Analysis/Reflection

1. The Abstract Edit

Working on abstract video is amusing yet it can enhance my production abilities and  editing skills. I used different effects and transitions to edit the video after self-exploration and getting some advice from the tutor and this tutorial. However, there are some challenges while working on this project. The image’s qualities were extremely poor. Some images were burnt and others become less distinct. I could not eliminate the discoloration because I operated camera inefficiently, resulting from incorrect white balance setting.

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This blur and burning image was because of wrong white balance setting.

The carelessness of adjusting the camera focus also made almost all images become unclear and not sharp. Therefore, I spent a long time to select the footage and adjust the low-quality moving images.  From this lessons-learned, I will set white balance carefully and check the camera focus thoroughly.

The sound of the images is problematic. Some footage had no sound and others had high pitch sound. The reason is that the input sound was off and the level of sound recording was also unstable causing audio distortion. To deal with this issue, I can add audio into the image and use audio effects to control the sound level according to Adobe website. From this experience, I will always check external and internal sound buttons before shooting in order to avoid the repetitive problem.

With curiosity to explore editing techniques, I exercise my editing skills by using a variety of effects and transitions. During the first edition, I did wrong in using effects due to the fact that I could not endure editing lots of footage within one hour and I had no much experience editing before. To overcome this difficulty, I edited my video again by using many layers and adjusting the opacity, color and the speed of some shots.

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In this shot, I reduced the speed of the image and adjusted the opacity to slow down the feed’s movement.

It was such a beneficial practical exercise that is called “learning by doing” although I was struggling at the beginning. The addition of transition on video enables me to explore the reality of how Adobe Premiere Pro works and it tends to train my brain quickly to remember the process of editing and using each effect and transition.

Music selection is important to match with the footage. I downloaded the free music from Youtube, which is in creative common archives.  I started playing with crossfade transition and adjusted the audio transition. Rather than using constant power transition, I used the pen tool to adjust the way I wanted to fade in and out the audio. It did work well and this becomes my new expertise and knowledge.

Overall, from the Expertise exercise, I learn lots more on how to operate the video camera and to explore the differences of video effects and transitions. This equips me with editing skills and allows me to practice these skills for the upcoming video.

2. The Expertise Edit

The Expertise exercise predominantly allows me to understand different types of camera shots and how to operate camera effectively. During the Expertise project, I have refreshed my brain and knowledge regarding video production after five years of suspending shooting video. I really enjoyed working on this project though I have faced with some difficulties, yet it is advantageous for my self-improvement.

From the editing experience, I would like to reflect on four main problems, one of which is framing the subject in different shots. Shooting with a variety of shots is extremely important. The difference of shots can demonstrate aspects of the characters, sets, and themes of the film. The success of my team working on Expertise project is that there is a combination of extreme long shot, long shot, medium shot, close up, and extreme close up, which reduces the workloads during editing. However, I found that there is a loophole to improve in my upcoming video production. I have noticed that all shots seem to be only half face of the protagonist. Therefore, next time I would move the camera to film the subject more closely and widely.

 

Another noticeable issue is sound quality. There was noise in the sound owing to the fact that I filmed in the class. I have not critically thought much about recording sound while shooting. Hence, when it comes to the editing process, the sound of the images is not usable. To deal with this type of problem, in the next project I will select a location that does not have too much distractive sound, yet a clear background sound. If there is an interview, I prefer to have a quiet place.

The position of camera angle is also crucial in video production. In my Expertise video, I have not filmed my character from different angles because I have not thought of it. After checking my footage, I realised that I should have done low or high camera angles to make my viewers understand the character’s relationship and make the video become attractive. This happens because I did not have a proper pre-production plan. This experience will remind me to think of various angles before shooting and to have a well-developed treatment.

Using effects and transition during editing is also problematic for me. While editing, I was trying to play with video effects and transitions. I used, for instance, color correction and blur and sharpen for video effects and 3 D motions, fade in and out, and flip over transitions. This has resulted in an unprofessional video and it looked distracted. I decided to remove those transitions and effects and edited my video as normal.

3. The Initiative

“Enemies of the People”, is the documentary film showing about the masterminds behind the mass killing during Khmer Rouge Regime in Cambodia directed by Thet Sambath and Rob Lemkin, has inspired me to find out more about how to produce the documentary film. With the journalism background, I believe that producing the documentary by using journalistic skills can address important issues, investigate the reality of the social issues, reveal the hidden information and inform audiences. Hewitt and Vazquez (2010) explains the four stages in producing the documentary film including  the beginning, preproduction, production, and postproduction.

Getting Started is the early stage to develop the idea, set the goal,  think critically about the characters and visualizing the story, seek collaboration and prepare proposal and budgets  The generating idea is essential to shape the angle of the topic and search for available resources and materials that are relevant to the topic.

