Foundation Evaluation THE REAL DEAL

Category: Entertainment

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Foundation Evaluation:

Foundation Evaluation Tom Holmes -Group 12

In what ways does your media product use, develop or challenge forms and conventions of real media products? :

In what ways does your media product use, develop or challenge forms and conventions of real media products? The opening sequence of my film’s form The opening of my film’s conventions and how it reflects the paranormal horror sub-genre How the technical aspects of my film are used (Conformed to conventions) Opening with a number of establishing shots with iconography included (church, church bells) and stock locations (graveyard, isolated forest) that also connotes the tone of the film, paranormal horror, as it appeared bleak and mysterious.   The protagonist’s character exposition was developed through close ups of his face, which showed his innocence in the situation. The mise -en-scene of his costume isn’t very important in the plot but his attitudes that are presented on-screen are; his non-verbal language. Non-verbal language is deemed to be used in more films of the horror genre than any other, because the audience is expecting thrills rather than plot.


The sound effects along with sound mix used such as church bells and ambience set the scene for a horror opening because of the iconography linked to them conventionally.   The soundtrack juxtaposed the plot well, whilst maintaining the plot as the song the protagonist listened to whilst jogging, inviting the audience to share his feelings.   Most of the shots were filmed on the protagonist’s left. This maintained the 180 degrees rule. Throughout the whole film, the protagonist’s costume was the same too and the lighting of the forest remained constant. Continuity editing is conventional of a mainstream film in that it is very hard to achieve. The titles appeared on the trees and at the end of the sequence on a cut to black. The typography was conventional of a paranormal horror because it looked sinister and dark. These titles are seen on screen during tracking shots. Tracking shots are used in all films as it is a professional-looking technique. An example of tracking I particularly like in a horror scene is the camera following the boy in the famous extract in ‘The Shining’ (Kubrick, 1980 ). Stanley Kubrick was also the first director to use a steadicam shot in this film, which I find particularly interesting.


The first appearance of the antagonist is dramatic and sudden, signifying the severity of the situation. The character blocking used in the first shot we see, shows the antagonist’s prevalence over the protagonist in the situation. This furthermore sparks an enigma in the plot as the audience then wish to find out what will happen involving this new character.   The ‘jump scare’ used in revealing the antagonist in my film is very commonly used in conventional horror films of all genres, especially of the paranormal sub-genre.   The antagonist is shown in a black cloak and hung by a noose; both of these props are quintessentially iconographic of horror . The protagonist’s reaction is supposed to reflect the reaction of the audience upon seeing this. This is to say that the initial shock is used as another iconographic device in my horror opening. After the climax of the plot, a POV shot shows the protagonist fleeing through the forest. As with a number of other horror films, this technique is used to create a sense of threat and fear and induce this effect on the audience.   Upon fleeing, the protagonist’s facial expressions are highlighted in big close ups and these develop his character further, indicating his fear.   The climax of the plot is a result of the protagonist finding himself cornered up against a tree and an extra- diegetic blood-curdling scream is audible (a conventional sound used in all horrors) as the audience is then led to believe he has been murdered (an iconographic event in horror).


(Challenging to conventions) To begin with, the editing techniques are simple but not conventional on reflection. A black screen and slow cuts open the sequence with little pace and urgency, as would normally be found in a horror opening perhaps.   Mise -en-scene in the form of costume for the protagonist are not conventional but nor are they challenging. He wears a normal outfit for a young teenage jogger in essence.   There is no low-key lighting in the sequence, where there often is in horror films. The setting of the forest provides a suitable lighting though. The device of most significance in challenging the sub-genre of horror is the soundtrack, certainly. The dense soundtrack juxtaposes the situation by being an upbeat song. It somewhat reflects the attitude of the protagonist in the opening sequence.   There are few signifiers of the climax in the build-up to it, as I wanted the jump scare to be more intense and surprising to all of the audience. This is not too common in paranormal horror films but when it appears, the audience are certainly surprised and this concept is reflected in this scene. During this scene towards the end, newspaper articles are flashed in intercuts and radio reports heard in the background of sound. These aspects develop a further sense of mystery but are not conventional to a paranormal horror film. (click the photo to see song’s official music video)


Finally , the title choice of my film is challenging of the genre. Not all paranormal horrors are serious throughout, and the title I created for the film is not completely serious either. It directly links to the film’s plot but with a sense of irony or humour to it. Despite this, the typography and the fade in appears very professional to me. As the story continued, the woods became more and more dense and the protagonist was the only individual in the location, showing his isolation. This theme is often explored in horror films, especially paranormal.  

