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Year 1 Module BACM101

BACM101 Reflective Report (v2)

The power of Sound Design:

Task One: Sound Mixing and Design – Foley

Task Six: Produce a Soundtrack

Task Eight: Radio Play

I came onto this course with my interest firmly being on film, TV and videos – and I’d still say it still is my main interest – but surprisingly for me, Sound Design ended up being the area that interested me most during this semester.

The ‘Produce a Soundtrack’ task was definitely peaked my interest the most, and it was also the task which helped me learn the most about myself. Further research after completing this it led me to discovering genres completely new to me, and genres I absolutely love now: vaporwave and lo-fi. “Vaporwave is primarily defined by heavy use of sampling, layering, distortion, chopping, screwing, and invocation of ‘80s and ’90s culture” (Colton, 2017). Lo-fi is not too dissimilar: it literally is “a term suggesting poor sound quality, the opposite of ‘hi-fi’…” (Harper, 2014). Even more interestingly for me, these two genres have led to stylised videos that make use of VHS effects and 1980s retro grids to match with the retro sound of the music. There has been a rebirth of this kind of retro media, all stemming from albums such as ‘Far Side Virtual’, ‘Chuck Person’s Eccojams Vol. 1’, ‘Floral Shoppe’ and videos such as Drake’s ‘Hotline Bling’. This new ‘a e s t h e t i c’ style is something I’ll be taking away from this task and applying in future projects. The vivid colours, retro looks and authentic vinyl sounds all appeal, and I’m very happy I found something new about my taste.

Although I found task six the most enjoyable, it was the Foley and radio play tasks that made me truly understand the importance of audio, something I was naïve to before. I learnt how Foley is something that the audience should only notice when it’s not there; it lifts a project to another level, yet still immerses the viewer enough to the point where it goes unnoticed. Moreover, I learnt about all the inventive ways you can recreate sound so it sounds like the original object; I actually got to do this during task one with party poppers! On a more extreme level, you can literally record a slow motion bullet with the “spout of a ’70s coffee percolator” (Chamberlin, 2018). The radio play task rounded it all off for me as it opened my eyes more to the storytelling power of sound. ‘The Revenge’ by Andrew Sachs opened up whole new possibilities for me as it wasn’t something I thought was possible. Taking Larry Sider’s advice on board, this task forced me think about the small details and how important it is to place yourself in the audience’s shoes. The effect audio can have on the viewer (whether it’s music or a Foley soundscape) was emphasised a lot during Larry Snider’s sessions, and I can see why now.

Example of a game being turned into a 1980s era retro video.
The Simpsons with a vaporwave touch.
An example of my work, based on the vaporwave style.
More of my work.
And more!
Floral Shoppe’ Album cover
Still from ‘Hotline Bling

Choreography, Space and Light:

Task Three: Edit together a short video segment – Choreography

Task Five: Stop Motion

Task Seven: ‘Do What You Do’

Choreography is something else I was bit naïve about before starting this course. I used to think that choreography was just do with the movement of people, but I was really interested to find out how it can apply to light/shadows and to camera – the latter being what interested me most. This was completely new to me, and I was able to explore this new interest with Jess when we used the dolly together on task three. I absolutely loved this, and it really helped me understand famous shots like the dolly zoom from ‘Jaws’ more. Moreover, using a dolly allowed me to explore the space of the shot, which helped me understand more about immersing the viewer within the scene, allowing the viewer “to feel a certain intimacy with a character, or feel more present in the scene” (Renée, 2017). Furthermore, I was also able to explore the space of the environment in the stop motion task. As opposed to focusing on what the camera was doing, we focused on what the set design was doing, which helped me learn even more about the possibilities of film and just what you can do to keep your work interesting.

On the flip side, the Aesop’s Fable video I did for task seven was a single static shot, so I had to think hard into what was happening in the shot to keep the attention of the viewer. Choreography played a big part of this video as a result, and I was able to convey the feelings of the subject using just my hands. Whilst task three and five opened my eyes up to different techniques that can keep your film interesting, task seven taught me more about resourcefulness and simplicity.

If I’m honest with myself, I didn’t explore lighting/shadows enough and it’s something I’ll challenge myself to do in the future.

Composition and Design:

Task Two: Image Making and Manipulation

Task Four: Produce a narrative based poster that “sells” a story

These tasks helped me consider composition for the first time ever, with task two specifically showing me how to construct images, using composition, to tell a story. I learnt about everything from shape, to pattern, to colour, to framing; and also how the rule of thirds can “produce images which are more engaging and better balanced” (Photographymad.com, n.d.). But I also learnt that this rule can be broken, with work by Wes Anderson being the perfect example. As a result of this task, I’ve started to consider the principles of composition every time I get my camera out now, so it is already something I’ve taken on board, and something I’d like to continue improving on in the future – I’d love to create a video that draws heavily on cinematography, combined with an atmospheric soundscape that shows the beauty of the things that go unnoticed to us on a daily basis.

