Developing Research and Practice and End of Year Review

Before joining the FdA Film and Photography, I was previously on a Level Three in Creative Media so I joined this degree with a least some prior knowledge of the two main subjects, because of this I don’t feel that I might have improved as much as some of my peers may themselves be able to reflect upon, although I have indeed improved in various different areas in the time that I have been on the first year of this course.

Most of the shorter term goals I set for myself in the personal development plan span two years, as I would section it that way based on the stages in which I would become a journalist or a writer. Start with the Foundation Degree, then an Hons and finally a Masters.

Certain goals that I set for myself I believe I have achieved as I continue to learn the subjects, via various means including theoretical and practical work. My major goal for the year was to improve upon my writing skills in regards to essays. I feel I have in most ways met this personal goal, the work I have handed in for evaluation over the year has improved over the last by having a more comprehensive and wider subject range as well as overall better literal writing. Although it may seem a small improvement as I want to work more in the theory based side of media, it is essential.

I also stated in my PDP that I wanted to learn more about the theory in film and photography, once again I believed I have achieved this through out the year by taking studies into the theorists of the subjects for use in year modules.

On the practical side of the degree I also think I have improved in areas that I desired, I set a task in the PDP to gain a better understanding of the technology used in film and photography. I believe I done this by working on my own projects. I have become much more proficant with certain softwares such as the Adobe programs, Photoshop and Premier Pro.

Overall I believe the year to have been a successful one and in many ways a continuation of the course that I was previously on. I’m gaining more knowledge in the practical and theory based elements of media. Although I am leaning more towards the writing based work of the degree thus far. As I stated before, because a lot of these subjects aren’t quite as new to me I feel that through researching and learning in both forms, I am now able to look at them on a more detailed level than I was when I started the year.

The Golden Ratio/The Fibonacci Sequence

In thinking about the theory behind photography I have bought myself back to one of my earliest lectures in the year with Tony, although brief, the subject was captured my interest.

Quite a complex subject with claims dating back to 400BC in Ancient Greece, the golden ratio is considered to be a structural form of mathematical beauty with the number sequence 0, 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21 and 34. This can be applied to composition in photography to create what this theory would claim to be a beautiful image. Myself I am interest in what could be considered to be perfect composition as I believe alternately that beauty in images comes more from expression and timing than any technical point.

Although I did attempt to apply this theory to some of my work early on in the year with my Introductory Skills module, I was unable to do so due to time constraints, as setting up the image with the principle of sections of the image relating to the ratio of the mentioned sequence is quite difficult.

I would like to use this theory in some of my photography work next year, this is one of the practices that I want to attempt now that I may be more experienced.

  1. HOM, E. J. What is the Golden Ratio? (Hom, 2013) Hom, E. (2013). What is the Golden Ratio?. [online] Live Science. Available at: http://www.livescience.com/37704-phi-golden-ratio.html [Accessed 1 May 2017].

Reflection on Visual Culture Presentation

In mid March I was asked to ‘lead a seminar’ by Tony for the Visual Culture module. This has sharply divided my personal opinion on my own work. Mostly due to my struggles in presenting work, this has been one of biggest obstacles of my year thus far.

My chosen topic for the presentation was postmodernism in film, a complex and wildly variable choice. I believe that this idea was again a very individualistic one, the subject matter was also an engaging choice of topic, very few people without an interest in ironically modern philosophy would be aware of the subject. The presentation had a genuine opportunity to be informative.

Although the subject matter was good and I believe the research and background that made the foundation of my presentation was in good form, my nerves and anxious nature let down the experience. My inability to communicate in a clear way to the audience caused information that was already quite complicated and interpretable to be become convoluted.

Overall to improve upon this I need to focus more on my public speaking skills, although this is not quite as easily improved upon as other areas.

Research into the late career films of David Lynch

For my Introductory Skills film project I took influence from the three movies in Lynch’s filmography. Lost Highway, Mulholland Dr and Inland Empire.

All of these films have interpretable narratives involving various areas of psychology, an example of this could be one interpretation of Mulholland Dr using dream analysis. This states that in the film the leading character Diane, sub-consciously invents herself as another person as if casting herself in her own idealistic version of a 1950s Hollywood film.

In my project I took inspirations from these films to add a interpretable psychological element into the plot through a characters dreams. Although I chose more personal theories such as wish fulfilment. Having these themes in the short film in my opinion adds another layer to what is already there visually but is there by the choice of the viewer, one could chose to ignore these aspects of the film and enjoy the film on its own.

Although I may not use these influences in my other projects or future films I believe this research will be useful in my upcoming film efforts because it has taught me more about complex narratives and adding multiple layers to a plot.

1. WYMAN, B., GARRONE, M. AND KLEIN, A.Everything you were afraid to ask about “Mulholland Drive”(Wyman, Garrone and Klein, 2001, Wyman, B., Garrone, M. and Klein, A. (2001). Everything you were afraid to ask about “Mulholland Drive”. [online] Salon. Available at: http://www.salon.com/2001/10/24/mulholland_drive_analysis/ [Accessed 4 Jan. 2017].

Honey and Mumford test

Tony asked the group to take a Honey and Mumford test, this is used to evaluate the way in which you choose to process information. My result was Theorist, essentially meaning I take in information from logical means and practices.

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SWOT Analysis

I have completed a SWOT analysis as part of my DRP module to give an idea of my position on the degree. This will be helpful information as I progress through the year as I and anyone else who views it can see if anything has changed during my time studying.

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