Die Hard

Editing – Alternatives to the ‘cut on the look’ (Part 2)

Moving the camera or characters is not the only alternative to cutting on the look. There are plenty of other creative ways to draw the audience’s attention from the looking character to what he is looking at — and vice versa — in one shot, without the need to cut, Continue reading

Editing pattern – Three ways to cut on the look and back (Part 1)

Cutting on the look from a looking character to whatever-is-drawing-his-attention is great, but the story doesn’t end there. Once we have figured out the situation, we (very) often want to cut back to the character and see him reacting. Continue reading

Editing pattern – Cut on the look (Part 2)

Cutting on the look to a subjective shot might be the most straightforward answer to the question: “What is that character looking at?”, as we do it through his eyes. Not only do we fully identify with the looking character, but we can also focus on the ‘what‘ without worrying about anything else. Continue reading

Scaling down – Have subjects move to the background (Part 2)

In part 1, we saw how watching subjects moving away from the camera could impact the audience emotionally — mainly because we feel unable to protect remote characters. But that is only one side of the coin. We also feel abandoned Continue reading

Obstacles – Stripes (Part 2)

As seen in part 1, nets and bars are commonly used as obstacles to virtually ‘imprison’ characters. But that very effect can be obtained with all kinds of stripe-shaped overlays, from props to postprocessing effects to rays of light and shadows. Continue reading

Subframes – Screens

TV or computer screens acting as subframes — let’s call them ‘subscreens’ — are usually meant to display minified or magnified representations of characters in a frame. Like mirrors, they put distance between Continue reading

Mental shot scales – The Close Shots (Part 2)

Trying to classify Close Shots proves very difficult, almost impossible, basically because their names usually refer to characters’ morphology — which is different from one another (shoulders, neck, hair base) — when in reality they deal with apparent distance to the subject. Continue reading