Preparing for this assignment was both easy and difficult for me, in many different ways. To gather my equipment, go out and film and sit down and edit it was the easy part. I already had a DSLR at home to film as well as the appropriate software to edit. The hard part was actually finding my inspiration to get my start on the films.
Because I have quiet strong emotions towards my suburb, and the people in it, the poetic film I think came a lot more fluently. I chose the quote “Regular maps have few surprises. Their contour lines reveal where the Andes are, and are reasonably clear. More precious, though, are the unpublished maps we make ourselves, of our city, our place, our daily world, our life: those maps of our private world we use everyday” from the novel Love Over Scotland (2006), by Alexander McCall Smith – which I think perfectly wraps up my feelings towards Point Cook and it’s community beautifully. Once I had this quote under my belt, I knew exactly where I wanted to go with my poetic film. I knew that I wanted it to be set at night time, in attempt to highlight the “rough” reputation that the western suburbs is constantly painted with; But I also knew that I wanted to simultaneously show people Point Cook for what it truly is. A colourful place that has a strong sense of community. To do this, I decided I wanted to try and create a film that made the audience feel as if they were roaming Point Cook themselves, and ultimately developing a sense of familiarity with the place – despite no one in the class actually knowing anything about the suburb.
I was happy with the end result of my poetic film, and I still like it the most out of my two finished pieces, but there are some changes I would make if I were to go back and re-do it. It was pointed out to me that the shots of me walking through Point Cook were the strongest, and the entire piece would’ve been a lot more effective if I had of continued to use that style of shot throughout the entire film – and I have to agree. This is something that I noticed in the editing process, and I wish I had allowed myself the time to go back and re-film so I could’ve done that. Moving into future assessments, this is something that I will consider, and will now plan to allow time to make any changes that I might decide to make in post-production. Something I would have also liked to have done is find better suited music, but in order to do that I think I would allow time to approach an artist (most-likely a local artist) and ask for rights to use their music for my film.
Heading into my representational documentary I had no idea where to even begin. Finding a quote was hard, because everything I could find on my area were shocking headliners about the crime that occurs in the area. Finally I stumbled across an article that actually held Point Cook in a high regard, and found the quote that would get the ball on a roll… “One of the most common criticisms of new and outer suburbs is that they are bland, soulless, cookie-cutter developments that lack culture and a sense of place… Point Cook’s growth is defined by detached housing, remarkable cultural diversity, many young families, work commutes, and limited public transportation infrastructure… These interactions of people, identities and place coalesce into a stronger local sense of shared identity (Novacevski, M. 2019. How to turn a housing development into a place where people feel they belong. May 14. The Conversation. [30 July 2019] <https://theconversation.com/how-to-turn-a-housing-development-into-a-place-where-people-feel-they-belong-116174>)”. This basically inspired me to show all of the things that Point Cook has (or the lack thereof) to offer.
I was quiet happy with how it turned out, despite how long it took me to get there – however I wish I had cut the final shot from the final cut and left it at the basketball court shot, as suggested by my classmates. I do agree that the final shot made the end look messy, like I didn’t quiet know how to finish it. Other people’s opinions is something I will also consider moving into the next assessments, and allow more time to show people my film and gather any constructive criticism that might help me improve my work.