The Weakest Week

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I named this the weakest week because I didn’t finish one of my assignments and rushed a little towards the end.

I really enjoyed the video editing lesson. I think my version of the Untamable Tamer turned out ok however I would have liked to add music to it too. I was debating between romantic music and zainy music.

The assignment that I chose was fun to do. I put a funny song about montages from Team America Word Police over the Rocky III montage scene. Is that too literal?

I enjoyed both of the the video breakdown and filing tips exercises. I don’t think I will ever look at a video the same way. I will always be looking for those themes. And I had no idea how often they changes camera angles in fight club! Wow…

 

The Untamable Tamer

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I was inspired to create the Untamable Tamer  because it looked like Charlie was trying to pick up a lady while he was locked in a cage. Who else would do that! I figured if I made it look like we wanted to be there and was using the lion to pick up ladies it would make an interesting story.

I used savefrom.net to grab the Chaplan video. I made the audio files myself using Adobe Audition. I created the intro and credits slides in powerpoint sand saved the files as pngs. Once I had all the files i added everything to windows video editor. I muted the video’s actual volume first. Then I put the into pictures and credits picture at the end and beginning of the video respectively. I adjusted the amount of time each slide was on the screen and finally lined up the audio with the video. Finally, I saved the file and an MP4 and uploaded it to youtube.

Montage!

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I completed the assignment why so serious because it sounded really fun. I used a song about montages from Team America World Police and added it to the famous montage scene in Rocky. It’s spot on and really funny. The song is only 80 second long and the video clip was 3 minute long so I had to be strategic and have the song start and end at an appropriate moment. I ended the song when Rocky kissed “the girl” and made that the climax and cut out the part about winning the face.

I used savefrom.net to grab both the Rocky and Team America videos. I had to extra the audio from the team america video using adobe audition and then add it to the movie in windows movie maker. I had to mute the existing music in the Rocky video to make it work. Hope you enjoy the result!

 

The first rule in this blog, is you can’t talk about this blog!

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I selected the 8 rules of fight club.

Video play by play:

The whole screen is very dark. Edward Norton is in the center of the screen but it’s as if he is hiding behind a wall to remain in the background of the image. He becomes more in focus and turns his head towards the person in the background.

The scenes cuts to people walking in the door. They are walking to the left and it’s clear they are coming in but their faces are in in focus.

The camera roles to the right remaining on the whole time to capture the movement. Brad Pitt is featured front and center. The room is dark but more light is focused on him than anyone else in the dingy scene. The camera continues to focus on Pitt as he talks. The camera angle shifts slowly as if the camera man is walking slowly behind Pitt to film his back.

The scene cuts to another place. This place is much lighter and brighter. The camera is above Norton. It’s almost as if he is insignificant. He’s also in the bottom left hand side of the screen. The angle quickly shift focus to the man talking to Norton, he is filmed below eye level and he looks strong and dominant compared to Norton. He is in the upper right-hand side of the screen. He exists stage right and we cut back to Norton sitting at a table in the center of the screen.

We are back in the dark place we were before and Pitt is front and center again for a brief second. We cut back to a scene in an office. Norton is standing on the right side of the screen and a man with a cart begins to walk towards him. He man is the focal point of the scene and he nods to Norton. As the man exits the camera slowly moves to the right and begins to focus on Norton.

We are back to the dark room and people are fighting in the middle of the floor. Pitt is again is at the center of the screen and more light is shining on him as he gets up from the fight bloody and triumphant.

We cut to a back alley. Pitt and Norton are standing an arm’s length apart from each other. Pitt is on the left as the fight begins. Norton throws the first punch moving to the left but Pitt launches back at him moving up and to the right. The angle changes to behind Pitts back and we zoom out a little. We see Pitt pounding on Norton. The angle changes again and we face facing Pitt and Norton has his back to us. Pitt is firmed from below eye level.

We cut back to the basement scene and zoom in on Norton. He is in the light now but getting the $hit kicked out of him to put it nicely. The camera zooms in even more to see his bloody face. He is being filmed from above on the left hand side of the screen.

