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Observational Documentary #1

The Documentary Practice 1 module aims us to understand the core of pure Documentary cinema which is an Observational Documentary. I love Observational Documentary, and have been admire the works of Harvard Sensory Ethnography Labs for so many years. Their work on Leviathan is one of the best film I have seen in 2014.

The first assignment for this modules is to producing a 3 minutes montage of film that tells the audience the sense of place. My idea for this assignment is to recreate the tranquility of the seashore landscape in the early winter. Seashore is not really popular place to visit on the winter.

I went to Tynemouth for shooting and recording every day for about 3 days last week (also for doing some recording for my Elective Project). I’m actually happy with the result of my first assignment on this module. Here is the video:

 

Click here to view the embedded video.

 

The presentation went well yesterday, although I was quite disappointed because I put much effort working on the sound but the speakers on the Assembly Room won’t do any justice for low frequencies sound. Anyway, the only critic I got for my first assignment was my decision to shoot the film in handheld style. Some people thought that it would look better if I’m using tripod so the images will look still. They said the handheld-ness of the film is distracting thus making it less tranquil and calm. My argument is, the handheld style will give a better sense of place since the beach is always windy and the use of tripod and still images always look ‘dead’ and staged, but having seen the film again I think they were right.

Next assignment will be producing a montage of conversation or dialogue between people.