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Photo was taken from this website.

For instance, the producer has to do more research to understand
the topic precisely and look for accessible sources to interview. Wales (2015) also claims that research is beneficial to identify the central problem and clarify the accurate information of the topic, which can result in a high-quality documentary film. Energetic and enthusiastic characters who can hold the viewer’s attentions are pre-selected. The need for collaboration from relevant people is essential to ensure the smooth production and strong connection.  Planning proposal and budget are extremely important at this stage. Sometimes, the producer may need to do fund-raising, applying for the grant in case he/she does not have enough money.

Preproduction is generally perceived as a plan for shooting the documentary film. There are two basic plans at this stage including preparing for production and arranging interviews.  Production planning is consist of scheduling shooting, producing the storyboard, writing shooting script, hiring the director and passionate crews, arranging equipment and  dealing with legal issues. The number of crews can have strong impacts on the production. Sometimes, a small crew has been hired to produce the documentary film due to limited budgets.

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Photo was taken from this website.

Planning interviews are required because the documentary film is about getting interviewees to talk about the problem and to show the conflict. The key interviewees have to be scheduled for the formal interview. Some interviewees might be more significant in the film to elaborate the  complex and controversial issue of the topic. Location selection with the right background for the interview also has to be done before the production starts. Wales (2015) added that in this stage, the production team has to coordinate the travel schedule for shooting and continue working on the editing script.

Production is the stage of gathering actual footage. The director has to ensure that the sound quality, light, and  the aesthetic cinematography are operated correctly and creatively based on the treatment. The documentary heavily relies on the sound from the interview, ambient sound, and natural sound. Having enough light can improve the footage while shooting that is why the director has to ensure that there is enough light.

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Students pursuing Master of Media at RMIT were shooting Voxpop in front of the State Library.

To get the high-quality sequences, the cinematographer has translated the contextual vision of the director by paying attention to balance the composition, framing and to be innovative in producing artistic sequences. The director has to be critical for producing creative or aesthetic camera shots because it can take precedence over the editing stage. B-roll and cutaway shots can add information during narration or interview, which can explain the topic and increase the credibility. The significance of story conflict can build on the value in the documentary and the film has to retain the conflict otherwise, the documentary may become less interesting (Wales, 2015).

Postproduction is the important part for assembling all footage. Structuring documentary is essential when it comes into the postproduction. The storytelling has to be constructed into three parts including beginning, middle and end, and sometimes final thought might be included as well.  While editing the documentary, a mixture of different shots will be blended up and the script might be changed depending on the actual story after putting footages together in order to fit into a coherent film.

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Photo taken from this website.

Music also can be incorporated into the documentary film aiming to enliven the story by suggesting emotion or mood.  According to The International School History, there are 8 styles of making documentary including the use of “exposition, actual footage, narration, oral history, archive material, reconstruction, music, and graphic”. Thus, the  filmmaker can use the combination of styles or just a few of them. In addition, many techniques are available for the filmmaker, two of which are no narration and personal point of view documentary film. After finish editing, the draft documentary might be screened to a specific group of people who can give constructive feedbacks before finalizing the whole documentary film.

Let’s take a look at my latest mini-documentary five years ago I have faced with many difficulties in terms of generating ideas and shooting video. I admitted that I did not plan well before shooting plus having some technical issues such as shooting without the tripod. As a result, my documentary has many shaky moving images and become unprofessional. Thus, the advice above will enable me to improve my existing skills and tap into my personal interest in producing the documentary film.

References:

Hewitt, J & Vazquez, G. (2010). Documentary Filmmaking: A Contemporary Field Guide. Oxford University Press.

Wales, L. (2015). Complete Guide to Film and Digital Production. Focal Press

4. Prompts

According to Sound Design paper, the sound has been grouped into three categories including music, sounds, and speech. Speech has become appealing to me while reading. Narration and dialogue are the essential functions of the speech. The narration refers to a verbal and nonverbal means of communication and it has been classified into three types including direct, indirect, and contrapuntal.

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The sound mixer, photo was taken from this website.

The indirect and contrapuntal narration have been commonly used in the film .The sound designers mostly use indirect narration to tell the story or actor’s activities without narration. This means the audience can understand the situation based on what they see on the screen without having narration. For instance, there is no narration when the actor opens the car door and walk into the theater. The Contrapuntal narration is the way the sound designer use the image in opposite to the narration in order to make a comparison. As an example, the narration is about African children do not have enough food where the video is showing lots of food wasted by western people. The sound designers have to  have inherent ability to distinguish sound differences in order to  produce the sound that provides listeners with cognitive and affective information. This lesson enables me to understand and identify sound particular how to use speech  for the next project.