We cut to two men in and office forcefully undressing a man lying on the table. The man laying town is at an angle that is diagonal and to the bottom right.

Cut back to the basement. Norton is fighting now. He’s on the right side of the screen punching left. The angle changes twice to show his face as his opponent falls forcefully to the ground.

The next image we see is the man laying on the ground but the ground is on the right hand side of the screen. The man is clearly in pain and sweating. The angle shifts again and this time Norton is on top and to the left being filmed below eye level as he throws punch after punch.

The final scene is the Back of Pitt’s heard front and center, then the camera zooms in on his face as he speaks. As the camera zooms in Pitts disappears and we see Norton in the same place. It’s almost as he her morphed J.

Sound play by play:

Music plays as Norton begins to speak. About five second in narration shifts to Pitt. He reads the rules of fight club slowly but surely. The last few second of the scene, the narration switches to Norton mid-sentence.

Combined:

Watching them together I realized I didn’t miss much. There were some placed the background music had a drum bang when someone got hit or to emphasize a key point. The most notable observation I had by watching and listening is that point at the end, when Pitts morphs into Norton is when the naration switched.

One other observation I had is how Norton became more prominent in the scenes as story progressed. This was almost like a training montage seen you’ve see in a move where the character grows a lot in a short period of time. Only in this case growth means becoming more confident (good) and losing touch with reality (bad).

I See if From a Different Angle

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I’m going to have a hard time disproving Ebert here so I won’t even try.  I think the notion of that moving right is forward and favorable and left is in the past and less so is true in almost everything we do. A clock rotates to the right and moves forward, trends that are positive are described and moving up and to the right. I think that is true for most things with the exception of politics maybe (ha-ha, couldn’t resist). The foreground being stronger than the background is a logical concept to me. I recall being an art classes in high school and doing an exercise with the images like the one below.

vase3

The teacher asked is what images we saw and always everyone said the vase. One of the brilliant creative kids must have realized there was a face in the background as well. That blew our minds. But it validates the point that people tend to focus on the foreground first.

Ebert’s statement that diagonals in composition convey movement is an interesting point I never thought about.  The video I watched about Camera angles and shooting techniques mentioned that action sequences were often shot at weird angles. I assume that creates more diagonal lines and odd angles. Additionally filming at an odd angle produces depth and makes the image look more 3D.

Another point Ebert made about filming at a vantage point above the character’s eyes, reduces him and shooting below his eyes, enhances him. The Camera angles and shooting techniques mentioned something very similar that reinforced that concept and Tarrantino did as well. In fact, many to the key scenes in Tarrantino’s movies were filmed from below. It makes the characters seem larger than life.

The other key point discussed in the Camera angles video was how camera angles combined with stunts can really enhance an action sequence. Switching angles midway through the scenes produces the illusion of movement an always keeps the viewer guessing. Additionally, the video described how some camera tricks like filming from a different angle can make it look like the person is climbing when they are not.

And that’s a wrap – the final project summary

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I’m generally a fairly creative person but I was having trouble coming up with my big idea all semester. What can I say, I work well under pressure. I will milling through ideas and started thinking of things that would really draw people in, what we can all related to, stories, unlikely heroes, looking at things from a different perspective… ok the thoughts were jumbled in my head. I just finished my research paper for 590. At this point we are lucky I didn’t write about critiquing a research video. On a serious note, it was a combination of thinking about things from a different perspective and an unlikely main character were the inspiration for this idea.

My idea for an improvement is conceptual at this point. I don’t have the steps defined and I don’t know exactly what the solution would look like. What I do know is that understanding a dog will help an owner  and a dog be better friends. If this get’s picked up I’ll work with the dog whisperer to come up with the content for the training dvd J.

The story is written from the dog’s perspective. This is a shift from the usual emphasis on the owner in commercials. But I thought it made sense to present from this angle because the product I’m promotion is about understanding the dog.

