The Work Of Shaun Jacques

‘Activity Week!

“This is it.”

No, not the Michael  Jackson film; this is the most important week of my course (so far) I awoke on Monday morning without a clue what I would be doing this week…all I knew was that it was the ’72 hour challenge’ and that I would be working with my 100mc group. I arrived to my lecture and sat with that group expecting the usual lecture followed by a definition of the task; instead it was straight to business with the explanation of the task. The challenge was to create a media item considering the things we’ve learnt from the last few weeks within 72 hours to be presented for Thursday’s lecture, the confiding brief was’ The project we have always wanted to make’.

I was fairly relieved, to be honest as it didn’t seem too difficult to achieve technically, the major problem would be the brief, because we could do almost ‘anything’ I knew there would be divisions within our group over what to do. When you have people with such different lifestyles and ambitions put in one group, there’s bound to be some sort of disagreement right? Good job I was prepared for it then. We met up as a group straight after the lecture to discuss what the project would be…This wasn’t easy. We all decided we wanted to do a video, but beyond that there was little common ground on which we could build up a decent idea. Some were cast aside straight away, others were progressed further but later altered almost completely. We eventually decided to go with an advertisement (although this later turned into a short stop-frame animation) which in Rares words was advertising ‘nothing’ I disagreed with this approach particularly at the early stages as I felt it would be a difficult concept to promote in a short advertisement (it was hard enough to understand in an hour and a half discussion) we eventually decided to promote the idea that it is the public that makes a brand rather than the other way around. We eventually came up with the idea which we would end up filming the next day.

That day we met up to get a tripod for the filming, the items we were using for this project were: A digital camera, A Tripod, A laptop to edit, and a lot of advertisements from print magazines for props. The location was Charlotte J’s kitchen. At this early stage of collecting the tripod we already encountered a problem…THERE WERE NO TRIPOD’S LEFT!!!!  I was panicking at this stage, i didn’t feel it’d be possible to film this shoot effectively without a tripod, I was having visions of a very disorientated video, which would make no sense (for a project that’s already seemingly difficult to explain in the first place) We came into a bit of luck and managed to get a desktop tripod (which proved to be enough) The construction of the set went really well. I’m very proud of the work we put in to make it, as i felt it looked professional; it felt really bad to take it down in the end. Charlotte J prepared for her starring role whilst me and Charlotte V were searching for copyright free sounds and effects we could use in the editing stage (I continued this for a while even during the photo taking)

We encountered a few problems in the production stage…One of these was actually deciding what shots to take, for example i suggested a scene in which we shown the items moving towards Charlotte. This was not used in the final production as it seemed to difficult to portray effectively with the little equipment we had, another major problem was the conditions of the shoot, despite the fact the footage we achieved is only about 20 seconds long, it took about an hour and a half in full ‘costume’ for us to achieve this, during this time Charlotte had to stay completely still and in hot conditions because of the paper she was covered in, unfortunately it became a bit much for her and we had to call an end to the production sooner than we would have liked. Despite this we were able to improvise the ending, using my suggestion of video for the final seconds rather than pictures to create a more shocking effect.

When it came to editing we felt restricted, we only had access to basic windows movie maker and the options we had were a lot less than I, at least was used to. Despite this we managed to achieve a decent edit but we ended up having huge discussions over details such as font type and frame length.  At the end of this I uploaded it to my YouTube account. www.youtube.com/user/jarv1990 and awaited the premier on Thursday morning.

Nerves settled in on Thursday morning, the video had been up for a day and there had been absolutely no feedback, I kept thinking “Did people like it?” “What’s everyone else’s going to be like?” I sat down with my group for the premiers and anxiously awaited ours. I was impressed by most of the other groups work particularly the other stop-frame piece. When ours loaded up on the projector I struggled to watch, I just expected the whole audience to not have a clue what we were on about, fortunately we seemed to get good responses the people I spoke to afterwards thought we portrayed our idea very well, which was the main thing I personally was worried about.

That’s the gist of what happened during the ’72 hour challenge’ I now await the results of the scores given to each media item, I couldn’t care less if our group wins to be honest, because (despite a few moans) I really enjoyed creating this project and would like to be able to do it again.

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