How does your media product represent particular social groups? :

How does your media product represent particular social groups?   What social groups are used in my opening sequence? How are they represented (how are they constructed through technical aspects) ? What are the macro issues present? Does my film reinforce or challenge any ideologies linked to the genre? As with other horror films – paranormal or otherwise – my film does not feature many characters. This is not only because it is only the opening to a horror film but as with others of the genre, the plot is kept simple with minimal characters and the thrill/excitement conventional to the genre is heightened.   The main character – the protagonist – is a young, white male. The only other figures that the audience is shown in the sequence are two other young, white people (another male and a female), and the antagonist; a dead non-human entity. A male adult is also present however. The audience does not see him and may not be aware of his presence as it is merged into the sequence without any notification. He is present as an extra- diegetic voice, reading out a news report over the stills of the newspaper articles. On reflection, the protagonist is the only character in the plot whose attitudes and values are explored. The other two figures are only on screen for a second or two. This can be interpreted as the male figure in a horror plot to be more significant than his female counterpart perhaps.   Some may perceive the lack of significance of females in the sequence to be a negative absence; whereby the fact that the only girl in the sequence features for a very short amount of time and does not have an influence on the plot – a cameo role. Such a factor is often seen as patriarchy; where women perceive themselves to be situated in a society that favours men.


Given the resources available and the time constraints, it would be exceptionally difficult to include a female actress as a prominent cast member. However, statistically there is a twenty-five percent female cast. The genders of the characters in the film do not affect the plot line and there are no implications that males are more or less likely to be attacked by an ‘ominous being’.   The concept of death is everywhere: trees, leaves, the graveyard and the body. This is conventional of horror of any sub-genre. The ‘final girl’ concept is not present in the sequence. Instead, the ideas included in my film are of an emergent ideology because it challenges the dominant ideology of the female existing as the victim in a horror movie, by the protagonist/victim being a young male.   The scenario of female victims is included in one of my case studies, ‘Halloween’ (Carpenter, 1978). The ideological discourse present connotes the idea that in horror films it is always the female character that plays the victim of the antagonist and in the opening sequence to this thriller it is indeed a teenage girl. My film challenges this dominant ideology by placing the victim as a teenage boy.


The protagonist’s clothing is un-branded, non-descript and casual. He is not presented as ideologically loaded to be upper or working class. In comparison to other horror films, this lack of branding perhaps shows the fact it was an independent production with a low budget, compared to the high production values of larger (but still independent like mine) paranormal horror films such as Cross Creek Picture’s ‘The Woman In Black (Watkins, 2012). The mise -en-scene of the protagonist’s clothing is further represented in the choice of colour of his coat; green. This colour connotes youth, innocence, and a juxtaposition of death. Not only is this because of the connotations linked to the colour green, but the binary opposition present between him – young and fit – and the death all around him including the dead entity.   The protagonist’s stance and actions suggest he jogs a lot. This perhaps could be linked to his social class background because jogging is seen as an activity for those with free time.   Another criticism that may arise is the lack of diversity of social groups. The only three people are young and white. Despite this, I do not believe any of them are figures of stereotype. No deliberate indication of social background is included. The paranormal investigation of later on in the plot (after the first sequence) influences the fact that not a great deal of character construction; a sense of mystery is present.


Some people may not believe in life after death, which the paranormal sub-genre, and indeed my film, is centred around. This means that the myth of ghosts is very significant in whether an audience appreciates the plot.   Such an issue as this links to the macro context in religion featured in my film. With the church setting the scene and the dead figure haunting the woods, the ideologies associated with Christianity arise and some audience may question the likelihood of life after death and the binary opposition present between good and evil.

What kind of media institution might distribute your media product and why? :

What kind of media institution might distribute your media product and why? Who might distribute my film? Is my film’s production style reflective of an independent production or an industrial ? My film would certainly attract the attention of an independent distributer more than an industrial one, as the budget, casting, props and effects are not as impressive or extensive as an industrial tentpole for example.   My first case study was in fact an independent paranormal horror film, ‘Paranormal Activity’ ( Peli , 2006), an independent film, produced by Solana Films. Captured on a high definition (1080p, similar to the camera used in my film) SONY camera and printed on 35mm film over digital, the production reached cinema screens for the low production value of $15 million. Distribution of the film took great advantage of the viral marketing campaign aspect of Web 2.0. The feature was essentially an online voting system used to allow the audience to vote for the film to come to their local city. Once a certain amount of people from an area had selected the "Demand It!" button to screen the film, it would be exhibited in a local cinema. Such a campaign could be used for my film, cheaply and quickly to generate a buzz and furthermore accumulate a larger audience too.


