Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Daily Create: Something Brand New

My iPhone had been giving me a lot of issues, being really buggy, so I called Verizon and they sent me this replacement iPhone. Yay for no more issues!

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Weekly Summary: Digital Storytelling

This week I changed the look of my blog again. I'll get it right at some point. This was also the first week that I had to upload something to Soundcloud for class; it was an experience trying to figure out how to add the recording to the daily create group.

Lots of posts this week. I posted my first video for the video section, which I feel good about, and I had a good idea for my next video that I'm really excited about. A couple responses to some of our class readings as well, which I enjoyed reading. I have to admit, though, some of the readings have been a bit of review from some of my film classes (a testament to our awesome Screen Arts and Cultures program!).

Overall, it was a good week, and I'm looking forward to the next one.

Some Thoughts on Camp, "Hansel and Gretel," and "The Room"
Reality TV: Why Do So Many People Watch It?
Digital Storytelling: Future of Education video
Daily Create: Desk Organized Into a Pattern
Video Daily Create: Favorite Foreign Language Phrase
Friends Dancing! First Video for Class
Daily Create: Guess the Activity From the Sound
Response to "Writing Movies for fun and Profit"

Response to "Writing Movies for fun and Profit"

The reading from "Writing Movies for fun and Profit" reminded me a lot of SAC 310, the screenwriting class here at UM. Except it was even less sugar-coated, if that were possible. People hate to think about movies as having such a clear-cut structure that is the same in almost every movie, but it's true.

In the article, though, they said the inciting incident appears exactly on page 10, and I had a problem with that. It's true that there is a structure that is followed, and it doesn't vary that much from script to script, but it DOES change a little. Things don't occur exactly on certain pages in every script, but they do appear around those pages.

Of course, this is kind of the point; they are embellishing just a bit for the sake of demystifying the process of screenwriting.

This article was a summary of a number of other screenwriting books I had to read for class (and some for fun) and it's always weird to hear everything laid out so plainly. Because the fact is, movie-making is not a mystical process, it is an industry, a well-oiled machine. You could argue that independent feature films are made a little differently, but when it comes to Hollywood, it is a business that has been around for a long time. That's why we keep getting movies split into two (I HATE THAT); as long as the movies keep making money, this trend is going to continue.

This reading felt like one prolonged slap in the face. For instance:
"Your heroine should be as real as your first crush--only she's carrying the plans to destroy the Death Star and she looks great in a bikini."
As far as I know, no one objected to this rule.
 These elements, the article argues, NEED to be there in the script. It's a strange dichotomy between "real life" and "fantasy," but you can't lean too far to one direction or the other or you'll lose your audience.

I think they're right, but the way they deliver their message, as I said, is like them saying "Dummy, look at how things are!" I haven't decided yet if I think this is effective or not, because reading this made the rebel in me want to argue with them, even though I think they make some good points.

Regardless, "Writing Movies for fun and Profit" is the definition of no-nonsense writing, and it made for an interesting read.

Daily Create: Guess the Activity From the Sound

Something I do almost daily. It should be pretty familiar to people.

Friends Dancing! First Video for Class

After watching some of the other videos from class, the idea of doing some kind of supercut appealed more and more to me. At first I thought I might take a bunch of clips of people covering "Titanium" by David Guetta and put them together. I used a Firefox add-on to download the clips and starting editing, but right away I ran into problems.

Some of the covers were played in different keys, and at different tempos, and I had a really tough time putting them together in a way that I liked. On top of that, I was using Final Cut 7 to edit it together and was running into all kinds of rendering troubles.

So I abandoned that idea and came up with this instead. I found the Friends clips on YouTube, downloaded them, picked out the most random song, and spent a decent amount of time making sure all the movement matched up to the beat of the song.

I noticed there are a couple other videos similar to this on YouTube, but I'm proud of how this one turned out; I think it's a worthy addition. Plus, who doesn't love Friends and Duck Sauce?

I've already got an idea for my next video that will be very different from this one, in just about every way. And I'm still looking around for ideas for my third video.

Video Daily Create: Favorite Foreign Language Phrase

Daily Create: Desk Organized Into a Pattern