260MC Portfolio.

Task 1, ‘photographing the face’.

This task was to create a 1 minute video of catching the human expression to create a narrative without dialogue and in one shot only. To do so, we must use lighting and set to the best of our standards.  In my piece, I wanted to shock the audience, make them expect one thing but pull out a completely different chapter. Everything they expected to happen wouldn’t of come close to what actually does, this is what I think gets you a good piece of work.

There is no sounds or dialogue in the piece to allow audience to focus more of expression and not get distracted by sounds. When in silence viewers are almost forced to concentrate more to detail and movement.

“It isn’t a large canvas, the human face, but even with the same number of component parts (two eyes, a nose, one mouth) the result is limitless variation.”

Within this short 1 minute film I wanted to portray a twist by using a seen-before narrative of a man staring at a woman. Unlike the others that we see my character is not actually looking at the woman in a creepy, perverted kind of way. He is simply admiring her, he is watching her with envy and passion and imaging inside his head how lucky she is to be comfortable in her body. As soon as he stands up and walks towards the camera, which represents a mirror, he looks empty and full of sorrow.

After a few seconds his face changes and although there is still a sense of emptiness to his expression, he looks slightly courageous and removes his t-shirt and reveals himself. He reveals that he wasn’t born in the right skin, reveals that it is possible to be unhappy with your gender.

What I like about this piece is the concept and the frame. It is a wide shot which establishing setting and characters, however there are many things I could of improved on:

Lighting. I like the lighting on the faces however I only had one LED light and I should of booked out 2 as I could of placed one facing the back wall to cancel out irrelevant shadows. When watching I sometimes watch the shadows which distracts me from the actual story. White balance was an issue due to again only having one LED light.

Setting, the setting was set in a dining room of a student share house so the characters aren’t strangers but they don’t know a lot about each other. You can sense this with how they behave around on another. However the setting doesn’t make much sense due to the only table I had in my house is a big garden table! If I was to remake this task I would branch out to better locations because:

“It’s important to establish the time and place of your story in the opening scene of your screenplay. Doing so gives the audience the geographic location and era in which the story takes place.”

I was inspired by 2 men sitting on the bus talking about films, in which one said he loves when he is expecting something and the film completely twists it because it makes him feel cheated but in a good way. However could I have possibly tried to put too much narrative into 1 minute? But surely more narrative is better than none.

This is the piece I have chosen to remake because I have done more research into photographing the face and believe I could produce a better piece of work concentrating on  1 persons facial emotion and play around more with lighting.

One sector of this film I like is how the lighting forces a black outer frame almost like a natural vignette effect which draws more attention to the center of the shot where everything is taking place.

Photographing faces – how to get the best portraits (2012) Travel Resources, 9 February.
Available at: http://www.austinadventures.com/travel-resources/photographing-faces-how-to-get-the-best-portraits/ (Accessed: 7 December 2016).

Screenwriting (2003) How to format A screenplay: Establishing time and place. Available at: http://www.scriptologist.com/Magazine/Formatting/Time/time.html (Accessed: 7 December 2016).

Men makeup (no date) Available at: https://uk.pinterest.com/explore/men-makeup/ (Accessed: 7 December 2016).

Task 2, Soundscape.

For this task we had to take our favorite piece of literature and create a soundscape for it. I chose a poem written by e.h about modern day society as its a controversial subject for teens/ young adults as they feel the need to live life through expectations and not living reality. Every day social media blows up with hundreds of tweets and thousands of retweets regarding society and its issues.Society is supposed to represent the life of any average human being to live, so why is portrayed as so negatively on a daily basis? Slander and expectations is why. Both male and female feel they have to hit the many different stereotypes to make them a decent human being. Being thin, long hair, piercings, how to speak to each other, selfies, what clothes they wear. It’s crazy.

But there are people you meet in this generation who don’t care about society’s rules and regulations and this is the concept of my sound scape, an average girl who wears her own clothes, drinks as much as she wants and smokes what she wants. Because of this my soundscape has been read out in a sarcastic manner with lighters, laughs and whispers of typical rude stereotyping that goes on every day.

