Dan Hume's Blog


Good Old London Times
April 26, 2012, 1:52 am
Filed under: Extended Major Project

It’s just occurred to me, but maybe it would be a nice idea to compare and contrast London as it now against London back in the 1960’s. I’ve been looking at some old bits of video footage on youtube and I’ve really got a real sense of how London has dramatically changed in the last 50 years.

‘Swinging London’ is a term which often applied to the fashion and cultural scene that flourished in London, in the 1960s. A time where no-one had a mobile phone and London telephone boxes where of some actual use to the public. It’s really interesting to see the social changes that London has gone through. To me, the 60’s clearly represented the true british identity we once had, but now seem to have lost. Not only has our identity been lost, but everyone seems distant nowadays in comparison to the footage I’ve seen of people back in the past.

I’m particular drawn to the video shot on a 16mm camera. I’ve been shooting some footage using the 8mm camera app on the iPhone and it does an incredible job at replicating this raw vintage look that was distinct in the 60’s. In a way this reminds that we often enjoy looking back at the past and taking what we can from it, to bring it up-to-date or re-establish it.

Not only are the videos fascinating to watch, but also the comments underneath them make for interesting reading. One of the main topics that people have been discussing is technology. I came across this comment on the rush hour video; ‘Not a mobile Phone to be seen! How DID we manage!’. I find myself asking the same question as well.

Update!

I’ve been emailing around to see if I could obtain some old footage of London in the 1960’s, but I’ve not had much success. I found this particular video, which had some great shots of the 1960’s. It really conveys the general mood of that era and how people appeared to be more engaged with each other than they are now. However, the user who uploaded this refused my request to use any of the footage.

What I would have liked to have done is to have taken a small sample of clips from the video and then re-shot those clips in the exact same location and composition to demonstrate the radical changes of society between two eras. I would have also liked to have used the 8mm iPhone app to visually match the 16mm vintage look like the example below.

16mm Camera (Original)                  iPhone (8mm App)



Proof I’ve been shooting on an iPhone
April 20, 2012, 1:03 am
Filed under: Extended Major Project

Although I’ve stated many times that I’m shooting my documentary on an iPhone, people still ask has this been shot on an iPhone?

Most of the shots are handheld when I’ve been filming so it’s kind of hard to photograph myself filming. However, here are some shots I’ve taken when I was doing some static shots using my gorilla pod.



New Additional Shots & Ending sequence
April 19, 2012, 1:01 am
Filed under: Extended Major Project

New Additional Shots

I went up to London on the Monday just gone to do some experiment shots for my project. Despite it being a Monday, it was actually a nice sunny morning and the station looked particular photogenic and I couldn’t resist to do a bit of filming.

At the beginning of my documentary when it cuts to the 8mm shots on the train, I was feeling it doesn’t really flow that well because I was thinking about what the audience would think if they were watching this. I wanted to make it clearer a little bit clearer as to why there was a cut to shot on the train. I thought if I could get a few shots at Bournemouth rail station and have them before the actual shots on the train, it would make that idea that I’m travelling to London to observe people.

As I mentioned, the weather was nice and sunny so it worked well in my favour for continuity as the 8mm shots dramatically show strong lighting if it’s sunny day.

  

I just feel that these few additional shots help generate the narrative of the piece by showing the audience that I’m travelling to London myself to observe the teaming crowds of people.

Ending Shots

I want to end the documentary in a similar approach to introduction. I used the the ambient version of the song, Isolate, to slowly build up the mood the of documentary. The original song at the end becomes more broken down and ambient sounding; therefore I’ve decided that it maybe a nice idea to show the day ending, as I’ve documented the start of the day during the intro. I had a decent amount of footage that I’d shot around the early evenings during my visits to London  when the sun was setting. I was able to capture some really impressive shots with really strong colour contrasts.

In some of the shots, such as the man walking into camera which then fades into the South Bank shot, I wanted to emulate the idea of the documentary  in a different way by showing the sparseness of the individuals. Everyone is walking alone.

I feel one of the best shots I’d captured was the end shot of the man listening to music on the train. It was completely spontaneous and it really justifies the freedom of filming on a mobile phone. I literally saw this unique composed shot crop inside my head as I was looking out of the opposite window at the sunsetting. I also like the added touch of the light rays bleeding into the shot, because it’s shining in the direction of the man sitting on the train; therefore emphasising him as the focus point of the shot.

  

  

  

  

I’ve rendered out a video of the end sequence to give you a better idea of how it’s edited.



A Couple of Nice short iPhone Videos
April 15, 2012, 9:18 pm
Filed under: Extended Major Project, Video

As usual. I’ve just been browsing on the iPhone Cinema channel on Vimeo and yet again. I’ve found a a couple of nice videos I wanted share today.

One of the videos have been shot in Dubai, using a Panasonic GH2GoPro HD Hero2 and the iPhone 4S. It’s been shot extremely well and at times it’s hard to distinguish the shots that were shot on the iPhone. This is pretty impressive as this proves you can mix shots between a higher end camera and the iPhone camera and it won’t look out of place.

I just had to post this because it has some really nice cinematography with a nice little narrative.

By The Film Artist

I was intrigued by the tales from the driver of the desert safari tour, one in particular about where the name ‘Dubai’ originated from. One is the Bur Dubai area and the other the Deira, there were 2 brothers ‘Do Bhai’, one lived on one side and the other on the other side, hence Dubai. True or not doesn’t matter to me, I like the idea that no matter where you live in this modern world we can all be brothers and sisters and try to live in peace and harmony rather than war and conflict.

