Graph 1 – TECHNICAL
Prior to entering the BaComms Media program, I had zero technical experience with filming and editing. So, as illustrated above, I continued to gain new technical skills and learnt most during the first quarter. We had two weeks to complete Project Brief 2. (There’s a typo error in the picture, it should be “PB2” and not “PB3”) Within that time constraint I, 1) consulted online videos and explored Premiere Pro 2) brainstormed personal portrait ideas 3) figured out how to use my camera. Being one of the least experienced in class, I felt the pressure to improve and excel. Nonetheless, I am thankful that Brian did not spoon-feed us because I was able to test my capabilities. Fortunately, the final product was well-received. This project had the least creative restrictions compared to others in semester one, enabling me to challenge my creative direction. I think it is my best work this semester.
Since Project Brief 2 had consistently kept me on my toes, its completion marked the onset of a lull. The audio interview class exercise required us to use Audition CC. Its interface looked more complicated than Premiere Pro and I was trying my best to avoid opening the software. Reject!!! The following week, we had a video interview class exercise. That was not much fun either. The camera movement was jerky and we did not organise a reliable shooting plan. I learnt to work with whatever footage we had and took advantage of our failings to create a more comedic product.
At the same, we had been introduced to Project Brief 3.(There’s a typo error in the picture, it should be “PB3” and not “PB4”) It made me panic for a long time because I had no closed ones in Australia to be the subject. When I finally found someone, we had to work around clashing schedules and the condition that the subject’s face not be seen. It was an interesting creative constraint. I remember Paul’s advice, that sometimes limitations can benefit creative direction. And it’s true! Beth said not revealing his face added to the mystery.
I have learnt not to be fearful of restrictions and to manipulate weaknesses into strengths. The graph plateaus after week 7 because the semester’s latter half was geared towards collaboration and using the technical skills acquired thus far.
Graph 2 – CONCEPTUAL
I try to bridge ideas learnt from my performing experience and current media studies. Is this a process of re-learning? Consciously journaling and drawing links help me become a more conscientious artiste. This way, I can derive new goals and inspiration for my film-making process too.
As artistes and inventors, it is essential to re-learn so that we gain awareness of upcoming trends. I’ve realised that media is both a tool and ever-evolving platform. We now live in world that requires humans to adapt to advancing technology, instead of vice versa. This is especially important because mediated communication is utilised across and between, all existing institutions and industries. We cannot run away from technology.
I also try to bring knowledge from my cinema contextual studies into my projects. I experimented with the following concepts: motifs, symbolism, repetition, rhythm of edit (where to cut), narrative structure, camera angle and perspective, etc. I want to experiment with soundscapes more, next semester!
Graph 3 – PROFESSIONAL
This is a general depiction of my professionalism and work ethic throughout semester one. The first six weeks had me very excited about learning. I punctually delivered my work with much dedication and sense of ownership. I also made a point to actively participate during class discussions and have no problems providing constructive feedback to peers. I enjoy reading and thinking about thinking.
Unfortunately, I became lazy and demotivated throughout the second half of the semester. It could be due to my struggles during collaborations. I ended up completing tasks for the sake of it. I also lack the discipline to consistently make to-do lists and manage my time, especially after losing momentum due to illness. This is an occurring pattern throughout my life. I hope to “maintain the fuel” throughout the rest of my semesters here. Prevention of relapse: take care of health and JUST DO IT.
Graph 4 – PRACTISE
I think professionalism and practise go hand-in-hand. So where my drive dipped, so did my practise. After we completed individual projects (PB1, 2 & 3), we worked on collaborative efforts (PB4). As a team, we did not explore many creative options. We did not allow ourselves to experiment and fail. Our focus was scattered across various projects. I aim to rise up to the occasion and step up as leader in future team projects.
HOW I LEARN
My sister and I were discussing about the way we process information and contribute at work. It seems there are two types of people in the meeting room: one who readily throws ideas on the spot and one who requires alone-time to garner inspiration. I am usually the latter.
I enjoy being given a mission, then going off to do some private investigation before sharing a pile of ideas in the meeting room. Impromptu presentations are thrilling but I gain more confidence when there is time to construct my ideas in a coherent fashion. Having more time also allows more space for creative exploration.
This work ethic is helpful when datelines are far. However, in a conventional work space, I probably cannot afford to do that. I think this “learn-first-give-later” process stems from a lack of confidence and fear of sharing “stupid” ideas or making mistakes. I became aware of this mentality about three years ago and I’ve been trying to improve by being more of a “yes man”.
I practise by speaking out in class more often. I encourage myself to be present in the moment; actively listening in class, analysing and brainstorming on the spot then communicating my thoughts in a clear manner.
I managed to achieve some goals set out before the semester started. This was achieved by committing to the individual projects and building up my media portfolio. RMITV was also very helpful in providing insight to the various roles and hierarchy in a TV studio. I need to work on collaborative efforts; to not lose passion and sense of ownership when moving as a team. I want to be a better leader too, someone who is able to facilitate members to play to their strengths! Cheers to future semesters!!!