“Directors are mostly aggressive” crew members have to understand this. This is unfair that is why there is a discussion of the role of the director and actor. What I do learn from Actor and The Director is that the significant relationship between actor and the director is to understand each other. Instead of giving an order to actors to perform as what the director wants, the director has to accept the actors’ ability, specialty and potentiality.

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Production crews photo by Sean Hagen from Flickr:CC.

Some talented actors are able to perform perfectly though the director has not guided them. This means qualified actors can show their intelligence and to a certain degree can reduce the director’s workloads.  The most successful director is the one who understands actors intuitively. Another interesting point is that competent director retains the good working environment, inspire actors, acknowledge actors’ great achievement in performance. The Incompetent director will allow technical problems or his/her mood distract the working atmosphere and disrespect the actors. The director has to use infinite patience strategy and self-analytical approach to managing the production. The actors have to respect the director and do their roles aiming to successfully perform as what the audience wants. Personally, this kind of leadership has reflected the reality in the society not only in the production team. The leaders or the directors have to respect and appreciate their colleagues working under their supervision, leading to a remarkable triumph. The above points can immensely improve my understanding regarding the director and actor relationship, and hopefully, I can apply these strategies to my future career.

5. Lenny Production 

Team spirit has provided me with a great achievement in producing Lenny short film although it is not 100% perfect. My team has been working to support each other and this builds a strong sense of collaboration, leading to a great success despite minor problems. Let’s me share some experiences and challenges during Lenny project.    

Preproduction

My achievement in this stage is planning the storyboard and marking the script before starting the production. I have drawn a treatment for my production by considering different types of creative shots and angles, which includes close-up, medium shot, long shot, extreme close up. Planning key locations and characters in advance has also contributed to the success. I have thought of some locations nearby RMIT and I have divided three scenes based on the provided script allowing me to understand clearly how to manage each scene.  Besides, I have tested camera and sound recorder for making sure they work well and it made me more confident before camera rolling. Before starting production, my team has allocated specific task for everyone.

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This photo was taken from this website.

However, there are some obstacles . My team did not discuss thoroughly with each other about the exact location and the film treatment before shooting. My team and I went immediately without thinking of finalizing the plan for the production project, where to shoot , what the prompt are, and what kind of shots should be captured. This has resulted in unclear shooting plan and a bit complicated when filming each scene. From this experience, for the next project, planning is the best solution to work effectively and efficiently and I would have a discussion before starting shooting although each member has planned the treatment individually. It is important to talk and clarify the plan before going out.

Production

My team allocated tasks for each member clearly and each member including me had to rotate the role. Personally, the rotating role is more practical during this production since each member has a chance to perform different tasks and learn from each other.  During the production, I had a chance to be a sound recorder, camerawoman, assistance director (AD), the director. According to task allocation, I could fulfill my role to a certain extent. For example, when I was a sound recorder, I tested the sound button to ensure that it turned on and I checked the level of the sound volume to make sure it was in standard level. With regard to camera operation, I could frame the image well without too many mistakes and listened to the director and followed his comments for improvement. I applied the rule of production crews by respecting and doing my role without bothering or invading others’ task.

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My team was shooting scene 1 for Lenny project at RMIT campus.

Although there were many positive results during the production, there were also a few minor mistakes and misunderstandings. The planned location was not chosen due to the construction work. It is unpredictable although I have checked the place one day before the shooting. The switching role is good for exercise but it might be disastrous in the real shooting. I was confused about my team member’s role because everyone kept rotating the role. For instance, the role of being an assistance director and the director have not clearly differentiated. I noticed that being an assistance director in my team was just saying camera roll and other tasks were guided by the director. This means I failed to perform as AD because I was perplexed and could not fulfill the task. From this experience, I would say having a specific and clear role for each member is recommended for the next project and each role has to be precisely explained before starting the production.

Postproduction

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This is the way I organized sound and images for my Lenny project as well as other production projects.

At this stage, all footages have to be assembled and I would say my team has filmed many creative shots despite a few technical errors.  The process of editing is quite demanding if there are  poor-quality footages. During my Lenny project edition, I have followed the advice by creating the specific folder to organise all necessary files neatly. There are three important processes that I have achieved during the editing. Selecting footage is not time-consuming for me because most of the footage were usable. I created Bins for the three scenes, music, and sequences and then I started putting all the shots together based on the script. Using video transition could avoid jump-cuts in my video that was why I used a few film dissolve and cross dissolve to make my video goes smooth. I also used the pen tool to fade in and out the music and audio while editing.  With the experience from editing abstract video, I added the title of the film and behind the scene images, just to make the video more attractive.

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Some wrong activities during shooting Lenny short film.