The challenging aspects to conventional independent production are found in the potential signifiers of high production values. This is to say that some factors of the film suggest a bigger budget than conventional of an independent film. Examples of this is the cost of a 1080p camera, the use of a track and dolly used to produce a more professional visual aspect and the use of Adobe editing software (Premiere Elements and AfterEffects ). However, horror films are generally low budget and this is no exception with my afore-mentioned case study of ‘Paranormal Activity’. Indeed , the titles required after effects that locked the text in place instead of tracking with the rest of the footage, which could not be done simply in Premiere. Instead, using AfterEffects , the end result resembled a professional title sequence, similar to that of another case study, the television series of ‘Durham County’. The positioning of the texts in the sequence is presented on the background of the opposite colour; black or white. This reflects the titles in my film being placed on pieces of the background in juxtaposition to the foreground. The static positioning of text maintains the unnerving nature of the sequence. From analysing the extract I learned about the importance of background incorporation in title sequences.


Very little make-up or high standards of costume/prosthetics are used. This is because my film does not register under gore horror or zombie horror, sub-genres that require these pro-filmic effects. Despite this, the lack of this addition to mise -en-scene can connote that the production is independent.   Editing effects such as the titles are linked to relatively high production values because they appear professional and they took a significant amount of time and skill to complete. Whilst the use of a low budget set location (public woods) may be perceived as a low budget, independent characteristic, the fact that only one set is used in the sequence is conventional for the horror genre. This is because the storyline is kept simple and effective in evoking an enigma and tension throughout.   Few props feature because I felt that the film did not need a great deal of props in the opening sequence, especially as the story is just showing an event that took place, the viewer is focused on what will/has happened in the plot. No A- listers are included in my film’s opening. This is not extraordinary for any film, but it is certainly more a characteristic of an independent production. The film would therefore most likely be distributed by a British independent company such as my case study Vertigo Films. However to be found by such companies it would have to be shown at film festivals.


How and where would my film be distributed and exhibited ? Any promotional activity would most likely be symbiotic and/or Web 2.0 as these are the cheapest forms and more successful for independent companies, as opposed to convergence which involves partnerships with other companies. Not only this, but the paranormal horror sub-genre often uses such platforms.   Teasers , previews and trailers presented as viral videos are often used to promote horror films, so this strategy could be a possibility. On reflection, a plan similar to this would certainly be more possible than anything on a larger scale. Partnerships/symbiosis with venues such as SecretCinema or even larger venues such as Odeon and Vue Cinema promoting the film with previews and trailer screenings, may not be possible for such a low budget set on marketing. The latter of these would be less likely due to the scale of my film being relatively small, but the film should not just appeal to a niche audience, more the mass audience of horror films altogether.


In terms of Web 2.0, one of my case studies would not have been possible to complete without the device. Watching the opening sequence of the pilot episode of ‘The Vampire Diaries’ for a technical analysis allowed me to consider how expansive the audience of certain videos can be. I shared a link to the film on YouTube using Facebook and within days the view count had increased significantly. A website linked to and promotional of a film in the modern industry is very common to see and accounts for success in a number of ways for films of both independent and industrial status. As well as this, vertical integration is still used in the market by both independent and industrial companies.   The issue of piracy is often overlooked in considering exhibition of films, despite maximum caution being taken at the cinema itself. As the film could be found online, illegal download and viewing is a possibility.

Who would be the audience for your media product? How did you attract/address your audience? :

W ho would be the audience for your media product? How did you attract/address your audience? -Demographically, my film would not attract a specific age bracket of people and exclude everyone else. Generally the film would be more attractive to younger people but this is common place with any horror film I believe. That is to say, however, that it would not be surprising if an older audience did wish to watch my film. But it is designed to entice a younger core audience for sure. I say this because of the plot of the sequence as well as the filming style amongst other things. These aspects will be discussed later. -I believe that my target audience would be the core audience of 15-29 year olds that regularly attend horror films of any genre. I think this because there is nothing obviously unconventional in my film’s opening to suggest it is any different on a significant level to generate a cult audience for example. Paranormal horror is not different to other horror sub-genres in truth, in that it encourages a young audience to the cinemas to watch the films but also in that the plots for many horror films are simple and easy for the mass audience to follow. This is a problem of arthouse or cult films in some cases as they are ‘specialist’ films; they require a certain kind of audience to watch them. So, in essence, I believe that my film would appeal most to the likes of the core audience of horror film lovers in the 15-29 age bracket. Who is my core target audience ? What makes this the case?