Task four showed me how to design an image to capture the audience’s attention. I’m very interested in graphic design, especially artwork for book covers or adverts, and from doing this task I learnt a lot more about how to make something that is eye-catching. Moreover, both tasks combined showed me how you only need one image to sell a story, and how I can achieve that. I can now take this extra knowledge into the next book cover I produce!

References

Billington, A. (2016). Amusing Short Film ‘The Foley Artist’ Shows the Importance of Sound. [online] FirstShowing.net. Available at: https://www.firstshowing.net/2016/amusing-short-film-the-foley-artist-shows-the-importance-of-sound/ [Accessed 8 Jan. 2019].

Chamberlin, B. (2018). Epic Sound – The Guide To Sound Effects. [online] Epicsound.com. Available at: https://www.epicsound.com/sfx/ [Accessed 8 Jan. 2019].

Colton, S. (2017). Love in the Time of VHS: Making Sense of Vaporwave. [online] The Politic. Available at: http://thepolitic.org/love-in-the-time-of-vhs-making-sense-of-vaporwave/ [Accessed 4 Jan. 2019].

Dix, P. (2016). Watch a Robotic Trump Destroy the World in Absurd Vaporwave Video. [online] Flavorwire. Available at: http://flavorwire.com/580673/watch-a-robotic-trump-destroy-the-world-in-absurd-vaporwave-video [Accessed 4 Jan. 2019].

Francis Han, S. and Peters, D. (2016). Vaporwave: subversive dream music for the post-Internet age. [online] Vaporwave: subversive dream music for the post-Internet age | Editorial | Bandwagon – Live music, bands and concert guide for Singapore, Manila and Jakarta. Available at: https://www.bandwagon.asia/articles/vaporwave-subversive-dream-music-for-the-post-internet-age [Accessed 4 Jan. 2019].

Harper, A. (2014). Lo-Fi Aesthetics in Popular Music Discourse. Ph.D. Oxford.

Markowitz, D. (2018). 5 Vaporwave and Future Funk Tracks to Get You Ready for YUNG BAE. [online] Phoenix New Times. Available at: https://www.phoenixnewtimes.com/music/5-vaporwave-tracks-to-prepare-you-for-yung-bae-at-valley-bar-10913771 [Accessed 4 Jan. 2019].

Photographymad.com. (n.d.). Rule of Thirds | Photography Mad. [online] Available at: https://www.photographymad.com/pages/view/rule-of-thirds [Accessed 8 Jan. 2019].

Renée, V. (2017). The Visual and Emotional Effects of Using Dolly and Zoom Shots in Your Film. [online] No Film School. Available at: https://nofilmschool.com/2017/02/visual-and-emotional-effects-using-dolly-and-zoom-shots-your-film [Accessed 8 Jan. 2019].

Sachs, A. (1978). THE REVENGE BY ANDREW SACHS : Free Download, Borrow, and Streaming : Internet Archive. [online] Internet Archive. Available at: https://archive.org/details/THEREVENGEBYANDREWSACHS [Accessed 8 Jan. 2019].

YouTube. (2012). Fastest Vertigo-shot: Jaws by Bill Butler (1975) HD. [online] Available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MbeXzJDYxS0 [Accessed 8 Jan. 2019].

Bibliography

Billington, A. (2016). Amusing Short Film ‘The Foley Artist’ Shows the Importance of Sound. [online] FirstShowing.net. Available at: https://www.firstshowing.net/2016/amusing-short-film-the-foley-artist-shows-the-importance-of-sound/ [Accessed 8 Jan. 2019].

Chamberlin, B. (2018). Epic Sound – The Guide To Sound Effects. [online] Epicsound.com. Available at: https://www.epicsound.com/sfx/ [Accessed 8 Jan. 2019].

Colton, S. (2017). Love in the Time of VHS: Making Sense of Vaporwave. [online] The Politic. Available at: http://thepolitic.org/love-in-the-time-of-vhs-making-sense-of-vaporwave/ [Accessed 4 Jan. 2019].

Dix, P. (2016). Watch a Robotic Trump Destroy the World in Absurd Vaporwave Video. [online] Flavorwire. Available at: http://flavorwire.com/580673/watch-a-robotic-trump-destroy-the-world-in-absurd-vaporwave-video [Accessed 4 Jan. 2019].

Elias, D. (2018). GARY RYDSTROM talks “the little details” and the power of doing a good job on THE POST – EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW. [online] Behind The Lens. Available at: http://behindthelensonline.net/site/interviews/interview-exclusives/gary-rydstrom-talks-the-little-details-and-the-power-of-doing-a-good-job-on-the-post-exclusive-interview/ [Accessed 8 Jan. 2019].

