The media industry if full of collaboration among so many different types of people. As part of a class project at RMIT, I was recently able to collaborate with a group of my peers, from all different backgrounds, to come up with a digital story and see it through from pre-production to post-production. We started off with four ideas that could not have been more different but were able to take those ideas and mesh them together creating an entirely new story. In the end we decided to create a 90 second fictional story about 4 assassins on their day off coming together to play a high stakes poker game.
When working together with a group communication is one of the most important things. Having come from different backgrounds it was difficult at times to coordinate meeting times outside of class. Because pre-production is all about planning and organizing all the paperwork, getting the materials needed, and making sure every last thing is in order for the shoot; not having that line of communication between the group members can break an entire project. In the case of End Game, a few group members stepped up and became leaders making sure that everything was in order. Each person operates differently so we wanted to take on the roles that bests fit with our personality and skillset, but also for everyone to be involved throughout as a learning process.
I took on the primary role of Art director for this project. As I was looking into the roles and responsibilities a few things stood out to me as being strong points of mine that I could easily feed into this project. Being able to think visually, see the broader picture, and have an eye for detail are all things that are part of this role and I feel I do them intuitively. As an art director you need to work with other roles so that the story’s vision, crew’s vision and your vision of what it should look like all alignas best as possible.
There was an instance when planning where we wanted to use a red felt for the top of the poker table. I remembered previous discussions about the characters and one was to be in a red dress. This would have thrown the scene completely off balance, drawing the attention to that character. I brought up the issue and we were able to rethink the use of the red table to blue which is going to set it apart which is important as it is a main focal point in our story. These types of little details are important for the Art Director to think about and fix before it comes time to shoot the film.
Another role that I have taken on for this proposal is being in charge of the web and poster design. Keeping in mind our promotional strategy, I wanted to find a template that could be easily adapted to fit the new content that we will add once post-production is completed. It was important to have a consistent theme that would mimic what we are envisioning the short to look like. Our film has a darkness to it and features a poker game so the simple black white and red color scheme suited it well. When branding or promoting a product consistency is an important factor making it easily recognizable.
It has been both fun and hard preparing the past few weeks and I am really looking forward to see what results come out of this collaboration.
Schrader, P., 2016. PRODUCTION DESIGN. Film Comment, 52(2), p.58.
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