Evaluation

I wasn’t sure what a super 8 camera was, which is why I was interested to take the course for my complementary studies option, when I was shown the cameras and inducted I was interested in how you can control the speed of the film in camera rather than having to wait until the post production side of things. Knowing that the camera could speed up and slowdown in camera I wanted to experiment with that feature and see what I could do. Unfortunately at the time of taking out the camera to test it out I pressed the wrong button which ended up messing up the film.

My initial idea was filming a busy road of traffic at a roundabout, I wanted to do this because I thought it would be fun to experiment with the speeding up and slowing down of the cars, but I also wanted to do this in digital so that I could pick up the light trails of the cars by using a slow shutter. I thought the light trails idea would look better in the film as it would catch the viewer’s eye more, also I could do two in one if I were to speed up or/and slowdown the cars in post-production.

With this course being ‘Collisions with Super 8 I obviously had to use the Super 8 camera and include some, if not all of the footage from the Super 8 film in my final film, this is where I had to try to decide what would be best to do in Super 8 and which would be good for digital.

Picking up light trails I would have to do in the night as that’s when it would be best to do the slow shutter speed, with the car lights being more noticeable in the dark. I didn’t think the Super 8 camera would pick up the car lights quite as good as the digital camera would as it would be in black and white and also I wouldn’t have the slow shutter option with the Super 8 camera, because of this I thought it would be best to use the digital.

The light trails idea came to mind as it’s something I’d always wanted to experiment with in the past with my photography but I’d never found the time to, also the opportunity hasn’t arose yet as that particular photography wouldn’t fit into any of my past or current assignments. Because I’ve never tried to do light trails in my photography before I would obviously have to experiment beforehand so that it looks its best and works effectively in the film. Although I was very keen on this idea I unfortunately couldn’t find the time to get out with my camera in the night to experiment, this is due to working a lot and trying to get other work for my current assignments on my photography course up to date and finalised for deadlines.

This is where my idea slightly changed, I wanted to keep to the idea of speeding up and slowing down as I thought it would make a good effect but as I didn’t find time for the light trails idea I changed my idea to something else. I’ve always travelled a lot, hour long buses to my college when I was in Bridgwater studying my BTEC, which I travelled by bus for the whole two years I was there and then also hour long buses to Weston Super-Mare when I was at college there studying my Foundation degree. I also travelled on the bus to visit my Dad, who lives in Bath, these journeys were another hour on the bus.

Anyway, I travel a lot and when I’m travelling on the bus or train, or even in the car if I’m been given a lift somewhere, I find myself gazing at the view through the window whilst listening to my music, and when I gaze through the windows I always found it interesting how the view looks, blurred and distorted due to the speed that the vehicle is going. Thinking of these moments it came to mind that that sight could be interested when sped up or slowed down and that gave me another idea for the film. Obviously the reflection from the windows could be a problem, unless I had a UV filter for my camera, which I don’t. But then I thought that the reflections may work well in the film as the unknown subject which may come up every now and then could add to the blur and distortion of the view, not quite knowing what it is you’re seeing.

Putting this idea into action I filmed some of my train journeys and captured the blurred and distorted view that I saw through the window, I also captured train announcements as I thought they could be good sound clips for the video and may mix well with everything going on in the video. Although I’d of liked to of filmed this on the Super 8 camera as it being in black and white would cancel out the colours, which would add the idea of the subjects being unknown, for example; if it was in the colour the blurred/distortion of green would obviously be a bush or a tree, but in black and white you wouldn’t know that. However I didn’t film it with the Super 8 camera as it would be been more difficult to film with whilst in the seat of the train and I wasn’t sure whether the Super 8 camera recorded sounds. I do plan to convert the video into black and white in post-production to create that surreal effect though, I also want to experiment with making parts of the film play backwards in post-production as well.