Francis Han, S. and Peters, D. (2016). Vaporwave: subversive dream music for the post-Internet age. [online] Vaporwave: subversive dream music for the post-Internet age | Editorial | Bandwagon – Live music, bands and concert guide for Singapore, Manila and Jakarta. Available at: https://www.bandwagon.asia/articles/vaporwave-subversive-dream-music-for-the-post-internet-age [Accessed 4 Jan. 2019].

Harper, A. (2014). Lo-Fi Aesthetics in Popular Music Discourse. Ph.D. Oxford.

Markowitz, D. (2018). 5 Vaporwave and Future Funk Tracks to Get You Ready for YUNG BAE. [online] Phoenix New Times. Available at: https://www.phoenixnewtimes.com/music/5-vaporwave-tracks-to-prepare-you-for-yung-bae-at-valley-bar-10913771 [Accessed 4 Jan. 2019].

Photographymad.com. (n.d.). Rule of Thirds | Photography Mad. [online] Available at: https://www.photographymad.com/pages/view/rule-of-thirds [Accessed 8 Jan. 2019].

Renée, V. (2017). The Visual and Emotional Effects of Using Dolly and Zoom Shots in Your Film. [online] No Film School. Available at: https://nofilmschool.com/2017/02/visual-and-emotional-effects-using-dolly-and-zoom-shots-your-film [Accessed 8 Jan. 2019].

Sachs, A. (1978). THE REVENGE BY ANDREW SACHS : Free Download, Borrow, and Streaming : Internet Archive. [online] Internet Archive. Available at: https://archive.org/details/THEREVENGEBYANDREWSACHS [Accessed 8 Jan. 2019].

Winkie, L. (2018). How ‘Lofi Hip Hop Radio to Relax/Study to’ Became a YouTube Phenomenon. [online] Vice.com. Available at: https://www.vice.com/en_us/article/594b3z/how-lofi-hip-hop-radio-to-relaxstudy-to-became-a-youtube-phenomenon [Accessed 4 Jan. 2019].

YouTube. (2012). Fastest Vertigo-shot: Jaws by Bill Butler (1975) HD. [online] Available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MbeXzJDYxS0 [Accessed 8 Jan. 2019].

YouTube. (2013). FL Studio: Chord Progressions + A Little Theory (Basic – Part 1). [online] Available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BnIBaDjM_14&list=PLODAfS1EnYrlg3Tg15ukT4_zsZkfv1ruM&index=2&t=0s [Accessed 4 Jan. 2019].

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Year 1 Module BACM101, Year 1 Module BACM102

Radio Play (Task Nine) – BTS

“Radio is the theater of the mind; television is the theater of the mindless”.

– Steve Allen

Introduction:

The risks I took on this task was to attempt to mix field recordings I did with my phone, with sound effects from online and make it seem as if it was one ‘package’. However, this did help me learn how little you need to make something decent; in other words, it helped me learn more about resourcefulness. Moreover, it also helped me learn more about audio mixing. These skills will definitely help me on future projects that need to be done quickly and it will also help me with any future audio projects that have quick turnarounds too. I could learn this futher by doing different courses on audio mixing in Audition, but also by learning (and practicisng) more field recording as it is one of the harder methods for recording audio. The thing I would do differently next time is remember to rent out a proper microphone!

The task:

For this task we had to create a section of a radio play that captured an ‘incident’, and only five words of dialogue was allowed to be in the final piece.

The idea:

Thinking of an idea for this task was actually tougher than I thought it’d be. In the end, I started to think of my daily routine and what sounds I hear. I decided that I would focus on my journey to university as I use the train, and that in the radio play I  would create an ‘incident’ during that journey: forgetting your ticket.

What I did:

To do this, I did some field recording on a few of my train journeys to and from university. I wanted to try record people waiting, and the rush to get on the train. However, you couldn’t really hear other people that well, and I think using a better microphone would of helped here; a mistake on my part but a lesson for the future.

I did focus on other notable things, though. I got recordings of the announcements, the beeping of the train doors, train doors closing and that sudden silence that follows the doors closing, the announcements from within the train, the movements and noises of the train etc. There was a big emphasis on realism and detail during talks with Larry Sider, and that’s what I really aimed for by recording everything.

In the editing software, I combined the sounds I recorded with sounds from online. The sounds I used from online were mostly for accentuating sounds I didn’t get cleary during the field recording, such as the train approaching. All the sounds (personal and from online) mixed really well, and the last step was just to record the incident; me forgetting my ticket. I recorded me going through my bag and getting my headphones out, and then added in some sounds effects of clothes rubbing uo against a microphone to simulate the sound you hear when you put headphones on. I then recorded the little bits of dialogue I needed, and finished off with a train horn sound effect I got from online to cover up the language used!

