Action!

Hello! We’ve been hearing a lot about what the 3D artists and digital humanities students have been up to lately but not much about our digital cinema students. This post, written by Ava and Rachel, brings us up to speed.

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Digital Cinema students Tyler Anderson and Tony Pha reviewing takes.

The creation of a work of film is separated into many stages. Speaking most generally these stages are pre-production, production, and post-production. Over the course of two months, we have worked heavily on the pre-production stage, including location scouting, storyboarding, creating wardrobe and prop boards, as well as blocking out shots on location. In a concentrated story form like we are creating for the beginning of the Harvey Game, this stage is essential. Since we are shooting on an off-campus location, the Mabel Tainter Theater, communication between the teams, within our team, and to those at the Tainter, all have to line up and be worked out before anything can be done.

The first time we are able to work on set, different challenges became immediately clear. From our initial storyboards, we had a clear idea of how our video would look, but often it’s a bit more difficult to actually create these ideal images. The spaces within the Tainter also posed interesting problems to solve. For example, the “Rare Book Section” is actually a few closely-packed shelves in a back room. Sometimes our initial storyboards had to be tweaked, or we came up with new ideas on the spot. The most frustrating part of filming is actually the communication stages. Having everything planned, yet waiting for the “Okay” is difficult to have patience for, but is worth it in the end.

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Sara Westman temporarily acting as the protagonist for the short film; pre-production is painstaking.

Our next steps will be to shoot the final version of the film with our actress, and then work on the post-production stage. This will include a lot of color correction, as well as some digital compositing of shots to really give the feel to the library we’re looking for. Sound design will also come into this stage, as sounds will be added and edited, and some music potentially added to heighten the mood. We’re looking forward to seeing our short film integrated into the Harvey Game.

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