An issue I had during post was that the girl who was narrating the poem came out as really quiet on audition and even when turning volume to the highest level she still sounded quit quiet. But I worked with my other clips and made them all an equal level excluding the loud sh, but that was for effect!


I didn’t include the whole poem because we had a 1 minute limit I didn’t want it to feel rushed and I wanted more space for added sound I had recorded separately. The extra sounds used in this piece are:

– Footsteps
– Door closing
– Grinder
– Lighter
– the paper burning
– inhaling and exhaling
– coughing
– harsh whispers
– SH
– Laughing

I feel like the sounds I used help tell the literature better as it set the narrative from the first sentence we hear which is “Welcome to society”.

I wanted to tell this piece using metaphoric terms in which when the door opens and closes, someone has just entered the room, it can represent a young teenager entering the cruel world of society which is why there is an eery feel when listening to it. It is quite negative and after listeners have finished listening it can play with their head and make them feel anger towards life we live today.

Overall I am happy with this piece and even though it could be patched up a bit more and adjusted to sound a bit better I think it’s one of the best concepts out of all the tasks we have been given for the 260MC module. It engages listeners and makes them think more about current issues and makes them feel a bit sad yet annoyed after watching.

I edited this on Adobe audition using a multi-track setting and adjusting volumes and clipping all together to how I want it. I then exported it to Adobe premiere and added a cover photo that I had taken earlier on that day when recording the smoke sounds. The photo is taken on the canon 400D and edited in adobe photoshop, I created a colour enchantment layer to put a pink tint on the smoke to give the photo that standard ‘I look like I should write a quote over the top and post of Tumblr’ kind of vibe.

I recorded all my sounds on an iPhone 6+ as appose to an edirol, if I was to remake I would use a edirol and concentrate more on the voice’s audio levels.

Welcome to society | high existence (no date) Available at: https://uk.pinterest.com/pin/25403185374587789/ (Accessed: 8 December 2016).

Smith, C. (2016) 170+ amazing Twitter statistics. Available at: http://expandedramblings.com/index.php/march-2013-by-the-numbers-a-few-amazing-twitter-stats/ (Accessed: 8 December 2016).

Task 6, Remake.

After creating all 5 tasks we had the chance to go back and remake one to a better standard. I chose to remake my Photographing the face as I believe my first attempt could of possibly had a little too much narrative in  1 minute, so, instead I kept it simple and just played around with lights and reflections.

When filming this piece I focused more on lighting and canceling out shadows because when setting up I wanted to silhouette the back so the only time you’d see her face is when the colorful lights were reflected onto her. However, this just didn’t look good like I wanted it too. It would of looked better if we had a wider space, a better camera and a tripod. During pre-production my tripod broke on me and it was 11pm so there was no where I could of gone to get a new one!

So I worked with what I had and instead I had a light behind the camera to the left and had one shadow in shot. I tried with 2 lights and instead it created another shadow which is very annoying because when evaluating my task 1 I spoke about wanting more lights so I could play around on set more. When placing 2 lights behind my actor it created a reflection on the camera and it looked awful!

What I like about this 1 minute piece is the concept is simple and sweet. How many people get aggy/ sad/ aggressive when drinking certain spirits? Gin sends many people close to me upset and I wanted to portray that in one shot. My actress’ facial expressions are pain in the eyes and not an inch of a smile cracks once. The lights represent a club/ party to convey loneliness in a crowded place, people can feel lonely when surrounded by people and during spare time over christmas I would love to remake this piece yet again and include other characters.

What inspired my piece was the music video from Snakeships song “All my friends” as I love how the director has used lights and filters throughout the whole video. It is so colorful and personally I think I enjoy the song more when watching the video as its a beautiful scenery. You can watch the video here:

I feel like I have in some ways hit the targets for the remake project due to how I changed set up in post production and played around with lights, kept the narrative simple and portrayed the emotion of my character more but yet again I feel like I could remake this piece and improve it massively. I suppose I feel like I haven’t improved my first attempt up to a good standards because they’re both such different pieces.