In spite of some successes during editing, there are some issues. Some audio of the footage were disrupted by the construction sound that was inevitable. I decided to mute the audio because of the noise and I used the music to integrate into the video instead. There were many shaky images which resulted from using the hand-held camera without the tripod.  In the camera screen, the video was not so shaky, but when I played it on the computer screen, it was.  Another critical issue is that my picture appeared as a reflection from the mirror in the footage. I have to pay more attention when shooting near the mirror from now on otherwise this problem will occur again. There was also no ending shot for my Lenny project as planned. The initial idea was that there should be a wide shot of Van walking out of the scene , but there was not because my team forgot to film.  As experienced, there should be a person noting down and checking every planned shot before finish shooting for the future project.

6. Find Your Scene

“Me Before You” is a romantic drama directed by Thea Sharrock and released in 2016.  The film is about the love story between a disabled banker and his caretaker. This film has blown my mind and made me almost in tear. Because of this, I would like to deconstruct one amazing scene that I have extracted from the movie. Overall, this scene was produced with greater efforts and the well-designed plan.

  • Shot Construction: the director used many cinematography techniques to create visual storytelling in the film. According to Timothy Heiderich, the basic of film composition and the creation of different shots can form the cohesive narrative about what is going on in the film without telling. From my perspective, this scene used the film composition and various shots greatly. The director and cameramen created the art of cinematography by taking a variety of shots including long, medium and close up shots to position the action. This scene construction enables viewers to become more engaging with the actors.
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In this medium shot, the director blurred Will while  Louisa and another lady were talking about Will’s feeling to join his ex-girlfriend wedding.

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This close up shot, Louisa was asking Will to go out and her facial expression showed her insistence.

  • Camera Movement: In this scene, cameramen and the director worked together effectively to use various type of camera movement and different angles. The cameraman filmed the movie from the high and low angle, using tracking, panning, tilting, zooming techniques, which followed  the basic camera movement. Those shots were just incredible, allowing the audience to interact with the scene.
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Crane was used to filming this establishing shot by gradually moving the camera down to show the overview of the wedding and the actors.

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In this long shot, while the two actors were walking into the ceremony, the cameraman was panning from the right to left across the stone gate.

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Louisa sat on Will’s wheel and Will moved the chairs as the music was playing  and  the camera was moving along the two characters.

  • Production Design: The director has provided the audience with precise information in terms of illustrating the sets and visual style of the film concept. This mainly is about the use of color and mood in the film in order to create the aesthetic environment. In this scene, I would say the location was selected rigorously with a nice great campus and crowded people in the ceremony, which complied with the film concept. Wheels chair was designed to fit in the situation for the disabled protagonist. A mixture of brilliant color such as green, red, purple, and white in the scene has made the film become startlingly beautiful.
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The big church was chosen to show the wedding ceremony and actors dressed colorful clothes.

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The director captured the groom and bridge as the background, yet used the red color of a woman’s dress to make the shot become bright.

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A well-planned shot in the scene, many audiences were cast and performed in the church to celebrate the wedding reception as the real one.

  • Performance: “what make a good performance?” there is a discussion between the instrument and the craft for the best performer. Instrument refers to the actor’s mind, body, voice, and emotion.  The craft is about the process of building actor to perform based on the script. There are 10 tips for improving performance in the film. Personally, the actors in this movie have demonstrated their professional performance based on the basic rules and guides. I truly appreciate the actors, who could make the audience laugh, smile, and cry with them. Louisa and Will are talented and have spontaneous performance, which makes them achieve a fabulous job in this scene. They used their emotional feelings to show the tone of the performance, which made the audience understand and some were in tear including me. This shows that the actors are highly skillful in performing tactics.
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This close up shot shows the good feeling of Will accepting Louisa’s request, which made the audience feel happy too.

 

 

Digital Story Proposal

Have you ever heard about Digital Story? If not, you may spend a couple of minutes watching this video.

 “Tell your story and keep it short” said by Jerome Gratigny, is the advice for everyone to begin his/her digital story.  There are three types of digital story and it has been used as an effective communication and a  way of teaching/learning (France and Wakefield, 2011).  My team has chosen infographic video for the project to convey a message regarding stop blaming the victim. Let’s have a look at my project proposal before moving forward.

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The process of creating HTML code for my  project called ” Stop Blaming the Victim”.

Before achieving this proposal, let’s me share you a few challenges that I have encountered. Researching topic, creating HTML for a page, and designing concept for marketing image are quite difficult, yet beneficial for my self-development.

