Because once I start, it’s hard to stop.
This is one version of the picture scene.
This is another version with a different picture scene as well as a different ending.
Because once I start, it’s hard to stop.
This is one version of the picture scene.
This is another version with a different picture scene as well as a different ending.
As promised, the first two draft.
Just a few minor differences in the middle. I personally prefer the second one.
Overall, after watching the two films without sound, I realise that it feels choppy. I might try another edit to see how it will fit. Maybe a one take shot is all it takes. It is hard to find the right audio element to compliment the visuals.
To be continued.
Following the shoot of my grandfather in his trunks, I decided to make a radical shift in concept.
I took inspiration from some of my favourite documentary films:
A film about the filmmaker trying to find out more about his father. I like the director’s use of found images to compliment the soundbites. Also, this is unlike the film I’m trying to make but I love the fact that it was a conversation between a son and his father. This is part of the first scene:
A film about- well, to explain the film would be to ruin your first experience. I like that this film was directed at a person; as if this film was meant for someone.
I’ve talked about this already, but I liked the idea of holding a shot long after what was needed – just like this famous scene in The Graduate:
With these references in mind, I’ll proceed with a first draft.
This past week, we watched Grizzly Man by Werner Herzog.
I had already watched this once, but I had yet to watch it in greater depth.
I liked the director’s use of holding the shot much longer than it was intended. It felt starkly real and human.
Of course, the footages of bears are interesting in itself, but the real story is actually about the Grizzly Man, Timothy Treadwell.
It was quite interesting how the story was structured. Herzog would provide commentary ever so often throughout the film. I feel this acknowledges the fact that this is the opinion of a person and not trying to set the entire film up as something to be digested and accepted to be as truth. Herzog wants us to form an opinion of our own. This was quite powerful for me. Most times, we have to take a step back in order to realise that documentaries have their own agenda.
It got dry at some parts but as a whole, the film was intriguing, even on 2nd viewing.
Next up, The Act of Killing!
On 22nd Oct, I met up with my grandfather for dinner to celebrate my birthday. I asked him if he was coming over on Sunday for mahjong.
“Ya, you want to take picture again?”
“Yea, I want to film you doing your poses again.”
“Okay. See you tomorrow.”
Next day, this happened-
Yeah! Watch it in all it’s conversational glory. I didn’t expect him to actually bring his trunks as well. This was interesting and so surreal.
I’m not entirely sure if this is the look I want but it is definitely a once in a lifetime kind of experience.
I did a couple of different versions as well, just to get some variety
Personally, I think that either the topless one or the trunks one works better. What I dislike about the trunks shot is that it was shot a little too tightly. I doubt that I will be able to recreate these shots again. It just won’t have the same intrinsic experience attached to it anymore. I like the topless one too. It has a little more of an organic feel to it as it was the first shot I took.
I will now have to figure out if I want to readjust the concept to fit the shots. It definitely tells a different story now. I still want to hold on to the idea of having a landscape of a person – that is to say that a person is a culmination of experiences and the people who have entered and left our lives. It could still be in appreciation of it but I don’t know if the concept will be as strong if I were to place a longer focus on my grandfather than the people who have come into his life.
Alternatively, the credits could come crawling along with the shots. The credits could also come in, fading in and out of the scene. It does feel like it might come off as generic or dull/uninspired. I need to think harder about how to go about expressing this concept.
This is tougher than I thought.
After thinking a little more in depth (and also because my grandfather happened to come over to my house on a Sunday) I the subject of my film to be about my grandfather instead of just any ol’ landscape. I changed to film to be about my grandfather and all the people and events in his life that made him the man he is today. I feel that it is a great way to cap off a trilogy.
I took a couple of shots that might work for the film.
The shots are blurry, I know. But looking at these shots, they feel very typical and expected. I felt the need to try out other shots to have more options.
These shots were more candid; perhaps making it feel more intimate.
Looking at these shots, I’m starting to reconsider the 1-second film with the long credits. The shots do not seem to fit the film concept so much anymore. I will retake the shots and see what happens next. I have a general idea of what shots I want to take but I feel that I shouldn’t be so fixated on how I want the film to turn out; trying to keep the process as organic as possible. After all, this is about keep it real.
Trying to analyse this film at this point will probably not come out right; having only watched this film once. Instead, I will talk about what I liked about this film.
