People and Story Lecture 6: Story Structure
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People and Story Lecture 6: Story Structure

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  • Plan for today.\n\n6:00-6:45 Editing Help\n6:45-8:00 Review Scenes, 5 photo stories, 5 best clips\n8:00-9:15 Talk about story structures in the docs we’ve watched\n9:15-9:50 Workflows, Scripts and Cutting Down Clips\n\n
  • til 6:45\n\nProject Settings\nGetting clips into the timeline\nZooming the timeline\nScale to Frame Size\nOverlapping and how the layers work\nUnlinking Clips\nSnapping\nScrubbing with Cursor\nBlade Tool\nSlip Tool\n\n\n
  • Next week: Watch rough cuts in class & talk advanced editing/finishing techniques - Color Correction, After Effects, Animation.\n\nTake temperature: how are you feeling about the rough cut being due?\n\nI’m going to update the rubric tomorrow.\n
  • It’s where things get really cinematic. Where we transcend B roll.\nLook for something that tells us about a character.\nLook for the character interacting with others in a telling way.\nReview a few\n\nMarjoe had some great ones: can you think of an example?\n\n\n
  • 6:30 - 7:00\nWhy?: Driving narratives with visuals\nUnderstading the basics of structure w/ visuals\nGreat prep for B-Roll Groupings -- Telling small stories inside bigger stories. Doing something in everyday life (we’ll come back to this with Refugees) \nBrainstorm a few ways you might do that with your story. \n\nReview each persons story. Have them explain it afterward.\n\n\n
  • 6:30 - 7:00\nWhy?: Driving narratives with visuals\nUnderstading the basics of structure w/ visuals\nGreat prep for B-Roll Groupings -- Telling small stories inside bigger stories. Doing something in everyday life (we’ll come back to this with Refugees) \nBrainstorm a few ways you might do that with your story. \n\nReview each persons story. Have them explain it afterward.\n\n\n
  • 6:30 - 7:00\nWhy?: Driving narratives with visuals\nUnderstading the basics of structure w/ visuals\nGreat prep for B-Roll Groupings -- Telling small stories inside bigger stories. Doing something in everyday life (we’ll come back to this with Refugees) \nBrainstorm a few ways you might do that with your story. \n\nReview each persons story. Have them explain it afterward.\n\n\n
  • 6:30 - 7:00\nWhy?: Driving narratives with visuals\nUnderstading the basics of structure w/ visuals\nGreat prep for B-Roll Groupings -- Telling small stories inside bigger stories. Doing something in everyday life (we’ll come back to this with Refugees) \nBrainstorm a few ways you might do that with your story. \n\nReview each persons story. Have them explain it afterward.\n\n\n
  • 6:30 - 7:00\nWhy?: Driving narratives with visuals\nUnderstading the basics of structure w/ visuals\nGreat prep for B-Roll Groupings -- Telling small stories inside bigger stories. Doing something in everyday life (we’ll come back to this with Refugees) \nBrainstorm a few ways you might do that with your story. \n\nReview each persons story. Have them explain it afterward.\n\n\n
  • In some ways this is a ridiculously simple concept.\nHis concept is a little different than what I want us to do b/c its more geared toward narrative.\nThe idea that all of your material is serving.\n\n
  • This is more Tierno Action Idea style\n\n\n\n
  • Maybe more helpful than this action-idea concept is what I call the one sentence\nThe central concept that all of our footage should speak to.\nThis will help us stay focused and edit in a disciplined way.\n\nThis was the one sentence he we were working with a few months ago\n
  • Til 8\n\nWatch each one.\n\nTalk about any tech issues\n\nTell us what you said your one sentence was.\n\nAnswer these questions as a group: Don’t worry, we’ll come back to them with your rough cuts next week.\n\nOpener -- does it have to explain everything in the first 20 secs, first graph? No! Hook em\nWhere's the narrative high point? - put that 3/4 of the way through\nWhat is missing? What else can you get to fill in the gaps?`\n\n\n\n
