Jameela

A forum for sharing views on the art of film, video and AV sequence making as well as on competitions, judging and festivals.
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John Simpson
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Re: Jameela

Post by John Simpson »

I have decided to try and get up to speed on the "Jameela" debate! Could someone tell on which thread it started on. Anyway here what has come to my mind on this point:
Jameela M Boardman wrote: Tue May 26, 2020 9:08 am I'm afraid I disagree with one of your comments above where you say "In a hobby like ours..."
For me this is not a 'hobby' but a vocation, same as the stuff I write or the talks I give, or the film presentations I make. In essence it is my attempt as one person trying to help make the world a more thoughtful place... Perhaps only a drop in the ocean, "Yet what is an ocean but a multitude of drops?"

I believe the serious young filmmakers also feel the same, to show something that could be better than the world they are inheriting. Conversely, those young people who do it as a 'hobby' will just post on YouTube, no need for an Institute. So it is the serious folk we need to become attractive to -- if there is to be a future for the IAC.
Somehow Youtube was seen as an irritation to many film club members, (was, because it is history now! And new platforms mainly portrait mode are popular) It is mobile phones now, shot in portrait mode and some film clubs are saying they will only accept films shot in landscape! Here we go again, film clubs are going to be left in the dark ages! The fact of the matter is that YouTube Filmakers have a far higher profile than Film Clubs, and it is not too hard for even a mediocre YouTube filmmaker or vlogger to do very well - Yet some Film Clubs still try and take the high ground.

The issue of YouTube monetised videos has been raised in the Forum, I wonder if this has been discusses at all by the IAC committee, are videos that have been, or will be monetised allowed to be entered into BIAFF or not, if not, this is another area where the IAC is not keeping up with the times. There are very few YouTubers in Film Clubs and even fewer active in the IAC, this speaks for itself.
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TimStannard
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Re: Jameela

Post by TimStannard »

A good subject for debate, John.

My own opinion is that "YouTubers" and "IAC film makers" (for want of a better nomenclature) have little in common. Both make video and both may publish their films online. But while there's some crossover, that's pretty much the end of the similarity.

This is not a snobbish view. I enjoy watching some of each, but I don't see them as the same.

In the same way, I don't see reading PC Pro magazine as the same as reading Private Eye or a Lee Child thriller (all are written by experienced, capable*** and knowledgeable writers, all use the printed word as the medium, all are published and all endeavour to make a living from it).

Personally I don't like portrait videos for the simple reason that they are designed for (or should be designed for) watching on a portrait device - ie a phone and I don't really want to have to squint to see something on a 6" device. I don't mind it for a quick joke or even an advert, but for a story - be it a lame sitcom or a dramatisation of a classic or for a docmentary, I want to watch it on a screen which fills a large part of my visual field which (unless I'm lying down on the sofa) is landscape.

Of course the IAC should be welcoming of YouTubers, but I really do not believe their output can be or should be compared with the output of "traditional" IAC film makers, who aspire more toward David Lean or David Attenborough than Zoella (who is probably very old hat now, but when my daughter watched her I thought the technical quality, style and presentation was superb).

*** OK you may resevre judgement on Lee Child - i was justr oooking for a successful, populat novelist.
Tim
Proud to be an amateur film maker - I do it for the love of it
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John Simpson
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Re: Jameela

Post by John Simpson »

I hear what you are saying but reserve judgement. I know it would be radical but what about Film Clubs working out a way to put their screens in Portrait mode?
Michael Slowe
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Re: Jameela

Post by Michael Slowe »

A film is a film is a film. Does it matter what aspect it is in or how it was shot. It's either good or it's not. Some of these You Tubers do have imagination and they may well graduate to making better films. I've just read through a year's posts on this thread, what did happen to Jameela and where did she go? It's interesting that the IAC has arranged film viewing (and commenting) on line. I've just watched this evening's one. Only under sixty people attending, which is disappointing, and the film quality wasn't brilliant, but someone is having good ideas and getting it done.

