The Work Of Shaun Jacques

111mc

REFLECTION 4: Personal Critical Evaluation

During the module, we encountered more than a few problems; including organizing a decent schedule that suited both us and Grace and recording with just one camera but the biggest two problems were the fact that we could not film at the school (which changed the style of the film completely) and sound problems which were only evident when it came to the editing. We found solutions to these problems by changing the original structure of the planned edit, using sound form only one set of recordings (as the second set were filled with background noise which seemed ridiculously out of place when compared to the other shots) and filming the 2nd set of scenes at Grace’s house rather than the school. In hindsight i believe we could have made improvements by booking out two cameras at once to help with editing sequences, having a ‘clear story’ as we headed out to film and aim to get all permissions out of the way as soon as possible so we don’t have the panic we had in this documentary.

Grace

I believe over the course of the module, my unique contribution has been my adaptability and willingness to try my hand at any task, I organized the 2nd filming shoot with Grace which me and Sam went to, I also organized the PowerPoint presentation which will be shown tomorrow I also felt that I was well organized for the majority of the time as I did not miss one workshop, film or edit session. I believe my ability to work in a team has improved  in this time, but only when everyone is pulling their weight, I do believe we did have strong characteristics in our group but I’d be hard pushed to say who was the leader of the group and calling the shots as me, Sam and Adam made very strong decisions and presented very strong and varied ideas in the filming and the editing.

print screen of powerpoint slide

Going back to problems i felt that I could improve alot on AVID although I feel alot better about it now than I did before, alot of it is still a mystery and I believe given more experience and knowledge on the software, the edit would look more professional and we perhaps could have experimented with more effects.

In reflection, I feel that I could have researched more. I also feel that in the future I should make sure that everyone in my group has the same ideas as me when it comes to research/filming/editing as it could stop a lot of arguments starting at the later stages. Most importantly I have learned that you can not simply record a rough idea and expect to edit something perfect later on. I do not believe that the finished piece is what I had envisaged all those weeks back, but as a learning curve these tasks have taught me many skills which will hopefully make me improve in the future.

DVD Cover


Screening My Finished Film.

Once my film is completed I will need to look at opportunities for the public to see it. It’s all well and good showing it to my coursemates and lecturers, but A film needs to be able to reach as many people as possible. There are five traditional ways of distributing and screening a film which I shall take under consideration:

Broadcast

Internet

Film Festivals

Film Screenings

Cinema

I am looking in to these ways of showing my project at a local, national and even an international level.

First of all I managed to find several local opportunities to screen the film in the Warickshire area, this will be the most relevant market to me as the film is focusing on a person in Coventry. I discovered ‘Roots To Shoots‘ which holds a film screening night once a month at Taylor John’s House in Coventry, which I could supply a film for. They also hold an event once a month in Leamington Spa. Below are the details for last months ‘Roots To Shoots’ Film:

SCREENINGS / FESTIVALS
ROOTS to SHOOTS short film nights, screening student to pro level shorts all in one night. £5 Adults and £3,50 students. Screening every month at these venues in Cov and Warks:

Date: Thurs 26 Feb | Time: 7:00 PM | Location: Coventry
Roots to Shoots Coventry
Taylor Johns House
Canal Basin
CV1 4LN

Date: Thurs 04 Mar | Time: 7:00 PM | Location: Leamington Spa
Roots to Shoots Leam Spa
Royal Cinema
Spa Centre
Leam Spa
CV32 4HN

To submit your shorts a DVD screener is required in a 4×3 or 16×9 ratio
email: info@rootstoshoots.org for details

As well as this I also found out about ‘Thursday Flickers‘. Again this event takes place in Leamington Spa and is Free for all. their catolouge events this term runs from the 11th of February until the 24th of June.

“Thursday Flickers is a great opportunity to see some unique short films made by local and emerging film makers. Screenings include work from video artists, short-film makers, animators, motion-graphic designers and artists using video installations. Please ask at the art gallery reception desk or visit http://www.warwickdc.gov.uk/royalpumprooms for further information.

FREE, no need to book.

If you would lilke to show your work at one of our Thursday Flickers screenings, please contact Tammy Woodrow on 01926 742700 or email tammy.woodrow@warwickdc.gov.uk.”

Of course in this modern age, It is impossible to ignore the power of the internet when it comes to streaming my finished project. However because of the vast size and the amount of sheer ‘junk’ on the internet, I have to think carefully about where I put it. It is far to easy to simply upload to YouTube with no tags or identifiers and just leave it there to get maybe the odd couple of views. Of course when used correctly YouTube is a fantastic help but I would be looking to upload to other sites aswell, sites which are specifically for short films.

Sites that I would consider include:

http://www.thesmalls.com/


The Smalls is a showcase for short films and music. The site aims to create an opportunity for filmmakers and musicians to get their work commissioned.”

http://www.bbc.co.uk/filmnetwork/

“Showcasing new UK film talent by screening short films, profiling the people who made them and providing filmmakers with the tools to exchange advice,”

http://www.budgetfilmmaker.com

“An online resource for aspiring film makers and people working towards the production of a limited budget film.”

Of course these are acting at an international level, which is great for showcasing the content, but will a user in San Fransisco really want to find out about a special needs teacher from Coventry? Somehow, I doubt it so it is important that If/When I upload content to any site like this, that I create a good synopsis of the film, tag the content markers effectively and also market it in a decent way. These sites that I have listed above DO NOT guarantee publishing on their website like YouTube or Viemo would. However that can be seen as a positive because if it does get published, it means that somebody (all be it we probably won’t know who) thinks that our film is worth putting up on their site. In the case of budgetfilmmaker, they offer the films as a download rather than as a stream, This wouldn’t necessarily be much of a problem but it would be worth looking at the terms and conditions of the site to see what right as content provider I have.

