Reflection on Sound and Image

‘The media is the most powerful entity on earth. They have the power to make the innocent guilty and to make the guilty innocent, and that’s power. Because they control the minds of the masses.’

Malcolm X


I started studying Master of Media at RMIT University three months ago. I have to say this is the most exciting experience ever. Three different courses at the first semester have left me not only valuable knowledge, but also one step closer to my career pathway. One of them is Sound and Image course, which turns me from a person who had no idea about filmmaking, to a student who now knows every basic step of being a filmmaker.

During the first days at school, I had so many difficulties from pre-production to post-production. Knowing how to operate professional camera was hard, using software to edit the footage was even harder. I used to be the one who could only come up with an idea in imagination, now I can work with those heavy filmmaking equipments from camera, sound recorder to lightning system. The course structure was designed so well. I learned from the basic knowledge of how many camera shots are there, how to perfectly focus on an object with camera lens circles, and how to organize a faultless frame with ‘the rule of thirds’.

I was so thankful that we had opportunities to advance our skills with our intensive days. We had various topics, from producing a movie scene to a documentary. It was hard but interesting. We learned to set up a plan for pre-production, get our hands on drawing storyboard, worked in team to decide which camera shots and angles most suited the scripts. We now figure out what it is like to manage the production and how to work in a team. Different roles in a film crew have different responsibilities. Lower self-esteem and support each other will always bring good results.

We now also know what Vox Pop is. We were struggling with our confidence when asking strangers to do the interview in front of camera. But it is no longer a problem. A refusal can never bring us down. This is not only an experience in producing documentary, but also a lesson for every person. Be patient and never stop trying.

However, the most compelling skill I learned from the course is editing. It was really hard and it took so much time to know every function of the editing software, especially Pro Premiere. Each tool has its own function. And when there were too many ‘terms’ to learn, I started being panic. I overcame by dropping at the suite when I had no class. Practicing is the only option to develop editing skills. Now I know a lot of short keys in Pro Premiere to save time, as well as how to polish my product with different video and audio effect tools.


Sound and Image course is almost ended. After three months I now acknowledge every step of filmmaking from pre to post production. I wish we could have more class for this course so we can advance our skills. Advancing editing skills is essential and I would never stop practicing to achieve my goal.

The Expertise Edit

Camera Shot

camera shot is the amount of space that is seen in one shot or frame. Camera shots are used to demonstrate different aspects of a film’s setting, characters and themes.

There are different kinds of camera shot:

  • Extreme Wide Shot (EWS)
  • Wide Shot (WS)
  • Mid Shot (MS)
  • Medium Close Up (MC)
  • Close Up (CU)
  • Extreme Close Up (ECU)
  • Cutaway

We formed a group of four, exercised three different camera shots with one action. Matthew, a member of our group, decided to clap his hand. He had to stay still so we could capture his clapping in his same position. We took three camera shots, a Wide Shot, a Medium Close up, and a Close up.

Although the sound was recorded well, there was not enough light in the room. The tone colour is not right and too yellow. The quality of MC and CU are bad when we zoomed in at Matthew. However, this task helps us to specify what kind of camera shot most suits the action to shape the meaning in a film.

Editing

The basic task of post-production in film-making is to cut and edit footage.

I had three raw footage to make a sequence. The audio was recorded three times due to the three different shots. I chose the first one. The MC and CU shots were then cut and joined with the WS to make a continuous action. This technique of film editing is to link the footage together without awkward pauses.

Expertise #1


The two videos below were filmed from other groups.

Hannah was sitting on the table and flipping her note-book. They also had a WS, a MCU and an ECU as well.

Expertise #2

Miro was in other group, walked to the elevator and pressed the button. She was filmed with a WS, a CS and a ECU.

Expertise #3

Their footage was easier for me to edit, the actions took enough time and had a space before and after their actions. The exercise has helped me to acknowledge the various types of camera shot and the practice of cutting and editing footage to an ongoing sequence.