Through six lots of ten seconds shots of footage I have attempted to communicate a feeling of a place whilst evoking a particular emotion through composure with one shot containing the use of 1 point perspective.
The six shots I manipulated were to create a feeling of uneasiness. In order to challenge the typical emotions associated with a toy and sweet shop I used several techniques to distort the expected feeling of comfortableness. I drained the footage of its happiest colours and combined a mix of both fish eye and standard shots.
Shooting with a fish eye lens allowed me to disclose a feeling of obscurity that I feel represents the inaccurate nature of the ability to recite our childhood memories.
The last scene within the film is composed to draw your eye to the middle of the frame. The movement of the spinning top juxtaposing with the stillness of the rest of the frame to create, I hope an effect of eeriness.
One of these shots was influenced by a photographer/cinematographer/film.
The decision to use a fish eye lens was inspired by photographer Taguchi, who also combined black and white with a fish eye lens in this photo below to create a scene which is colourful and vibrant in a different way.
It was not filmed within 2000 metres of the university.
This piece was shot in ‘I want one of those’ toy shop, York road, Birmingham. That is approximately 53 108.352 metres from the university. (Thank you google maps!)
I thought carefully about the title
The name ‘Bitter sweet’ became my final choice for a title as I felt the oxymoron of being both bitter and sweet was a thought-provoking way for somebody to recall their childhood.
What might have seemed sweet when we look back nostalgically might have actually been bitter and vice versa.
The sounds were taken only from the location with no music.
After premiering my film I was told that ‘Watching the visuals of my film without sound creates an entirely different feeling to the film I created’, for this reason I feel as though the sound itself adds a thick emotional layer. I recorded the sounds within the shop that I felt were the most atmospheric using a H2 zoom mic. Such as a ticking clock, sweets being poured, a till, scales, bike bell and a spring to name a few. I didn’t use half of the effects but listening to them reminded me of the emotions I felt in the location that I wanted to project.
As I am so often told music is often used in films to ‘polish a turd’ so I found it personally challenging to create a series of shots that spoke entirely for themselves. Doing this task taught me how sounds can also be used rhythmically to speak in a similar way to how a piece of music whilst also creating a more coherent sequence.
Exploring my independent cinematographic style in relation to another artists has been hugely beneficial for me in building up my technical competence. Whereas before I have only had faith in myself as a writer this task forced me to take over also the technical responsibility of bringing me concept onto screen. This allowed me to see my strengths and weakness’ in my technique in quite literally black and white.
I felt as though I met the brief and peer feedback also supported this. In terms of how I did it, I learnt that persisting in finding a location pays off. For me personally the sweet shop gave me the exact atmosphere that I wanted.
A weakness I have discovered in my work is the use of sound, although I had good feedback on the sound being atmospheric and well mixed it may have been perhaps a little too loud and not too safe for headphone users. Sorry!
I have definitely found a new-found and honestly a much needed confidence in cinematography and although I have some way to go to make sure everything is in focus and as steadily focused as you would expect from a professional, gaining interest from other professional cinematographers is definitely a rewarding experience.
This project will definitely change my perspective of laying out a frame more carefully. A space within a place can be two very different things to each other, most interestingly different spaces we create within places can be very different to different people.