Its all about fourth year

Creative Digital Media Final Year Project


September 2015

Our First Creative Session

So yesterday we had our first creative session. It was a chance for us to pitch our initial ideas and talk about the area we would like to work in.

As always there an some incredibly varied projects. Naturally I pitched the idea of working in film. With that in mind I entered the pitch with the aim of either, using coding and graphic design to create a place where I could upload my past and future film work. This would allow me to expand my current abilities with code and design and give me a creative space in which I publish diverse film projects.

The second idea I had was to create a documentary about the life and experience of a musician from the 60’s and his opinion of the industry as it is, his current work and how ageism encompasses all of this. This went down a little better than my first idea, which correctly stated in the session is a huge undertaking in which I could easily lose myself in one area of. So taking the advice of the panel onboard, I do certainly intend to work on a documentary, perhaps not the one I pitched, but certainly a documentary.

I’ve said this to a few of the people I know who work in film and each one has come back with an idea of creating some sort of mockumentary. Which is interesting, its certainly something I never considered myself doing. But the idea of creating a satirical piece is compelling.

So now, not only do I have an area I want to work in but a decent idea of what I want to create. This I suppose is where I move into the research stage and find something that really resonates with me that i’d like to emulate.


Initial Inspiration

1.Vimeo is a fantastic platform for uploading and enjoying video content. What I like about it is while it doesn’t pull in the audience of youtube it is a space for people who are fully engaged in creating quality shorts. This helps provide great feedback for content creators which in turn helps them hone their craft. I do find it quite difficult to navigate at times however, coursing through its version of a news feed or its internal search engine can be a little tedious.

vimeo newsfeed

Vimeo does attract me to working in a space similar to this as film is certainly a passion of mine and working on web design is an area I want to expand my skills in.

2. Locke, released in 2014, is an notably underrated film. Its premiss is very simple, man drives from work to a hospital, but on the way we are given a masterful performance by Tom Hardy as he slowly lets us into the life of his character Ivan Locke. We are given detailed insights into Lockes motivations and belief system and his desire to completely separate himself from his father despite arguably making the same choices as him.

Experiencing this film certainly makes me want to push myself as a cinematographer and create an immersive film using only a small space to tell my story in.

3. allows a space for content creators to upload and showcase their work in a space where it can be critiqued by industry pros. The best comparison I can think of is linkedin for those interested in film or design. So, creating a space that is purely my own and that I could direct people to, is something that I would like to work on.

It could possibly be a huge, undertaking but having something that has been created purely by me, rather than another profile on a website saturated by other content creators I feel could stand to me better than using a template upon which I could upload my work.

4. Amores Perros is a film I come back to quite regularly and think upon, more so the thought processes of the script writers and director rather than the film itself. It is a fantastically well made film about vastly different characters and how their lives change as a result of a car crash. But its more so the idea of bringing characters together, who normally would never have any type of interaction with each other, that intrigues me and makes me want to explore this idea as well in a short film piece. Here is the trailer anyway, be warned though it does contain some adult content.

5. A lovers quarrel with the world is an excellent documentary on the life and writings of Robert Frost. It gives a fantastic insight into his being, his love of nature and also his patriotism, which is most likely a reflection of the era in which he lived. Its more so his musings on what it is to be a poet that intrigues me, at one point he states “Never do it to pay a bill, because you probably won’t”. It is the insight of an artist who has a deep passion for his work and decades of experience which impresses upon me the desire to make a documentary about expressionism.

Some ideas for final year project

So we’ve been asked to think up a couple of ideas relating to our final year project.

  1. Documentary on the life of a famous musician from the 60’s
  2. Minimalistic movie posters of famous films.
  3.  A short about on the theme of sonder.
  4. A photography project depicting the hidden emotions of couples on their first date.
  5. A short on two characters without fathers.
  6. Illustrations of God based on different interpretations.
  7. Photo essay based on the works of Robert Frost.
  8. Branding project on a fictitious film company.
  9. “Where are they now” interviews with previous graduates.
  10. An eBook on a character doing everyday activities.
  11. Movie debate show with guests from the film industry.
  12. Short parodies of popular films.
  13. Documentary on everyone else’s final year project.
  14. Photo essay portraying peoples bedrooms.
  15. Anamorphic typography photography project.
  16. Short film about a character whose father is emotionally distant.
  17. Only using one light source, photography project.
  18. Redesigning logos of well established companies.
  19. The same situation acted out multiple different ways.
  20. Photographing the same object everyday.