Tim, were you joking when you commented on the lack of dissolves in my film? The whole point was to have decisive cuts, hopefully to accompany appropriate audio. Dissolves do have a part to play in the language of film but they should have a purpose surely?
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Howard-Smith
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Re: Jameela

Post by Howard-Smith »

I personally have an aversion to videoing with a smart phone in PORTRAIT MODE. I can’t help feeling irritated when people have filmed some event in this way instead of doing the OBVIOUS thing and turning the phone to horizontal. Portrait mode is for still photographs of people or statues or towers.
I definitely don’t want to see films at BIAFF shot in portrait mode. And nobody can say anything to change my mind on this.
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John Simpson
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Re: Jameela

Post by John Simpson »

Michael Slowe wrote: Mon May 31, 2021 10:30 pm I've just read through a year's posts on this thread, what did happen to Jameela and where did she go? It's interesting that the IAC has arranged film viewing (and commenting) on line. I've just watched this evening's one. Only under sixty people attending, which is disappointing, and the film quality wasn't brilliant, but someone is having good ideas and getting it done.
Which thread was the original thread for Jamelias ideas? Jamelia is still around, perhaps she will join the descussions. I'm sorry I missed the IAC film viewing, is there another one planned, is there a link to the Monday night films?

What about a portrait mode film competition, filming "statues and towers" that would stir us all up!
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John Simpson
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Re: Jameela

Post by John Simpson »

Dave Watterson wrote: Thu May 28, 2020 5:07 pm
The term "personal film making" is used in some academic areas to describe our type of work.
I just remembered! Many Germans refer to "passionate film makers" - Brits may be shy about using the term, but at least it speaks to Jameela's concern about descriptions which may be taken as trivialising.
But we surely ought to recognise that there are all sorts of people making films for all sorts of reasons.And we should not ignore or deprecate the work of those who want to have fun, to make gentle entertainment for their friends.
When I first joined a Film Club I just wanted to show my films and learn how to make better ones. I had no intention of entering a competition culture, I was quite happy being a C grade type person, but I found the only way to get films shown was to enter them into competitions, where they were generally ripped apart. Members' films nights tended to get clogged up with holiday type films. Regarding the films I was making they were just explorations into ideas and a bit of fun, nothing that had not been done before, nothing special. But the result of having them ripped apart creates a sort of anger and an "I'll show them attitude," I've heard other people say this as well. I believe this is unhealthy and counter productive and ultimately self destroying for the 90% who are not winners.

You may say you should strive to be the winner, be the A grade student - I totally disagree - If success happens in any walk of life, it happens! Many films which are seen as successful, I would not rate at all, so why should I strive to make films like that? For me there is no gold standard to which we all must strive, that is totalitarianism. One Film Club member who had been in the industry (I find they are the worst!) said "You have to kill your babies!" Suggesting getting rid of ideas or films which are precious to me.

I'm happy with the word hobby. A person can if they have the skill and inclination, develop it up to a professional standard, same with most hobbies
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Dave Watterson
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Re: Jameela

Post by Dave Watterson »

Just to touch on your second-last point ... "Kill your babies" is usually intended to mean you should remove shots you are proud of, or which mean a lot because they were difficult to get ... IF THEY DO NOT TELL YOUR STORY. I have never heard it used to mean abandon your themes or ideas.
tom hardwick
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Re: Jameela

Post by tom hardwick »

I'm with Howard (4 posts above) in that portrait mode filming of landscapes is just daft. This is me using polite language BTW. But it does seem to be law in the middle east, where war-torn landscapes are incessantly hose-piped in portrait mode, and ⅔ of my TV news picture is silly, useless, blurry blank nothingness.

Michael's right though in that a film is a film, and the aspect ratio shouldn't really have a bearing on how successful it is in entertaining us. But wouldn't it be even more entertaining (and the news has to be entertaining as well as informative) if the unfolding situation was allowed breathing space in the stationary, horizontal frame, rather than being hose-piped to 'get it all in'? It would stop me yelling at the TV, 'It's a bleedin landscape!'
Michael Slowe
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Re: Jameela

Post by Michael Slowe »

Tom, I'm totally with you. Although I would be tolerant to those portrait aspect You Tubers, I much prefer the 16:9 (or wider) aspect and I find it difficult to take seriously a film shot in portrait mode. It's so easy to turn your iphone around to get the better aspect and I cannot, for the life of me, understand why they don't. I shot a film (can't even remember the title! but it's on Vimeo and my site), on a river trip in Portugal, entirely on my iphone and it looks great, needless to say, I turned the phone around!