References:

SACHS, T. (1978). THE REVENGE BY ANDREW SACHS : Free Download, Borrow, and Streaming : Internet Archive. [online] Internet Archive. Available at: https://archive.org/details/THEREVENGEBYANDREWSACHS [Accessed 19 Dec. 2018].

Year 1 Module BACM101

BACM101 Reflective Report (v1): Produce a Soundtrack

Produce a Soundtrack (Task Seven) – BTS

For this task, we were required to create either a movie soundtrack, or an atmospheric soundscape using Foley sounds imported into the music software as samples. I wanted to achieve this brief by creating an atmospheric soundtrack.

Processes involved:

  1. First was the research phase. I looked up ambient soundtracks first as my original intention was to create something relaxing and ‘spaced out’. I also looked up some tracks I already knew; particularly thought-provoking ones, songs that makes you day dream and eerie atmospheric songs. During this phase, I also watched tutorials on FL Studio.
  2. Now that I knew what I wanted to do, I began to play around and use FL Studio. This was a huge challenge as I don’t know anything about music, and FL Studio is a very confusing program. I began by learning the C-Major family of chords on piano, putting them down in FL Studio and playing around with the pattern of them. I mainly copied a pattern off YouTube, then added to it to create my first ‘song’; but it wasn’t something I was completely happy with.
  3. After this first dabble, I gave it another shot, this time with a MIDI keyboard and more knowledge from one of Chris’ sessions. I learnt an easy version of ‘Neon Gravestones’ by twenty one pilots, and then started to play around with that tune until I came up with my own. This was the basis of the whole song, and from there it was all about adding to it. I went through all the atmospheric ‘droning’ sounds I could find in FL Studio, played around with them until I came up with patterns and added them to the song. From there, it was a matter of adding things like a bassline, and of course Reagan’s speech as I had decided by this point I wanted to relate it to the SWFTA project. By complete accident, the soundtrack I had come up with sounded very eerie, but I loved it and it went down brilliantly with the class.

This was by far the most enjoyable and satisfying task I did during the last two months. For the longest time I’ve been interested in using this kind of software to create atmospheric music and atmospheric remixes of songs, and this task finally gave me a start after years of putting it off. This, combined with the fact I knew nothing about music before making this soundtrack, is what made this task so great for me. The sense of satisfaction and happiness I had with my own work is why we do what we do.

On the technical side of things, I managed to learn a lot about FL Studio: the layout, what different instruments are available, mixing and how to put a song together. I can now open FL Studio and at least have a basic knowledge of where to start.

Furthermore, the power of audio became even clearer. There was a huge emphasis on the effect audio can have on an audience (whether it’s music or a Foley soundscape) during Larry Snider’s sessions. This task drove that point home for me: the incredible way it can change the audience’s mood, immerse them, place them somewhere else, scare them and most importantly for this piece put them somewhere else.

Moreover, I learnt more about listening and hearing, something I had to do a lot whilst making this soundtrack and something else that was emphasised a lot during Larry’s sessions. I had to pretend I was the audience whilst listening to my own soundtrack countless times, questioning if it was dragging on, if it was having the same effect on me that I wanted it to have on the audience, if the piano made sense, if it was tense and so on.

Further research into this new-found love after completing this task led me to discovering genres completely new to me, and something I absolutely love: vaporwave and lo-fi. “Vaporwave is primarily defined by heavy use of sampling, layering, distortion, chopping, screwing, and invocation of ‘80s and ’90s culture” (Colton, 2017). Lo-fi is not too dissimilar: it literally is “a term suggesting poor sound quality, the opposite of ‘hi-fi’…” (Harper, 2014).

Even more interestingly for me, these two genres have led to stylised videos that make use of VHS effects and 1980s retro girds to match with the retro sound of the music. There has been a rebirth of retro media, stemming from albums such as ‘Far Side Virtual’, ‘Chuck Person’s Eccojams Vol. 1’, ‘Floral Shoppe’ and videos such as Drake’s ‘Hotline Bling’.

1200px-hotline_bling
Still from ‘Hotline Bling’              

vaporwave_grid_sun
Vaporwave grid effect

floral shoppe album cover
Floral Shoppe’ Album cover

In conclusion, this new  ‘a e s t h e t i c’ style (the term that is starting to be used to describe all of this combined) is something I’ll be taking away from this task as it has really peaked my interest for different reasons, such as the idea of bad quality actually being the aim of this style. The vivid colours, retro looks and authentic vinyl sounds all appeal to me for some reason, and I’m happy this task let me discover something new about myself, which I’ve already started to dabble in:

80s Retro Text Effect2.jpg

References

Colton, S. (2017). Love in the Time of VHS: Making Sense of Vaporwave. [online] The Politic. Available at: http://thepolitic.org/love-in-the-time-of-vhs-making-sense-of-vaporwave/ [Accessed 4 Jan. 2019].

