Now that the gates have opened and schools are fully operational, so have our classes. But not without the necessary changes and precautions. Now instead of having four classes per day from 8:30 until 3:00 we now have only two or even one class for the entire day open from 9:30 to 3:00. These classes are split up into quarters of the year. This have significantly altered the work flow and especially PLP which is blocked out for the entire day. This doesn’t come without good reason though, it’s all in the name of safety. By only having one or two classes per day it greatly reduces the amount of people we come in contact with thus lessening the impact and spread of COVID-19.
Because we only have PLP for one quarter of the year we need to run through projects quite speedy to say the least. For the first project in our PLP maker/humanities class we had a whopping 3 whole days to complete it. This project was named “running a remake”, It was based on the recreation of a short horror film named RUN! The driving question to help us through the project was “How might we learn video skills by recreating a short film”. Which I’ll answer at the end of this post.
Since this project was all about film it would only make sense for the first milestone to be the first steps into story creation, establishing shots, filming itself and editing. To learn those topics, we took to the app called Clips. Our task was to create a video about who we are. To start this, we had been given a book entitled “Everyone Can Create Video”. It was basically a cheat sheet on how to create a good looking video using clips. This helped tenfold. It was very useful throughout the project and had all the info we would need on angles, shots, composition and editing. After we went through the book, I knew what I would need to create my video. I had to get establishing shots to get the viewer to become intrigued into what the video was about, then to tell them our name and hobby and finally a little clip of our hobby. I really struggled with the story in this milestone as I found it quite difficult to put the clips together to create meaning. Regardless, I finished it.
Here’s my video:
Milestone two was really leading us into the main part of the project. It was a pages document to organize our group. I was working with Ryder, Quinn, Nathan and Erin. The document had all our roles, the tasks we needed to complete in an order of priorities, the sounds and shots we needed to get for our final replica and each costume we needed. The most important thing on this was the storyboard, which basically told us every shot we needed to get.
Finally, the gold standard video; the main attraction. Since I wasn’t able to make it for film day the plan was for my group to film everything, and then to send it to me to edit it. The roles were that Nathan was the jogger, Ryder was the monster, Erin was the secondary jogger, Quinn was the Director, and everyone helped with the filming. Then I would edit the video. So then the group went out to film. I can’t really tell you much about the first day except for what my group told me. They said it was quite hard to find a good replica of the path in the original video but found something relatively adequate. They looked back to the storyboard and got all the shots but then the plan changed, Ryder said he wanted to edit the video and I should find all the sounds and implement them which worked out. Once we submitted our video we got critiqued and had many errors. In fact, every single group had multiple errors which led to another film day for revision.
Here’s our first try at the remake:
The second film day I actually took part in. Since I didn’t have a role in the film, I took a lot of the shots and also planned them out. I learned a lot through this process. Through the shots we had to have the runner go from the same place he ended off in the last shot which was really quite difficult. What made this even harder was the fact that we didn’t shoot the shots in chronological order so we had to look back at the tape and decipher where to place the runner. We also had to find a different location but we still couldn’t find a good fit and had one error in a paved path. Eventually we got all the shots and it was time for the editing phase. This time we decided to split it up. I would do the start, Quinn would the the middle section and Ryder would do all the end shots, then I would do all the sounds again. Unfortunately this process didn’t work out and I had to completely scrap that and do it all myself again to line up all the shots with the original video down to one tenth and even one hundredth of a second. This part was extremely labour intensive and took hours. Then it went through many more editing tweaks on the sound volume, placement, text and cuts. Regardless, I got it done and we’re all pretty proud of the end product.
Here’s our final film along with a comparison to the original:
So what were we being assessed on? The fundamental competency this project was based on was Innovative Designer: “How might I design a solution to a problem, process, or challenge”? So we had to design a solution to a problem, process, or challenge considering different sources of inspiration, perspectives, and feedback. So how did I achieve this? I analyzed the problem, in my case the recreation of the film RUN! and I relentlessly inspected the film frame by frame, nitpicking each and every detail and tried my best to replicate it into my film. When I wasn’t happy with this result, I looked to my teacher and peers, got feedback, evaluated it, then changed my product and repeated this process multiple times.
Now to answer the driving question, “How might we learn video skills by recreating a short film”. I would say I learned many video skills via the peer critique feedback loop. When I wasn’t happy with the product I got feedback and got to the root of the problem. Then I went to the resources I had. The Everyone Can Create Video book and the internet. I learned so much from watching youtube videos and taking notes then taking those skills and using them in my own creation. Along with this; my group played a big role in my growth through learning video and we worked together, bouncing ideas and sharing knowledge skills with one another.
In the end I’m happy we did this project as I think we all learned quite a bit about the start of film and editing as a whole. Our whole group had to work hard together to come out with a sufficient end product that we are all satisfied with. So that’s the end, but I’m pretty sure we have another more advanced film project coming up similar to this one so I’ll be sure to use the skills I learned from here into that one.
Check back for more blog posts!