I spent plenty of time searching reports and journals written on gender and violence against women issues. With too much information, I could not capture the most significant data/facts and shape my angle. To deal with this, breaking down the big topic and asking journalistic questions (5W+H) can help me speed up my research and it can help researchers narrow down the topic.  According to WikiHow (2016), classifying  and eliminating irrelevant facts enable researchers to save time  and compile needed information. Research is not easy, it does require skills and the ability to select important information otherwise you will waste lots of time on searching without reaching the real destination as me at the beginning. Although I managed to synthesize the main argument for my project, which was about combating social stigma against rape victims in Cambodia and Indonesia, it was still time-consuming. The above advice will be practically useful for me to adopt and adjust the way of searching my topic before starting in-depth research in the future.

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Photo courtesy: Visual Library

Another problem is developing HTML for a page. I candidly admit that I know nothing about HTML. After working on Codecademy, I thought it is not difficult to create the page, but it demands strenuous efforts. In reality, HTML code is complicated especially when I want to incorporate images or videos within the text that requires exact height and width of the image.

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An example of  HTML  for my  digital story proposal.

My team member and I have been trying to find the existing HTML code of a specific website in order to change the code to fit in our project. This creative idea turns out to be time-consuming and even more confusing. Developing structure and composition of the text requires web-design skills and the ability to understand how HTML works.  Vara (2008) recommends understanding the basic programming code of HTML, which includes symbols and words.  The best solution is to remember the key elements of  HTML, such as order list, headline and paragraph code and to know the exact format of an image or video to be included.  My team  finally has decided to start producing the code from the scratch and used the recommendations above. From this lesson learned, I would not try to find a short-cut way to create HTML code anymore, I will try to improve my HTML coding skills and adjust my website to look more attractive and professional. To find out more about how to create HTML using Dreamweaver program, you may find the below website helpful.

Designing marketing image is quite demanding although my team member is so skillful.  My team and I have been searching for images related to stop blaming the rape victims. Some ideas have been generated from the existing promotional materials, yet the initial image of my digital proposal has to be developed. I have realized that my first marketing picture does not respond well to the core message of the project. To adjust the design, I have randomly picked up audiences in my school and asked them to give feedbacks. As a result, I have got more ideas to change my marketing image.

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Before receiving comments from the audience.

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After incorporated comments from the audience.

To develop an attractive image, the message has to be condensed and clear addressed (Dean, 2013) and the content has to stay positive showing an inspiring or amused message that can boost viewers’ emotions (Banner, 2016). I guess the theory of “KISS”, which means keep it short and simple, can nail my designing issue.  Receiving feedbacks from the audience is also beneficial to test the design before finalising.  I have combined constructive advice plus my personal understandings to design the final marketing image for my project. I would say, considering feedbacks from other people, can enable either me or other designers to get more alternative and innovative ideas and I will use this strategy in producing infographic video for my final project.

References:

Banner, M. (2016). Your Guide to Creating and Sharing Content. Retrieved from http://contentmarketinginstitute.com/2016/05/guide-sharing-content-infographic/

Dean, B. (2013). 5 Steps to Create Compelling Content Through Infographics. Retrieved on from http://contentmarketinginstitute.com/2013/07/create-compelling-content-infographics/

France, D & Wakefield, K. (2011). How to Produce a Digital Story. Journal of Geography in Higher Education, 35(4), 617-623.

Vara, V. (2008). How to Create a Successful Web Site For Nothing (or Almost Nothing)http://www.wsj.com/articles/SB121803326363016929

WikiHow. (2016). How to research effectively. Retrieved on 20 August 2016 from http://www.computerhope.com/starthtm.htm

Reflective Writing

 

  1. Prompt – Reflect and Write 300 words

(Reflect, write about reflection prompted by the reading – ‘writing reflectively’ ­Briefly describe two points that you have taken from that reading. Points that excite you, something that was completely new to you.)

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There are two main points that I have learned from the papers. Reflective writing is a new knowledge I have acquired from the reading. The importance of writing critically is to reflect on what everyone has done or involved and it can substantially contribute to self-improvement. This type of writing is not about describing your activities or involvement in the special situation, but it requires a person to think thoroughly about what he/she has made and to find his/her loopholes and successes to improve and motivate his/herself. This type of writing might be out of the interest of some people even myself, who has never thought of using reflective writing to change the negative results or dissatisfactions. I have just realised that it is significant to observe or reflect on daily’s activities and it can be the possibility to make thing positively change. Writing reflective journal enables me to figure out my weaknesses or strengths that can help adjust methods or attitudes for a better performance, and this is a useful way for me to become more successful both academic study and future career. For this reason, I will use reflective writing journal to enhance my critical thinking skills and self-performance.

