In a Friday class, (I think it was week 9) – we were put into groups and were given the time to investigate something. I really enjoyed my group – the good thing about the subject so far is that I have really gotten to know most people in my class and am keen to work with the (without feeling shy and a bit scared). Although, I still feel a bit timid – but I just need to get over that.
Michael suggested the ‘Vertigo’ zoom (as he referred to it). The Wednesday class was about short little exercises to do with zoom, focus, focal point etc. So that really helped with out investigation. I was really REALLY happy with who I was working with – we were able to bounce of idea’s and have a really good time. For this investigation we chose the ground level hallway to do this. We fiddled around and we ultimately needed a dolly to create a smooth shot (give us the dolly Paul) – but we made use of a wheely chair and tape. We originally tried a handheld approach – but there was too much human error. We ended up taping the camera to the chair. Tom said on the ground (because we had a chair…) and Gabby and I pulled the chair back, while Michael watched and directed. Henry was on camera – changing the zoom and focus at the same time we moved. This ended up being a physical gesture – he was basically doing the splits. Aria was at the back watching the monitor from the camera (we didn’t bother with audio). We did this shot multiple times, pushing the chair faster, and changing it up each time till we were happy.
We then moved onto Henry’s fighting scenes – where I was DOP and worked with Henry to try and achieve what he wanted. Gabby and Aria were the performers first up – and Henry choreographed each move (which he is great at). The by watching what they did, I discussed the movement of the camera. He wanted a few ways of how he wanted the scene to be filmed – one was just the ‘standard’ and no movement. The other was movement, zooms etc. The next fighting scene was with Michael and Tom – and they really enjoyed it, improvising where they could. But this is when I was able to hold the camera handheld – it got a little heavy so I swapped with Gabby for a bit. But it was all a lot of fun – because we all got really into it. Henry gave me a lot of leeway – as he was more focused on the movement of the performers (not sure if the safety procedures were put into place…) but not one was hurt and it was good fun. I can’t wait to see what Henry (or anyone else) edits. I didn’t know what I was doing, as I have never really paid attention to fighting scenes – so this was really good for me. I learnt a lot – and realised how much work went in with the communication and even trust.
This was probably one of my favourite classes thus far – it was so fun and something that, normally, you wouldn’t get the time to experiment with. So I really enjoyed this. I just need to have faith in something I want to do… While also making it a productive class for everyone.