The story follows a traditional story line. Once upon a time there was a dog names max. Every day he played with balls. One day he made a big mess. Because of that his owners get frustrated and yelled at max. Because of that Max felt bad and the owner purchased the Understanding him, Be a better friend to your pet dvd. Finally, the owner began to understand Max and train him properly. And ever since then he and his owners were best friends.

Though what I wrote above was much more succinct then the story contained in my post. The story contained in my post is much me interesting and engaging.

I started the story off with a picture of Max, a black lab puppy I from google images. I added a though bubble in snag it and resaved the image as a png file. Then I added a picture of Max with no shredding toilet paper with not description followed by an audio file. I created the audio file in Adobe Audition using several of the skills I learned in week five. First I impersonated (can you impersonate a dog) the voice of Max having a great time shredding the toilet paper. Then I solicited help from an actor, my husband, to record the voice of Max’s owner yelling at him. I used a little of the Foley skills I learned and slammed a door to added affect followed by me impersonating Max whimpering. I added the file to soundcloud and embedded it into the post.

Next I added a line of text specifying that time has elapsed. Then came the fun part! I created a very short film from my camera phone through the eyes of Max as he was “sniffing” around the house. Max comes across the DVD sitting on a chair, pauses for a second then spots a ball and darts away. I created an audio track that I placed on top of the video. I’ll get to that in a second. The audio itself was recorded in Adobe Audition. I made sniffing sounds then spoke in my max voice again followed by 10 seconds of sniffing and a statement about the ball. I decided that it would be appropriate for Max to hear the owners talking about their frustration with him off in the distance so I recorded a second file of myself talking about Max being naughty and trying the dvd as a latch ditch effort. I created a multitrack session Audition and layers the files. I placed both files in the session with the master’s background played over the sniffing. Unfortunately the master’s voice was too loud so I had to alter the file in some way. This is the first time I’ve tried to do something like this before so I had to reference google to find a solution. I found an idea on linda.com that did the trick. There is a “far away source” option I selected to get the desired effect. Then I save the multilayer file as an MP3. The last thing I did was combine the audio file with the video. I forgot to mention sooner that I watched the video and wrote down the key points in the video so I could sync up the sound before importing it.

Screen shot from Audition

Screen shot of my project in Audition

I used Windows Movie Maker to combine the audio and video together. I’ve used it a few times before our previous lesson and know it’s a little clunky. The video I recorded has unintentional sound included so I had to figure out a way to remove the sound. I went to google again for this and found that I could mute the sound embedded in the video and attach my own sound to get the desired affect. The last thing I did was save the file as an MP4 then uploaded it to youtube. Wow, that was a lot of work but I think it turned out good!

Windows Movie Maker

Screen shot of my project in movie maker.

I followed the video with one line of text to explain that time has elapsed but the dog has learned a new trick for lack of a better term.

The last feature in the story in my favorite because I love the video. I leveraged the video from a dog food commercial I found on Youtube. I used SaveFrom.net to download the video. I was able to use to use the entire video but has to clip the portion of the video with the product and added an image of the dvd I was promoting. I muted the audio liked I did on the prior video so I could add my own.

I felt like this video really needed music over it. I went on youtube and found a really nice song that I liked. I used SaveFrom.net to download this file as well. Once the file was downloaded I used Audition to cut it to the length of the video. The only effect I used here was I used the fade out to have a more natural song ending. The original track was four minute and I cut it down to one. I solicited additional help from my hired actor, my husband to record a 15 second voiceover for the video with a message about being a better friend to the dog. I layered these files in a multitrack session. The only modification I has to make was increase the voice volume and decrease the music volume. Finally I saved the file as an MP3. I imported the MP3 into the video, saved the file and uploaded it to youtube.

Wow I’m out of breath just typing that! The last thing I did was made a “poster” to solidify the end of the story. Note the same image received a cameo in both videos.

Hopefully you enjoyed my story and reading my blog to this point. I really enjoyed telling these stories and adding life to the elements through media.