Another important point from the reading is making an assumption and it intrigues me. The concept of recognising assumption is quite abstract and unrealistic, yet it is beneficial to form an idea of what thing perhaps happen. This might lead to pre-assumed solutions or to develop strategies. With useful information from the assumption, people may be prepared to tackle any kinds of problems occurring and it might be an evidence or idea for reflection. It is surprising to learn that assumption can be considered as a key point for reflection. I rarely think of making an assumption about particular event or person, and I have never paid much attention for predicting the future. This can be my weakness that I need to change. Making an assumption possibly allows me to think strategically ahead before meeting someone or attending events. Thus, this immensely benefits self-reflection and provide me with some ideas in advance to be prepared for the upcoming or unprecedented events.

  1. Prompt – Goals and Desires – 300 words

In 300 words or less outline your goals, desires – what you want to get out of this semester. You will review this later in the course. You may rethink this dramatically – this is a good thing.

My main goal in this course is to analyse and manage media project effectively. The positive expectation is that my technical skills and ability to initiate attractive content for video will be improved after this course. Throughout the course, my technical skills in terms of shooting and editing video will become more advanced and able to produce high-quality videos. I believe that this course will enhance my existing production skills mainly on shooting video and recording sound.

As filming is my weakness and I have limited knowledge of media production. I strongly hope that this course will enable me to practice more in shooting and understand clearly about different kinds of techniques in order to capture interesting and creative shots.  The lecturer and tutor will train how to record perfect sound since it is my barrier. Editing skills are also important. Learning how to use the professional software program and the effective techniques to edit footages and sound can allow me to work more efficient in producing documentary or various videos.

Another expectation associated with this course is producing high-standard content. The significance of producing content for each video production can attract more audience and uphold audience’s trust, but it is quite challenging for me. Understanding the essential elements of producing high-quality content plays an important role to boost my confidence in designing content for video. My ability to initiate new and interesting ideas for producing video will be expanded and improved throughout the course. Thus, I believe that this course will teach me with a wide range of abilities to produce attractive content allowing me to work sufficiently the media industries.

  1. Prompt – Crew Roles – 300 words

Read through these Crew Roles for drama production then Developing a Crew and write about something that surprised and/or excited you.

I am fascinated in learning about the complexity of dividing production departments and responsibilities. Based on the structural task division, managing crews is incredibly difficult. To achieve one drama production, there are many works to deal with crew management and it has enlightened me how the distribution of workload among the crews is beneficial. Each crew’s role has to be allocated efficiently in order to ensure the smooth production and greater unity in the team. Among crew departments, post-production task allocation appears to be different from what I have known. For instance, the Foley artist, who is in charge of producing and recording sound effect to fit in different movements or visual object, has grabbed my attention. I have never heard about this position before and I have thought that sound effects are extracted from natural sound only and the sound manager will be responsible for it. This reading has explained me well and clear my doubt.

Developing a crew demands more efforts than what I have thought, and one of the most surprising information for me is crew selection with experience. My understanding is that the way of recruiting crews for drama production is different from choosing staff to work in a company. Despite undergoing many job requirements, all crews have to show their eternal preferences as well as their personal traits that have to suit the job environment and conditions. Most importantly, crews have to rehearse with other team members before officially being selected though they have experienced for many years. This is beyond what I have known so far. It seems to me that to become a member of the film production, each crew must obtain the high-quality standard of both personal attitudes and capabilities. This indicates that the job selection processes appear to be so tough and it demands all crews to show passionate commitment to handle the work as a team.

  1. Keyboard shortcuts.

Most applications reserve keyboard shortcuts for the functions that you use most often. It is really good to learn all of these as it will speed up your editing and additionally alert you to functions that the software developers and other users find important. (You can learn much about the software by looking at keyboard shortcuts). New wording (see email): Find the keyboard shortcuts for the film editing software you use and describe 2 or 3 functions (or more is encouraged) that you’ve never used before and describe why these functions will be invaluable to your editing.

I have never used Adobe Premiere Pro to edit the video before and I find out that many shortcut keys are useful for users. Personally, there are four important shortcuts to improve efficiency and to work on multitasks, one of which is Cmd+/. This shortcut key is to create Bin in the project. The Bin is similar to the folder, it helps users to organise files for editing neatly and efficiently. For instance, when I was working on expertise editing, I created Bin by using the shortcut to place my raw files including footage, music, and sequences. Without Bin, my files would be messy and disorganised, which may become a disaster if I want to find footages for editing.

The best way to import file is to use Cmd+I. Users cannot use Adobe Premiere Pro without importing files, and it is undeniable that using this shortcut is quite useful and easy, not to mention time saving.  Another vital shortcut key is Cmd+X. This tool is to cut the footage or music while users are editing. This shortcut will provide users with a convenient and fast editing because it is commonly used for cutting the usable footage from one place to another place while editing sequence. Last week, I used this shortcut to select only good footages for my expertise exercise and it was so quick for me to arrange the needed footages together.