-In terms of gender, my film does not set out to appeal to the likes of one sex rather than the other. In relation to which genders were present in my opening sequence, certainly it would seem like the film would be more attractive to males as there are more in the story. However, I do not think this is the case. Conventionally, horror films appeal to both males and females, specifically maybe males slightly more. Paranormal horror is much the same story. Initially, people would expect more men to visit the cinema to see horror films, but why? Is it because horror films are expected to be violent, gory and scary? Iconography in horror films determines the audience a great deal, as most horror films follow the conventions of the sub-genre. Indeed, I believe my film is mainly conventional of paranormal horror. What effect this fact has on my audience, there is no telling. In spite of this uncertainty, I believe that my film certainly appeals with equal depth to both men and women because there is no content to claim one way or another a certain group of people would like it more than others. -Class and occupation is taken into account when films are produced, distributed and exhibited. The style of filming as well as the content will appeal to different people, the way it is advertised and who it is advertised to will too and where the film is shown will have been considered in relation to the people who will watch it. I have already established that my film is much more likely to be exhibited in a smaller cinema chain rather than at a multiplex. Similarly, my film would not have the financial backup of larger films with bigger budgets and so reaching everyone, particularly upper classes for example may not be so easy because of the financial strictness and limitations.


-The only belief/value really touched upon in the opening sequence is the matter of good against evil/life against death. This set of binary oppositions is a topic often linked to Christianity. This factor is linked more towards psychographics rather than demographics. The psychographics element to my film relates to what things a group of people like. This can be anything from gore to ghosts or from mystery to murder in horror films. I believe that my opening sequence suggests that my film would attract those with paranormal psychographic tastes because of the nature of the plot being void of blood and the more creepy aspects of horror, but rather it focuses on the mystery and supernatural side. -Another demographic concerning my film is ethnicity. The social background to an audience is often more important than it appears to be. This is to say that definitely a certain ethnic group would prefer to go and see a particular genre of film rather than any other. Moreover, certain ethnic groups may have values that restrict them to only watching films of specific content that would not offend. I do not believe that my film explores any ethnic groups’ attitudes nor does it cause concern for prejudice.


As I just mentioned, I think that my film would appeal to those interested in paranormal horror, much more than anyone who likes the more gruesome aspects of horror in slasher and zombie horror, such as ‘Shaun of the Dead’ (Wright, 2004). This is a very gory comedy horror film in truth. There a number of reasons I think this way, namely in the style and plot of the opening.   The style of my film’s opening is not intense, it sets the scene for the rest of the film with character development and paranormal events taking place. When I refer to my film’s ‘style’, I speak of the technical aspects and how these make my film conventional of paranormal horror. Jump scares are conventional of horror and so an audience would expect to see this if they went to the cinema to watch a film of this genre. On psychographic terms, I expect regular film goers that anticipate scares and thrills from horror films would go to see my film; younger adults and teens perhaps find this more attractive. Despite the fact that there are not a great deal of scares in the opening, there would be more as the story. I believe that this is evident given the style of the sequence. What appeals my in film to my target audience in terms of genre ?


The setting for the opening is a stock location; a forest has strong connotations to horror and mystery. This factor was considered during the film ‘The Blair Witch Project’, a very famous horror film.   The soundtrack appeals to a younger audience and shares connotations of youth due to its upbeat-feel and its genre. Mystery in the plot up until the end of the opening sets the stage for the rest of the story to continue on from a opening which does not explain a lot but creates a cliffhanger to introduce the film. Mystery is conventional of paranormal horror. The protagonist and the antagonist are both generic characters in my opinion. This meant that my audience can understand their attitudes and values simply and enjoy the story. They can relate to the protagonist too I feel, as he is presented as just another teenage male out jogging. This links to the aspect of verisimilitude; it could happen to any jogger. Verisimilitude as a characteristic of film is very important in horror, increasingly so, to induce fear.