  • 8-9\nFor short pieces finding structure can be hard. This is a simple way to go. \nBest Clips at Beggining and End. Fill in the middle.\nLandmines\nTook the best two clips and put them at the beginning and the end.\n\n
  • Classic Three Act Play\nWhat does “inciting incident” mean? the thing that makes the people spring into action\nKings Speech: He has to make lots of speeches. He struggles. He makes the fucking speech.\nHunger Games: Setup the scenario, Inciting: she get’s picked, second act training \nBarzan: \n\nJoy?\n1st Act: She has to sleep in the car (inciting)\n2nd Act: She’s in the shelter -- things are hard but its always been hard\nClimax: this is a temporary situation - she may end up back on the street.\n
  • Hand out the script. Don’t get too distracted by it, we’re going to come back to talking about it.\nStructure in Freytags:\nExposition of the problem (this is really long in this case -- intro-ing refugees and M+O’s situation)\nRising action: situation is critical, they’re depressed, families could be killed\nClimax: the turn in fortunes -- they get resettlement\nFalling Action: they talk about coming to seattle -- we laugh -- catharsis, things will be okay\nDenoumount: Slates and the video portraits\n\nThe one sentence: \n"Young refugees are fleeing physical violence in Iraq, but unable to start their lives in Syria, they face a new struggle to escape psychological threats of stagnation, depression and economic hardship"\n\n\n
  • Map out the structure\n\nTalk about the 4 possible approaches/action-ideas for Barzan and sentences (any given story has many ways to tell it. Most of these were generated while talking about the story over beer)\n\nFate vs. Free Will\n“Can Sam be held accountable for the way his life looks or were larger forces at play?”\n\nMaps/Politics\nHow one’s man’s life followed the geo-political trajectory of an era.\n\n*rooted in place\n*Time/place\n*Geo political story\n*Think Bhutto\n*More journalism-y/documenatry-y in traditional style\n*Has Iraq/Al Qaeda/Global War on Terror peg\n*Allows us to work chronologically\n*Allows us to explain details/background/politics (Kurd, history, etc.)\n*Very segmented\n*Might be hard for people to stay engaged (counter point:  might be a good way to acknowledge the complications of the case and dig into them--this might be good for US to acknowledge early on in the film making process too so we don’t get to abstract)\n\nLove Story/Family\nThe struggle of one family to stay together against the odds/One man’s quest for family/home\nLike:\n*Unexpected\n*A political Rick & Jane\n*Current events/tension\n---immigration status\n---will they ever see each other again?\n---relate-able\n--accessible\n--human interest/unpredictable\n\n\nHero’s Journey:\nhttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Heroesjourney.svg\n\n\n
  • Hero’s Journey:\nhttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Heroesjourney.svg\n\nCall to Action\nDenial of call\nsupernatural intervention\nthresh hold (beginning of transformation)\nfind a helper/partner\nthe abyss/revelaton\natonement (gift from the goddess)\nreturn\n\n*Animation vs. live action\n*Character study\n*non linear\n*Classic\n*Arty\n*Emotional telling (lots of chance to use the human element)\n*Less predictable (though some precedent--Waltz with Bashir/Persepolis)\n\n\n\n\n\n\n
  • Til 9:15\n*Goes a long time with just archival footage @ beginning\nBuilds trust and distrust at same time\nYou really get to know him\n*Final scene: do you think Marjoe’s a con man?\nShot w lots of really long scenes. Cutting back and forth between a couple of cameras, real time\nFilmmakers become characters\nWhat larger issues are being illustrated by this story? Evangelism. Oscar docs are always topically on with the zeitgeist. \n\nWhat was the “one sentence”\nMap out the structure\n\n\n
  • You can’t get anywhere getting rid of the bad material. \nLook for the good material and try to pull a story out of it.\n\n\n