However this quote by Wes Anderson I found on a website during making short films in college always makes me feel better:

“I have a way of filming things and staging them and designing sets. There were times when I thought I should change my approach, but in fact, this is what I like to do. It’s sort of like my handwriting as a movie director. And somewhere along the way, I think I’ve made the decision: I’m going to write in my own handwriting.”

Out of all the tasks we had to do photographing the face really took my fancy I was really interested in the lecture that Meera delivered back at the start of October for it. I find it fascinating that you gain so much back story, emotion, narrative just from a picture of 1 persons face. This sounds so easy but its actually quite a complicated thing to do.

To conclude, I do like this piece but I am aware of how I could improve it again which I would like to do in my own time. Photographing the face is not as easy as it seems and I need to buy a new tripod!

SnakehipsVEVO (2015) Snakehips – all my friends ft. Tinashe, chance the Rapper. Available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I3mrYxPLSH4 (Accessed: 8 December 2016).
Chan, J. (2001) Null. Available at: https://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/keywords/filming.html (Accessed: 8 December 2016).

Task 4, The film.

For task 4 everyone was put into groups and given an image however I wasn’t in uni this day as I was at work so I was not yet in a group. I joined a group of 3, and we were given an image which consisted of 2 young asian children in New York city back in the 1960’s and an older man pointing a gun to one of their heads.

The interesting part of the picture was that the child was smiling so it was all a joke and I really wanted to create a good piece for this but due t lack of communication I got moved to a different group.

This was the photo me and my new group had:


This photo was taken by Robert Mapplethorpe and Patti Smith. The boy is wearing leather trousers and putting on a shirt which to me portrays a punk rock vibe and with my group too as the narrative was focused around a band and there interaction with drugs.

I love this photo it gives off a film noir themes and the fact the room is quite run down makes the photo. It conveys a young man perhaps living on his own for the first time in a small affordable room.

My job within the production was getting actors and co-editing with Fallon. I met Fallon at the library after work on a Sunday and she had already put the clips in a sequence but they just needed re-arranging a little and a few transitions. However this was proved to be more intense and stressful than needed to be because a few shots were shaken and lost focus half way through and were not re-shot.

Unfortunately I couldn’t be at the location when filming as again I was at work, so there were a few things I couldn’t voice my opinion with at the time. For example the taking of cocaine, the lines were way to thick and would be impossible to snort that much which makes it look a little unbelievable. Also some shots you could tell they were flicking the coke off the table so I had to cut up a few shots and re- schedule them.

I really like the outcome of this production though, the use of lighting in the end scenes is my favorite as it establishing the setting very well. The narrative is easy to follow as is script/ screenplay.

I missed out on a lot of pre-production due to joining the group late so there was a lot I had to catch up on but due to having 2 the modules on at the same time and loads of course confusion due to miscommunication I didn’t get updated as quickly as I would have liked as we were all so busy. Also balancing a full time job and this course is very hard as this meant I also missed out on filming day. 😦

Originally I had 4 actors, all of them fitting the character types perfectly: long hair, music student so played instruments etc, they had that cool indie vibe about them so I was chuffed. However because I am the most unlucky human being to walk planet earth on the day of set, when they knew where to go and what they’d be doing, they bailed. And I was at work. So I had to call around and beg people to go in and luckily they did and they ended up being good characters! Hopefully everything happens for a reason.

All in all I really enjoyed being a part of this film because the final piece even though it was complicated to edit it has still came out as quite a good piece of work. My group was me, Azza, Tom, JB, Fallon, Rob and Alex and we all have our own opinions but the same theme of mind so we worked well. Just slight miscommunication because of distractions but this was me as well.

ARTIST ROOMS Robert Mapplethorpe (no date) Available at: http://www.tate.org.uk/artist-rooms/learning/resources/robert-mapplethorpe (Accessed: 8 December 2016).

Acting auditions, model jobs, music & extras casting (2016) Available at: https://www.starnow.co.uk/?gclid=Cj0KEQiApqTCBRC-977Hi9Ov8pkBEiQA5B_ipS_FE24Dcg17sUq0tiZMPzUgQxLz1vLuSCniYpFBEXgaAp5r8P8HAQ (Accessed: 8 December 2016).




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