Monday, October 13, 2014

Basic, Intro Cinematography Techniques

Recently, I was asked to judge for a short film competition run by the guys over at The Research Page on YouTube. The quality of the submissions was absolutely great this year and I definitely think that this year's iteration of the competition was definitely better than the previous years.

As part of this year's competition, the judges were tasked with creating short, simple tutorial videos on some basic aspects of filmmaking that we felt were lacking in the previous year's competitions. The subject that I was asked to create a very basic tutorial on was on a subject very dear to me: cinematography. Some other great videos were presented, including this great one from Lucas Pfaff on using DaVinci Resolve Lite:

As I said, some great submissions were put together this year and I really feel like the bar has been raised for the next time the contest rolls around. This may sound like a bit of a self-serving post, but really I just wanted to take this limited platform I have to promote the work of two of my favorite submissions of the competition:


MadMark Films

This was definitely my favorite of the bunch. Shot on what many would call "low grade" cameras and in a cheap location, this shoot is both frugal and very effective. Story-wise, I'm not a fan of zombies or zombie-like creatures because, let's face it, they're played out as hell. However, this was a very impressive short, not even considering the time they had. It's just a great looking short on its own merits.

Tick Tock

David Desoer

I would say this is likely the most creative take on the competition from all of the submissions. David did an absolutely great job in making an effective, interesting, funny story with both a small window of time and a great eye for frugality. The biggest thing that stood out to me about this short beyond the fact that it looks great and is just fun to watch is that it could have been shot anywhere. This movie could have been shot in one living room but feels like it took place over multiple locations. This, to me, is the essence of how creativity can win out every time. I really liked this short a lot.

All in all, this was a great competition and I'm really looking forward to what people put together for the next one.

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