A4.BoW: Video draft for feedback

I’ve spent too many hours experimenting, tinkering, listening, watching, recording and repeating the cycle. It’s now time to put it out to a limited audience of fellow students and friends.

The finished video will be included in a microsite that will also include a selection of still images and some text.

Best enjoyed with headphones © 2020 Andrew Fitzgibbon

The work is an evolution of the ebook format I was previously working on and I have explained the reasons for the change in output medium on my blog. Some of the feedback I received on the ebook has been used to shape the format of the video, in particular for those wanting to know more about the canal information is included in the end titles.

The technical process for making the video is noted in contextual practice and research section of this learning log. It used Apple’s Keynote and Garageband. Ambient sound recordings were made either on iPhone or Roland R-05 recorder (more effective than iPhone). Voice over recording was made using a condenser mic, interfaced into Garageband.

More information on the narrative, including the poets quoted is here.

Please leave any comments and suggestions below.


Update – summary of feedback

I felt very appreciative of the encouraging feedback received (recorded on the blog and by email). Thank you!

Here, I note some points to take to discussion with my tutor and potentially address in A5.

  • Timing of transitions. A few people commented that they would have liked longer to view images or certain images. As currently configured some images have longer on screen than others – mainly the ones that are more complex. However, only longer by a few seconds. I see the video as part of a broader dissemination presented through a microsite that allows other ways of interacting with the work. I’m not convinced that increasing the viewing time would benefit the work – I enjoy the transitory experience of video and feel it part of the specificity of the medium. It leaves me with an appetite for more, in contrast with the long film stills in Robinson in Ruins that left me feeling like I’d sat through 1 1/2 hours of 7 minute guitar solos.
  • End titles. A mix of comments between the inclusion of too much information and not enough time to read the information. I deliberately placed this at the end as I’m aware that some people welcome this sort of context and others can do without. Those who don’t want it can then simply stop the video. People read at very different paces and I timed the transition at a slow read for me. I’ve also included further information on the website, so I’m not minded to make changes to the end titles.
  • Image processing. One comment suggested that they found too much red in the images. In a number of images, I have enhanced colour because to my personal taste it was lacking (a product of often overcast skies in northern England). This is a subjective area but one to sound out with my tutor.
  • Timing of narrative. One person felt distracted when the start of narrative phrases coincided with slide transitions. I didn’t notice this myself but can understand it being a distraction and will address it in the next iteration. Obviously any question about the timing of slides and transitions needs to first be resolved to avoid tail chasing.

7 thoughts on “A4.BoW: Video draft for feedback”

  1. Fitz, enjoyed watching. The images are interesting and present a good perspective of the canal. Sometimes I wanted to look longer, although I did not ‘pause’ the video which I could have done. I did find the background sound too high relative to the voice, but this may be because my hearing is not very good anymore. The time on the 1st historical text page was a few seconds too short for me.
    Somehow I can’t help but feel that a hard book would be the best. I suspect the video will go down well for OCA purposes but if I was a practicing artist trying to make money it would have to be a book. Maybe for SyP you can explore different options. I am not saying that the video is not good, I think it is but would have a personal preference for a hard copy.

    1. Thanks Doug. I will be making a book during SYP. I just personally feel that such a tactile medium is not the best solution when having to submit digital work only – and I knew this early in my process. A benefit of photography is that it is form-independent to some extent.

  2. Excellent stuff Fitz (as I have said before). Presenting work in video format is different. Unlike the book, one does not have the chance to linger or move backwards (unless one has control over the sequence) but that does not matter as the viewing experience can also contain sound which you have employed carefully (beautiful piano music). I guess I have only one comment to make and that is a bit tecchy … too much red!! It seems photographic processes tend to boost red to add panache to imagery but I find it jarrs. In the opening image, the red of the bricks seems a bit saturated for instance, and I notice this in others. Subtle but colour matters to me even though it is often a matter of taste. I don’t necessarily see strong and weaker images but that is what sequences usually consist of … if it was just a series of knock out photos then there might be a stoccato effect and not so much flow. Frankly, the OCA course seems worth pursuing when I see fellow students producing work like this.

    1. Thank you again for your kind words Amano! Interesting about the red – relates perhaps to a discussion I had with Doug and Lynda about intensity of colour and the muted European taste. Because it is so often cloudy in Yorkshire, I find myself craving colour (being a West Country boy) and do tend to add colour to my images during post. There is also perhaps something in my enjoyment of high contrast American and Japanese street photography that influences me. Not to mention John Bulmer’s colour work in the north of England. I perhaps have a preference for exaggerated representation in photography. Certainly a point I’ll take for discussion in my next tutorial. You are of course correct about the importance of sequence; I dug into my collection of less preferred images to make some of the transitions work and spent a lot of time playing with that, even reprocessing some images to make a better flow. Feels like work that is invisible to some people, so I’m pleased you noticed.

  3. Just commenting on your comment Fitz, it often feels that way but, as your special student audience, we know and appreciate the time and effort it takes to create a sequence that truly flows.
    I like the changes you’ve made to A3 and noted the newly added images and how well they fitted in the flow. Your narrative works beautifully with the sequence. What I like about the images that you added is that you brought in the people, the residents of the canal, with compassion and sensitivity. Well done.

  4. Hi Fitz, I think this is a quantum step from the ebook! I personally much prefer the single photo’s – it’s calmer and gives the images time to speak, the flow is much better. The bird song running through it, drowned out by industry, then returning is really moving. I watched it on my phone and could feel the music through my fingers, it was a very strange experience, it drew me in and anchored me into the environment you were narrating.
    And on top of all that, you get 10/10 for managing to incorporate “hotch potch” into your video!!
    There was a point in the video where the images appeared to speed up – 2min30 – don’t know if this is the case or if it was a buffering error. But it jarred, you might want to check that?
    But, really spiffing.

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