Thursday, January 29, 2009

Storyboard exercise 3: Schoolism assignment - intro

I started an online course with Kris Pearn at Schoolism. The first tutorial was a introduction into storyboarding. Really good. Anyone who is serious about learning storyboarding should definitely sign up for this course. Kris is informative and very enthusiastic. Not only can you watch the tutorials, but there are also all the other students' assignments he has assessed. So far I've got a lot out of it.

Here's my first assignment. The brief was 'How did I get here?' Let me know what you think.

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Monday, January 26, 2009

Storyboard exercise 2: Bagdad market

Here's a sequence I came up with a couple of months ago. It's about a spy who resists arrest in a Bagdad market.

My aim in this sequence was to introduce the woman, find out that she's wanted by the police then show what she is capable of - all in thirty frames. If I were to expand it I would make the fight at the end more technical. Maybe she grabs his gun, turns, punches him in the wind pipe, elbows him then throws him in the chicken stall - like a SAS dude would, short and to the point.

A market is a very confined space, so to reflect this I wanted to keep the camera close to the action, occationally going out to show how big and easy to get lost it is. As the characters glance up and react we follow what they see. It's like a slightly delayed response. Battlestar Galactica uses this technique through out the series, especially the spaceship scenes.

Let me know what you think.

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Thursday, January 15, 2009

Books before bed

This is what I'm reading at the moment before I go to bed. When I dream all the myths and legends mash up into one strange fable. Then in the morning I wake up feeling something important has happened.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Storyboard exercise 1: The Bourne Identity

Hi there.

I thought I'd start off this storyboarding blog with an exercise. An editor once told me that the best film practise you can get is from actually studying films. So, I thought I’d start off with my favourite – The Bourne Identity.

Here are rough thumbnail shots of the opening sequence. I’ve tried to keep the thumbnails as loose as possible and include the bare minimum of detail. What I’m interested in is what the camera reveals and how the characters develop.

The story starts with an accidental meeting of a man floating in the sea (on the left side of the screen) and a fishing boat (on the right side.) As they cut back and forth from the interior of the boat to the exterior with the man, the camera moves closer on both sides. Finally, it ends up on a close up shot of one of the fishing crew realising what he has found. This is the moment when the two sides meet.

From here on we’re with the fishing crew, mainly the doctor. We’re discovering about this mysterious man as they are. It’s as if we’re another fisherman among the action. The camera mimics this by rocking back and forth with the doctor’s actions and the movement of the boat. It’s not until the doctor finds out that the bed is empty and the man has woken, that the camera now shows the perspective from the man’s point of view.

I love this scene because it builds up and ends on intense emotion. It also raises the important questions for the story, “Who is this man?”, “What is this thing in his back?”, “Why has he been shot?”, “Where has he come from?”

It is a stark contrast from the following scene at Langley, which is very sterile and business-like. The camera there is held back from the characters and is quite steady, emphasising the distance and hostility.

You can read the script here. It’s interesting to see what they’ve changed to bring it more to the point.

Please note:

The shots travel downwards, not across. Also, I accidentally spelt ‘identity’ incorrectly on the top of the page. I suffer from dyslectica. Sory.

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Saturday, January 10, 2009

Let's begin!

Well, if you can see this we're in business.