First of all, I loved the ending of the film where the timelines were split in two; with Thong being aware and confused about it. It breaks the fourth wall and makes us realise that we are watching a film. It left me feeling confused and intrigued. I’m still trying to figure out why this worked for this film. I have a feeling that if this was done on just any other film, it would have fallen flat. It is a tricky thing to pull off. There is still a lot to figure out about this film. It was an interesting experience in cinema, to say the least.
Secondly, the use of different styles of filming was, while not entirely groundbreaking, used in good taste to fit the narrative. The film made use of cinematic styles, documentary styles, and ever photography to give each scene its own unique flavour. There are times when everything feels so real and then there are times when it feels detached.
Lastly, it was confusing how it was never explicitly mentioned when Uncle Boonmee was recalling his past lives. Yet at the same time, it was refreshing and we are left to think about it. Which parts are his past lives? Is the film itself a recollection of a past life? Again, I can’t really make any sound conclusions yet.
Having never watched an Apitchapong film, it was an unusual first experience. It is quite challenging trying to keep up with what is really going on in the film. It challenges the audience. I am not entirely sure if this is the kind of film I want to produce down the line, but it is definitely a film worth thinking about.
During the presentation of project 2 a.k.a Screen to Screen: A collection of short stories, I came up with the idea of having a one-second video to express the idea of appreciation. The one-second shot would be a landscape scene and the credits would be about everything and everyone that has made the scene what it is at that moment.
This brings us to me actually googling about if this has been done before. I was hesitant to do any research on this for fear that it would affect how I approached this concept. Alas, if you want a good enough grade to go to film, you have to do research and show process so here we have the same method of a one-second film.
The idea is to make the World’s Biggest Shortest Film by inviting everyone to make a movie together. People all over the world are invited to donate a minimum amount of $1 to be a producer in the film. All profits of the film would then go to charity. in that one second of film, there will be 2 frames of 12 paintings. This makes up the 24 frames in one second. The credits will then play for one hour with a feature-length ‘making of’ documentary next to it. To me, this is a gimmick to garner attention, albeit for a good cause (probably).
It seems then, that my film would only be taking “inspiration” from the aforementioned film on the part that it is one second long with a long end credit.
Conceptually, the two films are quite different. While their film is about bringing people together to partake in this non-profit experiment, my film is about appreciation of things we take for granted. This can be in the form of the people who clean up the dead leaves on the ground every day or even the people who made the filming equipment. Unlike The 1 Second Film, my film will not be 1 hour long with a feature length documentary playing over it. Not having any video or image playing over or alongside the credits places focus on the credits themselves.The long length of the credits is meant to show appreciation for the people we take for granted.
The quote means that beauty is a lure to death. The angler fish is frightening and also a representation of that lure to death and the lure of the angler fish is a flower, which is the representation of beauty. I used a hibiscus flower as it represented acknowledging beauty in Victorian times. The pistil of the hibiscus is a line that draws your attention towards the flower itself – just like a lure.The halftone of the angler fish gives it a level of depth as it looks like it is in the shadows. This is in contrast to the flower that is clear as day. The painting frame is a nod to the film, where a character says the above quote in response to not wanting to give up a painting. Coincidentally, a painting is also a symbol of beauty. The frame gives depth to the image within which enhances the feeling of being lured into the void that is death, hence the use of a black ‘canvas’.
Unity/Harmony – Perspective is used to show depth or distance between the frame, the angler fish and its lure.
Symmetry – The symmetrical balance of the composition gives off the feeling of calm and patience; like being stalked by a predator. “It’s quiet…too quiet.”
Similarity/Contrast – Contrast of the negative space and the angler fish make the subject pop out, like from the shadows.
Dominance/Emphasis/ – The flower is at the centre of the frame and the halftone of the angler fish makes it recede into the back. This makes the flower the centre of attention.
Hierarchy – The frame and lines leading you into the elements within it. The angler fish has the subject of the flower within it. Each of these things lead your eye to the flower in the centre.
Scale/Proportion – The flower is a lot smaller than the angler fish. This is to make the angler fish seem larger and therefore increase the sense of danger and tension.
The quote is about sacrifice and letting go. I started out with the image of a nut, used to hold all the elements within. The wolf is a representation of the Iron Giant. It is leaping out of the sphere that is breaking apart. It leaps to the void to protect the innocent boy. The boy looks on at the wolf. The way the boy looks at the wolf feels like a farewell. The sphere at the centre of the composition is a representation of the world. The sphere is breaking apart. It is literally about the world that is about to be destroyed, leaving the Iron Giant to protect it. It is also about how the boy’s world is about to be shattered because the Iron Giant is about to leave to sacrifice itself.