Harper, A. (2014). Lo-Fi Aesthetics in Popular Music Discourse. Ph.D. Oxford.

YouTube. (2013). FL Studio: Chord Progressions + A Little Theory (Basic – Part 1). [online] Available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BnIBaDjM_14&list=PLODAfS1EnYrlg3Tg15ukT4_zsZkfv1ruM&index=2&t=0s [Accessed 4 Jan. 2019].

Bibliography

Colton, S. (2017). Love in the Time of VHS: Making Sense of Vaporwave. [online] The Politic. Available at: http://thepolitic.org/love-in-the-time-of-vhs-making-sense-of-vaporwave/ [Accessed 4 Jan. 2019].

Dix, P. (2016). Watch a Robotic Trump Destroy the World in Absurd Vaporwave Video. [online] Flavorwire. Available at: http://flavorwire.com/580673/watch-a-robotic-trump-destroy-the-world-in-absurd-vaporwave-video [Accessed 4 Jan. 2019].

Francis Han, S. and Peters, D. (2016). Vaporwave: subversive dream music for the post-Internet age. [online] Vaporwave: subversive dream music for the post-Internet age | Editorial | Bandwagon – Live music, bands and concert guide for Singapore, Manila and Jakarta. Available at: https://www.bandwagon.asia/articles/vaporwave-subversive-dream-music-for-the-post-internet-age [Accessed 4 Jan. 2019].

Harper, A. (2014). Lo-Fi Aesthetics in Popular Music Discourse. Ph.D. Oxford.

Markowitz, D. (2018). 5 Vaporwave and Future Funk Tracks to Get You Ready for YUNG BAE. [online] Phoenix New Times. Available at: https://www.phoenixnewtimes.com/music/5-vaporwave-tracks-to-prepare-you-for-yung-bae-at-valley-bar-10913771 [Accessed 4 Jan. 2019].

Winkie, L. (2018). How ‘Lofi Hip Hop Radio to Relax/Study to’ Became a YouTube Phenomenon. [online] Vice.com. Available at: https://www.vice.com/en_us/article/594b3z/how-lofi-hip-hop-radio-to-relaxstudy-to-became-a-youtube-phenomenon [Accessed 4 Jan. 2019].

YouTube. (2013). FL Studio: Chord Progressions + A Little Theory (Basic – Part 1). [online] Available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BnIBaDjM_14&list=PLODAfS1EnYrlg3Tg15ukT4_zsZkfv1ruM&index=2&t=0s [Accessed 4 Jan. 2019].

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Year 1 Module BCOP100-CMFT

Production, Value and Taste 300 Response

Conformity:

During one of our seminars with Andy, we had an interesting conversation on conformity.

Why do we conform? Because we want to “fit in” with the people around us and be perceived as “normal” by a group of people or by a person. We buy branded clothes because it is in fashion, and then when it is out of fashion it goes to the back of the wardrobe never to be touched again. We do this even though budget clothes can look just as nice and be more comfortable because we are told by society that buying brands means we’re “part” of society.

A lot of young girls act like Kim Kardashian because they think that that’s how girls should act, and they conform to the group and social pressures around them and concede to posting indecent pictures and wearing indecent clothes.

Those are just examples, but in general most people pretend they are something they aren’t by dressing and acting certain ways. This comes down to the pressure society puts on everyone to conform, and media is what influences this the most.

Just like fashion, media has evolved to cater to different tastes as well. For example, in fashion UGG boots were what everyone needed to wear. Now it is Adidas shoes, next year it will be something else. With media, Westerns were the most popular genre of movie, then it was Crime movies. But even in media, why should we conform to making what will get the views? Why can’t we just make what we love and enjoy? Who says other people won’t enjoy it too?

It might be a tenuous connection to conformity, but I do feel as if most media makers just jump on the bandwagon on whatever is trending at the time (whether that’s on YouTube or in the film industry) and they don’t actually make what is true to them and themselves. I find this very sad, but as long as money, views and conformity have their way this will never change; nor will society conforming to how they should look and act.

96adb787-0496-494b-9a8a-baba86f68a62

References:

Cherry, K. (2018). Conformity: Why Do We Try So Hard to Be Like Other People?. [online] Verywell Mind. Available at: https://www.verywellmind.com/what-is-conformity-2795889 [Accessed 14 Dec. 2018].

Harris, A. (2012). Slate’s Use of Your Data. [online] Slate Magazine. Available at: https://slate.com/culture/2012/10/film-genre-graph-chart-of-percentages-over-time-goes-viral-on-reddit.html [Accessed 14 Dec. 2018].