Compliments -People explained how they liked the variation and ambition of shots we plan to use to meet criteria for technical excellence . -Many people also agreed that our storyline/plot was original . -Relating to our Wilderness Woods filming, people asked whether we would be replicating or interpreting some of our best shots in this film, as it is also situated in a forest . -Once the treatment was explained in relation to the music soundtrack, people seemed to like the idea.   Questions/targets -Some people did question our decision on why we did not choose the favoured title our audience questionnaire concluded upon. On reflection, we will need to explain in-depth as to why we chose a different one . -On the topic of the title, some people also theorised that the audience - or at least some of them - would maybe not understand our title, 'Psychedelic '. -Practically, our location could be busy, as a number of our audience picked up on . -Despite the fact our Wilderness Woods shots were praised so highly, people questioned whether we thought we would be able to match or improve upon their quality . -In terms of the advice our audience provided, people suggested we should research into after effects before we start shooting so we know what to expect when editing .     Comments: -People liked the low angle shot of the ball. -People liked the music syncing a lot. -Where the titles were positioned went down well. Targets: -No indication of horror genre? -The clip was too long. This is a collection of the response we received after our rough cut was screened.


What did my audience research provide in terms of results and evidence? -For my audience research I mainly utilised questionnaires and open screenings. The first allowed me to collate data and ideas on the sequence from a number of people and generate a group of graphs to show the results. The second refers to my film sequence being shown to numerous people while I reviewed their reactions. This enabled me to judge the reactions of an audience who had seem the film for the first time. Such an activity will have provided me with a very useful understanding of the views and attitudes of my target audience and to judge whether it is positive or negative. Was the setting effective? Did you like how the entity was shown, and was it shown enough? Feedback was generally positive, praising the shortness of the sighting adding to the intrigue, however it needed to appear more malevolent. Again the feedback was almost completely positive, people liked the sound in our piece, and thought the juxtaposition of the music was interesting and engaging, however some found it odd at first. Did you like our choice of soundtrack? Please explain.


Opinions were mixed, some thought the title was too colloquial for a horror film, while others liked the theme of juxtaposition throughout the piece and the memorable aspect of it. We decided to not use the Patriarchy question as it was very difficult to determine without several characters, the terminology also led to confusion. Do you like the title? Was tension built up enough? Please explain. Comments were very positive, however most people were unsure of how it was built, however it was accredited generally to the sound mix and fast cutting.


The viewers seemed to understand the plot perfectly well, commenting mainly on the discovery of the noose and death of the protagonist. The disappearance of the tennis ball was only mentioned once but the summary constraints may have been two small for details such as this. Please summarise the plot in two sentences.

What have you learnt about technologies from the process of constructing this product? :

What have you learnt about technologies from the process of constructing this product? Blogging was an essential part of recording my film’s progress. Using this device was not only an example of just how useful Web 2.0 can be, but also it allowed me to collaborate all ideas, developments, research and progress in a form that was attractive, quick, effective and a good example of IT skills. Essentially, the use of blogging falls under these skills: -> embedding -> analysis texts Group 12 Blog – Group 12 - Foundation Production -> design of the blog YouTube – Tom’s channel -> timeline of production -> contextual analysis -> adding images The term ‘embedding’ refers to the method of taking footage or a piece of information from one place on the internet on one webpage and placing it in a blog post somewhere else on another webpage. The device allows a blog post to be written with text stimulus to describe a piece of filming or the advantages and disadvantages of it and also a visual aid of the film itself; it provides great detail and interactivity. Such a device is very characteristic of Web 2.0’s inclusive nature. Online , I used a total of three different programmes to present the planning of my work and distributing progress. These programmes were the blog posting website Blogger , the presentation website used to promote information in a professional-looking manner Prezi and the ever-growingly popular video sharing social media website YouTube . How did I use aspects of Web 2.0 ?


