A look-back at my group’s work on the first project this year.

Our first project was given to us at the end of September which we were given four weeks to complete. The brief was simply to create a short film, no more than 3 minutes in length, starting with the soundscape. In our group, the first thing we discussed was which roles each of us wanted to fill. There was some debate between us about what everyone should do but we eventually settled on the following roles:

Director – Marcia Rumsey, Cinematographer/Camera Operator – Andrew Cardinal, Project Manager/Producer – Rae Hanna, Set/Costume Designer and Budgeting – Valdis Tjusevs, Editor – Gabby King, and myself as the sound designer.

I had never done sound design before so I was cautious to take on that role, especially for a project that depended so much on the sound, however I came to university eager to try new things so I decided to take up the challenge. Later on in the project we also took on another member, Fatima Derbas, as she didn’t yet have a group and so she decided to help out with editing.

As a group, we discussed what sort of films we liked and what we would want to make. Several ideas were debated and scrapped before we settled on something that would become the foundation of our final piece. We discussed a drug-trip sequence, inspired by films such as Trainspotting, which involved balloons and I suggested that the trip involved clues about the protagonist’s life. After we had ideas for the narrative we discussed more technical aspects as well as the location. We initially decided to film in Memorial Park, after visiting the location and deciding it was suitable, however a lecturer suggested that we may be better off trying somewhere else due to how busy the park can get so we scouted Coombe Abbey park and decided that that location was much better for the film.

We managed to find a suitable actress using the FAH Skills Circle on Facebook and on the day she was very easy to work with and we managed to get the shoot done in a reasonable amount of time. Overall the shoot was successful however I think we all learned that the more organised you are beforehand the better the shoot will go as there were certain things we hadn’t factored in that added time and complications to the shoot. Looking back as a group we decided that the film would have flowed better if we just had more footage and in the future I think we all would just make sure to film more.


[watch the film here]

After showing back our film the responses we got were pretty positive but I think we all agreed there was room for improvement. One thing we noticed during the show-back was that the sound was way too quiet down to a simple technical error on our part and something that could’ve easily been solved. During feedback someone pointed out that the balloons and the costume were a particularly weak part visually to which I think most of the group agreed. I also agreed with the point that there should’ve been longer on the balloons and more happy memories should’ve been heard.

Not long after show-back we received this feedback on Moodle:

“Branches of an idle mind: Needed music, and louder audio, I couldn’t hear what the sound effects were like. Some strong cinematography but not strong enough for a simple visual idea. Really strong idea, but quite challenging to execute. Because of the simplicity needed to be still stronger visually. Production folder is adequate. 65% MODERATED: 62%”

As a group, we were pretty happy with these results for a first project and we are all looking forward to doing even better in the future.

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