Thursday, 7 April 2011

Question 8 - Evaluation - Looking back at your preliminary task, what do you feel you have learned in the process?


For the final segment of my evaluation and analytical processing of my AS Media folder, I have been asked to evaluate and interpret lessons and things that could have been improved in regards to both my preliminary task and my final thriller opening product. To conduct this, I will divide the evaluation into three areas: Camera, Editing (inc. Sound), and Planning.


In regards to the camera work, my first point would be that we have made a significant improvement in the framing of our shots and how much substance covers the screen, below you can see the contrast between two random scenes - one from our preliminary shot, the other from our final edit and see the progress we have made as frame constructors:



The screenshot from our preliminary shows amateur framework setup, for a significant amount of time during that scene, all that could be seen was railings, a wall and the top of the two characters heads - these things weren't thins that were pivotal to the plot, and the shot didn't highlight what needed to eb shown, i.e. the victim. However on the shot beside, from our final product - there is an improvement in frameworking, the shot shows both the location and the protagonist in equal light, highlighting the two most significant things about the scene clearly - the shot and framing was also key for me as an editor because it left significant space for titles to be added on top without blocking the protagonist's face.


Whilst watching the two videos, I believe as a whole the editing on our final product was much more cleaner, and flowed better than the prelim. A standout scene within the prelim where the editing wasn't on par with the piece as a whole, was the entrance into the boss's room, an instance where the protagonist with the red hat, told his sidekick to "be quiet" because they were about to enter the boss's office had to be added in afterwards and its placing in the scene, when I watch it didn't correlate with the characters hands movements, and it's sound was too high in relation to the scene.

Secondly whilst watching the two clips side by side I see significant improvements in the overall looks in regards to the production value, and effort put in to make each clip look like a professional output. The preliminary video was almost entirely composed of diagetic sound, that seemed to fluctuate between different decibel levels, lessening the quality of the pieces sound. In contrast our final piece had a soundtrack composed for it, and narration fitted around the scenes, giving the piece a more quality - orientated finish.

There was more dynamics in the final piece in regards to the effects and transitions applied to the video clips. In the prelim simple cuts and jump cuts were applied. As apposed to the "Cross fades" "Additive Disolves" "Dip In, Dip Outs" that were applied to the Final opening, and the use of slow motion to highlight the irony of the water bottle.


Before any of those areas above could be covered, the stage of planning had to be initiated. In hindsight I conceed that this in fact is the most important stage.
Our planning of our prelim was almsot non-existent. It was just a simple case of coming together as a group, and devising our plot and suggesting to each other variations in camera angles that we could use to make our piece better. We were also asked by our teachers to devise an animatics production of our prelim in the planning stages before actually drafting the final cut of it. This you can see below:

Our final product took a much different approach. We were determined to make the perfect piece, which resulted in alot of arguments between peers at the beginning, but our work ethic overshadowed this and we came past it to enter the research stages. For this I researched into other successful films in the specific niche we were aiming for, such as "Lock, Stock And Two Smoking Barrels" and "Snatch" from which intertextual references are made in our piece. Storyboards were also composed this time around to really justify and put in prespective the plot of our final piece.

While planning we had to pitch our ideas, get feedback from our proposed plot and watched various videos on YouTube on the FilmRiot Channel Account to see ways of making a good movie great in terms of editing after our finish product had been filmed.


In conclusion I regard our work a success and the whole process helped me as a media enthusiast encounter a huge learning curve. The AS Media outline forced me to make technical advances in my work, in terms of framework setup and learning how to operate a Mac and the professional editing software Final Cut Pro and LiveType.

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