Analysing texts and film clips for project research through blog posts was very useful in the project as well as quite enjoyable. The use of blogging allowed everyone to view and comment on my work and this was very beneficial in constructive criticism and advice. This also helped me record progress, as well as the timeline feature of Blogger. More simply, adding images to blog posts was very useful in working in multiple media forms. All in all, I learnt a lot about blogging on Web 2.0. I believe that the most significant thing I learned about was how to utilise all aspects of the website. Doing this has also allowed me to open my eyes and truly appreciate Web 2.0. This project allowed me to use Prezi for the first time. The programme is similar to Powerpoint but it uses aspects of Web 2.0 in that its inclusive elements allow people to view and share presentations. The programme also allows the user to create much more attractive slides compared to Powerpoint in truth. The variety of design allows the presentation to reflect my film, and this was important considering what it was used for in relation to my film. Despite not creating the actual Prezi for this task, it was very useful when pitching my film. The appeal of the presentation was a great asset and it allowed me to pitch my film with more confidence I feel. I have learnt how to use Prezi through this project and also the attractiveness of the programme over any other similar presentation device.


In terms of using YouTube, I already understood how to navigate the social media website but uploading videos was new to me. Through the process, I have learnt about: -> time problems -> quality problems -> embedding -> view count -> tagging -> thumbnails On reflection of these aspects of YouTube use, embedding videos and analysing view counts were important to my project. The first I mentioned earlier but the latter was useful because it enabled me to understand what methods of video sharing worked best. Embedding videos on the blog increased the view count for sure, but I found that sharing the video on social media website Facebook was most beneficial. Furthermore, tagging my videos on YouTube with other popular topics on the website expanded the channel for viewers to find out about my videos through similar uploads elsewhere.


The SD card and card readers used were not obviously conventional methods of filming, compared to 35mm film and so on. My first case study of ‘Paranormal Activity’ was filmed on 35mm film, such is the convention of film making. It is often cheaper to use than digital, as this low budget production showed. The SD device is similar in some essential ways to digital film making in that compared to celluloid film, using an SD card is a lot quicker. Not only this but also, the footage can be transported a lot quicker than print and it is furthermore a lot less likely to be damaged in transit. In conclusion upon this, it would appear that the use of SD cards for filming was a lot easier (albeit sometimes digital is a lot more expensive but not on such a small scale) and more effective for those using cameras as relatively amateur in filming . Regarding the actual filming aspect of the sequence, I used a 1080p camera to shoot the footage. Before anything else, this provided a high definition aspect to the filming and so it appeared professional enough to be a genuine horror film opening. 1080 HD is in fact the highest resolution possible in film-making standards. Moreover, in regards to YouTube upload, it is the highest possible resolution. Whilst on the topic of YouTube upload, filming on this high resolution created some issues. Uploading took a considerable amount of time and with the constraints attached, this was problematic. So, in terms of filming equipment, I have learnt about the different resolutions at which a camera can record but also, just generally, I believe that my filming skills have developed a great deal. Moreover, I have learnt about the technical features of camera equipment. How did I film the sequence? (Reference to filming equipment ). I learnt that in relation to small-scale filming, SD cards are by far the easiest and most effective way of capturing footage. It is also a relatively cheap option. I have also learnt skills in transferring footage from camera to computer whilst avoiding corruption or damage.


The next basic aspect of filming was the use of a tripod. This device enabled filming to be carried out – in my case in the woods – at any angle whilst maintaining a steady and level ground for footage to be recorded. A relatively easy piece of equipment to use, the tripod could be carried everywhere so every position could be explored. When not using it, I could shoot steadicam shots. The device also allowed the camera to shoot at a variety of heights. The only problem I encountered was the stability of the tripod when used in the track and dolly (discussed next). This issue resulted in a shaky product in some shots. Luckily, such a hindrance could be resolved in Adobe AfterEffects . It meant some time had to be spent on this, when it could have been spent elsewhere. I have learnt about the different pieces of equipment associated with filming. On reflection, I have learnt most  about using the equipment to film in different ways rather than the actual devices. Technically , when using the camera, I was able to view what I was filming using the screen on the camera. With this addition, I was able to position aspects of mise -en-scene in such a way that it would align with the lines of the camera frame and rule of thirds could be incorporated. The quality of the camera too meant that I could also take depth of field into account and so another professional aspect of film making was used. I have learnt about using a camera in a professional manner to shoot everything whilst considering the end product consciously all the time. I have learnt about the importance of all aspects of film; mise -en-scene (what to include in shot and what to avoid), camera angles/movements and the implications they have in relation to the story, and recording sound.


