Thursday, September 17, 2009

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Assignment # 2 write up.

As opposed to my first project, this one frame at a time assignment began in a far more specific direction. I had a fairly certain idea of what it was to be achieve in terms of aesthetics and concept. The main concept was an attempt to illustrate a flow of knowledge or ideas throughout the world. A book rises from it's shelf, places itself upon the grass, opens and suddenly the world (a flower; nature) rises from it. In this instance, the viewer of the film becomes the sole witness to this event. Through these ideas, a circular pattern of cognitive process, the passing of knowledge through the world's consciousness. The flower explodes, and then is closed into the book, forming a union between knowledge gained through study (book) and that of experience (flower/world).

Aesthetically, I thought the lush green of the plots of grass, and the brown of the book would contrast well, both being earth tones. At first, there was some thought of a different background for the piece, but inevitably, I liked the idea of the black background with some light reflecting from it (about every frame I changed the position of a piece of wood laying on the garbage bag to simulate movement of light. Also, almost every frame, the grass was ruffled to attempt to give it continuous movement.

In Postproduction, a lot was done in photoshop. All sequences of the book opening itself up required the removal of my hand from ten to 15 frames. After the removal of the hands, I drop all the photos into istopmotion to arrange the frames in the appropriate way. The scene of the flower grown from the book was done in reverse, actually being shot as if the flower were receding into the book, then later was reversed to show growth.

The music chosen is actually from a band named Comus (same as the book) which has an entire album based on the beast Comus, of which the book describes. The song is titled "Winter is a Colored Bird". Comus was originally chosen for their sound which typically comes of as medieval english witches, which this song being the most tame under those terms. I thought the lightness of the song added a nice airy flow to the whole piece.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Finalized idea for stop motion project # 2.

The camera will start on a stack of books (as they would appear on a shelf). One book will slide out from the shelf and open itself laying out on the floor. a flower will begin to grow out of it, and as each frame progresses, at the very bottom, the stem will start to become covered in text from the book (each frame will hold a growth of the flower itself, as well as the text moving up the flower, eventually covering all parts (pedals included)). A hand will come into the frame, and pick the flower from the book, and as soon as the flower has been detached from it's roots, the text will begin to cover the entirety of the arm shown. But, as the text progresses through objects, eventually the bottom of the flower will begin to become uncovered, as if it's a specific amount of text running a course through many different objects.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Ideas for next film.

Idea # 1

A frame by frame animation documenting the entirety of a chess game. Have two players (myself and one of my friends); neither of which would be visible in any of the shots, play a real game, and photograph the board after every move. We would play until there was a game that occurred which could sustain a long enough movie. The frames would be taken from an overhead view of the board. All the pieces moving in somewhat fast time would, aesthetically, create a great flow across the board. PIeces would move very rhythmically and mechanically due to the strategic nature of the game.

Idea # 2
Also a frame by frame animation, this time of a book removing itself from its self, moving about the floor (or whichever space it would be in) and begin to create forms with the pages within. The idea of pulling pages out and cutting images from them, and having them grow out, or interact with the book seems like an interesting idea as well. The goal would be, in the end, to create a world purely grown from the pages of a book, existing on (or inside) the book itself.

Idea # 3

Based on the short part included in my previous film with the flowers flying backwards into the mouth of one of the characters. Experiment with similar imagery (natural) growing in and out of objects, probably ones around my apartment. Would show naturepersonal space, sort of a flip of the reality of the situation, in which, or persona infesting personal space impede nature. I'd like to experiment more with having these objects grow out of humans, I thought, out of my entire first project, that scene (stated above) was the biggest aesthetic success. I feel I should keep experimenting with the idea, flush it out.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Assignment #1 Write up

For this first assignment, my approach was purely experimentation. I based most of my decisions as far as scenes and shots based on aesthetics. I wrote out a few different images that I imagined would be particularly interesting, and came up with a sequence of images that all fit a particular mood. The overall tone of the film drove it toward the occult and/or mysticism. The piece was shot in my apartment utilizing things already existing within the space. The actors were my three roommates and myself. Each has a certain character they seem to frequent in performance, so, I let them decide what to wear and their actions. All scenes were improvised with little direction. I shot it on a handheld usb camcorder, shooting each scene as a different clip.

As far as postproduction, I edited the piece with after effects, a program I had never used before and just learned as I went along. I flipped through each individual clip (there ended up being about 20 of them) and found certain images that I found successful, after which finding a logical way to sequence them, and tried to create a story from there. In the end, It seems that each character has a certain story behind them. The white phantom and the other hooded apparition play a game, the phantom searching for knowledge, while the hooded apparition delves deeply in his mind, inevitably loosing control. The game they play is that of power. Introvert vs. Extrovert. The gypsy character sits back and tells the fortune (or misfortune) of each player. Lastly, the Christ figure (or anti) haunts the White phantom as he treks toward cognitive progression. In the end, they take their moves (in the game of chess); and let the world fall around them, going back to the beginning ( looking inside themselves for what it is they seek) and experience spiritual bliss.

The music was a last minute decision. I was inspired Kenneth Anger, in his utilization pop music of the 60’s as the soundtrack to somewhat cult like occurrences. I thought it would be an uncomfortable contrast in the mind of the viewer, possibly making them uneasy. I feel like it throws more and more emotions at them that way. I also did a version with the sound reversed with delay on it, I feel this is probably more fitting, but I think I am happier with the musical version. Hopefully, they won’t know what to feel. Though, I’m not sure if I think the music was a COMPLETE success. If I had more time to work on it, I’m certain I could arrange it more successfully.