The Next 3 Years…

After 6 months at university, I feel like I’m in a better place now to make judgments about my expectations and goals for the rest of my degree.


  1. This is very broad, but I want to improve my organisational skills. I realised this semester that a lot of my assignments fall at the same time, and I could have made life easier for myself by looking ahead at the assessments calendar and planning accordingly.
  2. I’ve started to work on this already, but I want to continue developing my group work skills to ensure everybody works equally and communicates well to produce quality work.
  3. I have had a taste of working with film equipment and I hope to continue learning through experience.
  4. I plan to improve my editing skills both on iMovie and FinalCut. I think this is mostly a matter of practice, watching tutorials and experimenting with new ideas and techniques.

This semester I have been thinking a lot about how I can make the most of my experience at RMIT during my degree. I think one of the most important opportunities provided is the work attachment scheme and I have already been thinking about what I’d like to do for mine. I’m going to work to find as many relevant attachments as possible over the course of my degree and I hope this will set me apart when I graduate.


Last weekend I went to Sydney to visit some friends, and while I was there I went into the city to see Vivid. It was the first time I had ever been to see the lights show, and I stood and watched in awe, thinking about all the work that must have gone into creating something so imaginative and beautiful.

“Vivid” is a perfect example of taking media elements and placing them in a new context. We see animations everywhere; on television, in movies, video games, electronic billboards… and now the iconic Sydney Opera House and Sydney Harbour Bridge. The projections really liven up the city for tourists and locals alike. It is hard not to appreciate the beauty of the Opera House lit up with funky colours, patterns and characters, and all the work that must have gone into creating the graphics.

This is where I draw back to Media. Firstly, one really cool think about Vivid is that its main stage is the Opera House, which has such a distinct and recognisable shape, that it poses a new challenge and something a little bit different for the designers of the animations.

Vivid as a concept takes design and animation to a new audience, making it a very public affair. Animation is no longer just something you watch passively on your television screen at home or notice from your car driving through the city, but something that people can gather to see and admire. Their is also enormous hype around Vivid, which means that its reaching more people and creating more of an impact.

And besides, who doesn’t like to take their mind of the world for a while to watch something bright and mesmerising?

Remembering to Notice

“I remember everything. I forget nothing. I write everything down so that later I’ll know exactly what happened.” – Thomas Klopper, The Book of Everything (by Richard Tulloch)

This past week, I have been working intensively on a play I am in, The Book of Everything. Being in the cast of a production has taught me so much about awareness and noticing, because I have to know myself and my surroundings well enough to be able to switch off my ‘ticks’, become my character and immerse myself in her world.

In the past week, here are some things I’ve noticed…

  1. Ordinary noticing:
    1. Our director told each of us about our acting ticks. Mine are that I play with my hair when I’m nervous and there are times when I get distracted and come out of character for a couple of seconds. When he told me my ticks, I was vaguely aware of them, but I had never actively stopped to think about them before.
  2. Marking:
    1. During each run, I made a mental note of all the cues to remember throughout the performance
    2. Each day we had a performance, I made a concerted effort to remember our pre-show cast rituals
    3. I thought about a key moment during each performance to tell the cast about afterwards, as part of a cast sharing tradition
  3. Recording:
    1. After each run of the performance, I wrote down each of the points our director made about things that needed to be changed or improved upon
    2. At the end of the process, I wrote down a number of things I learnt from being a part of this performance because I want to remember the people and the experience, and be able to look back on it during the rehearsal process for future productions I hope to work on

A Terrible First Filming Attempt

In our week 5 tutorial we worked very briefly with the Sony MC50 camera, learning a few of the basic functions and then filming our own short hand-held, still and pan shots.

We were also asked to think about aspect ratios – the dimensions of a film recording – and to make sure that each of our clips had the same ratio, or that we incorporated different ratios in a creative manner or switched for a specific purpose. Next, we talked about zooming, and how it is very uncommon to see zooms in shot; it is much more common to cut from, for example, a mid-shot to a close-up shot. Finally, we discussed colour balance and temperature in film clips. The colour balance can have a profound effect on the viewer, as it changes the whole atmosphere in the shot. For example, blue creates a cold feel that may be associated with a hospital, while yellow is associated with warmth and afternoon light, which can feel very homey.

Editing Experimentation

In class, we learnt about the following four transitions in preparation for our second project brief, a one minute edited video self portrait.

The transitions:

1. Cuts  – if you notice the editing, you come out of the world for a brief period of time

– Straight cut, contrast cut, cut on graphic matching, jump cut; cuts can disguise (e.g. when an interviewee rambles, a cut can be used to shorten the edited interview – cut to a shot of the interviewer/the interviewee from another angle)

2. Dissolve – shorthand that audiences recognise as a passing of time, but can also smooth out shots that are clunky

3. Fades – fade up from black, fade to flack, flash frame of white

4. Wipes – not used in most media production but can be used as part of the aesthetic of a piece if established early on (exceptions: infotainment, Australia’s Funniest Home videos, etc.)

More to consider:

  • 25 frames/second = cinema (makes smooth and realistic action)
  • Humans do not perceive frames but rather see movement for anything over 12 frames/second
  • Sound can also be used to create a transition from one idea to the next (can change before the visual changes to create an interesting effect – foreshadowing what will come next)

This is my first attempt at editing based on the techniques from our media tutorial. The focus is on shape.