. It's a very simple task that slipped my mind. The end result looks really cool when it's lightly scratched because you can still see the colors. The scratching was also used to reveal certain portions of the stock to show the image beneath like with the monkey. The use of pre-recorded footage was great because in some instances they doctored it very minimally, and in others they went all out. One of the later ones is a little boy holding a camera and I loved the simple use of off setting it and putting a border along one side.

I also enjoyed the use of bleaching and blocking. The music was laid-back and it matched the flow of the images. Something I'd want to learn how to do is the stencils in the beginning. There were a few shots where the screen is black that there are green splotches that look somewhat 3D. It'd be awesome to learn how to make that effect as well.

Saturday, February 15, 2014


Just like basically everything else we've done so far in this course, crowdsourcing is something that I was familiar with but did not know it had a particular name. Some of the tips from the article are helpful on many levels and not just crowdsourcing projects especially when it comes to getting funding. Sites like indiegogo and kickstarter have been around for a while, but I had no clue that they fit under the category of croowdfunding.

The TED Talks on how Wikipedia came to be and how it works was so-so. However, if I had watched this years ago when the hype of wikipedia was still around, I can definitely say that I would have seen it as a huge learning tool. Jimmy Wales mentioned a lot of the information from the "What is Crowdsourcing?" article - talking about all of the volunteers who step up to do the work and complete the microtasks. In the end, this knowledge of crowdsourcing has helped Wikipedia profit wise immensely.

I found the Cloud Filmmaking Manifesto to be very interesting. When I read or hear stories like this, I always wondered how were they able to reach so many people across the world. It's ironic that the topic of the film was interdependency and people had to use technology to give their input. I was able to connect with the piece because I consider myself a filmmaker only it's very rare that you could find me directly behind the camera. So to take images and sounds and to make them into a film on this level is inspiring. I've also gotten that sense just since the first day of this class. It's great to know that I don't have to know or be the standard in's and out's of being a filmmaker. I can still create something moving and powerful without shooting it myself.

Sound Ecology

When I hear the term soundscape, it makes me think of the section in Walmart by the candles that has the odd collection of CDs with waterfalls, the ocean, the rainforest, etc on them. Even though I've relied heavily on listening for information due to my poor eye-sight, I never considered my surrounding environment to be a soundscape. I enjoy walking outside and listening to the birds and the wind blow because it's relaxing. We live in a time where TVs are always on, people are on their cell phones whether texting or talking, music is playing somewhere, and more. There's a calming sense of sound minus all of the extra noise. Because of this I enjoyed the Listen video. What I got from the video is that listening to your surroundings can be more visual than actually seeing something with your eyes.

The interview with R. Murray Shafer by Anjula Razdan was very informative. It mentioned the used of sound by the military which is something I had never heard about. The section about Harley Davidson copywriting the sound of the motorcycles seems very outlandish, but at the same time having a specific sound is what sets them apart from competitors. The more familiar people are with a sound, the more comfortable they are. Sound can have a major impact on an individual whether its how you feel or how and what it makes you feel.