City Symphony: Subway

For my current documentary, I’ve been doing a lot of shooting at tube/train stations, because they always have the subjects I’m wanting capture on video. I’m not particularly keen on the music, but I do like the visuals look of this video. I think for some of the shots the person who filmed this shot it discreetly as no-one appears to acknowledge his presence. I also like the fact that it’s been edited quite simply, but the shots are nicely composed; therefore it makes it visually interesting to watch. One thing I have enjoyed doing and that is cinematography. The challenge with the iPhone is it’s small sensor, which creates many restrictions when trying to create very cinematic looking shots. I think this video clearly demonstrates that composition is crucial when filming on a device that hasn’t got all the qualities of a high end camera.

By Chankenn

This is a hong kong subway scene.

shoot by iphone with 8mm vintage app.
edit by FCPX



David Hockney Multiple Video Art
April 15, 2012, 1:07 am
Filed under: After Effects, Extended Major Project

It appears David Hockney has now worked with video to create life size scenes. Here is an interesting program which gives you an insight into his latest approach of using, what appear to be, DSLR cameras to film with.

I like the way his shots of the country merge together showing gradual change of seasons of the same location. It’s very subtle but incredibly enticing to watch.

I’ve already experimented in the Specialist Project with taking multiple shots to generate a scene that captures more than what you would be able to capture in a single frame. Here is an example I did, in which I took a series of portrait shots, each recorded at a length of 20 seconds, to create this panoramic shot of a busy high-street, near Oxford Circus. Each frame was shot in chronological order as I panned from one end of the street to the other.

My approach is entirely different as I don’t have the luxury of having 9 DSLR cameras to film with and a team of people to help construct a rig and put it into action. It’s evident  that Hockey’s approach is more accurate and precise in order to get an immaculate result. With my filming style being secretive I won’t be able to achieve the same accurate result, which is actually a good thing as I’m creating something slightly different.

The overall results I’ve been getting are very reminiscent of Hockney’s early work where takes multiple images to create an entire scene, like in the image above. I like the way he positions each image in a more freestyle way instead of approaching it in a more precise and technical manner. If the overall result was 100% perfectly aligned, I don’t think there would been much point in going to the trouble of creating the image in the first place. It would just come across as another ordinary image that could have possibly been shot on a super wide angle lens. I think what I most like about this particular style is the strong definition of colour he generates by using slightly different exposures for each shot.

There are couple of shots where I accidentally moved the camera from side to side a bit too much when I was filming, which doesn’t look particularly great. Most of the shots were quite well and stable, considering it was all handheld. There needs to be quite a lot of concentration when doing this task. Although I won’t be able to achieve an exact 100% match with each alignment, I’m always determined to get it as close as possible.

Here are some screenshots of other videos I’ve made using this technique



A Poem About Isolation
April 14, 2012, 1:56 pm
Filed under: Extended Major Project

I’ve been trying to construct a layout for the publication of my documentary in a way that takes you on a little journey. At the moment it’s currently just three pages, which follow on from each other. After speaking with Phil yesterday, he suggested that I could tie up the whole project with a poem, which I thought was a really good idea. I had originally thought about using a poem called DP (Dorset Police) written by someone I know. There were some verses in his poem that conveyed this idea of isolation, but I felt it was a bit too personal to the point that it wouldn’t really fit in with my project.

Example

Confessions on a Dance floor CD Booklet

Here are some photographs taken from Madonna’s Confessions album. There are small excerpts of lyrics, which have been placed in the photos to generate a basic concept of the entire album.

  

  

I did some searching last night for poems that were about isolation. It wasn’t long until I came across this poem, which really describes the emotions of isolation in a clear way.

Isolation

Isolation is to be left out when you want to be in.

Isolation is feeling that sense of loneliness.

Isolation is feeling alone when ten thousand people surround you.

Isolation is hearing laughter in a room and silence when you walk in.

Isolation is staying away from people, afraid they won’t talk back.

Isolation is sad.

Isolation is small.

Isolation is hard to describe unless you are the person feeling it.

Isolation is quiet.

Isolation is blood pounding in your ears.

Isolation is counting how many times you get let down and eventually lose track.

Isolation is wanting to forgive but not knowing how.

Isolation is uttering a cry from the depths of your soul and waiting forever for that reply.

Isolation is not hearing an answer when you ask a question.

Isolation makes you feel worthless.

Isolation has to be the cruelest of emotions.

I despise the feeling of isolation.

I think everyone does.

By Dead Poetic

UPDATE!

Ok, I’ve managed to take the poem and incorporate it into the publication. I’m not as comfortable working using indesign so I actually worked in Photoshop to layout all the text. All the pages have been sized at 1024 by 768 pixels, for it to fit perfectly on the iPad. I’ve purposely laid the sentences as they are so that the user can get a sense of the direction they’re meant to swipe to go onto the next page.

I decided to generate some more images through the decim8 to act as the backdrops for the sort excerpts. I think the beauty of the app is that it takes away the literal context of  an image; therefore allowing a new underlining meaning to be implemented.



digital publishing layout
April 13, 2012, 12:41 pm
Filed under: Extended Major Project

After a lot of thought, I’ve decided to peruse creating a digital publication using the Adobe Digital Publishing suite built into Indesign. I’ve already posted a few entries, showing plans of how I want the final outcome to look like. Here is an updated plan of the layout.

It’s split into 3 sections, but there will possibly be a fourth page added, which will be another video showing a series of clips presented in a David Hockney style.

Here are the actual designs themselves that I’ve created in using Indesign. As you can see I’ve used the graphical images from using the decim8 app as the background layer for the pages.




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