That was the digital side of the filming done, next I had to work out what it was I could film with the Super 8 camera which would fit in with the digital video. With the camera having that feature of speeding up and slowing down I thought that I should make the most of that feature as filming on Super 8 without using some of the unique camera features seemed pointless. So, keeping to my idea of speeding up and slowing down traffic I thought that I could use my idea that I had for the digital recording initially but bring it to the Super 8 camera as the speeding up and slowing down of the film would probably look more effective being done with the camera rather than by the editing software. Sticking to the idea I filmed a roundabout and sped up and slowed down the traffic as it went by.

I thought this would all link in together as it gives the idea of a busy day and the busy lives that people have travelling places by trains, being stuck in traffic, being frustrated about being late etc. Overall giving the film a story.

I feel as if the project went well as I didn’t give up my first fault with the Super 8 camera and eventually got my recording done, which I thought went well, considering before I didn’t know how to work the camera. Also I think my storyboarding was good as I thought about the video and how it should all link together and came up with the story of the rush and busy traffic which I thought was important for the project, rather than the film being lots of different things which may not link together and therefore wouldn’t be interesting to the viewer. As well as this I feel as if my post-production was effective and the final film flowed together well.

My research could possibly of been stronger as I feel I focused more on the film itself than getting the research from lectures and self-directed research done but the lectures and self-directed research which I did do helped my project as it informed me about the three choreographies of Super 8 film, which became useful when it came to piecing together my story, with the actual event being the train journey/rush of traffic, the movement of 2D form/shape being the movement of the traffic and the shapes and forms where were created from the blur and distortion of the subjects through the window of the train and finally, the illusion of 3D space/action being the illusion of the blurred and distorted subjects and the viewer having to think about what is going in the film and what the blurred and distorted subjects actually are.

Abstract Blurred Landscapes

It’s photography like Randall Talbot’s and Cofiant’s (flickr user) photography series based on ‘Abstract Blurred Landscapes’ that influenced me to work with the blurred landscapes from the train window because at first I wasn’t sure how it would look but then I found one of Randall Talbot’s photographs and thought they were really good and then tried to find others like it, which is when I found some of Cofiant’s photographs and then searched through his Flickr page and found the series that he’s done. I think they’re really interesting photos as the colours blend together really nicely and it’s that which then made me think that the blurred landscapes could possibly work in the video and that it would be worth experimenting with.

I wanted to like video the landscape rather than take stills and put them into the video because I thought that the movement in the landscapes could also add something to the effect of it all and would of liked to of used the Super 8 camera as the wash patterns would of added to the movement of the landscape.

 

dsc_0041-edit RANDALL TALBOT

 

Photography by Randall Talbot

 

 

 

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Spring Thaw by Randall Talbotdsc_0018-edit RANDALL TALBOT

 

 

 

 

Photography by Randall Talbot

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Photography by Cofiantdownload

Photography by Cofiant

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I found this part of the scene interesting as well as after the fast strips of colour from the train going by, these white lines joined them, quite was obviously a part of the train but I think all these added shapes, lines and patterns adds to the abstract look and complement each other well. It’s a shame that I didn’t capture this particular scene with the Super 8 as I’d really of liked to see how that would of turned out.

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Another train came speeding past the window and luckily it was whilst I was still filming, I think this captured the abstract effect I was after best and in the scene it would go from how the landscape looks to this fast strip of colours. I feel as if this would of been a lot nicer if it was captured in Super 8 as the wash patterns over the top of the strip of colours would of added to the abstract look and give a really interesting effect.

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One of these abstract effects that I thought worked quite well was this particular part in one of the scenes, I think the added lines going across the scene adds quite a nice effect to the overall look of the landscape and helped to give that different feel to how your eyes see something when it’s slightly blurred due to the speed of the vehicle that you’re in.

Abstract Blur

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I wanted to try and create something from the digital recording from the window that didn’t look like what it’s supposed to be, because that’s what happens when you’re looking at something out of a window at the speed the vehicle happens to be going at the time. I didn’t get much from the video itself, I had to speed it up in Premiere to get the effect I wanted, which is another reason I’d of liked to of used the Super 8 camera for these scenes, but once sped up I started to get the sort of effect I was after. Although it’s quite obvious from this particular one what it is, I did can a few better effects throughout the edit.