Symmetry/Asymmetry – While the composition looks almost flat and symmetrical, the breaking of the sphere breaks the symmetry. This adds to the feeling of unease at the loss of something precious. It also makes the composition more dynamic.
Hierarchy/Scale/Proportion – Apart from the broken bits of the sphere directing your attention to the wolf, the size of the wolf is much bigger is also leaping out. The lines of the principle axis of the wolf leads you to the boy who is looking towards the wolf, forming an imaginary line.
The composition is almost all in pixelated halftone. This makes it feel as though freedom is a blurry mess and it disorientates. The American Bald Eagle is a representation of freedom and it looks down on us and makes us feel small. The sunset brings about a sense of freedom but the sharp lines cut through the cloud, pointing towards the eagle almost as if to say that freedom is painful. Lastly, we have the feather which are shaped like crosses, implying that freedom is a burden.
Unity/Harmony – The repeated use of the feather cross gives a sense of unity. The different sizes of the feather crosses gives a sense of perspective and depth to the composition.
Scale/Proportion – The size of the eagle makes it the first thing you see.
Similarity/Contrast – The different sizes of the feather crosses. Most of the images look clearly halftoned except the feathers and maybe the eagle.
Balance – While the composition is hardly symmetrical, there is a sort of balance in elements in the composition that gives a sort of symmetry to it.
The quote is about ‘taking it easy’; very much like inner peace hence Buddha being in the centre. Buddha is seating on mandala ‘carpet’ – a subtle reference to the film where the Dude’s rug is ruined. The mandala is a spiritual symbol in Indian religions for the universe. In a way, the worldly issues of the world are beneath the Dude. The roundness of the bowling ball and the balanced composition gives off the feeling of peace; there is no tension or turmoil. The textures of the ball gives off a hippy, psychedelic feel. This is to set the mood of the composition as being very spacey (as in the Dude being spaced out). The three holes in the bowling ball are meant to represent the 3 marks of existence – Impermanence, Unsatisfactoriness or Suffering, and Non-self. The marks of existence are all behind Buddha. In a way, this says that the Dude is not bothered by these things. The shades on buddha makes it much more obvious to see that there are no worries.
Balance – The composition feels balanced even though the three holes of the bowling ball give it a little bit of asymmetry. At the centre of it, Buddha. This is very similar to Early Christian/Romanesque Christian art where the Christ is at the centre of attention.
Hierarchy/Scale/Proportion – Buddha is the most prominent element in the piece because it is huge and in the centre. Behind Buddha is the bowling ball and the in Buddha’s palm is the bowling pin.
Similarity/Contrast – It feels like two main elements. The bowling pin and the sunglasses seem to add to Buddha and not stand out from it. This is because these elements are representative of the character (they are of the character). The bowling ball is the external and therefore is contrasted with Buddha.
Unity/Harmony – The mandala is done in perspective to give a sense of depth to Buddha. This also creates a slightly unnatural and surreal effect because the bowling ball is supposed to be flat. So while it creates distance, it feels surreal.
We printed our chosen composition on A4 transparency so that it be used for the whole silkscreen thing.
Bam. In the flesh. We then did the blue chemical thing on the silkscreen in the dark room.
You have to coat it evenly on both sides if you want the exposure to be done nicely.
After the blue chemical thing dries, you tape your transparency onto the silkscreen.
Place the ink side of the transparency onto the outer side of the silkscreen; that is to say, the side without the wood block.
Now do the exposure thing.
After you do that, you have a piece of silkscreen that is still covered blue. Of course it’s still covered blue. You have to wash it off with a water jet, silly.
Also, silly me, I did not record the water jet process. haha.
Now that you have your silkscreen print. You can apply ink and squeegee the ink onto whatever surface you want; even your face.
Don’t forget to tape up any excess exposed parts with tape (especially the edges. Then place a coin on all four edges of the wood. This gives you a better print. I don’t know. The elevation helps.
I did all this knowing that I would redo. I just wanted to see how it would turn out. I wanted to redo mine because this was too small and I liked ‘The dude abides’ better. So I rushed off to the printing shop at North Spine and printed again.
So back to doing all that again. Also, this time I recorded the process of washing away the exposed bits. (SFW)
I then tried inking it out on paper a couple of times
Do or die. Okay, I died a little, but here are the tote bags!
They aren’t the best in terms of quality, but they are okay. It’s okay.
I also managed to sell one of them off for $8.
$3 for the tote bag. Not bad, I bought myself lunch.