For as long as I can remember I have always been drawn to the creation arts. I just always loved created pieces of work weather that would be a video, graphic or picture, there is something about transferring your mind and version onto a piece of paper or film. Creating films isn’t something that I ever really thought about being a career but over the past couple of years in university it has been continually on my mind.
It’s one thing to say you want to do something but to do it you first need to understand what you are trying to do. I knew that I would need to look into the world of directors to have any hope in making this a career and not a hobby. I start off my looking into the paths some of my favourite directors took. I started looking into Ridley Scott listening to different interviews from the man himself. Scott starting working in adverstment, he claims he did 2000 commercials before he even touched a film, while doing this he got a job at the BBC as a set designer so he could get close to directors and learn from them. While this interview isn’t long it has importance with the message I got from it. For me Scott not only pushed himself to try get near people he knew would better himself but also worked on his skills working on commercials. To say that I want to me a director that only then I’m never going to get anywhere. I need to work any role that I can in media whether that is as a camera op or even a runner. Anywhere that puts me in a media environment where I can continue learn through watching and develop myself.
I have always found the best way to get better at something is to try and try again if I really want to be a director then I need to keep on making as many films as I can. I need to make each film better then the late and try bigger and harder things. Not only will I develop my skills through practices but also I will build up my portfolio with more and more work. Studios will be reluctant to hire me if I can’t prove that I can work with quality and budgets but my making film after film I can learn from my mistakes till I have work that I will be proud to show.
Directing: Film Techniques & Aesthetics- Michael Rabiger
“To be successful means having inventiveness and tenacity, an ability to get the best out of a team, a strong sense of vision, and an abiding love for the process of making films”. (P.7)
Working as a director isn’t a easy thing to do and this quote says it all. You need to be creative and have the drive to get keep on going, to get the best out of everyone that is working below you. If you don’t understand your vision then no one else is going to, passion goes hand and hand with this as how can you push your crew to do their best work if you don’t care about it. While this seems simple I find that sometime I don’t think about the basics when filmmaking so it’s important for me to just go back and think about stuff like this.
you can still make excellent films without elaborate settings or expensive props, costumes, equipment, or special effects. The ability to make much out of little is a vital one and shows up throughout cinema history. (P.8)
People tend to think that money is everything; the more something costs to have or make mean it will be better. While you can make a case for this it isn’t always true. Am filmmakers we should all have the ability to make a high quality piece of work and if I really want to be a successfully then at the start I need to show that this is something that I can do.
Whether you write your own stories, have someone else write a script, or choose something to adapt, you will always face these central questions: How am I going to use my developing skills in the world? What kind of subjects should I tackle? What can I be good at? What is my artistic identity? (P.24)
Before making any film these are the type of questions that I need to ask myself. Understanding myself and the subject of the film will equal a higher quality, as I will be able to throw myself into the parts I know I’m good at. For example I could have the creates version of how my film is going to look like but have no idea about lighting then it will never be good. This also the subject of the film if I don’t have a good take or don’t understand it then the film will never work.
As a director you should make creating a gripping human presence on the screen your No. 1 priority (P.97)
I find sometimes that when I making films that I get to carried away with the look of the film, how is that shoot going to look, how should I have the lighting etc. I need to make the presence of my film way more important. Look at the new mad max they had the camera like a crosshair always on the centres characters head, this make the characters the centre of the frame and the most important thing. You are so focused on the character over anything else, it is something that I need to work on to be better.
Because your crew members will affect your actors, they should be cast for personal as well as technical capabilities. (P.385)
This is something that I have never really thought about to be honest. When getting crew I only really focus on their ability not who they are but this can have a massive affect on the actors and can change how they preform. While this has never been a issue that I have had it is something to really think about for the future.
People only become good at what they are passionate about. If you are passionate about the cinema, you may be equally passionate about making movies, even though it is hard, slow, and unglamorous work. Yes, unglamorous. If you really love it, you can make your way in that world. (P.570)
Over the past couple of months I have really been thinking about how filmmaking with fit into my future. The reason that I have been doing this is because I’m not sure about my passion right now. I need to really think about this as if I don’t have the passion to be a director then I will just fail.
Film directing shot by shot: visualizing from concept to screen. Steven Douglas Katz
Not every film and sequence should be storyboarded or even scripted in detail, but film, which is the most protean of arts, is flexible enough to include the preferences of any filmmaker
I think sometimes we get so stuck up on rules that we never really just make the films we want. I have found this to be an issue through my time in university we always told that we need to have this, you need do that. This has been drilled into me to a point that sometimes I don’t want to make some artistic decisions
Great Directors at Work: Stanislavsky, Brecht, Kazan, Brook David Richard Jones
Kazan’s way was to cast to the actor’s inner possibilities, to the protean human spirit as he understood it. So he took actors to dinner instead of to auditions, on walks instead of into rehearsal halls. He tried to spend time with them outside the theatre in order to observe them being themselves. (P.139)
This is a different way on casting then I have experienced but is something that I think I will try next time I do casting. Knowing how people will act onset can let me work around any issues that they may have. Also giving more a friendly feel could allow me to have a better relationship with my actors with could be reflected in their performances.
Kazan has said that directing is “half conceptual, the core of it— you get into what the events mean, what you’re trying to express,” and half executive, “just work. But if you are careless with the first stage, you make something which is flaccid at its center.” (P.140)
Working as a director on a film means that you need to always be working and being the person that knows what the film is it’s message. If I want to make a good film then both point that Kazan says need to be addressed. If I don’t understand the film but work hard the film will most likely be bad, it’s the same the other way around I need to have a balance between the two to make the best films I can.
Work placements: a survival guide for students
You never know when you might wish to call up somebody you met or spoke to on your work placement so write down all contacts that may be of use later, particularly people with whom you had a good rapport. Do not restrict it to those within your placement organisation, but include those outside the company with whom you had dealings. When you are job hunting after graduation, your contacts and networks could prove invaluable. (P.58)
One thing that I have never thought about is networking but through this course I have learned that networking is the most important thing that I can do coming out of university. I need to start getting on this if I want to be successful in film.
2017. Ridley Scott — How To Become a Director Ovation. [Online]. [7 April 2017]. Available from: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H_BXP1X139Y
Rabiger, M (2013). Directing: Film Techniques and Aesthetics. (3rd ed ed.). : Hoboken :Taylor and Francis.
Katz, S.D (1991). Film directing : shot by shot : visualizing from concept to screen: Studio City, Ca : Michael Wiese.
Jones, D.R (1986). Great Directors at Work Stanislavsky, Brecht, Kazan, Brook. : Berkeley : University of California Press.
Fanthome, C. (2004) Work Placements. 1st edn. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan