My research question turned into a statement, as i was inspired by the quotes “the pupil is made of water” by Aristotle, and “the true eye of the earth is water” by Gaston Bachelard. This inspired me to investigate the visuals and audio of water further, turning it into the foundation of my project. Originally i was interested in rain as a theme, but i decided to expand it to water and i believe water has many interesting aspects to it – and rain can be limiting.
First, i looked at what water in film represents, and how it is important and is used to convey many different meanings. Water symbolises multiple things depending on the context in which it appears. Most commonly, water connotes sadness, submerging, rejection or despair. Water also represents washing of sins, grief, relief or cleansing. The ability for water to have many different significant meanings is interesting to explore. There are many modes of expression and perception in film, and water is one of them.
Over time, contemporary cinema has exploited the capability of water, visually and aurally, to give a palpable form to human desires and dreams. Water is evoked in film as a substance that submerges something, and that something may be destined to re-emerge. Water is an important tool in narrative flows.
In the expertise exercises, i put forth my idea to explore water: and our group went out and filmed different places in RMIT that had aspects of water that were interesting – this included a drain, plants, the rain, steps, fountains, and taps. This enhanced my idea and gave me a greater idea of my plan, to create a sequence of shots involving water – and experimenting with their visuals and audio.
To begin with, I took photographs of water so that I could get a certain level of understanding on the object which I was planning on focusing on. This research enhanced my project as it provided knowledge and ideas about how to shoot water – and what different water images may differ.
Following on from this day, i began to do my research on the topic i had now chosen. I researched a lot about water and rain in film, watched movies where water was a crucial element, and read scholarly articles including Film in Depth. Water and Immersivity in the Contemporary Film Experience, which helped me gain knowledge about the filming and recording i was committing myself to. From here on in, i began experimenting with filming.
For the duration of this project, i filmed a lot. I filmed several shots as experiments, that i did not include in my final porject. I filmed a bunch of water sequences over a series of weeks, and then i began to record audio to fit with the footage also.
After filming some of the project, i began to plan for more location shoots and organised days to record the footage. I tried to do this focusing as much on the idea that “the true eye of the earth is water”. Water had to be the main focus in filming, without many other distractions – i had filmed footage where the water was not involved enough. This occurred when filming a hose, and filming a fish bowl. Throughout the project, i was always expanding my ideas and plans.
When editing, the prompt was always in my mind. I edited using Premiere Pro, for both the 22 second sequence and the larger combination of my sequence of shots. I spent a while editing of Premiere Pro, trying to make the footage flow in an order – from dark to light, and from calm to loud. However, i realised following a narrative when putting together a sequence of different shots was not a good idea – and that i should put the sequences together in an order that visually that looks better, and more creative.
In my research, i followed many more quotes than just “the pupil is made of water” and “the true eye of the earth is water”. More quotes i followed and enhanced my research are:
“Water makes the screen a fluid and interconnecting threshold between two places, between here and there, between present and past, conscious and unconscious, waking and sleeping, life and death.”
“The point is that water is not only a representational substance that effectively visualises and symbolises the characters’ psychic condition, but also a substance in which the film characters’ bodies are immersed or drown together with their troubles.”
“cinema has recognised that water can visually give matter and meaning to human desires, dreams and secrets, eliciting suspense and fear.”
“images and sounds stream on the screen like an inexhaustible flow of water, a ‘mechanical fluidity’ that perfectly expresses the spirit of modern times”.
I am happy with the filming and recording i completed, and how the sequence of shots naturally worked together. I thoroughly enjoyed researching and exploring water as an element that is experimental and creative.