Ripple Delete is extremely crucial for editing and its shortcut key is Shit+Forward Delete. Users do not have to waste time in connecting footages. Normally, when users split or trim the footage, there will be a gap between one footage and another. If users spend time to drag footage together, it is time-consuming and sometimes complicated. The best way is to use this shortcut or users can double click on the blank space between the two footages.

  1. Prompt – A scene – 400 words

Look at this scene from Martin Scorsese’s 1976 film Taxi Driver. In your own words talk about why you think the Scorsese has made the choices he has. This is not a test of your film knowledge we are just keen to get you to start deconstructing, analysing and reflecting. Attempt to write about the production design, camera work, the shots, the performances and the edit.

Screen Shot 2016-08-11 at 7.20.27 PM

One of the shot extracted from the scene in the film called “Taxi Driver”.

With regard to production design, the producer tends to work collaboratively with the team crews to design sets, to select location, and to choose actors and costumes. The production designer has displayed the constructive sets with photos and banners of Palantine and some messages, which allows audiences to assume the possible scenario of the film. Audiences are able to understand that the film might be relevant to politics.  Selecting the corner and see-through glasses building as the location is to enable the male protagonist to see the female character chatting with another man from the window that was why the male actor dared to approach the female character abruptly. The film producer appears to establish the well-organised location to link with the film message. In relation to selecting actors and costumes, the producer has made decision based on the script. The actress is beautiful, which reflects the written script and the taxi driver ‘s face and personality show the naughty character in the film. Costumes selection is prepared properly showing nice actors’ appearance to fit the script.

The producer has used many cameras to shoot this scene and integrated various shooting approaches to make the scene perfect. There are at least three camera operators filming from different angles and shots. The producer appears to use various techniques to make the film become more artistic by panning, tilting, and tracking the camera. The combination of wide shot, over shoulder medium shot and close up shot and keeping camera rolling during the conversation have made the film become more lively and sophisticated. This can show the advancement of technology and method to produce the movie and also provide audiences with different experiences of watching different shots.

The performance has done greatly and each actor is professional and well-trained. The protagonists competently perform their duties during the shooting with natural facial expression, eyes contact, and verbal language. The intention of producing the movie is to make the character’s act as real, and in this scene the producer has clearly proved that the three characters have remarkable ability to perform professionally.

The creativity of editing this scene has been done with considerable efforts. From one plot to another was linked smoothly and even illustrated the story behind. The sound was sharp and clear, which could explain the audience well about the ongoing discussion between the two actors. The music seems to be romantic and match with the scene in which the audiences can feel as they are acting. This can be the purpose of the producer to keep the audience awake and to create the pleasant environment in the film.

 

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How to Improve Your Blog?

Hootsuite, Twitter, Linkedin, Instagram, Facebook and Blog are seen to be popular among social media users currently, and based on my experience in producing these social media platforms for Melbourne Noir project, blogging is the main challenge.

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Blog Issues

Blog can provide both readers and bloggers with many benefits including exchanging knowledge and ideas (Koning, 2013), improving soft and hard skills (Cangiano, 2012; Hazari et al., 2013), enhancing communication skills (Fowler and Thomas, 2015), building professional networks and self’s reputation (Problogger, 2012), and reflecting self-learning (Muncy, 2014). However, Blogging can be quite challenging for a beginner. Designing content, writing in an attractive way, and using photography and video are the main obstacles I have encountered, which can hinder the improvement of my Blog.

Selecting Content

The problem associated with content delivery is that I have no idea what is the most fascinating issue I should post on my Blog. This can be seen as the conflict between blogger’s interest and the reader’s. Snell (2015) argues that writing Blog without main purpose can be problematic which can lead to the ambiguity of designing Blog content. To deal with this, Patel (2015) suggests that each blogger has to know his/her target audience, and make a prompt decision on content sharing. Having clear focus of each blogpost can grab reader’s attention and increase readership (Klems, 2012). Normally, I have prioritised my personal interest rather than thinking of the audience’s and this might somehow make my Blog become more self-oriented. Identifying potential audience perhaps help bloggers to shape the angle of the content, but they might have some challenges if they do not have knowledge and experiences to fulfill audience’s demands. Therefore, for my future Blog, I would prefer choosing a combination contents between writing information that relates to my expertise and serves a specific group of audience.