Which of these to keep?

  1. Minimalistic movie posters of famous films – Its a new take on something that is usually studio approved and minimalism can allow you to experience the emotional depths of a character through a static image.
  2. Documentary on the live of a famous musician from the 60’s – The wealth of knowledge, the regret for lost opportunities and trying to make it in an industry obsessed with the new. It would be a great insight for upcoming musicians.
  3. Branding project on a fictitious film company – Its the most varied of my choices and would allow me to work on skills that I enjoy and wish to improve.

Possible Areas of Work

Ive always had an attraction towards working in film.

For me its such a broad area that if I choose to be independent and work on my own projects through using my own equipment or pitching ideas to a network its a route I can go down. Or I can choose to try and attach myself to a studio and work on projects that come through as a camera operator or editor. When it comes down to it, I really just want to entertain people, and being involved in that process, when it comes to film and creating something that people can laugh, cry at or ponder over is something I’ve always really wanted to do. Ever since I was pretty young, watching Ace Ventura and laughing at the goofiness of Jim Carey and his portrayal of a character who was completely over the top and yet you still buy into the film and follow it through its ridiculous course, I’ve felt that this is something that I want to be part of. Finally, from the work that I’ve done, although  there are some glaring problems working to fix those issues and pushing myself towards being critically successful is something I want to attain, if I do choose film as my future.

Whereas graphic design would allow me to explore a very different creative side of myself, and employment wise, again, attaching myself to a company I feel it could possibly be much more stable than film. Working with clients and collaborating is something I think I do very well and visualising the clients thoughts and ideas just really speaks to me, however arduous the process may be sometimes. I have a passion for looking at someones work and trying to break down each individual piece and understanding the creative process that went into whatever it may be and figuring out how to improve on something that already exists and make it more accessible for its users. The last point is expressed expertly in a recent TED talks lecture we watched, Tony Fadell: The first secret of design is noticing.

So can I do this, can I push myself to the levels of the people I idolise in both these industries, I guess it properly starts now.

A self analysis of my course related strengths and weaknesses

lets get this started

I’ve always had a problem with self analysing  what I’m good at when it comes to creative digital media. I guess it harkens back to Ira Glass’ comments on the  Creative Gap.

However, this part is supposed to be about what I’m good at, so, let’s jump into that. I know I’m a good editor, one of my first projects was to create a tourism video for Kilkenny County Council to use in online marketing campaigns. The project took about two months to fully edit to the standard that my project managers and I were happy with. I was dealing with a lot of footage taken from all over Kilkenny and my own footage from the days I spent down there meeting the members of the tourism board and visiting their various businesses. The finished product was first displayed at a gala event for the board members and to my surprise received a standing ovation(that was a pretty cool moment). Since then its been displayed in Australia, Germany, Spain, Dubai and Qatar, that I know of, and failteIreland expressed interest in using it as well. Heres the video, if you’d like to have a look at it.

What I’m not good at is coding. I’ve never found enjoyment in sitting infront of a computer scrolling through lines upon lines of code trying to fix the multiple errors in my script. Its monotonous. Dumb errors, fighting against the computer, configuration its all just too much for me to handle in a two or three hour sitting or however long it takes to achieve something that you don’t completely hate.

So my current idea for my final year project is a marketing campaign based on a fictitious film company. This would heavily employ my abilities as a web designer and coder. An area which, as discussed, I’m quite behind on in terms of the rest of the class and indeed my own enjoyment of this area is lacking. However as film is something that I’m deeply passionate about I feel confident working on a website based around this and seeing it out to its full potential. This would also incorporate my abilities in graphic design, working on movie posters and such, which again would be highly beneficial when we’re looking at the overall industry involved in creative digital media. Which goes into my next discussion topic of where these skills can be used in the industry.

As this is a multi-disciplinary course there are bountiful options available to the successful graduate. Mainly the graduate who takes a good understanding of the areas discussed and can show that they have incorporated these in an outstanding project. So using everything that I wish to employ this year, some possible areas of work for me would be, firstly, the graphic design industry. It is an expanding industry and extremely diverse, so whether I choose to freelance for a time in order to create contacts and expand my body of work or attempt to attach myself to a company involved in print the choice, really, is mine. Of course film as well, be it as an editor, vfx artist or camera operator. Really anything that I do best on and truly enjoy will more than likely be the area that I wish work in. in the coming years.

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