Year 1 Module BACM102, Year 1 Module BACM104

SWFTA ‘Attitudes and Platitudes’ Film

SWFTA Project Plan

Use other people’s voices to tell your story.

Layout of video:

In chapters (chapter 1 “we fought for this”; chapter 2 “you fought for this”; chapter 3 “you worked for this”; chapter 4 “we are still fighting for this” etc.)

Freedom of speech definition:

“Freedom of speech is a principle that supports the freedom of an individual or a community to articulate their opinions and ideas without fear of retaliation, censorship, or legal sanction.”

“Everyone shall have the right to hold opinions without interference”

Freedom of the press definition:

“Freedom of the press is the right to circulate opinions in print without censorship by the government.”

What is your message?

That freedom of speech is a right every person should have, and freedom of the press is a right everyone deserves. No government should ever interfere with these two basic rights, and we as citizens should never let these rights slip away from us; but even though we have fought for them in the past, we are in fact letting them slip away.

What is my view/thoughts?

That everyone has a right to say what they want within reason. Everyone has a right to debate. Everyone deserves to be told the unbiased truth by the newspapers.

Footage ideas:

  • War – news on war, battle of Britain, troops fighting.
  • Adverts from around 1980: Generic advertisements (Coca Cola?)
  • News idents. (BBC, ITV etc.)
  • Aftermath footage of cleanup from German Blitz on London. (To show resilience of British people)
  • Civil war – IRA news footage.
  • Clips of reporting on war.
    • “We fought for this”
    • Fighting for freedom of speech.
  • Active demonstration.
  • Effort to gain freedom of speech.
  • Movements – Poll tax riots.
    • Victims of both sides
    • “I Disapprove of What You Say, But I Will Defend to the Death Your Right to Say It”
    • “We fought for this”
    • CND march 1983
  • Debating clips/political debates
  • Public opinion clips.
  • Miniskirts/high heels controversy
  • Posters; newspaper headlines
    • National secrets in newspapers/TV.
    • Too much freedom?
  • Old movies; old adverts
    • (sexist/racist undertones)
  • Hate crimes
    • Hate preachers footage.
  • Crowd dispersal.

When does freedom of speech become incitement of hatred?

Summary:

I visualise the beginning of my footage showing various scenes of demonstration to introduce the idea of freedom of speech.

To follow on from the introduction, I would like to show: interviews of the public; the public in a studio environment answering questions; and professional people in a studio answering questions as a panel, further showing how everyone is entitled to a difference of opinion.

Evelyn Beatrice Hall was quoted as saying “I Disapprove of What You Say, But I Will Defend to the Death Your Right to Say It”. After this I would like to show: tolerance to other people’s views; videos highlighting both sides of the argument or opinion, finishing off/summarising with footage of crowds dispersal.

SWFTA Diary:

05/11/2018

We visited the SWFTA archives today as a class. We were shown around, and met some of the staff including Jilly who we will be corresponding with during this project. The visit helped me work out what direction I wanted to go down with my SWFTA video: freedom of the press.

08/11/2018

We discussed SWFTA during our Thursday afternoon session with Chris, and I now want to widen my video to be about “freedom of speech” and “freedom of the press” as both go hand-in-hand.

09/11/2018

Today was my first proper visit to the archives where I had a chance to check out some of the footage and get an idea of what is available. I spent a good hour with Jilly, and I learnt that the South West archives do not have footage from the World Wars due to it being under Crown copyright. This meant I had to re-think some of my ideas as I wanted to have a lot of war clips, and clips of soldiers returning from war.

This visit also allowed me to discover some other footage which could fit into the ‘freedom of speech/press’ video, with one being of people’s reactions to women wearing the newly in-fashion mini-skirts and high heels.

I returned to the university with Stephen after the visit, where we organised our ideas onto word documents and lists. I also started to think into how I would edit my video, and at the moment I want to edit mine in the style of Quentin Tarantino – in sections/chapters. For example, chapter one would be “you fought for this”, followed by footage of soldiers and post-war damage. Chapter two would be “we fought for this”, followed by footage of riots etc.

Jilly informed me of this useful site which will help me research footage in my own time –  https://player.bfi.org.uk/search/free?q

16/11/2018

I met up with Tom in college today to discuss the SWFTA project. We sat in the library Mac suite, where Tom gave me his thoughts on what I had written, and added in his own ideas to the Word document I created for the project. It was very useful to hear some of his suggestions as it was things I hadn’t really thought into, and it was also really good to get a second pair of eyes to proof-read what I had written.

At the moment, we are very close to having a finished list of what we want that we can send into Jilly. Tom also thought of a really cool idea of editing the video in a way that makes it look like a news broadcast that is then taken off the air by the TV network, with the sentence “returning to scheduled programming” appearing on the screen. However, as we will have to edit our videos separately I will stick with my chapter idea.

