Matt-Media

Automotive Photographer & Cinematographer


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1000 word reflection

 

Over the past week iv had to start thinking about the documentary module more realistically and thinking about people closer to me, who have an interesting story to tell. And that would be available and willing to discuss their stories with me. Sometime the best stories are right there in your face you just don’t realise it.

After thinking and going through my family and friends closest to me, For my Documentary I’ve decided to base it around one of my closest and longest friends Tom Busby who lost his dream of competing in the London 2012 Olympics due to a shoulder injury, representing Team GB in Boxing.

I have some visual ideas that I feel would work really well for the style of what we are going for, in a gritty boxing gym in Coventry on location shooting, I feel like any shot would look great! I Also want to add some archive footage of some of Toms matches which he has at home on DVD from the age of 9 when he first started.

There are a lot of other shots I’ll be trying and experimenting with as access to Tom is good as he only lives down the road from me. I was going to try a shot in his shed at home where he has his own punch bag, of lighting him like a silhouette and see how it turns out. If it turns out well I may try to implement it into the final edit.

The meaning of this documentary is to bring out the emotion and passion Tom has for boxing and how he felt when he was told he wouldn’t be able to compete in the event he had been working up to for some years. The end of the documentary should emphasis that Tom is on the road to recovery and the fight to get back into the ring. We were also asked to create the feeling of a sweaty and manly smelling gym through the use of visuals.

First off we went to film some of shots at the gym. I organised with Tom, when he was going to the gym. We organised with equipment and headed off, when we’re about to reach the location about 15 minutes away I received a phone call from my friend who said that its really busy at the gym and he doesn’t think we could film much.

But learning from we have been told at university, we went anyway even if to just film establishing shots or sound we would get something! Luckily when we got there the gym it had slowed down so we could film everything we wanted. We managed to record the sounds of the gym to bring across that sweaty and gritty atmosphere. With sounds of boxing gloves connecting with bags in the background, after that we then filmed Tom on his training routine in the observational documentary style. After this we then did some cinematic shots of him doing certain training disciplines, doing his gloves and tape.

Once we had finished filming Tom at the gym we then moved onto the cinematic establishing shots such as pulls of focus and panning shots. That was a wrap for the Gym shots.

After that we then needed to film the interviews and silhouette shots, the lighting was really difficult to set up as the shed with Tom’s punch bag in wasn’t the largest. 
After filming the best we could with the space I had of the silhouette boxing, we moved on to the interview and got the lighting looking really good with the punch bag just to the side of the shot, Tom gave a lot of good and inspirational lines and was really confident on camera in a participatory style.

I then did some cinematic shots of Tom’s trophies and gloves that will look really attractive in the final video. Moving onto the editing process now as a group, we decided to go of and do some editing each. With my edit I went for setting the scene in the first 30 seconds with the sound of the gym heard with gritty shots of old gloves and rope layered over the top. After that I wanted Tom to introduce himself. Whilst editing I was having a massive problem with Toms audio as he doesn’t pause or take a breath in his interview all the words follow on to the other so it has to be a really sharp and blunt cut. Tried getting around it as best I could, with the shots of Tom in the shed I wanted to create the dark contrast with the light mainly on one side of the punch bag and his face. This was up for some discussion between the group as Michael wanted it brighter so we did two different edits to see which the group preferred.

I tried adding as many different visuals on the top of the interview as possible to break it up, we did a lot of handheld stuff on the shoot at the gym especially in the ring but in quite a phew of the shots a mirror was playing havoc! After showing my edit to the group I was pleased that everybody enjoyed and engaged with the documentary. There were some criticisms about the pacing of the piece, also about the lack of other visuals but other than that it all went down well. I went back and told the rest of the group; Mike was currently doing an edit and applied the changes from our feedback.

Overall I’m thoroughly happy with how the piece has turned out, I think we have achieved our goal of creating an emotional and sense full piece. The visuals are all there and managing to squeeze that story into 3 minutes was a huge challenge, the audio was spot on and so was the lighting. The documentary turned out pretty much how I had it in my head, which is how it should be.

