Week 2: Unit 6:w/c 9/01 Visual Skills

This week was about visuals and how we portray different elements through the camera whether that is the movement of a camera such as using a tilt or pan movement to make the shot look smoother or using a dolly to move it closer or further away from the character or object.

The 180-degree rule

An 180-degree rule is to maintain direction and to know what side the character would be and what side the camera would be placed. However, if the scene is needed for the characters to change sides you will have to show this by gliding the camera in-between the line.


Direction is one of the essential things to analyse and think about when filming and storyboarding as this is to maintain no confusion towards the audience for example if they are coming in from the left they would need to exit a the right of the screen and then the next shot would be coming in from the left to the right to make the character look like  walking  forward instead of in circles.

Camera Movement

Camera Movement this is through using various techniques such as using a pan to set the scene or enable the audience to create ambiance to the scene or to portray a certain emotion. Another technique is Tilting which is moving the camera on a tripod vertically this can be used for showing an action or introducing a character into the scene.

Dolly – moving the camera closer or further away from the character.

Truck movements – This is  tracking the pace of a character or to follow and focus on  characters amongst a scene by using a piece of equipment called a steady cam

Boom – This is where the camera placed on a bar which allow you to pan and tilt at a high or low angle on a pivot.

Amelie –

An example of this is the film Amelie (2001) and how the director maintained direction

1st shot – The carousel and in what direction it was going allowed the audience to know which character was where.

2nd shot – When the male character Niño was walking up the stairs but to also show this was the use of direction by arrows being on the floor.

3rd shot rather than using the left/right positioning they used Natural direction instead so then it keeps on making you wonder where he is going to go next.

4th shot – Cutaway to focusing on a statue which distracts you from the next movement which is changing the opposite direction and introducing the character back into the film.

5th shot – By changing the direction it shows to the audience where the character is looking and example of this is when character Niño is looking through some binoculars in the opposite direction he was originally placed.

6th shot – The last shot of the scene was a fill in shot which focused on the motorbike and then panned onto the carousel with the sound of the motorbike still in the background which then continued onto using a tilt to introduce the character Amelie, back into the scene.


Storyboarding –

Before we could create our short films based on direction and movement we had to create a storyboard to understand where each character may be placed or where the will enter and exit the frame.

There are many types of storyboarding that you can use as a guide to what storyline, location, and light you may need when filming and in my opinion, I find it easier to see each scene be plotted out and into detail.

Traditional storyboards – These are storyboards in which you draw in with the description at the bottom of each box.

An example of this is from the film Jurassic park in which storyboard artist David Lowery Created to represent the various scenes that director Steven Spielberg wanted to bring to life.


(Lowery, 2013)

Animatics – This is a type in which you create the storyboard on a computer rather than by a piece of pen and paper.


(Mccown, n.d.)


Photo Storyboard

The photo storyboard this is one in which is useful if the character and set is in place by having the character stay still in a position with various photographs showing the direction and motion it may include within the film.

Example of photo storyboarding :

(Stewart, 2008)

Shotlist :

Another one is a shot list this doesn’t include any visuals at all only detail of what you would like in the scene what is going to go where this would be useful for the editor but not a much for the camera man.


(Gabe Moura, 2015)

Evaluation –

To show our knowledge towards direction and movement of a camera we had to create a short film using some or one the techniques shown to us. Such as tilt, pan, Natural direction e.g

My idea for the short film was originally going to be a basic storyline of someone going up the stairs to a computer however the location I had planned to film at was too busy to film in as this may be a hazard with the tripod on the stairs. So I went to another location and created another story which in my opinion was better than my original plan which is based on the game hide and seek where a girl is on the hunt to catch the suspect. These locations had to be based around the college grounds. So I used two flights of stairs to set up the scene as under the stairs it was a perfect setting for creating a mysterious outlook when filming.

Final Storyboard:

Page one
Page two

As we were basing our short films on showing direction I used techniques such as panning, Point of view shot and Natural direction although I didn’t use any extra equipment such as a Steadicam or dolly but it still gave me practice with using the tripod more.

There were a few challenges that I had overcome such as trying to film all five videos at the same  time although we did have most of the day to film this it can be quite pressurizing if something may not work out but that is one of the reasons why we do this is to overcome things like this.

With the many challenges that comes with producing the video I had a lot of help along the way such as adding in certain effects whilst editing such as during the end of the video I wanted to add two videos onto one screen so another student in my course helped me out as i did with her challenges too. other challenges I had overcome was with trying to make sure the character is entering and exiting the shot in the same direction as before hand however by having my storyboard in front of me I used that to help others around me understand what and how I want to create the video.

Overall there are a few things I would do to improve this video which is making the audio louder and plan the video better than previous.Apart from that, it all went well from the people who helped to the final product produced.

Final Product:

Bibliography :

Gabe Moura, (2015). Shot list for memento. Available at: http://www.elementsofcinema.com/cinematography/shot-list/ [Accessed 13 Jan. 2017].

Lowery, D. (2013). Jurassic Park. Available at: http://screencrush.com/movie-storyboards/ [Accessed 13 Jan. 2017].

Mccown, C. (n.d.). CGI -Black &white. [image] Available at: http://www.overallpicture.com/enlargment/3422 [Accessed 12 Jan. 2017].

neo932rcl, (2011). Amélie Poulain – “Les Flèches bleues”. Available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JTesvzr9TAc [Accessed 12 Jan. 2017].

Stewart, F. (2008). Short Film Photo Storyboard. Available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MoHi8IywcTU [Accessed 15 Jan. 2017].









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