  • "Defining your story.\n\nNumber one rule: write to your tape/footage/quotes\nEspecially important for multimedia: you can't explain/write around things the same way you can with print.\nYou've spent weeks with this topic. What was the most interesting part for you - in 30 seconds, what is the most interesting part.\nTrust your reporting - your own instincts - what anecdotes are you telling at parties. (First 30secs/graph/shots)\nWatch out for esoteria - you have tons and tons of info - what are the guts.\n\n
  • Talk through workflows:\nOne process for video: 1) write an outline 2) make a cut 3) make a script/transcript 4) edit\nNeed a script as soon as you’re critiquing structure or showing it to someone else.\n\nAnother process for video: *review footage, cut together b-roll sequences and pick out audio clips to use - try to cut together and then get to wanting a script - but then you don’t have to transcribe all the footage. (this works best when you have an abundance of material so don’t need to log it all)\n\nAlso part of our editing process with you - or any collaborative editing process. And that’s the why: it becomes too complicated to edit/critique a project without a written guide to everything that’s in the story.\n\nFormat: totally about what works for you. Probably good to use formatting to indicate different types of content - “actualities,” b-roll, music, transitions - but roll with what works/makes sense to you - just so long as we see all the words that are in there.\n\n
  • Specific example of how dramatically you can cut down/slice and dice a clip.\n\nOne note: what you see here is the tape log - there might be spelling errors; definitely it’s not exact. And that’s OK! When you’re at a stage of logging tape, you want to get the gist, get close, but you don’t have to go word for word.\n\nThe idea is just to give you a sense of how this winnowing down process can work.\nAlso, to show what a transcript/tape log can look like.\n\n0:59\n
  • Edited version is about 1/3 the length - but you still get all the info. Can you think of anything that was missing from the edited cut? Presumably not - and it’s the test of a good edit.\n\nClip is cut down to 0:18 -- 1/3 of the length!\n\n0:44 with narration - trimmed off 15 seconds and threw in a ton of narration.\nThat one was a content edit, lets look at another that is an edit to make it clearer/coherent\n\nSwitch over to FCP and show same example from Never Going Home\n\nThen do sample audio sync\n
  • Edited version is about 1/3 the length - but you still get all the info. Can you think of anything that was missing from the edited cut? Presumably not - and it’s the test of a good edit.\n\nClip is cut down to 0:18 -- 1/3 of the length!\n\n0:44 with narration - trimmed off 15 seconds and threw in a ton of narration.\nThat one was a content edit, lets look at another that is an edit to make it clearer/coherent\n\nSwitch over to FCP and show same example from Never Going Home\n\nThen do sample audio sync\n
  • Talk through each technique - draw the web layout\nUse index cards; stick figures\nList your scenes, characters - best clips/photos each on a card and work on arranging them\nWrite a script\n\nFind a system that works for you: it’s about identifying the good stuff, the action, the emotion and then finding a way it can logically flow.\n\n

People and Story Lecture 6: Story Structure People and Story Lecture 6: Story Structure Presentation Transcript

  • STORY STRUCTUREMCDM Program - Fall 2012 - COM 583
  • A FEW BASICEDITING TIPS
  • ASSIGNMENTS★Thursday, November 8th at 12 noon: ★ROUGH CUT! {Video + script} ★Review Sample Script ★Review Final Project Grading Rubric
  • SCENES
  • 5-PHOTO FLICKR STORIES
  • 5-PHOTO FLICKR STORIES
  • 5-PHOTO FLICKR STORIES
  • 5-PHOTO FLICKR STORIES
  • 5-PHOTO FLICKR STORIES
  • 5-PHOTO FLICKR STORIES
  • TIERNO AND THE ACTION-IDEA★The single idea all your material isserving★Beginning, Middle, End★Tension★Subject is an action, not a person
  • BARZAN ACTION-IDEAUnable to return home after his wife commits suicide,Sam is determined to make a new home in America.In the process of doing so he gets mixed up with Al-Qaeda. He’s accused of terrorism and eventuallydeported back to the place he started.