The most expensive and professional device used in the process of filming was certainly the previously mentioned track and dolly. This was utilised to provide a very high quality piece of filming through tracking sideways along a fixed point to show the protagonist jogging, for example. The device is commonly used on-set in high production value industrial films. Unfortunately, using the track came at a cost. Using the device took a considerably long time. On rough and unsteady terrain, the poles used for the dolly to run along were uneven and kept breaking. This setback meant that filming in different locations took much longer than envisaged . From using the track and dolly I have first of all learnt to appreciate just how effective it is in creating a professional-looking end product. It can create a piece of filming that appears original of any high-budget tentpole movie. I have also obviously learnt how to use the track and dolly to its full potential. However, I have also learnt about the negative features in using a track on rough terrain. The time cost of setting up the poles and shooting multiple takes was considerable. I believe that the end result was worth it but nevertheless it is certainly worth considering this factor prior to shooting with it.


How did I use  editing software  effectively? What issues were there in the  editing  process? What have I learnt about  editing ? Adobe Premiere Elements was the software I used in editing and compiling my film. The programme composes essentially of a viewing screen, an import section that allows footage to be brought into the project and finally a timeline that references the whole project from start to finish. This section also allows me to make cuts and edit the sound mix. I already knew the basics of using Premiere before editing this sequence, through projects in earlier years and other short films such as my preliminary task. Although, I have learnt about some specifics like cutting rates in the programme, titles, sound mixing and exporting projects to enable them to be uploaded to YouTube. I also very shortly used editing programme Adobe AfterEffects.This enabled me to create titles on the footage that appear a lot more professional than the ones available on Premiere as default. First, I transferred the footage from my Premiere project to AfterEffects . Next, I was able to track a null point in the clip where I could place the titles. Titles in Premiere are very basic in both typography and transition. Using AfterEffects was much more useful. They allowed the end product to appear with the kind of professional product envisaged to begin with. In truth, I only took part in a very small part of this process. Even after only using AfterEffects for a short amount of time, I have learnt to appreciate the complexity in title design in film. I have also learnt how to edit existing clips from Premiere Elements and finally how to edit titles onto a clip and make it follow a null point in the footage.


Sequencing all the footage was the first task. This involved importing all of the footage from the SD card onto the D-drive of the computer. Once in the D-drive, all of the footage could be gathered in the Premiere project. The final step was dragging the footage onto the timeline and sequencing it into the right order. The accessibility and ease of use in Premiere with regard to cutting and sequencing is very noticeable. Matched cuts are very easy to incorporate as well as motivated cuts too as the cut tool allows you to snip one piece of footage anywhere and drop a new piece in. I have learnt a lot about sequencing footage in a Premiere project. I have learnt about the importance of cutting clips at precisely the right moment in order to main continuity and keep the sequence seamless. Technically, I have leant about the numerous tools that Premiere offers. The sound level tool, the fade in/out tool, the unlink video and sound tool and many others. I have learnt about the D-drive too. This component acts as a storage device for an individual computer and has the capacity to hold a significant amount of data. Using it was very useful in saving a lot of projects, footage, sound clips and images related to my project alone.


Maintaining continuity in a sequence is one of the hardest elements of film making. Breaking the 180 degree rule (making sure to film the subject on one side) would be disastrous and verisimilitude would no longer be present. Continuity editing itself is an aspect of industrial/professional film making and so doing this was very rewarding . I have learnt about the importance of maintaining the 180 degree rule and constant awareness of continuity is essential in producing a good film. I have learnt methods in achieving continuity too, such as avoiding filming differences in setting, costume and expression. Sound  is a very important aspect of film. In editing terms, it is often place as second in priority behind video. Premiere allows the user to edit the sound mix and order of sound very simply and effectively. Using the green bar underneath the video sequence, one can make changes to the sound levels but also the order in which sound is organised within a project. Another use of editing in Premiere in terms of sound is incorporating sound effects ( sfx ). Downloading certain sound clips from the vast catalogue of and placing them in my film was a simple enough task, after which all that had to be done would be to sequence them into my footage.


Transitions  are another important element of some films. In mine however, simple cuts were all that were needed. In horror movies, transitions are not often used, certainly not in comparison to other genres. Issues concerning the editing process mainly include little struggles in Premiere and a recurring problem about the programme not being able to find the required footage on the drive. In the end, all setbacks were resolved. One particular problem I encountered was in relation to the timeline. Sometimes aspects of it would not work the way they should, for example sometimes the cut tool would result in the footage jumping. Despite this, I overcame all hurdles I faced, in the end. -I have learnt a little about This website acts as a hub for sfx for inclusion in films. They are free to download and import into Premiere. This is a clip of sound used in the tension build up as the protagonist assesses the situation towards the end.