Writing Style

Another issue regarding blogging is the ability to write attractively. Due to my limited knowledge and experience of blogging, writing Blog to post interestingly is problematic. I do not know where to start and how to make it flow well. I sometimes write blogpost without thinking of the main idea that I intent to convey message to the public and this leads to misunderstanding and unclear structure. Clark (2016) identified three important writing problems, which includes the way to start up writing, to link idea together and to finish. Increasing more reading and using simple language can help bloggers enhance the structure of their writing gradually (Rakt, 2016). Besides, daily writing is more likely to boost the blogger’s confidence in writing various subjects critically and structurally. Thus, I will learn to improve my writing by practices and by reading a diversity of articles, others’ blogposts, books or journals although it might be time-consuming.

Using Photo and Video

The usage of photo and video in Blog is demanding as I am a new blogger. Capturing a good quality photo or filming video requires skills and it is one of my loopholes. Working on Melbourne Noir project, I could not think of creative photograph frames for my Blog. Mills (2007) explains that a combination of video and photo posting on Blog can attract more readers because audiences are more likely to explore something new and different. Visualising blogpost by using photos can also promote blog’s popularity and credibility (Klems, 2012) and catch readers’ attention (Bloggingpro, 2013). Pidgeon (2014) also recommends a few techniques, two of which are deciding on what to shoot, and following rule of thirds. These tips seem to be practically useful for me and I believe that by having a mixture of text, photo and video can make my Blog become more professional and successful though it may require more efforts.

 

References:

Bloggingpro. (2013): 5 Creative Blog Design Strategies to Attract Viewers to Your Blog. Retrieved on 20 July 2016 from http://www.bloggingpro.com/archives/2013/10/01/5-creative-blog-design-strategies-you-can-attract-viewers-to-your-blog/

Cangiano, A. (2012): Why Every Professional Should Consider Blogging. Retrieved on 24 July 2016 from http://technicalblogging.com/why-every-professional-should-consider-blogging/

Clark, B. (2016). The 5-Step Process that Solves 3 Painful Writing Problems. Retrieved 23 July 2016 from http://www.copyblogger.com/writing-process/

Fowler, K and Thomas, V.L. (2015). Creating a Professional Blog: The Impact of Student Learning Styles on Perceptions of Learning. Journal of Marketing Education, 37 (3), 181-189.

Hazari, S., Brown, C. O., & Rutledge, R. (2013). Investigating marketing students’ perceptions of active learning and social collaboration in blogs. Journal of Education for Business, 88, 101-108.

Klems, B. A. (2012). The 12 Dos and Don’ts of Writing a Blog. Retrieved on 28 July 2016 from http://www.writersdigest.com/online-editor/the-12-dos-and-donts-of-writing-a-blog

Koning, D. M. (2013). Hello world! Challenges for blogging as anthropological outreach. Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute, 19 (2), 394–397

Mills, A. (2007). Blogging: Lessons and Challenges. Legal Information Management, 7(4), 236-238

Muncy, J. A. (2014). Blogging for reflection: The use of online journals to engage students in reflective learning. Marketing Education Review, 24, 101-113.

Problogger. (2012). 8 Reasons Why Students Should Blog. Retrieved on 26 July 2016 from http://www.problogger.net/8-reasons-why-students-should-start-a-blog/

Patel, N. (2015). 4 Simple Ways to Choose the Best Blog Topics for Your Audience. Retrieved on 26 July 2016 from http://blog.hubspot.com/marketing/choose-the-best-blog-topics#sm.000001wpvvitgt1f2av6g53jimx4e

Pidgeon, E. (2014). How to take great photos even on your cell phone. Retrieved on 27 July 2016 from  http://blog.ted.com/how-to-take-great-photos-even-on-your-cell-phone/

Rakt, van de, M. (2016). Obtain an attractive writing style. Retrieved 29 July 2016 from  https://yoast.com/attractive-writing-style-blog/

Snell, S. (2015). 5 Common Blogging Problems, and How to Overcome Them. Retrieved 26 July 2016  from http://www.vandelaydesign.com/common-blogging-problems/

Facebook Friend Becomes Her Lover

Aged 26, Chhim Sreyneang, has found her love with A French-Spanish guy via Facebook. 

Chhim Sreyneang,26, is a Lifestyle Reporter at The Phnom Penh Post Newspaper/Photo by Sun Narin

Chhim Sreynearng is a girl who likes the way of living as the foreigner does. Even her style of love is foreigner’s unlike other Cambodian girls. She has known a 45-year-old man, Clane Garr who is the cloth designer based in Phnom Penh through Facebook. Their love has sustained for nearly nine months.
Chhim Sreyneang is telling  how can she meet her love?
Sreyneang is now working as the Lifestyle reporter at the Phnom Penh Post newspaper.

The happy couple at a party

Chhim Sreyneang and her lover at the party/Photo from Facebook

She says that she gets on well with his lover and she is in the process of understanding each other. Moreover, she is planning to marry him in two more years.

She expresses the reasons why does she love her lover?