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Shooting week

 

This week we began shooting our documentary, we started last thursday. Rather than going to our documentary lecture we decided it would be beneficial if we went to film some of shots at the gym. So I organised with my friend Tom who the documentary is based on, when he was going to the gym. He was fortunately going that day at 1 o’clock so we got organised with equipment and headed off, when we’re about to reach the location about 15 minutes away i received a phone call from my friend who said that its really busy at the gym and he doesn’t think we could film much.

But learning from we have been told at university, we went anyway even if to just film establishing shots or sound we would get something!. Luckily when we got there the gym had quietened down so we could film everything we wanted. We managed to record the sounds of the gym to bring across that sweaty and gritty atmosphere. with sounds of boxing gloves connecting with bags in the background, after that we then filmed Tom on his training routine in the observational documentary style. After this we then did some cinematic shots of him doing certain training disciplines, doing his gloves and tape.

Once we had finished filming Tom at the gym we then moved onto the cinematic establishing shots. That was a wrap for the Gym shots.

After that we then needed to film the interviews and silhouette shots, the lighting was really difficult to set up as the shed with Tom’s punch bag in wasn’t the largest.
After filming the best I could with the space I had of the silhouette boxing, I moved on to the interview and got the lighting looking really good with the punch bag just to the side of the shot, Tom gave a lot of good and inspirational lines and was really confident on camera.

I then did some shots of Toms trophies and gloves thats look really good in the final video. I’m currently editing the final footage to get it looking amazing!


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The good and bad of DSLR’s

DSLR’s are versatile photo cameras, that are small yet pack that all important perfect professional looking photo, SLR’s are mainly used by photographers as the range of different techniques you can use are endless with shutter speed, ISO, exposure and aperture all playing a part in the perfect shot!

I enjoy my photography, i’m relatively new to it on a professional basis but i’m enjoying the creativity and gaining that photographic eye. Spotting unique and different angles is a joy and i feel great when i capture that perfect shot from when I started uni i have been taking out the Nikon D90 as much as I can, anywhere I go I try to have one with me!

Canons are the top of the market when it comes to SLR’s and having access to some decent Canons would be great, it would allow me to gain more experience, gain better shots of a higher quality and be more creative with a better camera.

Filming on a SLR is all swings and roundabouts, you can get some amazing shots such as amazing focus pulls, smooth zooms, really shallow depths of field. The quality of the shots are truly beautiful, on the other hand the audio on SLR’s is extremely poor. This means you have to record the audio with a mixer or externally  on another device. Another disadvantage about doing video on a SLR is that the time you can shoot a single time for is limited to a short burst of between 5-15 mins. This helps SLR’s stay in a lower tax bracket and not becoming video cameras.

Personally SLR’s are perfect for my style of work, and i really enjoy being creative with them.

Feel free to check out my website to see my latest work!

http://www.matt-media.co.uk


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Documentary structure/shot list

OPENING – Video

The opening for the documentary will be observing Tom taking part in his boxing training in the gritty gym, We will try to get across the smell and atmosphere of the gym in the opening sequence to set the scene.

OPENING – Audio

Over the top of Tom training He will be introducing himself, along with how he got into boxing etc. With the sound of the gym behind him talking very distant.

SCENE 1 – Video

Tom will then sit down on the bench and start strapping up his hands ready to box with a wide shot and Tom situated bang in the centre of the frame. With a gritty background and sweat dripping from his hair and brow, with close ups of the sweat and emotion. Close up shots of him putting on and strapping up his gloves. Flickers of his best moments in matches from archive footage.
SCENE 1 – Audio

Tom will continue to talk about his boxing now getting into recent times leading up to his dream of boxing in the olympics and getting into the european championships. With deep breathing and momentary silence where Tom is trying to catch his breath.

SCENE 2 – Video

Tom will be on a punch bag in the gym taking out all his anger, the same shot will be done on his own punch bag at home that will all be lit like a silhouette. I will try to keep cutting to the two different shots and sync them to the same sequence.

SCENE 2 – Audio

Over this scene Tom will be discussing the time when he realised he wouldn’t be able to compete in the olympics after suffering a shoulder injury that crippled his dream, the visuals will show his anger at the time it happened.

SCENE 3 – Video

Scene three will have a lot of archive footage with some of Toms best moments and victories, cutting to shots of him training really hard with close ups of muscles, sweat and determination in his eyes.

SCENE 3 – Audio

Tom will be explaining about his road to recovery and how he’s trying to return to his former glory. To once again step into the ring competitively.