In terms of getting the film on Television the best opportunity would be Channel 4’s ‘Three Minute Wonder’ segment

“3 Minute Wonders are commissioned as a series of four shorts from budding new directors who haven’t yet had the opportunity to make a film for broadcast TV. Each week is thematically driven. The films are connected by subject, but they also have to be able to stand alone and be understood in isolation.”

It would be interesting to see if there was a theme in which our documentary would be suitable for this.

I would also aim to show this film at the local Odeon Cinema if possible as it would be a good opportunity to show the film to a lot of people in comfort but may prove to be a bit costly.



Reflection #3

Our research has changed slightly from my last post. Unfortunately we are unable to go with our original plan of shooting at the school which Grace; our character works at. This has changed both the style of what our finished film will look like and also what paperwork is required to make it. With such little time left to film we are aiming to get some footage which is relevant to the film but not necessarily true to the situation, these dramatized shots will be used in the film to visually stimulate the viewer instead at looking at the same shots which have been previously described as dull.

At the moment we are yet to film these shots but we aim to get this done over the weekend (Friday 5th March – Monday 8th March) with the editing of the whole film at least starting to take place on the Monday. My role within the filming and production has been mixed, as we all decided to have a go on either the PDX10 camera as we filmed Grace or Adam’s DSL photography camera (I had a go on both) I feel the scenes in Grace’s home could have been organized better and if we were to film there again we would walk in with a script of questions and move the camera (or maybe location) once we had moved from one set of questions to another.


Reflection #2

Our research has developed further into looking into the school where our character Grace works at. The school Grace works at is Little Heath primary school and it is one of the oldest schools in the Coventry area, The school has won a number of awards including the 2003:School Achievement Award for improvements in academic progress and 2004: Gold award for health promotion.(http://www.littleheath.coventry.sch.uk/)

After presenting our one minute video in the lecture in front of our fellow students (the video at the bottom of this post), our group discussed where we could take our presentation of our character further. It should be noted in the filming of our 1 minute preview, we actually recorded 40 minutes of useful footage which is still very valuable to us as a group, however we decided that Grace’s location was a bit bland (at least to have ALL of the film at)

We decided to get in touch with Little Heath primary school to request permission to film there (preferably a lesson with grace, but hopefully at least a few location shots) At the point of writing we are waiting for a response (Not too surprising as it is Half-Term)

Me and Sam setting up the camera

Jambo and Grace

Sam and Me filming

Interviewing Grace


Reflection #1: Research Process

This is a reflection indicating my research and experiences thus far in the 111mc course. So far I have researched into the local history of Coventry to try and get an idea of what good characters could be found in the area. Since deciding on the character of Grace, Research has been focused on primary I.E finding out about our character, her interests, her skills, her ambitions and most importantly her job. We discovered these facts via a series of phone calls and e-mails. Also today (Monday the eighth of February)   we filmed footage for the 60 second clip to be presented on Thursday, during this long conversation we discovered a lot about the above traits that we did not know previously. Currently I feel the next step for our group is to research further into the kids that Grace teaches, as well as research into the school that she works at. I feel that on a personal level this module thus far has allowed me to become less shy in asking people to be a part of my projects (something I’ve never really been able to do outside of my friend circle) It has also shown me the faults with having little to no research in a factual piece, this is motivating me to add to my admitted lack of secondary research.


[Pics to be added] A moment of Grace proposal

As a group which consists of myself, Sam Davies, Adam Broome and James Dann we decided to go with Sam’s documentary subject Grace. Grace is a special needs teacher living and working in Coventry. At our group meeting we discussed the potential visual style and presentation of the documentary, We decided that we would have an interview with Grace which would be interlinked with footage from the school (her workplace) and if possible footage from a lesson.The interlinked footage would be played with little to no sound in the edit as the sound would be from Grace in the interview. We would also have a faint possibly string based music piece in the background. The interview pieces would be a close up of her talking in a news/chat show style (i.e not facing the camera) we would also have somebody sitting opposite Grace to conduct the interview (but more than likely no be shown on camera)

At this point in time what we would discuss in the interview we would ask Grace about what the job means to her, How she got it, what her inspirations are and what she has got out of it in the time she has been there. I intend the documentary to be an uplifting insight into what must be a difficult yet rewarding career.


‘1 story out of 4,399’

As mentioned in my previous post, my subject is Emma, Emma is the manager of ‘Stardust’ casino in Coventry’s city centre. This story will focus on the job she has and the people she meets as a part of that role.

This story would be a fairly negative one as I would focus on the isolation and addictions of many of the people that would have come in to the casino over the years. The story will begin fairly upbeat talking about her job and a brief focus on her life outside of her job (family,etc..)

The focus would then be on her job, as in physically what she does each and everyday. I would then ask about the people who come into the casino and ask for any good stories, good and bad ones such as major winners and losers, how people coped with such wins/losses, as it is a casino I am certain she will be able to tell me many more horror stories than uplifting pieces. the pace of this film will be quite slow,

I aim to interlink scenes of Emma with that of willing customers and perhaps get a few comments from them aswell, I plan to use as much of the sound scape of the casino as I can without using added music and effects. I believe that people would want to watch this film as it will hopefully show some of the darker sides of gambling and human nature.