October 15, 2008

Week 9: Long-Take Bolextravaganzahhh3!

This past Saturday (yes, we had class on Saturday) our class gathered on campus from 12pm-4pm with the task of shooting (in groups of four) one continuous minute-long take on a 16mm Bolex, then processing the footage in a darkroom and finally projecting and transferring the footage to video.

A few days in advance, the weather forecast was not promising for Saturday: rain and drizzle fo' shizzle.

But, the class was instructed that the show would go on - barring a tornado - and students were strongly encouraged to bring umbrellas, swimsuits, raincoats or other impervious accouterments - hence, a few umbrellas in the long-takes. The result was four pretty off-the-wall long-takes and a rollicking good time.


So, a bit more about the process. As mentioned, the class shot with a 16mm Bolex, which has a 28 second wind (at 24fps - sound speed). Since each group needed a one-minute long-take, they needed to undercrank the camera at half-sound-speed (12fps). Thus, they were able to shoot for 56 seconds. However, when the film was projected at 24fps, it played at twice the speed (see movie clip, below).

In Final Cut, students take the transferred-to-video Bolex footage and invert it to a positive image and then slow the footage down to half the speed to get something closer to reality. See the modified footage, below:


Below, a few more digital stills from the shoot.


AND FINALLY! ~ All four of the long-takes

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