Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Adventures in Filmmaking: A Complaint (Or 2...or 3)

Smile. You're on candid camera.
I like being a cinema minor. Really, I do. But what I like even more is complaining. At my university, complaining comes with the territory. If you follow me on twitter or read my blog at all you will know that I've taken some pretty interesting cinema classes (we call my avant garde film class the cinema department's version of hazing), but it helps me make friends because we all commiserate together.
The main problem I have with my video production class this semester is a number of things. For one, I'm not crazy about the professor. As much as I complained about my professor from last semester, he was nice and helpful and explained the projects very well. I always knew what he was looking for. This new professor, not so much. We have completely different tastes and so far; in watching other student's videos, he seems to like all the ones I hate. When doing my project it is slightly frustrating because instead of thinking of my own vision, I'm thinking of what he will like and what will get a better grade which I don't like to do, but is unavoidable.
The other thing is, it is hard to make a creative project when the area you are restricted to is a campus and the surrounding area which is not very large or beautiful. I know that this is where the creativity part of the class should come in, but the entire class ends up having similar projects. It is a challenge not only to film something in general, but to film something different and make your project stand out from the rest. It is something I constantly struggle with, along with coming up with ideas in general.
Another complaint I have with my class is the strict deadlines. Before one project is even complete, we are already talking about the next one. It allows a little time for the creative process to take place and I constantly feel rushed. I wish I had time to really think and plan what I wanted to shoot rather than just pointing my camera and abjectly shooting because I want to get my project done on time.
However, on a positive note, so far I have been learning final cut pro much better. I have been taking my time to play around and really see how everything works which has been a good learning experience. Also, since I am making videos that are made to play with quick time, I will eventually be able upload my videos to the blog and share them with my faithful readers. I think it will be interesting to see what other people think of my early filmmaking efforts outside of the people in my class. And while my first project is not the best thing I've ever done, I don't hate it, which is a good sign so far.
 Overall, the class is not terrible, just frustrating and time consuming. This year has been extremely hectic for me, but I am trying to enjoy what I feel may be my last production class here at Binghamton University.

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