18/11/2018

I have just finalised the list of footage, and sent an email to Jilly and Chris informing them. Tom and I have asked to go down to the archives on Friday at 2:30 PM to collect the footage on a hard drive so we can start editing.

24/11/2018

Tom, Stephen and I visited the Archives today. The trip was for Tom and me, but Stephen joined us so he could get another look at what footage is available. It ended up being useful having Stephen with us as he gave me a few ideas, and we also decided to share each other’s footage for our respective videos.

We sat with Jilly for two hours going through her list, picking out clips that we thought had potential and would fit our SWFTA videos. We kept referring back to the list Tom and I put together as well, but in the end I think it was better just looking at Jilly’s lists and picking out footage.

Overall, it was a fairly successful trip as we came out with 137 GB of footage, but I do think I’ll need to re-think my edit as I couldn’t get a lot of the clips I envisioned originally.

25/11/2018

I finished my soundtrack today for the ‘Sound Piece’ task. It started out as me just wanting to do an atmospheric piece, but as I progressed further with this task I definitely worked out that I’d be using it for my SWFTA video.

26/11/2018

After getting back from university, I decided to look through the BFI website for some more clips, preferably ones that are more specific to my video and to my ideas. I actually found 7-8 really good clips for my video, which I’ve requested off Jilly and should hopefully get them on Monday the 3rd.

The clips I requested are:

  • Bideford Shipbuilding (1978)
  • Textile Factory in Redruth (1975)
  • Pre Fab Chudleigh (1964)
  • The Blessing of the Sea Ceremony (1969)
  • Chipmunk Aerobatics (1950)
  • John Doyle in Torquay (1971)
  • Royal Navy Aircraft Carrier HMS Invincible off Falmouth (1980)

30/11/2018

We listened to each other’s soundtrack projects today during the Friday Crit session. It was really good to get everyone thoughts and feelings on my ‘Freedom’ soundtrack I did, including Larry Sider. I got the responses I was looking for; most comments were that it was eerie, tense and had them feeling uneasy. Jon said it would fit a montage of old war clips, which is perfect! It’s made me think about my video a little more, and how I’ll decide to edit it. At the moment, I’m waiting until I have all my footage before I think any more into the edit.

06/12/2018

I collected the extra footage I wanted from Jilly today, and I’m now ready to start editing.

07/12/2018

My soundtrack I made for the ‘Sound Piece’ task was longer than two minutes, so I spent this evening cutting it down in FL Studio. I also cut down Reagan’s speech, mainly the bits where he mentioned or indirectly mentioned the USA. I then added in a really good speech by Winston Churchill. It took a while to do as cutting it down and keeping it sounding ‘right’ wasn’t easy, but it turned out great I think.

Arguably, the last time Britain was truly united was under Winston Churchill and that is why I decided to add him in. Using Reagan stirred up some interesting responses and leaving him in adds to the video in my opinion.

09/12/2018

I’ve now started the editing process. I spent today going through all the footage I have and cut out the bits that would fit my video. This was a big task as I have around 50 clips, but I managed it and I was then left with 17 minutes of footage on my timeline. I finished off the day by cutting those 17 minutes down to 10 minutes, and will continue editing on Tuesday.

10/12/2018

Some notes from my phone:

  • Get footage of someone talking to camera, and then put Reagan’s speech as text at the bottom. Guy slowly walks towards camera.
  • For each part of the speech, such as “we must defend it”, intercut with footage of protesters etc.
  • “I’ve been John Smith with the BBC News at 10”.

11/12/2018

I’ve done a lot more editing today. The video is now the required two minutes, and I’ve edited the footage to match the music. There isn’t much more to do now, just more tweaks, plus the starting and ending DMP/SWFTA cards we’re required to add to the video.

I didn’t go for the chapter idea in the end as I felt it didn’t match up with the music. However, the video was structured mostly in the chapter style, with war clips at the start, followed by post-war clips, followed by police and protester clips etc.

12/12/2018

The video is now finally done. I made a few more tweaks which were:

  • Matching clips to Reagan’s and Churchill’s speeches.
  • Added in the DMP/SWFTA cards.
  • Intro effected to match start of music.
  • Crop effect to make video look like it was all shot on old film.

The video also ended up being more about freedom as whole. It was hard to be specific to freedom of the press and freedom of speech with the footage I had available to me, but I think the video worked out better in the end.

