Video Killed The…Media Student (Almost)

"The files are IN the computer...?" (or in my case, the DV deck)

"The files are IN the computer...?" (or in my case, the DV deck)

Several times this week as I did battle with my mini DV tape, trying to extract my footage from it, I thought of Professor Wong’s warnings last week about the way that Murphy’s Law so often operates in creative and technical endeavours. After many lost hours and many suppressed tears and screams of frustration, I now understand this in a much more personal way. Suffice it to say that the words “time code error” will haunt my dreams for weeks to come.

Everything seemed to be on track with my movie up until this point. From fairly early on I came up with an idea of what I wanted to do with the video, and I checked out the video equipment and shot some footage over the course of several days. Already, to begin with, my project was based around the restrictions, or should I say obstructions, that existed, most prominent being the tricky schedule of my friend who had been the subject in my photographic assignment on which the film was to be loosely based. It was at least in part due to this  reality that I decided that the bulk of the two minutes would consist of a more abstract approach to constructing the arc of a relationship. I decided to bookend a montage of images with footage of my subject walking down a street toward the camera, smiling warmly in recognition (at the beginning) and walking away from the camera down the same street, glancing back briefly. These bookend footage clips I envision as representing more literally the beginning and end of a relationship, and giving the center section a context, a continuity that creates a narrative arc when taken as a whole. In between these two clips, I wanted to create a collage of imagery, some photographs, some short video clips, depicting objects, actions, and sensory experiences which evoke home and a sense of intimacy. I wanted to arrange these in such a way as to build slowly, a dripping faucet become a animated when turned on full blast, blooming flowers, later wilted. Interspersed would be brief, intimate images of the same female subject, correlating her with the other images, as if her facial expressions are merely more images among the others through which to track the growth, then fading of intimacy in a relationship. As the soundtrack, I plan to use the song “April, Come She Will” by Simon and Garfunkel–this song seemed to work well both length-wise and thematically. Since the lyrics use the metaphor of the passing of time from month to month, season to season, as a metaphor for the evolution of a relationship, it fits well with the approach of using images to convey a sense of passing time and with it a sense of the gradual birth and death of a relationship. I know that inevitably, the final product will not be exactly what I envision in my head, but if I’m able to somehow coordinate all the elements in a way that at least evokes some sense of emotion, I’ll consider that a pretty good success.

Now that I finally seem to have conquered the hated time code errors (fingers crossed), I’m eager to get to work putting all the pieces together as best I can.


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