Looking back at your preliminary task, what do you feel you have learnt in the progression from it to the full product?:

Looking back at your preliminary task, what do you feel you have learnt in the progression from it to the full product? I believe that it is certainly quite plain to see that my filming skills have developed since the production of my preliminary task. I have learnt a lot of this through researching existing professional films but also just my general development of media knowledge has helped I think. When filming now, I take great consideration of what is in shot and what the techniques being used will connote to an audience in terms of plot as well as possible existing ideologies. What have I learnt in terms of professional filming ? Have I learnt about the importance of content in shots? What have I learnt when reviewing and comparing my preliminary task to my final piece ?


I have already explained what I believe I have learnt over the course of this project on a technical platform. In relation to planning and creative thinking in film production, I have developed my knowledge a great deal. In both the W-W (Wilderness Woods) and preliminary task, the brief was in fact a lot more complex and detailed compared to the final piece brief. The task for the first was ‘there’s something in the woods’ and the latter ‘a conversation between two people including someone opening a door, maintain continuity and the 180 degrees rule’ . In comparison, the final piece was set as ‘the opening to a horror film of maximum length two minutes’ . In this development of available content for each film, I have expanded my imagination to conjure up more abstract concepts through my now further extended knowledge of film making.


In relation to actual filming, this is where I feel I have learnt the most; rule of thirds, what was in shot, how the style of filming will affect plot, ideology and logistics, to name the most significant developments. Rule of thirds was only touched upon in the first two tasks, in a few shots where it did not really affect much. In the final, I actually did not really consider rule of thirds, instead I just appeared to film everything, where possible, in a state of rule of thirds without even thinking about it. This also helped what I chose to keep in shot and what to exclude when setting up shots. In developing my awareness of how certain shots and the style of filming would affect the plot and story, I believe that I have strengthened the sequence’s macro elements, which is a more professional feature. This also meant more thought went into the creation of the storyboard for the film. This again was something I learnt about; the importance of a strong concept in the storyboarding phase.


Post production was something I had never used prior to the final. The titles can be classed as the only post production aspect of my short films in truth. Despite this, I learnt a lot about the importance of professional looking titles in a film opening. I have learnt a lot about character background; in the first task there is no indication as to who the person in shot actually is. This skill then developed and in the preliminary task more of a clue as to social class was included as the two characters featured were wearing suits and the location as well as plot seemed to shed more light on these aspects. Finally, in the opening sequence, there are lots more hints as to who the protagonist is, helped by the contextual knowledge that it is a horror opening. I learnt about how to include more information about the characters and how filming would help this. I have learnt about the importance of costume and props; there were no props in the W-W film as there was not a lot of time in planning. There was one prop in the preliminary task, which was quite central to the plot. And finally, in the horror film, there are five or more iconographic props such as the noose and others that are not so such as the music player.


Use of diegetic /extra diegetic sound and soundtrack has developed quite a lot. In the W-W task there are some repeated sound clips such as walking and lots of Freesound clips as well as no soundtrack. So, this task was simple in terms of sound editing and sound mix. The preliminary task was just a conversation but a soundtrack was introduced to develop tension and significance of the situation. In the final piece all sound aspects were covered and this was because I understood the importance of them as well as how to incorporate them into the story. In terms of location and lighting, the filming of W-W was very restricted in terms of where I could film, stuck on location. This meant that content was also restricted in depth. I had to make do in the preliminary task although the brief was strict, filming in school limits the possibilities. The final task was all planned and iconography associated with horror was available in the forest. I learnt about the immediate impact a location has on the audience’s perceptions and readings of what is happening. The narrative of all films were different; the W-W one was quite open but generic in some ways in that the setting was restricted, the preliminary task was also very restricted and no contextual background was available to be developed, and finally, the horror opening was very in depth and detailed with a lot more planning and consideration dedicated to it. This is the self-interview we performed to summarise our question seven with some visual and audible aids. Dan wrote the script and I edited the piece.


In conclusion, I believe that personally I have learnt the most about the many different aspects of film making. Before I had very little knowledge of what actually went into producing a film in terms of logistics and camera work too. Now, I appreciate all of these things. I have developed my skills in film making and I feel comfortable with all aspects of the industry as a whole. I really enjoyed all of the project and now my intellect on the subject has been strengthened, I would love to film many more sequences and carry on developing my skills.

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