Tag Archives: Digital stories

Digital Story: In Sight

The process of making a digital story was a great introduction into collaborative filmmaking. We decided to make a short film about a blind girls day-to-day life. The idea we were throwing around was make the short film in such a way that the audience did not know the girl was blind until the very end of the piece. This made the film a little tricky, as we could not show the eyes of the blind girl until the very end. This meant a lot of different angles were used to hide her eyes.

We were lucky enough that Bo knew someone who owned a restaurant on St Kilda beach so we were able to film in there which made for some great scenes. When we filmed on the beach the sun was beginning to set so we were able to film some beautiful shots of the sun setting and put it into the piece. The collaboration process went very smoothly, which was really lucky because this was a fairly large and ambitious project for what I was used to doing. My group members Bo Dechphant and Matthew Masyuko were really great group members.  At the beginning of the subject, when we were forming groups Bo and I ended up as a group because we just happened to be sitting near each other which was turned out great and then Matthew came in a little later and he proved to be a great person to have on the team. We each had our job and we were each able to complete it successfully. It was a great learning experience for me Bo and Matthew both knew a lot and I learned a lot about the film making process from both of them.

We did encounter some small problems. One of our biggest issues was that during day two of filming, during the beach and restaurant scenes we did not realize until after the filming was over and the footage had been uploaded there were dust specs on the lens of the camera. This meant that we had to go through all the day two footage and try to remove it in post-production. This was frustrating as it meant we had to spend even more time on editing, which by itself was a relatively lengthy process. The way we went about removing the dust specs was to, in After Effects, create a new solid the same colour as the background and then feather it. This was a great solution to shots where the background colour did not change at all, however for shot where the background colour did change it became really difficult to remove the dust and make it so it did not draw attention to the spec of dust. For the shots we struggled to remove the dust spec on we did a blur effect to try and draw attention away from the problem areas. Overall this issue was a great learning experience to always check your lens before you begin filming. The final problem we encountered was due to just running out of time. We had planned to create a 3d sound scape to try to enhance the project but due to scheduling issues we were unable to do the 3d sound unfortunately but that was not our biggest priority and the 2d sound we have in the final film is still amazing and works really well throughout the digital story.

As far as the distribution process of the digital story we decided the best way to advertise it was to firstly post it on YouTube. YouTube is where most of the views will come from. There are of course other video sharing websites like Vimeo but they do not have anywhere near the same user size as YouTube does. The next part of the distribution process is using social media to get the film out and known. We decided to blog about the film, tweet about it and make a Facebook page for the film.

Advertisements

Digital Story Reviews

Take this lollipop

This digital story is quite clever. The reason it is so clever is that it uses brings you into the story. It makes you apart of the story and that really makes people continue to watch. As soon as it becomes personal, which this digital story uses really effectively, you want to see how it ends. One weakness of this story is that it is rather predictable. As soon as I put in the Facebook page I knew immediately what was going to happen. But otherwise, for people who do not know what is going to happen it can provide a really good ‘shock’ that there Facebook page is in the digital story.

Hurst

This is an interesting digital story. Using twitter over a weeklong event has some advantages but also quite a few disadvantages. The weeklong event of telling this story is somewhat like a television series where you see one episode and then have to wait until the next comes out. This could help the suspense of the story, especially as it is a horror story. However one of the disadvantages is that people can lose interest really quickly. Most people who are not ‘die hard’ fans of the author may lose interest in the story really quickly or they may just forget or because they have to wait they may not even be bothered to follow along. This is one of the problems. From what I can tell the story leads up to a big finally which is in video format. This is problematic because follows of the story could drop quite a lot, especially because it is over one week, before the final piece of the story. Overall it is an interesting idea and I do believe if done right and if it is interesting from the first tweet then it could be a great new platform for story telling.

Bear 71

This is a great digital story that tells the story of nature and human society. It is an interactive digital story where the user can ‘follow’ Bear 71 around the national park while you hear a voice over from the ‘bears point of view’. This digital story begins with just over a minute film which demonstrates what bear traps can do and what happens to the bears after they are caught (given a tracking collar, a number is stuck to the ear and then released back into the wild while fireworks scare the bear off into the opposite direction of the park rangers). The story overall is quite good and in some points can really draw the user in and keep them watching. I did find myself at some points however to get a little bored, particularly when the interactive part started where you chase the bear around the forest. But maybe that is just because you go from an intense first video to the much less intense interactive part.