I’m taking a further look at some videos again to try to improve how I see and view the works of others. I’ve wanted to try to explore narratives of videos and how they are put together, including their visual stimuli and their audio. So I’ve taken a look at some more documentary style videos on Vimeo. I also thought it’d be apt to do this, seeing as I have received feedback from Annie and other peers in my class that I’d quite like to be able to apply to my own work, and I feel continuing to research and explore others ideas will help me to get to where I need to be with my own work.
Wilfrid sculpts Will is an enigmatic video that is quite quirky and works on a narrative based on an artist who creates sculptures of people that are not flattering. There’s a mixture of spoken narrative and also some background music that’s quite upbeat and quirky, and there’s a couple of times when we actually hear the interviewers voice too, which I found strange because it’s not something you often hear and we try to omit our own voices if we can. The visual side of the video was very interesting, moving from different parts of the process through to the end product so it was quite chronological to some extent. The topic itself was interesting and I was held for pretty much most of the video. The only thing I’d say is that after a while some of the cutaway shots and pieces of video started to look quite similar but this is because it is quite a small and closed environment. However the story was told successfully and the narrative was kept throughout in a way that I found intriguing. Another thing I noticed was that not all the video was at the same speed. There were times when it had been sped up in a time-lapse format and then slowed down for key movements and I thought this was quite effective and highlighted the time it takes to do this type of work very well. We got to see from start to finish so this was great in my opinion. All the shots on the camera were very well shot, and they were very sharp and stable. There was little or no camera shake so it shows that they knew what they were doing. Another thing I noticed was that some of the shots were shown zoomed in and then switched to wide on the same object. This was a feature I really liked. It was simple but gave a much better understanding of the object you’re looking at so I think it’s a video technique I might consider using in my own video work as part of my cutaways, just to add another layer of depth and interest to my work. I also noted that none of the video shots were still, there was always some movement. Annie said in my video work I had some shots that were completely still and that these would be better if they were moving, and I can now understand why this might be, so I will definitely try to change any still shots I’ve used to moving ones if I can.
This is a film created around the story of how Judas betrayed Jesus. I thought it’d be interesting to look at and watch because of its religious connotations and topics which is what my video is focused on. However, despite the intriguing title and description about it being a festival of burning a figure of Judas, I found that the video was actually not very interesting to me. It was slow to start with a lot of words and the screen took ages to changes after you had read the sentence. The fact there were subtitles were good because it makes it more accessible to a wider audience, but at the same time, I was a bit disappointed with the whole video because it just didn’t engage me and it wasn’t for a lack of interest in the subject. I was curious as to why the people were wearing bags on their heads, but this wasn’t really explained and just came across as slightly creepy. I also noticed there was a lot of still video rather than video with movement in, which again as I have found recently after it was pointed out to me, that this is something that doesn’t always work very well in video work. There was also no speech to dictate what was going on at the beginning which I thought would have been good, but this didn’t happen. As a religious video, I thought that this video showed religion in quite a bad light, as almost everything that people expect the stereotype to be, such as a boring or really creepy and weird. In my own video I was trying to destigmatise from this, and I think that having seen this video I can understand why some people have this view on religion as being old fashioned and a bit ‘bible bashy’. So therefore, having found a video on religion to compare to my own concepts and religious views, I was actually kind of disappointed by not only the narrative here, but the visual side of the whole thing too. It may appeal to some people but I just found it didn’t appeal to me and I thought it wasn’t particularly well done. It felt old and very archaic so I actually think my portrayal of the religion I’m going for, might be a bit more modernised and interesting is my hope.
Tasting Sight is a video about a man who lost his sight due to an assault and how with the advances of technology he was able to see his families faces again for the first time in 5 years. I thought the video was a brilliant narrative, it held my attention throughout. There was the right amount of getting to know the subject and his family and what they meant to him as well as understanding what had happened. I thought the video had been really considerate in terms of handling quite a delicate subject and there were moments when you were genuinely moved by the video you saw. The man himself was narrating most of the video along with his wife and occasionally snippets from his sons or doctor. It was nice to have a change of speech but it was also very nice how it was all put together. A great narrative concept that worked well with some very emotive audio and a video that was shot well to convey the moments of a family where their husband or father could once again see them. I loved some of the shots in the video as they were all different and changed throughout to move the story on and didn’t feel repetitive. They also were very well shot and not shaky at all. I loved that at times there was just speech overlaid on a black screen, just mimicking what he sees as he is blind and only sees black for a lot of the time. I thought this was a clever incorporation in helping people to visualise themselves in his place and understand what he is going through.
In terms of my research for my three minute video tweaks, these are three very different videos but all with some interesting points and merits to them. I’ve actually enjoyed being able to look at what other people have done and how they’ve done it because there are always different spins on how people can pull together a successful video. I feel some videos are more successful than others, but these videos we can pull from them what we thinks works well and what doesn’t so we know to avoid it. Constant research isn’t always helpful but in this case because I knew what I was looking for and had more understanding of the editing process I think it helped me to understand how to better my own work and how to engage and continue to develop my video using my feedback and through seeing what effects I do and don’t like in other people’s work too.