John, you fell into a silly trap with your early films. It doesn't matter what people said, you made what you wanted to make and, presumably, obtained satisfaction in doing so. Obviously you wanted to improve your technique, or whatever the critics 'tore apart' and no doubt you did. You are repeating Jameela's mantra about competition and criticism. Both have been with artists and art for ever, and always will be. The Impressionists were greeted with scorn and derision when they appeared, we quite like their work now do we not, and were they successful?
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John Simpson
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Re: Jameela

Post by John Simpson »

Jameela M Boardman wrote: Fri Jun 05, 2020 2:47 pm A festival should be a festival not a competition, but could we not at least abolish the: 'One, Two and Three star awards', while offering these filmmakers the option to withdraw their work and improve it in line with the feedback given, then re-enter their film for the following festival, otherwise it will only be selected for viewing in the current festival if time allows? ...This will separate out those films that mean a lot to their makers, but are really unfinished projects.
I suppose most people see what their Film Club think of a film before putting it into BIAFF. That might be the time to make improvements. Although I do not find the idea re-shooting or re-editing a film attractive, my mind will have moved on. For me to have the BIAFF judges suggest I re-edited a film would be a non-starter, although I would heed that criticism on my next project.

Tim says he thinks nurses and teachers need to be properly trained, I agree, there is a gold standard. But I think the argument in the forum is that there is not such a gold standard in film making. I refer again to very sucessful "professional" TV series such as "This Country" which is dummed down and has a lot of what might be called candid filming.

One club I was in ran a competition where the theme was very tight and descriptive, too much so. Only two people entered and the competition was cancelled. Perhaps if people had entered it would have been a pure contest of film making, not the art of interpreting the subject - but members were not inspired to make such a perscriptive film.
Last edited by John Simpson on Wed Jun 02, 2021 5:49 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Dave Watterson
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Re: Jameela

Post by Dave Watterson »

I meant to comment before on this ...

My view is that the BIAFF competition starts at the 5-star level. From those films the diamond and most of the major award-winners are chosen.

Ratings 1-star to 5-star are really an assessment (however inexact) of the standard achieved. They can be viewed as IAC's gesture towards the educational aspect of its statutes.
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Jameela M Boardman
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Re: Jameela

Post by Jameela M Boardman »

I like your suggestion Dave!

"A picture speaks a thousand words"

Below is a link to a two minute video clip rendered from my current project timeline. The complete video is expected to be about an hour in length and has the current title "THREE LONERS AND A SPIRIT"

In this story I play three different characters, as show in the clip. Externally they are on very different paths in life, but internally they are like facets of the same. In some scenes these three main characters talk together using cropped framed and multi-track.

This current video is experimental, it is a practise for an independent feature film I desire to produce. Like an Artist's statement on the world we find ourselves in now. It is extremely deep and for a specific audience.

I concern myself mostly with the story arc, individual character arcs, and contrast between scenes steadily building to the unexpected climax. I try to be careful that at no point can a first time viewer anticipate what happens next.

So, this is filmmaking too! ...Though I readily admit it would not fit into any festival program, nor would it be appropriate for any competition, it is a misfit the same as its creator!

But should there not be a place for such as this in the IAC ?

https://www.northspirit.org/clip-render ... scn68.mp4

You might need to download it first, (right-click and choose 'Save As') as it would need 30Mb/s for streaming. MP4 - 1080p - 50fps - Stereo.
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John Simpson
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Re: Jameela

Post by John Simpson »

This is like God breaking through into the made universe! We are discussing your posts and our/your reaction to it and suddenly you are there amongst us! Seriously great to have your input in the form of your link to the experimental film taster, I cannot claim to understand it but maybe we are not meant to. I suppose the Christian God is three in one, but I think the idea of sub-personalities is more exciting, and a person can have any number of those, I remember somebody claimed to have a subpersonality they named Atilla the Hun - not good to come in contact with!. Yours seem peaceful but I may be wrong.

I wish you success with the rest of the filming and editing.
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Jameela M Boardman
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Re: Jameela

Post by Jameela M Boardman »

Gosh!

The film does have 'Coming Together and Peace Message', but superficial people may find it contentious.

Here is freeze frame with my three characters walking together, made from three separate video recordings without moving the camera, the upper two video tracks being cropped. Normally this trick is best done on a cloudy day, but the mood of the scene required the blossom and sunshine, so the shadows are all cropped - never mind though as it was more important to get the mood right.

Image
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