Monday, December 1, 2014

Crowdsourcing, Wikipedia, and The Cloud

The idea of crowdsourcing is very interesting to me, particularly with the thought of large numbers of people coming together to co-create something that would have perhaps taken much longer when done with one person.  The only draw back I would imagine, besides the obvious dependence on people's willingness to participate and the time it takes for them to complete their part, would be the thought of cohesive style.  When one makes a film, say an auteur director, everything about the film tends to point in some way to that directing personality.  If you diversify the work into a group of directors - for example, all of the people involved in a crowdsourcing project - then that singular directorial vision would be lost in some way and replaced with the styles and visions of all involved.  This could be good or bad depending on the initiator's intended design.  I never knew Wikipedia was so crowdsourced of an encyclopedia.  It is really awesome that collaborator's from all over the world are contributing to its knowledge base, because people of similar cultures as well as who may speak from experience have the opportunity to input on different subjects at any time.  It is also wonderful that the subjects get to be crowdsource checked by readers and voted approved or not.  It just makes me wonder about new subjects that not many people have interacted with and therefore not many can verify or deny.  The concept of cloud filmmaking is cool as well - especially translating each film into different languages for a more universal distribution.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Bolex Shoot The Cooliest Experience

For the Bolex shoot I worked with Zoe, Andrew, and Chris.  After scouting some locations before the allotted time on Saturday we decided to shoot at the Village Clubhouse pool, specifically interacting with the surface of the pool waters.  We used multiple elements to bring our concept together:  Zoe swimming, a sheet being pulled, flowers floating, and stationary framing.  I enjoyed the process we went through creatively, the problem solving we achieved to attain the final product.  For example, we spent multiple ghost takes practicing pulling the blanket out of frame, Zoe swimming in the water from frame left to frame right, flowers floating, and Zoe swimming back into frame from the right to leave it from the top.  This had evolved from our original idea to use a play of shadows on the surface of the water rather than the blanket.  The play of shadows, we discovered, were too small in the frame of the Bolex when shot with everything else we needed so we scrapped that idea.  I enjoyed the shoot itself, and using a Bolex film camera - with its added risk of having an unintentioned product - brings a certain excitement to seeing the finished film that using digital does not.  It was good as well to process the film for ourselves again, the second time ever for myself.

Monday, October 27, 2014

Synesthesia, Cymatics, and Different Ways of Knowing

I had no idea that there were people whose senses overlapped like those who are synesthetic.  The thought of having a conversation with a person, or reading a book, and seeing different types of color and shapes intrigues me.  It also, in the more experimental form, allows me to imagine a whole different world of perceptual presentation in film.  I immediately see two actors speaking words, gun shots exploding, simple body movements that make sound with color (specifically, in my mind's eye I am seeing the scene from the Wachowski brothers 1999 film The Matrix, where Keanu Reeves is fighting Hugo Weaving and in slow motion dodging bullets from his gun).  The thought of cymatics is truly interesting as well.  I always knew sound had the capability to create movement but the precise and intentional creation of shapes through it was never something I considered.  Once again, in an experimental context, I could see the potential of cymatics.  It makes me think of films from Stan Brakhage in which he uses closes ups of intentionally colored and manipulated film stock throughout as a visual experience.  I imagine doing the same with a close up of sand or some type of lighter material, while manipulating it with sound waves.  I am sure this would create an intriguing visual experience.

Monday, September 29, 2014


I found the "Listen" video to be inspiring in more ways than one.  In another one of my classes this semester I am playing the role of sound mixer.  I have been contemplating how to best record content complimentary to our documentary footage on abandoned places that have been taken over by nature.  As part of my process for that class I have been watching videos online of feature film sound mixers and designers as well as reading Ric Viers "The Location Sound Bible."  Sound recording has never been something that I have focused upon prior to this semester when considering filmmaking, though I have always been a good listener in a relational sense.  Anyways, the video mentioned in the first sentence above has helped even further deepen my appreciation of sound design in general, both recorded and live.  I would say I agree more than nought with R. Murray Schafer's comments about this world, especially cities, being so noisy in a droning way that distinct sounds cannot be appreciated.  It has got to be interesting as a composer whose job is to listen to the tiniest of sounds in composing his/her work to walk into daily life with the same training ear, by habit paying attention to any sound that can be realized as distinct unto itself.  I look forward to testing this yet another doorway, in a sense, of greater perceptual intentionality studying film has opened to me.

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Begone Dull Care

The phrase "organized chaos" comes to mind.  I really enjoyed the jazz music and how the rhythm and tempo seemed to give the images limitations, which liberated the multitude of images by giving them a defined aural path to follow.  The abstractness of the images allowed for a certain type of interpretive freedom, fixating my mind on their motion rather than within previously established frames of understanding that may have been conveyed by other, less abstract images.  I found myself, as far as the ordered chaos is concerned, recollecting upon the work of a colony of ants as they work together to move to a new home; how that to my peering gaze they seem to be utterly crowding one another and without direction.  But, in fact, they are following a sense of direction beyond my observation.