Year 1 Module BACM101, Year 1 Module BACM102

‘Do What You Do’ (Task Eight) – BTS

“The beginning of purpose is found in creating something that only you understand.”
Tyler Joseph

Introduction:

The risks I took were to create a video that attempted to draw on everything we’ve learnt during the last two months, making After Effects the backbone of this video and recording live footage, something I’ve not done much before. These helped me to develop my skills in After Effects and helped me to further memorise the skills we have been taught in areas such as Sound Design. In the future, I can apply the new effects I’ve learnt in After Effects to a wide range of projects, but more importantly it’s a stepping stone to learning a whole lot more about the program. Moreover, it is also a stepping stone to learning more about using cameras and recording live footage as well. I can research this further by doing short courses on After Effects on sites like Udemy.com and Lynda.com, and by also learning off people who do know a lot more about After Effects. As for cameras, I can do Wednesday workshops, and also just start using my camera more and learning off the internet. The one thing I would do differently next time is film from different camera angles.

The task:

For this task, we could do anything we want… as long as it has a connection, however tenuous, to an Aesop’s Fable. However, we were encouraged to explore areas we aren’t so comfortable with, or haven’t done at all, as opposed to stick to our strengths.

The idea:

Originally, I wanted to look at the meaning behind one of the Fables as this is the kind of video I’ve been wanting to do for a year or so now, and I thought that this task could kick-start my own ‘informational’ videos. However, upon reading some of the Fables I soon found out that this idea wouldn’t work in this particular case because of how short and to the point the fables are.

I went back to the drawing board. I knew the area I wanted to brush up on specifically was After Effects as I haven’t used it in a few months and it is the one program I’ve always told myself I want to master, but at the same time I wanted to try apply as many of the skills we’ve learnt the last few weeks as possible.

The idea I came up with in the end, with the help of my brother, was applying a Fable to a modern day situation. I decided on ‘The Old Hound’ and applying this Fable to a usually reliable journalist who is for once late on filing in his section of a newspaper. As I couldn’t draw on any actors, I decided that telling the story using text messages on screen, in a Sherlock Holme’s esque style, would be really cool and help me cover the After Effects side of things.

What I did:

Filming:

To start with, I got my brother’s friend (who once worked in theater) to narrate the ‘The Old Hound’ Fable so I could use this in the video. The next day, with my brother’s equipment still out from his podcast recording with his friend the previous day, I got him to help me set up a camera and his Zoom H6 microphone opposite where the subject (me) would be sitting. We actually changed rooms to get better lighting after a few takes, so the room in the BTS video wasn’t actually where we recorded.

We rehearsed what I’d do a couple times in a few takes, then did it for real with my brother directing so we didn’t get any timings wrong.

Post-production

With the narration and footage now done, I could finally start editing.

I started off with adding in the text effects with After Effects. Cut short, I found the iPhone speech bubbles online, put them inside After Effects, animated them, added in the text, animated the text and then added in some motion tracking so the text moved with the phone.

For the phone music player effect: I found all the icons used online, put it together using Photoshop, put that mockup into After Effects and animated it so it looked like it was actually playing something. The slide and touch gestures you see were made using shape layers in After Effects.

20181201_170509

The last thing to do in After Effects was the Sherlock Holmes sketchbook effect you see just before the narration kicks in, very basically again: this was done by drawing a random mask using the pen tool, adding the ‘roughen edges’ effect, fiddling around with the settings of that effect, and animating the mask expansion so the mask animates in. Then it was just a matter of downloading a paper texture and applying this, plus the mask effect, to the part of the video I wanted to apply it to.

I then went to Premiere Pro where I started to assemble everything together, with the clips I edited in After Effects replacing the original footage. I also had to work on the sound as I had my brother directing me what to do in the original footage. I cut out all the times he spoke, only leaving in the parts where I put my phone down for example, and then download a room ambience sound effect to go underneath the parts I left in so it could fill the gaps. I also recorded some wind noises for the narration part of the video. Really, Premiere Pro was just used to assemble everything together so I can’t go into much detail.

One mistake I made during the making of this was to do the effects in After Effects first. This meant that when I came to colour correct the footage, it was also changing the colour of the text boxes. This obviously creates more work as it means I’ll have to colour correct the footage inside Premiere Pro, re-load that footage back in After Effects and then re-export the footage from After Effects.

EDIT (Colour Correction):

I found some time to colour correct the footage after my mistake.

Before:

Untitled.jpg

After:

Untitled2.jpg

Feedback:

  • Cinematic black bars can still be seen under the sketch effect.
  • The font looks very stock.
  • Eyes drawn to the bright spot in the video. The bright spot (due to the lighting) combined with the lines on table that seem to lead towards the bright spot cause this.
  • Think more about composition when doing short films.
  • Very powerful.

References:

ExpertPhotography. (2018). Photography for Beginners: A Complete Guide (Updated 2018). [online] Available at: https://expertphotography.com/a-beginners-guide-to-photography/ [Accessed 11 Dec. 2018].