OVERALL STYLE

Im picturing the whole documentary quite desaturated to emphasis the gritty and sweaty atmosphere.


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Documentary – Treatment/Storyboard

For my Documentary I’v decided to base it around one of my closest friends Tom Busby who lost his dream of competing in the London 2012 olympics due to a shoulder injury, representing Team GB in Boxing.

I have some visual ideas that I feel would work really well for the style of what we are going for, in a gritty boxing gym in Coventry on location shooting, I feel like any shot would look great!

Broken Dreams – Treatment

INTRODUCTION – Cinematic shots of the gym, pulls of focus on different areas, and panning shots of the gym setting the scene for where we are and getting that gritty old school boxing gym.

SCENE 1 – I think we should have Tom training then getting in the ring to talk to the camera leaning over the ropes, almost as if he’s looking down talking to his trainer. Where he will be telling his story about his boxing career how he got into etc, with some cutaways to archive footage of some of his matches in the ring.

SCENE 2 – As the story develops and it gets into the injury part of the story, I was picturing  Tom on the punch bag unleashing his built up anger about the injury, shouting out his emotions of when it happened and how it felt to learn the news.

SCENE 3 – After we have finished that section I was thinking about going onto some shots of Tom lacing up his boxing boots, and putting on his boxing gloves, then throwing on his boxing robe, to walk out to fight again. whilst he talks over the top of the shots about his comeback and recovering from the horrible injury which shattered his GB dream.

OTHER SHOTS

There are a lot of other shots I’ll be trying and experimenting with as access to Tom is good as he only lives down the road from me. I was going to try a shot in his shed at home where he has his own punch bag, of lighting him like a silhouette and see how it turns out. If it turns out well i may try to implement it into the final edit.

The meaning of this documentary is to bring out the emotion and passion Tom has for boxing and how he felt when he was told he wouldn’t be able to compete in the event he had been working up to for some years. The end of the documentary should emphasise that Tom is on the road to recovery and the fight to get back into the ring.

 


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Documentary Ideas and Developments

Over the past week iv had to start thinking about the documentary module more realistically and thinking about people closer to me, who have an interesting story to tell. And that would be available and willing to discuss there stories with me.

One of my best friends used to be an up and coming boxer with a lot of potential, with high hopes of breaking into the olympic team in 2012. Although in 2010 he suffered a an injury which dashed his olympic dreams and stop him boxing competitively. I feel this story would have a lot of emotion and a strong narrative, The documentary has a lot of visual potential as he has all his competitive fights still on tape that are accessible to be used in the documentary. Also he still trains hard to keep in shape with his boxing training and sparring.

Another idea I have is one of my friends has a condition which is quite severe, although I don’t know the name of the condition i know the symptoms it comes along with which are pretty heartbreaking. His body has an extremely low immune system which means if he gets even the slightest cold he has to be taken into hospital and watched over. The condition has also dramatically shortened his life expectancy to around the late 20’s which must be an extremely hard thing to live with.

Although there are a couple of problems with this documentary, unfortunately my friend has recently been rushed into hospital and is being kept in for a couple of weeks. I’m not 100% sure he would be willing to take part in the documentary, and i think it would also lack visual aids to get a good cinematic narrative across.

 


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Space or Place Cinematography task

For the space or a place task i had a lot of thinking to do, I had a phew ideas in my head immediately that I wanted to try out. including my car shoot I could use in different locations, Although after feeding my Bearded Dragon one evening I had a great idea of filming the space inside her vivarium to make look as though its a jungle.

After setting up some shots and working around the vivarium with various plants and ornaments, I realised it was extremely difficult to get some good shots in such a small space. Another problem that i experienced was the camera strobing the light, I’m not sure if this is because of the UV lighting inside the vivarium or something i had done to the camera.

After filming the vivarium and editing it all together i was extremely happy with how it turned out, although one strict practice i’m trying to get into with these 8 tasks is film two different things and see which one i prefer. I know its more work for me but allows me to be different with my work and choose which i prefer when they are both complete.

So for my second shoot i decided to go to a multi story car park and film my Volkswagen Golf R32 and use a lot of the lines and details on the car for my shots.
After filming and editing I think this turned out how i imagined as well.