No Direction Home

At beginning, the first scene is a man who are play an electric guitar and sing a song, I have no idea about this song’s name, but there are lyrics ‘ NO Direction Home, I gonna be alone.’  This is very match to the title of this documentary. As we know, the opening for a documentary is very important, So in this Trailer, the editor use music as a precursor to crap view’s interested. 屏幕快照 2015-05-30 下午7.25.07 屏幕快照 2015-05-30 下午7.25.29

Then , the camera switches to a black and white picture,they may shoot a scene in forest where are full of fog, so the atmosphere of the this footage looked mysterious and the background music was still running at same time.

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I did a short research about ‘No Direction Home’ No Direction Home is a documentary film by Martin Scorsese that traces the life of Bob Dylan, his impact on 20th-century American popular music and culture. Critic Roger Ebert gave the film 4/4 stars, stating that it ‘create a portrait that is deep, sympathetic, perceptive and yet finally leaves Dylan shrouded in mystery. I think those mysterious footage make the whole video more mystery.  and I really like the angle of shot which are shooting on the Bob Dylan’s face, especially when get close to the Bob’s face, and he sang a song, it’s really hook people’s attention and audiences can enjoy his music.the next shot introduced the some very basis information about Bob Dylan, and in this footage, we can know about  that this documentary was talking about music or musician,something related with Bob’s music life.  Bob Dylan shared his childhood and gave some photo when he was child, in this footage, we can see when the editor edit this footage, her switches different scene but the she didn’t cut off the Bob’s voice, I mean she continue play the Bob’s voice but swap the different scene. it is a good way to make a documentary, it just like Bob to explain his own story.

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When Bob’s voice stop, they played Bob Dylan’s music as the background music. Then the shot swap to Bob Dylan.

When introduced the Bod’s past, the editor used some old pictures which relate to Bob and describe his past, so the footage is more like an old man sharing his memory.

I think it is a very good way to make a documentary by using some old pictures, because for them  those pictures and memory is most precious thing in the world, and for audiences this pictures can interest viewers.

The first footage was showing audiences that  a man who are a singer which singing in a stage , so these documentary is clear display the key thing—music or music live.

And then in rest of 2 mins sequence, it continue to talk Bob Dylan how his father influence his and how much his love the music. So I think in the rest of documentary, it will give more detail about his music life and share his experience as well.  May be will have  some people who are very close to Bob Dylan, and they may be invited to talk more about Bob Dylan’s life, and give some reason why Bob Dylan can impact American music and culture in 20th-century maybe.

Introduction to Documentary

I’m happy to read those material which about different types of documentary.

It’s a very good lesson for me to know more about making a documentary. Firstly I read Modes of Documentary _ Bill Nichols

In this short summary of six modes of documentary, actually, I’m interested every types of documentary. The first mode is Expository, it “emphasizes verbal commentary and argumentative logic” often use a narrator. The voice is primary element in this type of documentary. However, if shooting a documentary or any video, I prefer to use images and footage to appeal audiences attention. In my opinion, visual images is more powerful than verbal.

I really like to use the Participatory Mode form in my documentary. Because our project is doing an interview, so it need interact with people. I think this mode is better than the observational mode, because the observational mode is more rough and shaky. When filmmakers of observational mode of documentary, they need to ignored by the surrounding environment. It more suitable for shooting outside, but in our project, we need to set up  and prepare all the equipment to shot our project, person sitting in the chair and use mic to record their voice, setting up the light. the participatory mode welcomes direct engagement between filmmaker and subject(s) ,the filmmaker becomes part of the events being recorded and impact the subject.

In addition, because this is documentary is about home, we need to explore people’s real feeling about home, guide them to say more about the feeling of home.  In this topic the Poetic mode cannot satisfy me.

The initiative post

We did vox pop and interview last week. It’s so much fun to do all of that, especially when we did the vox pop, we asked questions to  people who were walking on the street or staying in the canteen, asking them do a short interview, it was really fun. Because all of those vox pop video will be put in our documentary project.

I read  Modes of Documentary by Bill Nichols.

There are six modes of documentary, I think this is very helpful before we editing our documentary project, because those modes are very basic modes which teach and guide us to edit the documentary project. They give a clearly way for us to make a one modes of documentary.

I also read a book call ‘Documentary Filmmakers Handbook’ by Eckhardt,Ned. in this book, there are something which intrigues me. They introduce 12 basic elements of a documentary. I know every documentary contain basic structure and content elements, through theses elements may appear in different manifestations. So I pick up two elements which can use in my documentary project, and totally intrigues me. The first one element is The Opening and Title. Because documentaries are a form of storytelling, the beginning is important. You need to crap view’s interested, when they watch the opening, they can be interested. We can use music or subtitle in the opening, and because our this project is asking some questions about home, so I think we can use warm music and subtitle to appeal people’s attention. I know getting started is one of biggest challenges in a documentary, it alway take risk when we  design to use which opening can be perfect.

