Pulling a Lenny

Recently In TV1 we have been working on a series of extremely short scripts called ‘Lenny’.

In the first Lenny exercise we were given a bunch of different clips from last years students and told to edit them into a logical sequence. Unfortunately, these clips seemed more worthy of an experimental mash-up or comedy rather than a short drama. Laughing at the terrible acting and illogical filming patterns, I overlooked how hard the task actually was. It wasn’t until Lenny ex2, that i realized I was about to repeat the same exact mistakes. Watching these sequences before filming ours was also very helpful in reminding us what mistakes could be made. For example: the direction that the actors are walking in looked like they were headed in opposite directions.

In Lenny exercise 2, we were told to ‘edit in camera’, I was slightly confused at what this meant at first, until it was explained that each scene must perfectly match the next scene in the camera…..It reminded me of the good old days, when there would always be a long awkward glance from the person being filmed checking that the camera was on and ready. With the inability to shout ‘action’ and ‘cut’, the film was a lot harder to create. This task definitely showed me how crucial communication is on a set and especially when filming.

Today, we completed the Lenny exercise 3. Although we hadn’t sourced any extra actors or a first AD, I feel we managed well. I’m extremely glad that all our members showed up today as I feel that this task was a great stepping stone to our BIG SHOOT. It seems that we all work well together and are also great in each of our chosen fields. Helping the director with shots, I did also realize that i think about shots in regards to editing. As I brainstormed each shot, I would place it on a virtual final cut timeline in my head and imagine it being played after the previous shot. This was very valuable in supporting the director and outlining when shots might have crossed the axis or confuse the audience. I feel that editing our footage will be as equally rewarding as filming. For although we overcame some problems with sound( generator going on and off) and lighting (high contrast) on the day, we will only be able to pinpoint all our faults when we re-watch the footage.

Overall I’ve really been enjoying filming the Lenny scripts. For me, this Hands-on approach with the actual equipment we will be using, is the easiest way for me to learn. No matter how many times I read a manual it will never suffice to actually filming the ‘real thing’. Although they are short exercises, they allow us to repeat the motions of filming and become familiar with filming with our groups. This Personally makes me feel more comfortable with not only my crew but the professional and extremely expensive equipment.


Creating a Korsakow: Life

Like most of my fellow students, I initially struggled to find a plausible connection between all of my videos. After deconstructing them to their very core, I had an extremely significant insight. They all had one monumental thing in common; me. I began to think, as a creator what had I bought to the video? How had I shaped the content?

As Adrian Miles stated in his second lecture, ‘things exist in relations’. This started to become clearer to me as I began to re-watch the videos not as separate entities but as a collective whole. Analysing them from a gestalt perspective my videos seemed to reflect the flow of my own changing mental states, containing moments of utter chaos and contrasting moments of peace and tranquillity. As Certeau highlights in his paper ‘The Practice of Everyday Life’(i) I purely had to ‘make do’. Filming whilst I exercised, studied, worked and played, I began to interweave my ‘modalities of action’. In turn this dramatically affected the mood of each of my videos and the content I selected.

Reflecting on this, I began to notice the moments of peace I had experienced within my Easter break in comparison to the frantic videos I had filmed earlier in the semester. I felt calmer watching the videos that focused on the beauties within nature rather than the constructed beauties of man-made objects. From this concept I was inspired to create the structure of my Korsakow film around a central mantra that could remind not only me but others of the calmness one feels when they simply… Let go.

In our current era, it is often easy to become caught-up in the materiality of the world and neglect to notice what it means to be alive. From this idea I wanted to create a project that wasn’t linear yet wasn’t completely random. It has a message, but how one receives and completes it is ultimately dependant on the user. Through the use of text and the very careful linking of videos, I feel I have successfully created the message I intended. As the reading ‘The discipline of noticing’(ii) stipulates, disciplined noticing takes effort, therefore I have attempted to create a message that ‘develops sensitivity’ within my audience ‘to notice particular things’ and try and ignore others.

I decided to centre my piece around the structure of ‘Life’ as the user makes their own choices, which in-turn negotiates their unique experience and the message they will individually design. As a background I selected an image of the universe, for a number of reasons. Firstly it reminds my audience of the scale of life, showing them the greater picture. It also reiterates the powerful force of nature and how often we seem to ignore it. Just like the immensity and friction of the universe, I feel like most of my videos reflect a sense of this controlled chaos. In keeping with this theme I have also utilized sound differently in each of my clips. Using different sequences of upbeat music within each of my clips, I have attempted to overload my viewer’s senses. I give my viewers reprieve from this stimulation as they reach the videos containing the natural world and their diegetic sounds. Here, I have purposefully given my audience a moment of peace, in support of my overall message.

Although I personally feel my piece is successful, its broader message may not relate to everyone as it so closely does to me. After completing my film, I also began to compare it to others. Initially this made me extremely worried as it didn’t encapsulate the randomness and spontaneity I had seen in most other projects. Containing a unified message, my Korsakow film may not have successfully escaped every constraint of the narrative form, but I have learnt a lot about my own practice.

Also, In contemplating Shields statement ‘everything happens for a reason, and I want to say, no, it doesn’t’(iii), I learnt a lot about my own k-film and it’s existential struggle. For although one can select their own path through the film, the end message and final destination of the user is pre-determined. This might simply reflect my own control-freak tendencies but I think it also summarizes my fascination and conflicting beliefs in destiny.

