Look back at your preliminary task, what do you feel you have learnt in the progression from it to the full product?
Having filmed both the preliminary task and the full product, I believe that I have learnt a lot and have been able to develop my skills in the planning, filming and editing aspect.
In terms of planning our preliminary task was very brief and short compared to our full product. When discussing characters, in our preliminary task we had to choose the characters from our production group and we did not have an option to ask other people to act for it. It was spontaneous, whereas for our final product, we had more time to ask for volunteers to act for our film opening and we went into more depth of who fit the character role best. However we ended up using the same people in our production group to act in our film since we felt they fit the character roles well and it was more convenient to do so.
We didn’t have a proper layout plan for our preliminary task or a script to follow. It was unprompted and for our preliminary task, we wrote down a list of shots and tried to fit the shots in the scene whereas in our final product, we made a proper story board. This made it easy to visualise the scene instead of it being just a list. We planned the camera shots alongside the scenes keeping the prospect in mind rather than trying to fit them in.We progressed from this stage as we used post-it notes and noting down the image, editing and titling that we wanted to use, sounds that we wanted to include being diegetic or non-diegetic. This allowed us to clearly see what our film opening would look like and with the use of post-it notes; we could move the scenes around if we felt like they needed to be moved. This helped us develop as it was in much more depth and detail and we had to build on the mood and atmosphere of the whole scene and think about different factors such as props, mise-en-scene, camera shots used, lighting etc.
For the costumes in our preliminary task, we did not do anything; we just filmed it as we were but for our final product, we decided that the spirit would wear a white gown andhave her face covered with her hair to follow the horror genre conventions. The location of our preliminary task was also spontaneous as we selected a location within school and made the most of it whereas for our full product, we decided the location beforehand and we also visited the location a few days before we were going to film our film opening to get more familiar with it. This helped us visualise where we were going to film each scene and how we were going to use the location in the best way that we could.
Preliminary Task & Final Product
For the filming of our Preliminary task, we did not use many camera shots. We used close-ups and mid shots.We also used the 180 rule while filming the conversation between the two girls. We did this with the use of shot reverse shot. However, for our final product, we pre-planned the camera shots. There was a wide variety of appropriate shots used for each scene to go with the mood and atmosphere.We used high angle, low angle, close-ups and extreme close-ups to draw attention to specific things or emotions on the face. We also used 360 panning and whip pan to emphasise on the movement and tenseness of the scene.
In the editing of our preliminary task, we edited it on iMovie. For this task, we barely used any editing techniques. We used cross-blur and fade along with shot-reverse shot. This was because we were not as familiar with iMovie and were only using the basic editing techniques such as cropping the length of a clip, rearranging the clip, adding transitions and adding music in the beginning which faded out. We also did not use any titles except for the beginning title which says ‘The Essay’. On the other hand for our final product we used a diversity of editing skills as we developed our skills on iMovie and learnt how to use a wide range of editing techniques. We used different transitions such as fade, cross-blur, cross-dissolve etc. We also learnt how to use features like slow motion for clips that were too fast paced for a particular scene to fit the mood. We edited the Clip, Audio and Video settings for clips to manually change their brightness and exposure, apply different video effects such as ‘Day into Night’ or ‘Vignette’ and also choose different audio effects to suit the scene such as ‘Muffled’ or ‘Large Room’. This helped us edit the clips in more detail and aided our understanding of the software. We used Eye line match as well.
The titles in our final product also took a lot of thought. We tried to select fonts that fit the genre of our film and even downloaded some fonts from the internet too. We placed a few in the beginning and the rest we added wherever they seemed appropriate. The colour of the text also makes a huge difference so for ‘Bolt Studios’ we changed the colour of the font to an orange red to go with the flame at the back.For sound in our preliminary task, we just added a track in the beginning which faded out as the scene progressed whereas in our final film opening, we chose somecopyright free tracks from the internet and added those.
Along with that there was also the use of sound bridge to maintain the continuity of the scene. With the use of diegetic and non-diegetic sounds we enhanced our film opening and added more depth to it.