The second one is transition. Fade to/from Black

When one segment/section of the documentary ends, there is a fade to black, then from black into the next segment, The reason behind this technique is that the slow fades to and from black give the viewers time to reflect and prepare for a content shift. Historical documentaries often use this technique (Eckhardt, Ned 2011 pp. 36). well this is very good point, and I think in my documentary, will use a lot of this technique, because our project is shooting a footage  about “one word answer about home” so I’m trying to cut all of them one answer footage to put those footage together, and transition is very helpful to give viewers time to reflect. and make the whole footage more smooth.


Eckhardt, Ned (2011) ‘Documentary Filmmakers Handbook’ publisher McFarland & Company

Doubting Castle 3: Flipped Lecture (Triple-Aspects of Social Media)

This post is analyses the triple-aspects of social media ( for Lenny’s blog. it has some relevant for my group’s project( digital story-lego) as we are using social media to spread our stop motion project. What is mean social media is ‘triple-aspected’. Lenny explained

that, there three aspects being social media as a professional networking tool, a tool to market media projects and an emerging platform or aspects which cross for media project.  this social media thing and platform is very useful for our group members to think about how to use those media tool presenting the projects, because I have totally no idea about present our project and this is a good lesson for me to learn and analyses how to implement a social media strategy for a small production project. The example of the Toy Story 3 using Facebook, Twitter and Youtube campaign is a great example of a successful film franchise. Form very beginning, Disney and Pixar made it clear that individuals in their twenties would be  a big target for Toy Story 3. Although my group cannot able to make a more than one hour special cliffhanger screenings of our Lego project  and appeal college student to watch our small production project. We can use the similar strategy such as using Facebook to post our digital story product. Posting a targeted post. Using Twitter hashtag to research what kind of people like stop motion or what kind of people are interested in lego Etc.

The other ting inspired me is use your RSS feeds and hashtags to find out what is already going on about the topic of your production. It’s really helpful for us who are beginner of using Twitter, because we can hashtag our topic and discussion themes, The advice from Lenny say that making you social media searchable through the use of hashtags (Twitter, Instagram) and tag (blog). It is good way to connect with experts in your area, those experts have more experiences and their expertise skills which can help or inspired us. I think Twitter is good platform for beginner to search and to market your campaign. This link has some useful and interest information about using Twitter as an effective social tool to your own project.

Overall, in this article, I think Lenny trying to make clearly about using social media to develop professional networks instead posting meaningless tweets.

The abstract edit

Abstract video is non-narrative visual/sound experiences with no story and no acting. They rely on the unique qualities of motion, rhythm, light and composition inherent in the technical medium of cinema to create emotional experiences. (wikipedia)

When recording abstract audio, we need avoid to record some audio which we known well, like people’s dialogue or the footage, train’s sound. Our job is trying to record unique and incomprehensible audio. Using non-narrative sound experience with anything.

Abstract visual, I think we did great job in recording abstract video. Because abstract visual uses a visual language of shape, form and color and line to create a composition, so the video we recording is full of those basic abstract elements, the colour, line and unique form. Most of the previous work on emotion recognition focused on extracting emotions from visual or audio information separately, including both visual and audio from video clips, to recognize the human emotion. I know it’s very hard to use abstract video to have a deeply connection with human emotion.

Through abstract edit, we learn how to use mix two footage, how to use ‘fade in’ and fade out’ to mix two footage.I mean we can use effect control to adjust opacity. It’s really like Photoshopshop, putting two different image and change the layers transparent. We shooting the lobby of building 9, in that place, there is a bing screen and have a beautiful light effect. I’m happy to shoot that place, because it’s color and shape.

I also learn how to title to add the text in the video. Putting haiku is awesome idea in abstract video, because the Haiku can make your video be more fun and creating an emotional experiences  which have a strong connection with people. 


Jiajun Bu ; Chun Chen ; Nan Li (2004) ‘Audio-visual based emotion recognition – a new approach’ Vol.2 pp. II-1020 – II-1025

Abstract from GUO on Vimeo.


The Interpreter’s house 4: Hashtag research

Hashtag is very popular media tool which makes it easier for users to find specific messages of themes and contents. Hashtags are mostly used as discussion forums; any combination of characters led by a hash symbol is a hashtag, and any hashtag, if promoted by enough individuals, can “trend” and attract more individual users to discussion using the hashtag.