Finally, In creating this project, I have not only developed the skills to source links between media I initially thought were unrelated. But I have also gained insight into my own nature and work ethic. Furthermore In producing the videos themselves, I’ve also noticed that; less often means more. What I mean by this is that an unedited lo-fi video using natural sounds can often be more evocative then a highly constructed video with music and editing.


i. Certeau, Michel de. The Practice of Everyday Life. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1988.

ii.Mason, John. Researching Your Own Practice: The Discipline of Noticing. London: Routledge, 2002. Print. Extract.

iii. Shields, David. “L: Collage”. Reality Hunger: A Manifesto. Vintage, 2011. ebook.

To view my Korsakow film: click below

korsakow film

Within the Frame

This week we focused on the creative and practical tools used to create a films cinematography. As I haven’t given much thought to this in regards to our own film, I thought I would brainstorm and seek inspiration from other films I have seen. The first director that came to my mind was Wes Anderson, who directed The Darjeeling Limited, The Royal Tenenbaums and most recently Moonrise Kingdom:Screen shot 2013-04-15 at 12.38.37 PMmoonrisemoonriseUsing a Long depth of field, Anderson utilizes the wide angle frame.Throughout his films, he also seems to create highly intricate mi-en-scenes. Relying heavily on visuals, the frames often suggest more about the characters than the actual script does. Although this style doesn’t seem to work very well with our genre, it does emphasize the importance and thought that needs to be considered when designing a films cinematography.


If my work aspires to be anything …..it is this video. It’s a truley emotive piece that leaves me speechless after every watch.

Recently I re-watched this video and found it extremely relevant to both integrated media and Film/Tv1. For integrated it has shown me how a film can be moving without necessarily relying on a structured narrative. This film could almost be a poem, a sonnet, or even a serenade of the ocean. This has helped me form the basis of my own non-linear Korsakow film. Its not what order your text is in but instead how powerful the text is. I’ve come to realize that the main goal of my project is to create a feeling rather than to explain a story. This feeling may be dependent on the viewer but it must exist.

For my Film/TV class I have found it relevant to this weeks lecture and tute that focused on cinematography. The remarkable visuals explore the unseen world of the ocean from a different point of view. The sound also plays an extremely important function in this film. The rhythmic sound of the ocean, transports us back to our fetus-self wooshing within the womb. Its comforting and hypnotizing, calming us into a tranquil state.

Work In Progress

Yes faithful tv/film 1, I have neglected you for a while.. but I’m back and ready to reflect. To be honest, I’ve been finding it difficult too use this space as a means of collecting my ideas. Working within such a visual medium, I often find it difficult to express my ideas in writing rather than visuals. As this blog is such a public forum, I also feel that the nature of my ideas tend to transform once I have begun writing. As stated in the first weeks readings, the process of reflective writing is often changed by this process amongst many others. overcoming these mental blocks, I have decided to ignore that this work will be read by others, and try and write what comes naturally to me. We have begun editing our script ‘See a Man About His Dog.’ and although the reading in week 2 by Mackendrick advises one not to write a comedy, it seems that our script has resorted to comedic elements. This may be one of the faults of creating a short film and relying on certain character stereotypes.

Within the short space of five onscreen minutes or rather five pages in a script, I have found that one cannot truley develop a deeply complex character. With all of my story outlines, I have felt that my characters have reflected a character stereotype typical to that genre. This is mainly due to the time constraints of a short film. With this in mind, the cliche of each of the characters often comes across as humorous…. well at least that is what I’ve found in our script. The only way to overcome this is by accepting it and using it to ones advantage. In our script we have achieved this by exaggerating the cliches and nuances of our characters. Our bad ass biker-thug was originally spreading jam on his piece of toast, until we replaced the knife with a ridiculous butcher knife. Maybe our character could be experiencing these things in his own mind? exaggerating what is a purely innocent interaction with a biker, by his own preconceptions about how he should behave?.. I don’t know… I just thought of that idea….

I certainly feel that how you frame a shot, how you structure time and what effects you use can make a boring short film into a visually engaging and enjoyable film. I appreciate this in films such as snatch, which use a fast tempo, awesome visual effects and titles to create excitement and anticipation within its audience. Thanks Guy Ritchie… I like your work

Escaping the limitations of time

As I opened yet another tab on my Firefox browser, I saw what my life had become… A series of unmanageable pages all competing for my attention. So i guess it’s true….. I am a product of my generation. Overloading my brain with information whilst simultaneously attempting to complete as many tasks as possible. Weinberger suggests that this informational anxiety is purely a cultural condition… but has it gone too far?

Recently I observed this franticness within my very own sketch videos. Up until the Easter break I had noticed that most of my videos had attempted to escape the limitations of time. Without necessarily realizing it I had used the effects of fast motion and stop motion to maximize the amount of imagery I could contain within 10 seconds….. Pure genius really?

or not…..

In everyday life, I also struggle with the amount of time I have in my day. Stress and anxiety often overwhelm me, So as Michel de. Certeau highlights in his paper The Practice of Everyday Life’….I purely have to ‘make do’. One way of managing this is by participating in what Certeau highlights as ‘La perruque’, where one performs and undertakes personal work under their current place of employment….

I have recently been very guilty of this, undertaking my homework assignments at work when i often don’t have enough time to do them in my free time. Although filming myself pouring coffee isn’t necessarily productive, it isn’t a hindrance to my work ethic. If anything, it allows me to appreciate my practice, and notice the once unnoticeable beauties within my work place.

Yet, during the Easter break I noticed a remarkable transformation within my videos, that i didn’t notice within myself. The pace of my videos slowed down and i began to focus on the beauty of nature…..(see my last few videos in comparison to earlier ones)

Its strange what a little break can do.