  • BARZAN ONE SENTENCEDid Sam betray America in his strugglefor the American dream? Or did Americabetray Sam?
  • 5 BEST CLIPS★What is your action-idea?★What’s your best hook ?★Where is the narrative high point?★What’s your kicker or resolution?★What’s missing?
  • THE SIMPLE SANDWICH
  • THREE ACTS
  • FREYTAG’S PYRAMID
  • FREYTAG’S PYRAMID
  • HERO’S JOURNEY
  • MARJOE★ What stuck out for you about the story?★ How was it shot?★ Did you spot the editorial zoom?★ How did Marjoe’s story embody a larger phenomenon? Was he the right choice of character?★ How did the filmmakers construct a whole life narrative out of limited footage?★ What was the one sentence?★ What was the structure like?
  • WORKFLOW: START WITH THEGOOD STUFF AND BUILD ON IT!
  • DEFINING YOUR STORY★Write to your tape! ★What are the guts?★Use the party test ★What are the holes?★Use the 30 second test ★Kill your beauties!★Who are your characters?
  • WORKFLOW & SCRIPTS1.Rough tape Logging2.Audio/Narrative/’Story Cut’3.Visuals4.Detailed transcribing5.Script aids editing process
  • CUTTING DOWN CLIPSSo what we’re looking for is vehicles lingering in areascommonly used by smugglers or drug dealers. We’relooking for aberrant behavior, people looking over theirshoulders, that look lost. Commonly when people comeacross they’re wondering am I in the US yet? Lookingaround. People wearing a jacket in the middle ofsummertime. People walking around with luggage or bags.And walking along the side of the road in Canada. Theseare some of the things we notice that would qualify assuspicious behavior and that would require us to take alook at once they’re in the united states
  • CUTTING DOWN CLIPSSo what we’re looking for is vehicles lingering in areascommonly used by smugglers or drug dealers. We’relooking for aberrant behavior, people looking over theirshoulders, that look lost. Commonly when people comeacross they’re wondering am I in the US yet? Lookingaround. People wearing a jacket in the middle ofsummertime. People walking around with luggage or bags.And walking along the side of the road in Canada. Theseare some of the things we notice that would qualify assuspicious behavior and that would require us to take alook at once they’re in the united states
  • AUDIO EDITING EXAMPLEBERMUDEZ: We’re looking for vehicles lingering in, in areas that arecommonly used by, by smugglers of humans, drugs, other contraband.We’re looking for aberrant behavior, people wearing you know a jacket inthe middle of summertime. People, people walking around with, withluggage.
  • AUDIO EDITING EXAMPLEBERMUDEZ: We’re looking for vehicles lingering in, in areas that arecommonly used by, by smugglers of humans, drugs, other contraband.We’re looking for aberrant behavior, people wearing you know a jacket inthe middle of summertime. People, people walking around with, withluggage.
  • AUDIO EDITING EXAMPLENARR: This is Border Patrol Headquarters in Blaine, Washington.Blaine is a town of about 4,000 people. It’s right on Washington State’sborder with Canada. Mike Bermudez is a Supervisory Border PatrolAgent and Public Affairs Officer here.BERMUDEZ: We’re looking for vehicles lingering in, in areas that arecommonly used by, by smugglers of humans, drugs, other contraband.We’re looking for aberrant behavior, people wearing you know a jacket inthe middle of summertime. People, people walking around with, withluggage.NARR:You see cameras every few hundred yards along the entireborder here in Blaine Sector. They are everywhere, right in the middleof roads or fields. But the Border Patrol also uses sensors – in secretlocations – to detect illegal movement.
  • STORYBOARDING TECHNIQUES★Drawings★Index Cards★Stick figures★Scenes★Characters★Shots