I use Twitter to hashtag something which relate to Indian animation and Indian stop motion. It’s really helpful to find the specific content about indian or short animation film about India. I hashtag Indian animation, there are many animation about Indian. The filmmakers did a really good job on it. For example, I find a short animation video call Pour I’ amour de Dieu (For the love of God). this video was shared in Vimeo. Through this video, I rethink something about our Indian’s project, I think our project is not clearly to show something directly about Indian. Taking this video as an example, there are not any dialogue in this video, but we can definitely sure these video relating to Indian. The first thing is that the filmmaker used images of Indian’s dressing style and then they use Indian’s Buddhism, so thought these two characters we can definitely understand this is a story talking about India. they use symbol about India.

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Because of this animation, I learn how to use some symbols of indian to display my Indian project, and make it more specific on Indian project.

In addition, our group is doing lego stop motion to display Indian project but I have not any experience about how to  make a stop motion film. So we took almost serval hundred of pictures, and then putting them together to making a roughly stop motion. well It’s not that bad but the video is not look smooth and delicate. I hashtag #Indian lego stop motion, there are not any relevant information about indian lego stop motion, but there are some stop motions which are inspired me a lot. For example the one stop motion call Rediffmail NG – OPENING DOORS, in this stop motion, I realize that the technique is not most important thing that you think about it. A good story and patience are primary things you need to consider. Although this video is not about lego stop motion, it also make sense. they do a lot work on it, many took thousand or ten thousand to finish these video.

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Delectable Mountains 6: Programming concepts 2

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This is very interesting program In this program they have some video which can teach you how to use basic computer knowledge to create something which you are interested. in this program  they have a set of instructions that tell a computer what to do. You can build things which  are from your ideas. For people who are professional in computer programming, this is a very good way for them to build something to help people’s live more easier. In this program, we trying to use code to join with Elsa and Anna to explore beauty and magic world. They use a new code way call  Blockly which is visual blocks to drag in and drag out in the program to create snowflake and patterns.

They teach you how to use code to create a simple line and also teaching you how to use different Blocklies create complex patterns and snowflake. As a beginner of this program, I didn’t feel stress in these program, may be this program was created for children, so they tried to make the whole process easier.The other funny thing is that  in the final step is to create any pattern of snowflake you want. so you can create  things yourself with your own sense of creativity.

The initiative post

When editing the video, I realize that new media technologies  is really important to improve the movies quality.

I read a book about Using new media technologies to transform film. The author Grieb, Margit says that In the last decade the term “new media has all not become synonymous with emerging digital technologies. New media emerge from within a historical, socio-political  so I strongly believe that new media should be used as improving the process of filmmaking, but sometimes New media technology may be confuse some people who are focusing on showing the new technique of new media. When people using new media to produce a film ,director cannot  just shot something meaningless, or illuminate how powerful of new media function as a technology in a film. Actually new media should be as a dynamic force in contemporary culture

I think about why most of the audiences are not interested in documentary,  even they don’t think documentary is a film.  Sometimes Filmmaker use large budget to produce a documentary with new media and even they use a lot of new technologies to shot a documentary, but it still can’t catch the audiences attention.  I think because producer or director they didn’t think about how to use culture thing to appeal the audiences, or they just showing the film visual effect. But  of course

New Media Technologies is really good thing to help filmmaker to edit and improve the quality of film

Prompt: Pawel Pawilkovski and Richard Leacock

This article was talking about why audience are not interested in documentaries.

The opinion of the author is that Most documentaries claim to be simply recording reality. however, the author claims that For me the point of making films is not to convey objective information about the world, but to show it as I see it and to find a form which is relevant.

Choice the subject is crucial for film making. But for the author is not just see what he see through its eyes. This is definitely true because when you making a film, we need to be professional whatever you shot, and most important thing is that the film need to be spiritual yourself and then it can be spiritual audiences.

the other ironic thing is that the future of the documentary it doesn’t look good because nowadays the documentary needs TV for its survival and yet it is TV that is killing the documentary, I think this is true, most of audience,like me, I watching TV don’t really think documentaries as films,I think it is just shooting the real thing .The form of documentary its look people with no time for film-making. we all like to watch novel or fiction film, the situation is true, we can see most of  the very successful movie is Hollywood sci-fi movies, this is a trend, and may be this is a reason why the TV want to kill the documentary, because TV industry need to use less and less money to appeal the audience attention. Unfortunately, the documentary is not the one which can appeal audience’s attention.

Richard Leacock

In this article, the author shares his own story about process of making a film. and the one of the thing his mention is that rules can be broken. well this is a good point, actually when we film a interview or making a film, we need to repeat the same sense foe serval time, so asking anyone to repeat an action or a line is good to avoid  mistakes. and sometimes, break rule is a way to be creative.

A good filmmaker need to be with professional skill and knowledge, because this quality can help filmmaker to be more creative and to explore new thinking ways